One Tree Hill On the Bubble: Keep Or Cut?

By mid-May, broadcast TV bigwigs will be making tough calls as to which shows will return for the 2011-12 season, and which won’t. To complement the “Renew Our Show!” Bracket Tournament, TVLine is singling out select “bubble” shows to survey their prospects. Next up is a series that might be looking at its last branch: The CW’s One Tree Hill.

THE SHOW: One Tree Hill (The CW)

THE TIME SLOT: Most recently, Tuesdays at 8/7c.

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THE CASE FOR KEEPING: Ask yourself this (and try to answer honestly): Can you imagine The CW without the long-running One Tree Hill? I thought not. The series has become a network staple, surviving countless time slot-swaps over eight seasons, yet still managing to deliver inventive story arcs for a majority of its ever-expanding cast. No, it never reached the level of acclaim achieved by its WB predecessor/inspiration, Dawson’s Creek, but the fact remains:  Tree Hill has successfully reinvented itself not once but twice during its run. First, it braved a four-year time jump (avoiding what oft can be trite college stories). Then, come Season 6, the show overcame the hurdle that was the departure of core couple Lucas and Peyton (played by Chad Michael Murray and Hilarie Burton). The series’ other original players — Sophia Bush, Bethany Joy Galeotti and James Lafferty — remain interesting and relevant in this tale of small-town heroes. And who wouldn’t like to watch Naley’s new baby grow up, or witness what’s ahead for Brooke and Julian (Austin Nichols)? After devoting eight years to the series, it’s safe to say fans would stick around for one or two more.

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THE CASE FOR CUTTING: Even at its best, One Tree Hill is simply not the show it once was. Things haven’t been the same since Murray and Burton exited, and while the show was able to somewhat smooth over that bump in the road, it did so by adding a few too many newbies — several of which add little to the canvas (and sometimes nothing at all). Additionally, the series that once prided itself on young adults “living the dream” now seems to insist that in life, nothing is simple or ever going to go right. That isn’t a particularly fun message week-in, week-out. Since the characters we truly care about are right now in a good spot — and (SPOILER ALERT!) with the Season 8 finale set to feature multiple time jumps, effectively advancing big stories — it may be a prudent time to say our goodbyes.

Hit the comments section to make your own case for keeping or cutting One Tree Hill.

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187 Comments
  1. Liz says:

    I used to love it, but all things must come to an end. They need to let it go and move on.

    • evs says:

      It was a coming of age show for a lot of us. But at this point it needs to be let go of.

      Dawsons creek was far better in several categories yet OTH outlasted it

    • tvaddict70 says:

      i agree…should have ended 2 years ago

    • lorna says:

      i AGREE LIZ. end this and nikita. i wish they wouldnt have canceled lux, that show was incredible. oth has sucked most of s6, s7 was terrible, and s8 is ehhh.

      • Jamie says:

        Nikita is an awesome show. It started off slow, but it got so much better. I think it has great chances actually of getting renewed, but I agree with ending OTH.

        • brenda says:

          the original Nikita (with Peta Wilson) was so much better. when i hear Nikita was coming to CW i was hoping they were going to re run the original series.

    • shawna says:

      why should it end , daytime soaps have been on for years. People still enjoy those. If you don’t like it stop watching the show, but don’t prevent those that do enjoy it from watching by taking it off the air.

  2. Melissa says:

    I would love to see one more season!

  3. Alyssa says:

    please cancel this show. Like Liz said, I used to love this show, but it’s time for it to come to an end!

  4. Alberto Del Rio says:

    Honestly the show has been slowing down, but it deserves a 6- 13 episode final season just so we all know its the last season ahead of time like smallville this year, and they can produce the best last cpl of seasons to close the story right. So i say move it to fridays with supernatural for a WB friday for a cpl months next september.

    • anon says:

      Totall agree. It deserves a “last season” like Smallville has/had. I’d love to see the show end right and give it a good send off.

