"Sympathy For The Devil" is the ninth episode of the sixth season of One Tree Hill and the 115th produced episode of the series. It was broadcast on November 3, 2008. The past comes home to roost as the residue of deception, anger and romantic mistrust permeates the lives of several Tree Hill residents. Nathan finds himself face-to-face with an old rival, Brooke deals with someone who once hurt her, and Lucas's novel leads him into uncharted and threatening waters.
SynopsisBrooke is sketching with inspiration from Peyton’s ruined wedding dress. Sam walks in and realises and tries to get her to admit it, but Brooke refuses to. She begins lecturing Sam as she reminds Sam she is grounded. Brooke grounds her for 3 weeks as Sam is quite happy. Brooke tells her she is not supposed to be as Sam tells her that she thought she might have another week after what her friend done in the bathroom sink. Realising by Brooke’s face that she had not been in the bathroom, she walks out pretending to not hear Brooke as she shouts after her. Brooke gets up as the door goes and finds Owen there. Owen gives her some flowers to tell her that he enjoyed helping her clean up the other night and that he is going to bring her a present everyday until he wins her back. Shocked, Brooke covers it up and tells him what she likes as she lets Owen leave thanking him for the flowers. Nathan gets home from a run to see Haley making breakfast. She puts on his plate a pile of pancakes and she tells him that it is for his busy schedule with Slamball. Nathan is not too keen, as Jamie approaches. He tells Jamie that he does not get trophies for Slamball and Jamie is shocked at the idea. As Haley cooks, Nathan puts a load of food onto Jamie’s plate and pretends he has eaten it as Haley turns around. Lucas wakes Peyton up with a drink after she had a few too many tequilas at TRIC.
Lucas asks what she thinks of Julian as Peyton remembers Lucas proposing to her in Los Angeles and Peyton rejecting his offer. That day, when she goes to work in tears, she marches into the office room and breaks into tears. As she hits the photocopier, Julian walks in the room behind her. As he tries to talk to her, Peyton tells him she is not interested in being chatted up. Julian tells her that he is a movie producer not a music producer, but Peyton is still not impressed. As he goes to leave, he tells Peyton that the best thing about a paper jam is opening it up and figuring out what went wrong in the first place. She tells Lucas that he was charismatic as Lucas tells Peyton that he really needed to be a screenwriter and know his work has relevance, and Peyton, who was about to tell him about her not liking Julian, does not and agrees with Lucas. He admits he is nervous as he begins to make his first draft, which he completes in 3 weeks.
Lucas hands his first draft of the script in to an impressed Julian. Julian tells him that the script is good, but not great as he is one scene away from great, and he should know which one, Keith’s murder. Lucas admits that he thought it would be better for the audience to find out later in the film, but Julian disagrees and says there is nothing better in cinema than a man killing his own brother. Lucas reminds him it was his uncle and Julian tells him that the audience needs to face what happened, even if he cannot. He tells Lucas that he has one night to write the script, and if he cannot, then he will find another writer. Jamie and Nathan are watching Mouth reporting sports on television. Nathan is mentioned and the opposing team captain tells Mouth that they are not scared of Nathan Scott. Jamie tells him that they should just give him the trophy, but Nathan reminds his son that they do not do trophies in Slamball. In her store, Brooke is thinking about what to design next as Peyton walks in. They talk as Peyton finds out about Owen. Brooke tells her that she does not know if she is into Owen yet, but she is into the presents that he has been dropping by everyday. Peyton tells her that it is wrong to string Owen along, but Brooke reminds her that she is just as bad as she has only just told Lucas about Julian. Peyton admits she hasn’t told Lucas yet and Brooke tells her that Lucas will be really upset with her if he does not find out from her. Worried, Brooke asks how close her and Julian were and Peyton remembers going to see Lucas at his book signing and sees Lindsey and him kissing. She walks out sad and accidently walks into Julian. Julian remembers her as the saddest girl in the world and Peyton tries to walk away from him. Julian tells her he has a favour to ask and asks her to an industry party, but Peyton wonders why she is being invited. Julian tells her that if the saddest girl in the world goes with him then he can make a quick exit when she cries. Peyton then smiles as Julian is happy with his achievement. They go to the party as Julian admits it is for a script he is raising funds for. Julian notices the book in her hand that Peyton was taking to Lucas and asks what it is about. Peyton tells him it is about her and the two begin to get along. Lucas drops by Nathan’s who tells him that the scout is coming to see him play Slamball. Lucas congratulates him as Lucas tells him that he cannot go to the game as he has to write for Julian. He then asks Nathan what his best memory of Dan was when he helped him play one on one against one of his idols, Michael Jordan. Nathan asks why he asked as Lucas tells him he is trying to be the objective in Keith’s murder scene and he is wondering if Dan ever had a soul. Nathan tells him he had a soul, but he sold it and to write Dan as he is and how he deserves to be written, as evil.
