This is a class blog run by Dr. Carolina Acosta-Alzuru and her students in the course "Telenovelas, Culture and Society" at the University of Georgia during Spring 2011

Friday, January 28, 2011

The O.C.

After learning about the characteristics of telenovelas in class, many primetime dramas that I watch on television strongly share these traits. One of my all-time favorite teen dramas is “The O.C.” “The O.C.” was on air from 2003 to 2007, and it took place in Orange County, California. As we have learned in class, in the first episode of the telenovela, the two main characters meet for the first time. The first episode of “The O.C.” begins with Ryan, the protagonist, going to jail for robbery. His attorney is Sandy Cohen. Sandy realizes all the potential that Ryan has to offer, and he insists that Ryan stays with him and his family for some time so that Ryan can stop getting into dangerous situations. Ryan then stays with the Cohen family and becomes best friends with Sandy’s son, Seth.

Towards the end of the first episode, Ryan steps outside of the Cohen house to smoke a cigarette. There on the sidewalk next to him is Marissa. Immediately, the two make a strong connection. Marissa and Ryan’s plot line is especially interesting because Marissa comes from one of the wealthiest families in Orange County, whereas Ryan is abandoned from his alcoholic mother. The plot thickens when Marissa’s boyfriend Luke picks up Marissa in his truck. The love triangle is immediately born, which is a very important element of the telenovela. “The O.C.” series is completely addicting, just like a telenovela, because of family issues, multiple love triangles, many issues with the law, bankruptcy, and everyday issues that teens must deal with.

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