Let’s do the time warp again. One Tree Hill creator Mark Schwahn has decided that he hasn’t had enough flash forwards, so season 7, premiering tonight at 8pm on the CW, will mark the second time the show jumps into the future, though this time it will only be for 14 months instead of four years.
BuddyTV spoke with the One Tree Hill mastermind to find out what’s new for season 7. Schwahn talked about the themes of this season, how the new characters will be introduced, what’s going on with Dan Scott and the possibility of a Lucas and Peyton return.
The Theme of Season 7
According to Schwahn, one of the central themes of this season will be “When you’re someone who’s in the spotlight, what are your responsibilities and are the rules different.”
Nathan is now a famous professional basketball star, Haley is making a new album, Brooke is an international clothing designer and Julian is a globe-trotting movie producer. One Tree Hill has matured, and now the show will look at fame and how it affects the more person stories fans are used to seeing.
14 Months Later
While Schwahn believes this flash forward is important to get to the next chapter in the characters’ lives, he also admits to a more practical reason, namely the fact that Jackson Brundage, who plays Jamie, is a 9-year-old who was playing a 5-year-old, so jumping forward in time was also a way to keep using him.
Schwahn also didn’t want to inundate fans with a ton of new characters all coming in at once, so the flash forward also provides some license for these characters. He said that Robert Buckley’s character, Nathan’s agent Clay, has been with the family for almost that entire time, so when we meet him, he’ll be a part of the family. However, Haley’s sister Quinn will show up for the first time, so it gives the writers two different ways of introducing viewers to new characters.
In season 7, not only is Dan Scott alive, but he’s “in better health than ever.” Schwahn is also interested in many of the questions fans have been asking, and promises some, like the ones he listed below, will be addressed.
-“Is his progress as a human being legitimate?”
-“Does he simply have a dark heart and that’s who he’s going to be no matter what?”
-“Is it possible for a guy like Dan to find love again?”
Mouth and the Gang
One of the key lessons Schwahn has taken away from recent seasons is that not every character needs to be featured in every episode and not every storyline has to be neatly wrapped up within an episode. He says that characters like Mouth may only appear in a single scene, but it may be important to his own storyline and will be serialized throughout the season.
Speaking of Mouth, Schwahn promises that he will have an interesting story in season 7 centered around his dual roles as a sports reporter and Nathan’s friend, and what happens when the two are put against one another.
Lucas and Peyton
According to Schwahn, there is no animosity regarding the departure of Chad Michael Murray and Hilarie Burton, and if he could get them, he would still want to bring them back. In fact, Schwahn told us that he was even thinking of a specific storyline that would feature Lucas and Peyton, so fans may still see them again.
John Kubicek, BuddyTV Senior Writer
(Image courtesy of the CW)