One Tree Hill: Danny Boy

ONE TREE HILL: 9.11 “Danny Boy”

No one can kill Dan Scott!

Well, while the tremor and power in the phrase from Dan resonated in a flashback last night, we found out that it wasn’t true: Dan Scott isn’t invincible. And so we said good-bye to the greatest villain in Tree Hill.

It was a great episode. I mean, you almost forget all the wrongdoing that Dan has done in his life. Yes, of course, we all remember Keith. How could you forget? It was by far one of the most shocking things — if not THE most shocking thing — ever seen in Tree Hill (and yes, I’m saying it was bigger than a limo flying off a bridge after a wedding). Even we started to wonder, is this the one thing we’ll remember about Dan Scott once he’s gone?

The flashbacks certainly filled in the holes, but the rescue mission for his son and the moments in the hospital are what really stay in our minds at the end of the episode. For years, we all wondered if Dan Scott would ever really be gone. And for years, we wanted him to! But now, at the end of this episode, could it be that so many fans who hated the man suddenly were turned to tears at his passing?

Ok, so I’m a sucker, but yes, I was one of them. Yes, I got all weepy (I’m pretty sure that Haley has some magical power that every time she squeezes out a tear, fifteen come out of my own face). And really, it was the death of Dan Scott that really reminded us all that One Tree Hill is ending. In all the drama and angst of wondering who was under that sheet and how Nathan would get home to his family and if Brooke would survive against Xavier, we almost forgot that we’re on a ticking clock that’s about to stop at a season finale. Dan’s passing was an incredible way to not only relive the past but close up a story, the first step in closing up the show.

Not that it didn’t have it’s cheese factor. Of course, part of me was skeptical as to why Dan and Nathan were suddenly at the River Court, considering that Dan had just been shot, had surgery, and was dying. But the writers actually played to their own ridiculousness. Heck, if we’re used to seeing a dog eat a heart, we can believe a terminal patient would make it to play one last round of basketball. But even I started to wonder how Dan could really play, right as he flatlined.

While it might have been mean, showing a scene of final closure that was all dreamed, it really helped us, the viewers. Yes, I was incredibly saddened that Dan never heard Nathan say he loved him, but I’ve been waiting since season three to find out why — just why — he took Keith’s life.

And what about Keith? Just when I thought the show was over, there was his ghost, ready to take Dan away. I’m not exaggerating when I said I jumped out of my chair and hopped around as I found out what Keith would do or say. But in the end, Dan found his redemption. He did enough good to at least try to outweigh his bad, and even became a “plus one,” as Keith put it.

Dan will never be the man Keith was, but he certainly left a new impression us, which is all he really wanted. Between family and viewers, didn’t Dan just want to keep a legacy?

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4 thoughts on “One Tree Hill: Danny Boy

  1. I think it’s really interesting how they kept the fans waiting around for so many seasons before really explaining what his motivation for the shooting was. It’s a risky tactic, I guess, because people could forget about it or stop caring, but if you stick with it, it must be feel really gratifying to hear.

  2. True. I could see more people being frustrated though. Keith was a HUGE character in the first few seasons, so it’s certainly not something that someone would forget about. I think it took at least a season for Dan to confess to doing it, too, so it was a pretty heavy storyline for a long time.

  3. I won’t beat a dead horse, like s9 is doing but overall this episode was the most flawed in the s9 arc. First you have Dan being this hateful, evil, vindictive, brother killing man for years! and while his evolution was there it did not have the depth it should have. His flashbacks to Keith should have happened 2 years ago, so maybe I would feel a bit of sorrow for him. Yes, he is a flawed character and he learned from his mistakes…he is only human.

    But the process of his forgiveness was rushed this season. He goes from being a villain for 7 years to a hero? I don’t buy it. He literally said he killed his brother out of jealousy. Dan could have had those things in his life, if he was not such a terrible guy. I am glad they had Keith forgive him, because that is who Keith was. But the episode as a whole was so inconsistent. I didn’t feel for Dan, I didn’t care about Clay and his made up amnesiac kid. Brooke and Julian threw in some good episodic drama in there, but it just did not have the heart the show used to. I long for the days where an episode would both enthrall you, and inspired you. I am glad they are wrapping things up, but it’s just not what it used to be. I am glad Dan found some peace, and his character has only lasted so long because Paul is such a captivating actor. But other than that it’s just spinning the wheels.

  4. This was a great episode. And I have to say, this season is a definite turn around from last season. It’s a great rap-up to the entire series. I’m so happy that I stuck around for the ending. It’s really worth it. And although I love Keith and know his death will never be justifiable, I also think Dan has come a LONG way!!!!

    P.S I loved the way they brought back old sayings and things from previous one tree hill seasons. Things like:
    -”always and forever”- haven’t heard that from Naley in awhile
    -the Rivercourt in general- that is where everything started
    -unkindness of a raven- excited to see what they’re doing with this
    -the part where Haley says “when Lydia grows up and asks about her Grandpa Dan, i’m gonna tell her how…..” which was originally a hate saying by Karen to Dan about Lily not growing up with a father. Love the switch
    -and there are more I just cant think of them right now!

    Some great and touching scenes:
    1. Of course Naley reuniting
    2. The whole ending scene with Dan and Nate
    3. The whole Dan and Keith scene
    4. Dan and Deb scene
    5. And one scene I boo-hooed on was the scene where Brooke and Julian were talking about how her dad doesn’t love her. For some reason that scene was really touching. I really felt the emotion from Brooke and the wisdom from Julian.
    6. And my last and favorite scene of this episode was the Haley and Dan scene. Just the fact of her bringing up Lucas was very realistic, because we all know Lucas is never gonna forgive Dan. And it was just an all around unexpected scene. Haley’s relationship with Dan has been so complex and I think she’s finally come to terms on how she wants to perceive Dan. When they showed her crying during his death, that actually touched me the most because I was just imagining the things that were going through her head.

    OVERALL GREAT EPISODE! sad to see one tree hill go (and Dan), but I’m glad they’re going out with a BANG!

    also, this was a nice tribute to Paul Johansson’s (Dan) mom who died from cancer recently. This is a really good time and a great opportunity for people to get involved in Relay for Life and support cancer patients!

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