      I’d say keep for at least one more season!

    • anon says:

      Totally agree. It deserves a “last season” like Smallville has/had. I’d love to see the show end right and give it a good send off.

      I’d say keep for at least one more season!

  5. Brock says:

    The best thing they did was eliminate Dan Scott from the canvas. Once they said goodbye to that lump of hate-filled bile the show was able to focus on its younger cast – thankfully.

    It’s always been a deliciously twisted soap (the dog eating Dan’s replacement heart…) and I think it’s still got some legs left in it yet!

    KEEP!

    • Alex says:

      Dan Scott has been one of the most awesome characters on OTH and Paul Johannsson is clearly the best actor on this show! The show is BETTER with him. It’s probably time to end.

  6. JJ says:

    Get rid of it! It should have been done after 6..or even after 4. It changed way too much from what the show was about, brotherhood, the underdogs, music, friendships, BASKETBALL.

  7. Alberto Del Rio says:

    i think the complete opposite brock, once dan left there was no drama and it got real boring real fast. honestly who cares about mouth millie chase alex chuck. NO1

  8. Jordan says:

    I have been a fan since the beginning, and in my opinion this season is one of my favorites. So, yes I would love to see a season 9.

  9. Midori says:

    CANCEL IT!

    It’s been 8 seasons, which is several seasons too many. Cancel it, and everythnig else besides Supernatural and Vampire Dairies and add Fringe and Chicago Code and start anew network.

  10. Anna says:

    As long as none of the core 3 leaves this season, I am definitely hoping for another season. Yes, the show has changed since the beginning, but they couldn’t stay in high school forever. I personally love the mixture of heart and crazy drama this show has delivered over the years.

    • Meg says:

      Well put! I agree 110%. I think people need to get over the fact that Lucas (Chad) & Peyton (Hilary) left, and yes season 5 may of been not so great, but the since then it has been amazing and done a fantastic job, better than I imagined!

  11. Callie says:

    SEASON 9!!!!!! :)

  12. Josh Byron says:

    I used to love One Tree Hill, and I still kind of do. But, honestly, I think it should just end. I mean, all good things do come to an end. And I’ve already been preparing myself all this year for the series finale…so, I really do hope it comes to an end. I just hope Peyton and Lucas appear at least for a second in the series finale (as was posted a few months ago, if I remember correctly).

    • Nat says:

      You’ve captured my sentiments near perfectly. I’ll always be happy to see another season – I think they’re characters with plenty of story to tell – but in some ways I wouldn’t be too upset if they called it a day. It feels like it’s time.

  13. dq18 says:

    I REALLY thought this show came out when I was in high school, which sadly enough would be reason to cut it in and of itself. It did premiere later, but not by a very large margin. I applaud it for lasting this long, but really it’s probably better to go peacefully when people still seem interested than to be dragged off kicking and screaming looking pathetic.

  14. AlisaSterner says:

    I think OneTreeHill deserves one more season, but to go into it stating that it is a FINAL season. The fans are very loyal and deserve to be prepared for the ending of the show. It is not fair to people who have watched the show for 8 years loyally to have the show run a series finale, without knowing it. I vote for one more season, even if it’s only a 13 episode season.

  15. Jamie says:

    I do believe it’s time to end. And I think the season finale sounds like a series finale with what I’m reading.

    The main 3 aren’t even in negotiations – Which they would be by now if Dawn wanted it back.

    If they bring it back it needs a final season announcement and bringing back old characters sporadically like Smallville did.

  16. Britney says:

    Kill it, for the sake of humanity. I watch out of obligation to some favorite actors (Sophia and Joy), but I just can’t stand it any longer. The show hasn’t been the same since the original time jump (forget Lucas and Peyton leaving, that made it somewhat better, IMO), and with all the time jumps in the finale, just end it already. And if not, at least let Sophia and Joy be free.

