One Tree Hill “Danny Boy” Review

One Tree Hill Danny Boy
It’s the end of an era, folks. In this week’s episode of One Tree Hill, “Danny Boy,” Dan Scott…father, businessman, politician, murderer, convict and villain…died surrounded by his family, minus one son. To my great surprise, I cried actual tears. Who would have thought it?

For all the criticism the show takes for being campy and soapy and sometimes even silly, I would make an argument that few shows before or after One Tree Hill will ever capture the true spirit of what it means to earn and bestow forgiveness as thoroughly or as completely. Too many times in television and movies, characters expect to be forgiven for their crimes and more often than not they are granted that forgiveness too easily. Not so for Dan Scott.

No one has ever let it slip their minds that Dan shot and killed his own brother, and ever since he did so back in season three, the characters who were directly and indirectly affected by that horrible act have been trying to figure out what to do about Dan. To forgive or not to forgive. If they do forgive, are they betraying Keith? If they don’t, will they be damaging themselves more than Dan? I love that it was never simple for them.

Because in real life, it wouldn’t be, would it? Dan was always meant to be the antagonist, but if he’d been pure evil, he wouldn’t have been nearly as interesting. Instead, he was a deeply, deeply flawed human being, a fact which made the people in his life unable to simply cut him out of their hearts, with the possible exception of Lucas. For Lucas, Dan’s crime, which deprived him of the man who had been the father to him that Dan should have been, was unforgivable. That doesn’t make Lucas less of anything when compared to Nathan or Haley or Deb, but it does show that even after atonement and time, forgiveness is not a guarantee.

Who better to escort Dan into the afterlife than the person he wronged the most. In the same high school hallway where his life ended, Keith held out his hand to his brother and granted him absolution for all of it…the jealousy, the lies and the hate which drove Dan to pull the trigger. It was the perfect ending to that story which began six seasons ago. Dan Scott is gone, but it’s likely that he won’t ever be forgotten.

I feel like this should have been Dan’s episode entirely, but some time was spent on both Brooke and Clay. I suppose the thing that tied everything together was the idea of fatherhood. Clay, having recently remembered that he is a father, reached out to Logan and asked to be a part of his life. And Brooke tried one last time to make a connection with her father, only to find out that, yet again, he cared more about business than family. Oh, and Julian wants to turn Lucas’s book into a TV series. It’s a little Dawson’s Creek, but I’m willing to overlook its addition in an otherwise brilliant, touching episode.

What did you think? Let me know below!