Nathan is practising basketball as Mouth comes on the river court to join him. He tells Nathan that his opposing team member was threatening to put him back in his wheelchair. Nathan tells him that he once ruined his record and so will still be bitter, but he has got nothing to worry about, especially with Owen behind him, one of the toughest guys in Tree Hill. Brooke leaves the store and gets in her car. As she does, Owen jumps up from the back seat and startles her. Brooke begins to yell at him as she finds Owen naked in the backseat. He tells her it is to do with ‘what is underneath the clothes’ as Brooke tells him that she is a girl and when she does it, it is sexy. However, if he does it, it is creepy. She begins hitting Owen and kicks him out. Owen gets out and as he tries to get his clothes out too, Brooke drives off. Left with only a newspaper to cover himself, a police car pulls round the corner. Jamie is telling a story to Haley’s class as the bell goes. As Sam approaches, Haley asks if she can look after Jamie, without taking him to any parties, and Sam agrees. The two kids go to a vending machine as Jamie asks what economics is. Sam explains it as a way to get money that you don’t have to work for. Sam tells him to watch and learn and as she gets everything out the vendor, she sticks gum across the coin slot. As a student realises, she charges him 2 bucks for a piece of food. The boy unhappily agrees to it as Sam explains to Jamie that by charging extra, they have made a profit. Haley is walking around school as she finds Lucas in one of the corridors. Lucas explains that he has to write Keith’s murder scene and is unable. Haley tells him that it could be a lesson to others in humanity for example. Lucas, insulted, tells her that he does not want Dan Scott to be understood by the audience, he tells Haley that Dan Scott is not human and does not deserve to be forgiven or a spot in Jamie’s life. As he walks off, he realizes what he is saying and apologises.
Peyton is on the phone to a possible act and remembers watching Julian making a similar message to one of his actors. As he talks on the phone, Peyton teases him and as he hangs up the two talk about him moving in, which he has already done. Julian talks about his ambition to get his film to Sundance too and the couple kiss happily. Julian then sits up and tells her that he loves her, to which Peyton replies the same message. Jamie and Dan are walking through school as they pass the vending machines. He asks Dan for 10 bucks as he has to do some business. Jamie promises to cut him some in as Dan hands him the money and Jamie asks to make a quick stop on the way to school. Lucas goes to Peyton’s office and tells Peyton that he is not writing the scene. Peyton asks why it is so hard as Lucas admits he does not know what happened in Keith’s final moments and does not want to make it up. He wonders how he reacted and wonders whether to change Dan’s character, but refuses to write it. Peyton tells Lucas that she loves that he protects everyone, but Keith does not need protecting. She tells him that no matter how he writes it, Keith would want him to write it. As Lucas admits he just wants the truth, Peyton remembers hugging Julian and tells him that she cannot get her bag zipped up. Julian tells her it is 3 days that they are going to Sundance as Peyton brings in a big bag of clothes. She asks Julian to zip it up and as he does, he finds Lucas’ book and tells her that he knows what the problem is. He asks why she has it as Peyton tells him it is not a big deal. Julian tells her that he knows how much she reads it and collects them, and wonders if there will ever become a day when he is not sharing her with Lucas. He gets his bag and tells Peyton he will go to Sundance alone as he cannot do this anymore, and doesn’t want to either.