  17. Sharon says:

    Shantel (Quinn) wants a season 9! And she gives details about the finale!

    http://ology.com/screen/exclusive-interview-shantel-vansanten-one-tree-hill

  18. Anthony Kerty says:

    CUT. It’s had a great run and it’s better to leave while you’re still kind of wanted than being actually cancelled for disastrous ratings.

  19. JenH says:

    As a viewer that has grown up with this show and watched since the beginning, I understand why it may be time to let go. I agree that the show has changed but I don’t think it’s for the worse. I don’t need another nighttime soap, as this was when it first started. I don’t need to watch more psychos move on to the lane (uh hmmm, Desperate Housewives), I don’t need them to be in constant danger. Yes, OTH has had their share of psychos (nannies, fathers, tennis players that look like someone’s deceased wife, stalker Derek…) but the show is really finding a new ground by not focusing on all the insane things but the regular day stuff. I enjoy that Nathan is finding his footing outside of being the sports star but helping other talented people. I like that Haley loves being a mom and every once in a while goes to work at the record label or writes a tune. I love Brooke finally finding her match and finally being able to have a child soon (albeit not bio but it’s still her baby). The show has settled into a show that isn’t always about the extremes as it used to be and I like that. I don’t need all that ruckus any more. I want new shows to shock and awe me. OTH is not about that for me any more. It’s about the characters not the outrageous and ridiculous situations that somehow finds them. It’s now more character-driven a la Parenthood (I know, sacrilege things I am stating!). Is the acting perfect? No. Is the writing perfect? No. Are some episodes just campy? Sure. But I’m OK with that.

    If the show leaves, I’ll be OK. I won’t be as upset because we have had plenty of time with this show. But I like the comfort of the show. I like seeing it on the schedule and knowing that I’ll be entertained and know what to expect. The show is not on par with Two and a Half Men for me, which I have always thought was a horrible series. OTH has had its ups and downs. I actually don’t like the idea of several time jumps in the season/series finale. It scares me because I find them to be unsatisfying. I like the journey to the end, not just flipping the page to the end of the book and seeing where they all land and not how they got there.

    My happy thought with if the show is gone is that Sophia Bush could move on to bigger and better things. Of all the cast members, she’s the biggest star for me. She’s the one I tune in for, for Brooke and for Sophia. I want great things to happen for her. I’d like to see her do other work besides OTH. I think she has the chops to be other characters. She’s done some other work but I think she could get past the “oh, you were on OTH” and really become a star a la Michelle Williams from Dawson’s Creek. She have always been too tightly connected to that show but when she makes other movies, she soars. Sophia is a true actress, not some popcorn smaltzy thing and I want her to succeed.

  20. Kelsey says:

    I’ve been a loyal dedicated fan since the beginning. I love it. I love the characters. I love the story lines. Mark has said from day one that he wants 200 episodes. We want him to be happy. We’ve made it longer than most shows ever think about. In my opinion, 5 episodes isn’t enough to end it for good. I want a season 9. Even if it is only 13 episodes. Season 5 only had 18. We’ve fought year after year and we’ve prevailed everytime. One more season is all we’re asking for. So, I say KEEP!! <3

    • OTH23 says:

      I so agree!! 5 episodes is so not enough, we need at least another season to end it. I am one of those fans who will stick around till the end. As long as the 3 main characters stays. We already lost Luke and Peyton. So i’m hoping for another season, or even two. After all these years i think that the actors, and the fans deserve to know it before the last season is there. Not when theres like 4 episodes left. They can’t end a show so quick. We need to see a lot of old characters come back, especially Luke and Peyton. <3 And OTH is the CW's best show!
      WE NEED A SEASON 9!!!

  21. jeannine says:

    i really would love to see another season and my life would be over without one! i cant believe people are against it! this show is amazing and i couldnt live without it!

