Interesting first episode for James.
Brooke, Sam, and Victoria hit a crossroads. Lucas and Peyton make a decision. Nathan awaits a decision. Skillz has a spectacularly unsuccessful first date that ends up being more successful than he first thought.
I have to say that this was an interesting episode. Not the best episode, but interesting. For the first time in a while, it seems like the episode was one solid story rather than a collection of short stories.
I loved the opening with Peyton. Her dialogue fit in nicely with what was going on. The reason for the video is depressing; actually it reminds me of Jen Lindley from the Dawson's Creek series finale; but it makes sense. She has been preparing for a while in case she does not make it, and this is one more thing to do. She wants to be sure that her child knows about her and Lucas, so she makes a video to ensure it. When Lucas came in, it was painful; and no, not in a bad way. He wasn't trying to be mean or controlling, he just doesn't want to think about the possibility. He is living in the land of denial. Well, maybe that is a bit unfair. He knows what is going on and knows the possible consequences, but he just doesn't want to think about it. Can't say I blame him. Having Jamie over and looking through the container and seeing Lucas' and Peyton's history was so cute. Getting to relive all those memories really gave Lucas a new perspective. I think he was right when he refused to marrry her "just in case." I am glad that he came to the decision to marry her for the right reason: because he loves her and wants to spend his life with her. Call me a romantic or what not, but I think getting married for any other reason is wrong. Just a personal opinion there.
I also enjoyed the brief shots of the baby shower. Seeing all the girls happy together was nice. I loved that Mia and Brooke made sure that crying didn't start. I thought Mia's way of stopping the crying was neat. Take a picture! Wheee!!
And Brooke gets the intense storyline of the night. I am glad that she is ready to adopt Sam. I am even more glad that she decided to let Sam make a decision about what to do. It was really obvious that Sam is feeling torn in two about what to do. She loves Brooke and doesn't want to hurt her, but at the same time, she wants to know her birth mother. Being forced into a position of choosing between them would have torn her apart. When Brooke gave her a choice of what to do, Brooke showed (once again) that she only wants what is best for Sam. If that means that Sam stays with her birth mother, than so be it. Brooke will be broken up inside, but she'll find a way to make it through.
I have to say that I am impressed with Victoria. She really does care about Brooke and Sam. Or at least she seems to. Her facial reactions to Brooke crying seemed to say that she honestly was hurting for Brooke. I do hope that was real. I am not sure what to think about her otherwise.
Interestingly enough, Nathan got a major storyline, even with James directing. Granted, that story is part of the ongoing Nathan basketball story, so it makes sense, but it was still cool. Nathan has grown so much. He has learned to share and to make other people look good. He is really concentrating on the team and not on himself. I am so proud of him for that. I like that they have Mouth back in the sports broadcasting world. And bringing him into another character's storyline made it better. Like I said before, having the stories intertwined makes for a better episode.
Skillz' date was funny. Poor guy got his date sabotaged. At least it ended well. And his taking everything so well made him even more desirable to Lauren.
Next week, Peyton and Lucas get married. Lucas brings back Julian for Brooke, but Brooke has other ideas. Julian gets punched (AGAIN!) and makes a horrible pun. I would want to punch him for that too.....