If you don’t think Summer Roberts from “The O.C.” deserves some prime real estate in the TV Characters Hall of Fame, then, as Newport Beach’s resident HBIC would say, ew.
Of course, she was brought to life by Rachel Bilson, who was originally set to appear in just a few episodes, until she stole the goddamn show with her runway walk in the pilot.
Somewhere after Marissa shot Trey and before Ryan’s fledgling cage-wrestling career, the quality of the show dipped, but Summer always remained in fashion. And, like true fans, we watched till the bitter, earthquake-ridden end.
Still, when “The O.C.” was canceled after a shortened fourth season in 2007, a generation mourned the loss of a series that taught them to fear Tijuana alleys and cry on cue to the song “Hallelujah.” The final season was also, of course, the first without Marissa Cooper (Mischa Barton), who died in the arms of Ryan Atwood after a fiery car crash. Cue a season of brooding.
According to Bilson, the death of Marissa Cooper was one of the reasons behind the cancellation.
“I think that we went through a lot of storylines on ‘The O.C.’ We covered a lot in the amount of time we had,” Bilson told HuffPost during a Build Series interview. “I’m sure that it was a part of it because everyone loved Marissa.”
“The characters that [creator Josh Schwartz] created really stayed with people,” she added. “It was such a fun show to do and I’m just happy that it still resonates.”
Bilson coincidentally finds herself in a similar situation on “Nashville,” which killed off lead actress Connie Britton halfway through the current season. Bilson recently joined the CMT hit as a series regular, playing Alyssa, a Silicon Valley marketing expert who knows absolutely nothing about music, but a lot about getting things done.
″‘The O.C.’ is different than ‘Nashville’ because they really revamped it,” Bilson said, comparing the two shows. “There’s so many different characters and storylines that have true fans holding on to that it has a longer life span.”
You might be able to take the girl out of “The O.C.,” but apparently you can never escape Luke of “Welcome to the O.C., bitch” fame — Chris Carmack, that is — because he also stars on “Nashville” as Will, an openly gay singer.
“I hadn’t seen him in, probably, 12 years. He’s just the nicest guy and it was like no time has passed,” Bilson said. ”[We reminisced] a little, but he has a new baby now, so it was mostly talking about kids’ stuff.”
As for getting the rest of the Newport Harbor gang back together, Bilson says there haven’t been any official conversations about a reboot, even while many of the series’ contemporaries are being brought back to life.
“I think that Josh let that book close. We leave it where it is. Sometimes when you bring [shows] back maybe you’ll be disappointed and maybe it won’t be what you’re expecting. You can still have that nostalgic feeling toward the thing you like so much.
“RocketDog flip-flops and denim skirts should stay in the early 2000s and never return.”
Watch Rachel Bilson full Build interview below.