  22. Aidan says:

    CUT IT! OMG CUT IT NOW! Way back when One Tree Hill was one of the best shows on television, now its one of the biggest jokes on television. The finale 4 finale was SO PERFECT! If it would have ended then it would have went down in history as one of the best teen shows… but it didnt. As the season went on the storyline and show itself got sloppy and random from crazy psycho’s to little kid scavenger hunts. Take it out of its misery! I’ll just have to find a way to convince myself that the show ended after the 4th season.

  23. Dani says:

    Honestly, I haven’t been as interested since Chad Michael Murray and Hilarie Burton simply disappeared from the show. They were the main reason I was ever into the show in the first place! It has definitely turned into more of an adult soap opera. Even in the 5th season, when they were all supposed to be 21, they were all acting like old people already. 21 year old people go out with their friends, they drink, they have fun, etc. It just seems that the show has gotten so serious with one catastrophe after another. If everyone stays, and some are brought back, I think another, final, season could do well.

  24. Leigh says:

    END IT!!

    The CW needs to overhaul its programming. The only show I watch on CW is Gossip Girl, and I’m only in favor of one more season for it. So, they can wrap up all the storylines, reunite Chuck&Blair in EPIC fashion & give them their well-deserved endgame(EPIC CHAIR WEDDING!!!), and allow it to end with dignity & grace.

    OTH is a decent show, but it is WAY past its expiration date. Many of the CW shows are in the same situation. The network needs revamping!!

  25. EmelineOTH says:

    Keep One Tree Hill please, OTH is the best serie ever !
    All One Tree Hill ‘s fans want to continue this adventure, with this wonderful and amazing actors like Bethany, James, Sophia, Austin, Shantel, Robert, Jana, Stephen, Lee ………
    We want a season 9 for continue to watch lots of amazing episode !

    Please please please :) Save and Keep One Tree Hill !

    And sorry if you don’t understand this comment and also sorry for spelling mistakes but I’m french !

  26. Kay says:

    FOR THE LOVE OF KEITH, PLEASE END THIS SHOW. End. it. now. before you destroy the legacy of a once great show forever (if they didn’t already do that will psycho nanny and dead ex-wife doppelganger storylines.) This show has become a punchline. RIP Ravens. RIP Letyon.

  27. Well says:

    I would rather see them keep OTH and dump Gossip Girl and 90210, considering that OTH beats them in ratings most nights. But I think the show deserves a final season, like Smallville is getting.

    Wouldn’t it be funny if after all this promotion for Smallville it does well for the final episode in ratings and the CW pulls a 7th Heaven and renews it. LMAO

    But seriously give OTH a 13 episode order and call it the final season. It does deserve that much…

  28. Rashad says:

    I really hope it gets canceled. One Tree Hill SUCKS now. It is SO BORING. After season 6, the show became terrible.

  29. Christa says:

    One Tree Hill deservrs an original series finale like Smallville. They have showed us that they can make a 4 year jump and loose 2 of their main characters and still give us good storylines. Paul Johansen may not be there as Dan Scott but he is still very involved since he directs a lot of the episodes. So for me at least 1 more. KEEP

  30. Samantha says:

    I would definitely keep watching if they were to give it another season or two, but if they ended it this season, and ended it right, I would be okay with that. It’s been great despite their obstacles, but I wouldn’t want to see it go downhill by hanging on for too long.

  31. Matt says:

    YES KEEP IT!!!!

  32. ana says:

    I love oth!! it deserves a final season! I don’t care if it is of 6 episodes…just a season we all know is the FINAL one!! Just like GREEK did!

  33. Melanie says:

    Ok One Tree Hill fans, I have to be honest I have lost so much sleep over OTH not coming back. Or, if One Tree Hill should come back at all. Well, after going to Wilmington this December (2010) I fell in love with the locals, the area, the history!!! I would love to see OTH come back for ONE more final season! Yes, I said it bring it back for a S9 13 episodes! We need to see the final stories tied up (I.E. Lucas, Peyton, Dan, Deb, Naley, Naley’s Baby, Brooke & Juilian, Brooke & JUilian’s Baby) ETC. It needs it’s FINAL send off!!! It’s FINAL SEASON!!! We the fans need to be totally prepared for it’s FINAL Season! One more to go and then let it be after S9!!! Thank You! :)

  34. Toby says:

    Only a final Season 9!! Keep it!!!!!!

