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'The O.C.' nostalgia recap: The 4 most atomic moments in 'The Risky Business'

Season 2 | Episode 18 | “The Risky Business” | Aired Apr 7, 2005

The O.C.’s infamous Atwood brothers have been reunited at long last, and Trey seems to be following in his little brother’s straight-and-narrow footsteps. But when the Newpsies throw an oh-so Newport Beach black-tie “yard sale” in a country club ballroom, Trey clocks the highest ticket item that will get him out of a jam. Yeah, that’s right. Out of jail for a hot second, and he’s already in a jam. It’s in the Atwood genes.

It’ll take a dash of risky business for the Core Four to keep the yard sale afloat, Trey on the right side of a jail cell, and all of their relationships from circling the drain. All in a day’s work in The O.C.; there’s nothing Ryan, Marissa, Seth, and Summer can’t handle in the four most atomic moments in “The Risky Business.”

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

1. Seth and Zach re-team for Atomic County.
These boys don’t learn. Summer laid down the law after comic books, particularly semiautobiographical comic books, threatened to demolish the real characters of Atomic County. It’s fair to ask for the dissolution of Seth and Zach’s creative partnership, but to make them swear off comics for good? A little extreme there, Summer.

Seth and Zach decide to auction off a fraction of their comic book collections for the yard sale (because back issues of X-Men go hand-in-hand with timeless 18th-century ottomans). As if Carter, Kirsten’s work crush du jour, hasn’t done enough, he convinces Seth and Zach to pursue publishing a graphic novel rather than a series of comics. Seth chickens out when it comes to asking Summer about Atomic County, but he and Zach have already accepted a meeting with Carter’s contact at a graphic-novel publisher. When Summer is presented with the idea of a re-team, she intimidates them into promising their partnership will be different this time. Only time will tell.

2. Trey steals Tom Cruise’s crystal egg.
Old habits die hard for the Atwood brothers. But can you blame Trey for wanting to snag some cash from Newport one-percenters so he can rent an apartment and have a fresh start? Okay, so maybe theft isn’t the recommended means to a fresh start when you’ve just been sprung from the slammer for stealing cars. At least it shows ingenuity? I joke, but Trey doesn’t have many options when Marissa takes him to Alex’s old place and he flunks the background check. He doesn’t want to be a burden on anyone, and for reasons no one really knows, he’s a prideful guy. He’ll come up with the down payment on his own, even if it means pawning Tom Cruise’s crystal egg. (All right, it’s not Tom Cruise’s crystal egg, but the $10,000 glass oval was the very one featured in Risky Business.)

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

3. Ryan and Marissa and Trey: Does an Atwood love triangle bloom?
It sounds preposterous, but do we really expect anything to be out of bounds for Trey at this point? He’s lonely, a little depressed, and Marissa helped him out. It doesn’t take a degree in trigonometry to know that a crush will develop. But before we can hypothesize the likelihood of Marissa trading Atwoods, we have to dial it back to Marissa bunking at the Cohens’ and all the Marissa-Ryan tension that unearthed.

After Alex and rediscovering their friendship, Marissa and Ryan elect to take things slow rather than jump right back into a relationship, Seth and Summer style. Taking it slow doesn’t really translate to moving in together, but when Julie Cooper jets off to another country, what can you do? Marissa works overtime to guard Ryan’s feelings when it comes to betting on Trey. It would break his heart knowing that his brother was lying and can’t get back on his feet. Even though Ryan and Marissa have a moment at the end of the episode, it’s the stolen glances between Marissa and Trey that point in the direction of a Marissa-Trey affair. Trouble, trouble, trouble.

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

Warner Bros. TV/CW Seed/screengrab

4. The Core Four save the charity auction.
Like an issue of Atomic County, the Core Four band together like the superheroes they are and save the yard sale. Marissa and Summer stall the auction while Ryan and Seth schlep out to buy back the crystal egg. Seth distracts the buyers while Ryan sneaks in the back to swipe the egg and make a run for it. On the brink of being caught, Ryan throws the egg to Seth, and he catches it just like Tom Cruise in Risky Business. Ryan leaves the money and it’s back to the auction, where Summer makes $60 for her shoes while stalling. The egg finds a new home, and Trey gets his money. Marissa auctioned off a silver tea set from her basement, which happened to belong to Kirsten’s mother. But here’s the real question: Is Marissa helping Trey for Ryan or for Trey?

Episode Mixtape:

  • “Banquet” by Bloc Party
  • “Marvo Ging” by The Chemical Brothers
  • “Play” by Flunk
  • “Legendary” by Lou Barlow
  • “Sister Jack” by Spoon
  • “Love On A Real Train” by Tangerine Dream

All four seasons of The O.C. are available to stream on CW Seed and Hulu Plus.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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