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Episode 26 "The Ties That Bind"

THE O.C. SEASON FINALE
AIRS MAY 5 ON FOX


Its Julie Coopers wedding day. But it will be a day to remember for more than the blushing bride. ATO recording artist Jem who recently released her critically acclaimed debut album Finally Woken will perform Paul McCartney's "Maybe I'm Amazed" during the ceremony. But the wedding is only the tip of the iceberg in a series of events that will change the lives of many in the O.C. forever. Sparks fly, emotions run high and lives are forever changed on The Ties That Bind, the cliffhanger season-finale episode of THE O.C., airing Wednesday, May 5

The Ties That Bind
May 5, 2004
The news
Sandy and Kirsten are blissfully unaware as Kirsten plans a rehearsal dinner for her dad. She uses her feminine wiles to get Sandy to agree to play nice with her dad, but their amorousness is interrupted by Seth, Ryan and Theresa. The boys deny anything's wrong, but Theresa drops the bomb - she's definitely pregnant.

Truth and consequences
Is the baby Ryan's? He doesn't know yet - it's dangerous to do a paternity test before the baby is born. Ryan insists he wants to make things work with Marissa, but she seems unconvinced. Seth and Summer are also concerned. Plus, Summer announces they will no longer be having sex. Sandy stops by Caleb's office to make peace (sort of), and discovers that the property deal he sabotaged in Vegas was designed to keep the Newport Group afloat. Caleb could lose everything - and might go to jail. Sandy is shocked.

Can we talk?
Sandy and Kirsten pledge to support Ryan no matter what happens - although Kirsten seems a bit uncomfortable with Sandy's seeming insensitivity. Theresa tells Ryan she's going to have an abortion - neither of them are ready for this. Ryan doesn't know how to deal with this news, and Seth continues to put his foot in his mouth. Kirsten offers to go with Theresa to her Planned Parenthood appointment. Marissa is optimistic that now everything is going back to normal.

Second thoughts
Caleb surprised Julie with a palatial dream house. Seth and Ryan go out to Seth's boat, where Seth admits he doesn't feel the need to escape to Tahiti anymore - Ryan moving in made life much better for him. Kirsten tells Theresa she doesn't have to go through with the abortion if she doesn't want to. Theresa scoffs that Kirsten has never had to make a hard decision in her life, which makes Kirsten look hurt. I'm guessing something happened in her past that she's not sharing yet. That night, Theresa tells Ryan she's changed her mind - she's going to have the baby. Sandy accuses Kirsten of talking Theresa into keeping the baby, but Kirsten denies it - although she's still cagey about something.

Helping out
Theresa decides to go home - will Ryan come with her? Marissa moves stuff into her new house, and is overwhelmed when Julie, Jimmy and Hailey start sniping at each other. She confuses Julie by screaming that Julie got what she wanted - didn't Marissa want to move here too? Seth shows Summer his precious boat, then reveals he's selling it to make money for Ryan and Theresa.

Party of the Week, part 1

The rehearsal dinner is full of strained silences and uncomfortable revelations. Sandy tells Caleb the DA is going for blood, and he's going to be broke. Has he told Julie? Caleb says there's no need. Marissa tracks Ryan down to the pool house, where he reveals Theresa will have the baby. The kids flee the party for the beach. Ryan announces he can't let Theresa go through this alone - he's moving back to Chino.

Plan B
Seth's plans to sell his boat fall through. He tries to convince Summer and Marissa they can get jobs and make enough money to install Ryan and Theresa in an apartment in Newport, but Marissa says it won't work. Seth attacks Marissa - Ryan never would have gotten together with Theresa if Marissa wasn't such a screw-up. Seth storms out. Sandy makes a last-ditch attempt to get Ryan to stay, but Ryan says he wants to make sure Theresa's baby doesn't have the same rotten life he did growing up.

Party of the Week, part 2
Julie and Caleb's wedding is gorgeous and classy, but no one seems able to enjoy it. Marissa finally admits that she understands why Ryan has to leave, and tells him she loves him. Seth tells Summer he's losing his only real friend, and seems hopeless when Summer says they'll get through this.

Goodbyes
Ryan dons his Chino uniform in preparation for going back to Chino. Kirsten tearfully hugs him goodbye. Seth hides in his room, seemingly unable to deal with Ryan's leaving. Ryan and Theresa both look terrified as they drive away. They pass Marissa waiting for the limo that will take her to her new home. Marissa surveys her new palace, then starts drinking. At Casa Cohen, Kirsten breaks down while cleaning up the pool house, and Sandy comforts her. Seth packs up, leaving notes for his parents and Summer. He sails away in his tiny boat, alone out into the sea.