  35. C.C. says:

    I love OTH and will continue to watch it as long as it’s on! If they do feel like they want to end it, I think that they should go into the season knowing that the entire time. That way, it can get the send off it deserves rather than trying to tie it up too fast. The only shows I watch on the CW are OTH and Supernatural, so if OTH gets canceled, I’ll only watch that channel an hour a week. Surely they want to keep viewers instead of lose them. None of the other shows interest me in the least.

  36. Ang says:

    Cancel it. It’s a shell of it’s former self. The remaining original cast members want out and what’s the point of watching some newbies? The cast salaries take up a huge chunk of change that could go towards new, fresh shows. The CW needs fresh blood and variety into their lineup. Give another show a chance.

    • Well says:

      And what new shows would that be, all the crappy ones they have in development… Sorry I don’t care for Zombie Sisters, a young Doc, a Young Lawyer, a young version of Cagney and Lacey, a charmed remake, or another Highway to Heaven type show.

      So please tell me which fresh new shows are you talking about lol

      Look I am not a OTH fan at all, but the show does deserve at least 13 episodes for a final season considering it does better than GG and 90210 in ratings. LOL

      • evs says:

        I’m seriously curious, what are you like when you are a fan of the show? (I really mean it, no sarcasm or anything)

        OTH has drained every drop of a creative juice. I say if you want closure give it one double ep after the finale and just let go of it. If Gilmore Girls and Veronica Mars could bite the dust, One Tree Hill sure as h*ll can

        • Well says:

          As far as what I am like when I am a fan of a show. I am dedicated a fan who watches the show through the good and bad, cheers the show on and tears up when it ends. ;) I never give up on my shows.

          Heck I felt L&O the original that was canned by NBC should have been given better treatment than it got, and I wasn’t a fan of that show.

          As long as the show gets some closure then fine, double it up- give it 13 episodes it’s all good.

          I just hate it when shows don’t get the closure they deserve, and just canceling it out right won’t get viewers to turn back in to your new shows… JMO of course…

  37. Laura says:

    Seriously….it is awesome and should be kept going! It is funny and serious and simply and complicated….it is everything that is right about tv shows and is highly entertaining!!

  38. Maureen says:

    I’ve watched this show for 8 years and would like to see at least a 13 episode order just to be sure it gets a proper send-off. I’d hate for there to be any lingering stories at the end of the season. Fans have invested way too much time in the series at this point for it to go out like that. It survived this long…give it the farewell it deserves. Just my opinion.

  39. Michele says:

    Strong cast who play characters with interesting ties to one another. Writing that at times is solid and at times has been no worse the 85% of everything else on TV. Keep it. I would much rather hang with the characters of OTH then most of what’s on for the 18-35 demos. This show would be in much better condition ratings wise if they hadn’t tried to set it against Glee on Tuesday nights so don’t punish it for managing to maintain any viewership against that Fox juggernaut.

  40. ingmar says:

    I love this show and grew up with it. That said, it’s pretty clear this is their last season. The last remaining core members said so ( Joy, Sophia ). Plus it is clear they thread this season finale as a series finale. Rating-wise it wouldn’t even be on the bubble but the show is ending on own terms and that rocks!

