For the small minority of people who perhaps never watched The O.C. (please, rectify this immediately), the drama essentially follows Ryan Atwood (played by Ben McKenzie) who comes from a broken home. After landing himself in a precarious position, he’s adopted by Sandy and Kirsten Cohen, where he’s forced to adjust to a new life in Orange County alongside foster brother Seth (Adam Brody). And it doesn’t help that his next-door neighbour is the social “It” girl everyone wants to be or date, Marissa Cooper (Mischa Barton) whose best friend Summer Roberts (Rachel Bilson) is the object of Seth’s affection, and has been for many years.
Rumours of a potential reboot began with Instagram account Deux Moi receiving blind items suggesting a revival of the series was already in the works. Nameless sources shared emails which suggest the four seasons of The O.C. were being removed by July to head to HBO Max, as the streaming service has plans to revive the series. And, if all that wasn’t enough to excite you, HBO apparently wants some of the original cast to return.
The source wrote: “The idea of a reboot was off the table for most of the past decade mainly bc Ben McKenzie & Willa Holland (Marissa’s little sister Kaitlin) had series-regular roles in shows filming far out of town (NYC/Vancouver), Josh Schwartz (creator/showrunner) didn’t think it could ‘work’ w/o Ryan in particular (esp. since the show never really recovered after Marissa was killed off.”
The source even went on to suggest a possible plot for the robot series, saying: “There’s also already a rough sketch circulating of where the show would pick up; Seth & Summer, more or less happily married in Newport and living in their old ‘hood’ (actually filmed in Malibu but nvm lol), with their kid(s) - could be one or two - starting out as freshmen at Harbor.”
While it’s hard to say whether these rumours are based on any merit, some of the cast have suggested they’d be onboard to reprise their roles. Rachel Bilson revealed in an August 2019 interview that she would “absolutely be open to it.”
“The O.C. gave me everything. I love it and I’m still super close to [showrunners] Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, so I’d follow them wherever they go. If they backed it, I’d 100 per cent be up for it,” she said.
But while Bilson might be keen, Adam Brody (Seth) has said he wouldn’t be excited about such a prospect. “I would imagine at some point they will use the property to do in some way, and I’m all for [it]. I don’t mind these reboots or even remakes,” he said in an interview. “All that said, I’m not gonna be [involved]. I don’t have any interest in revisiting my high school character. And frankly speaking for Ben McKenzie, I know he doesn’t either.”
Whether the show will get the reboot treatment remains to be seen. In the meantime, we’ll simply be watching re-runs for the hundredth time.