  41. Chantelle says:

    One Tree Hill is the best thing ever. It affects so many people and influences their lives, mine included, making it so much more than just a TV show. Teens such as myself have grown up with these characters and actors and will support them forever. Although I don’t live in the US, from what I understand it is still one of the highest rated shows on the network despite it being on its 8th season and I know it’s always rated very highly over here in the UK. Just when we think Mark couldn’t possibly think of anything else to cover on the show, he does. He never lets us down. I trust Mark Schwahn and everyone who works on the show. I know they love it and would not do anything to ruin it. I honestly believe when they feel the show is at it’s end, they will end it. At this point, I think fans should respect that. Saying that, if the cast and crew and wanting and willing to make more seasons of One Tree Hill then I say that’s great and it should not be pulled!! Let the show go on for as long as the people involved want to keep making it. They know what’s best.
    If the network cut the show at the end of this season, I will be gutted that other shows (worse shows) are continuing. However, if the producers and writters decide to stop the show at the end of this sseason, I WILL respect that. This show will be with me for as long as I live, I can honestly say that. But lets do all within our power to SAVE ONE TREE HILL !!

  42. Brad says:

    OTH: Don’t cut it… KILL IT! Slaughter it. Destroy it. I can’t believe it’s been on the air this long. It joins my “That’s Still On?” Club along with Two and a Half Men and House.

  43. sarah says:

    time for oth to end!!! Hate it now and they have been ignoring their biggest couple, Naley.

    • lorna says:

      are you serious? its become the scott family, and im bored. havent cared for naley in long time, i cant stand haley and everyone kissing her but.

  44. Corinne says:

    I still love OTH, I will watch it till the bitter end. As long as Sophia, Joy & James stay with it. It is still a great show and hello CW, GG & 90210 are horrible….stick with the show that actually has some quality to it!

  45. dvh7711 says:

    Jesus! Cut it already!

  46. hayleys says:

    This show must stay on, excuse the pun! As much as it has run its course, I still can’t stop watching it. I wanna see Naleys new baby grow up! I wanna see a Quinn and Clay wedding and I wanna see Brooke become a mum! After all the shows ups and downs, it needs a final series to ty it up nicely, maybe skipping a few years to see Jamie playing basketball as a Raven!

    • Sandra says:

      I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE OTH.. you cant expect to stay in high school forever. I like seeing them grow up.. yeah lucas and peyton are gone.. but people grow up and move away.. its life. get over it!

  47. onno says:

    KEEP IT I just can’t imagine a tv season without the girls from OTH and yes at least one final season to wrap everything up have peyton and lucas back and have a nice happilly ever after ending ooh and get the fullcast a job at some other shows

  48. Sophie says:

    One Tree Hill has had a great run, and I love the show, Mark, and the cast to pieces, but I think it’s time. I would love for this show to continue on forever, but the actors are getting older and I think they’re really anxious to pursue other projects. That being said, I have no doubt that the cast is grateful for the opportunity they’ve been given. Wilmington, NC won’t be the same without One Tree Hill, for sure, but it’s definitely better to end on a relatively high note rather than…well you get the point. I wish they could bring everyone back for one last hoorah two-hour finale, but I know that’s impossible, but I have no doubt that whatever Mark Schwahn has planned, it will be great.

  49. rachel says:

    Please keep the show! this show has taught me so much about how important love friendship and overal just listening to your heart and following through with your instincts. I will always love this show it will always be my favourite if they cancel it i really hope mark continues to write books like they did with full house after that show stopped after 8 years maybe tree hill can do the same!

  50. BearDogg-X says:

    Cut it. Like I said in the OTH vs. Nikita “Save Our Show” Tournament, liked OTH, but it’s time for OTH to end. Sophia, Joy, and James are said to be ready to move on to future endeavors(Joy gave birth to a baby girl about a month ago and wants to focus more on her music career), and if the CW’s stupid enough to continue OTH without the remaining core three, then the show’s going to be losing quite a few viewers(some fans on other forums have said that they wouldn’t watch anymore if Joy, James, and Sophia do leave, more so if Joy & James leave).

    Let the show end on its own terms(as it appears it will with the season finale) rather than continue to beat the dead horse until it turns into dust like the CW did with 7th Heaven(only good thing that garbage show ever did was launch Jessica Biel’s career).

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