Brooke answers the door to Owen again. She apologises for leaving him on the street and offers to be even by him keeping the present he brought her. Owen tells her that he did not bring a gift and is done bringing gifts. He tells her that it is humiliating to be led on and tells her that he won’t be bothering her anymore. He walks off as Brooke regrets her behaviour. In school, Jamie starts up his business with his first client, Chuck. Lucas is at Keith’s grave, and as he sees Dan’s beside him, he grabs a shovel and begins hitting Dan’s face on his grave until the shovel smashes in half. Peyton meets Julian at a cafe and asks where he is there. She tells him to forget what he is doing if it is a scheme to get her back. Julian laughs it off at the thought of risking everything for her. He reminds Peyton that he left her and that he is handling the situation as a professional, by not telling Lucas about him and her. He begins laughing at her for her suggestions as Peyton walks off. Haley takes Jamie out of school and tells him it is wrong to do what he is doing. As she yells, Jamie admits that he was just raising money to buy his dad a Slamball trophy. She makes him give his money back as she smiles at how smart her kid is. Nathan steps onto the court ready to play Slamball as the opposing captain watches him. The game begins as Owen keeps knocking people out of Nathan’s way. The crowd goes wild as Nathan continues to score and begins to make a good lead for his team. The opposing team begin to get a lot rougher. At a time out, Nathan looks around but sees no sign of a scout. Owen looks at Brooke and tells Nathan they were showing off for people who don’t care. They go to play as Haley and Jamie wave at Nathan and Owen tells him to play the last 5 minutes for the people who do care. Dan meets Lucas at the river court and is asked what happened in the hallway. He tells Dan why he is asking and his struggle to write it and understand it. Dan explains what happened and hails Keith as a hero. Lucas then asks why he did it as Dan tells him that every story needs a villain, and he is his villain.
As the Slamball game resumes, Nathan continues to get knocked to the floor, as does Owen. Jamie admits that he is scared as Brooke sits him on her lap. Sam then apologises to Haley for teaching Jamie about how to make money, but Haley tells her that Jamie really looks up to her and she has the opportunity to be a role model and should take it. Back in the game, Owen is knocked to the floor and Owen is taken out of the game. Nathan assures him he can take the last 15 seconds as the opposing captain begins to challenge him, but Nathan challenges him back. Lucas begins to write Keith’s scene as Nathan goes to finish his game. As they start, Nathan pushes past all the players and scores his winning basket. The crowd goes wild as the opposing captain glares at him. Furious, he charges at him and pushes him through the glass guard. Haley and Brooke jump up in shock as Jamie runs off to see his father. As they do, Owen goes to see if Nathan is okay. Haley and Jamie get to the front of the crowd as Nathan promises he is alright. Jamie whispers to him and asks him not to play Slamball anymore. Julian picks up a book and inside finds his bookmark, a picture of him and Peyton. Owen gets in his car to go home and as he does, Brooke appears in the backseat. Brooke apologises for the presents and admits she did not see a future with them. As she talks, she sees Sam making inappropriate motions towards the car and waves as they both look at her. Brooke admits she has her work cut out with Sam and Owen admits he is crazy about her. Brooke says that he has the potential to be a great boyfriend, but admits that she has the opportunity to be a great role model for Sam and has to put her first. She tells Owen that eventually she might come crawling back. She kisses him as she gets out and ends their potential relationship.
Lucas knocks on Julian’s door and hands over the finished script. As his phone rings, Lucas is invited in. As Julian goes in the other room to take the call, Lucas finds the picture of Julian and Peyton. Mouth and Gigi are drinking as they are working as Mouth decides to go home. Gigi puts up a fight for him to stay as she begs him to stay and offers for no one to find out about. Brooke is telling Sam who proud she is of her and goes to get a drink of water. As she is filling up her bottle, Sam opens the vending machine and puts a ‘free food’ sign in the machine. Brooke is mortified and runs out after Sam telling her it is stealing. Nathan joins Haley and Jamie on the Slamball court and Jamie admits he was scared for his father. Nathan promises he will never go back to how he is as it is not worth it. He tells Haley he is done with Slamball and the family catch up on their day apart. Lucas gets back his house as Peyton is reading the play. She tells him that Julian was right, it needed the scene. She asked what changed his mind about writing the scene and Lucas explains that he realised the hero dies. Peyton then goes to tell him about Julian as Lucas gets the photo out of her and Julian and asks if they dated in L.A. and Peyton admits she did, but they were in love.
- ”This is not over, young lady”
- ”Didn’t think it was, old lady”
- ”Don’t kill the child, just don’t kill the child”
- ”Woah. What happened to nice Brooke?”
- ”I killed her and ate her bleeding heart for breakfast and I’m still hungry”
- ”You know the best thing about a paper jam?...It forces you to open the machine, figure out what went wrong in the first place”
- ”What was your best memory of Dan?”
- ”I don’t know. The day he went to prison. Okay, um. Michael Jordan basketball camp. Yeah, I was about 10 years old, and Dan pulled some strings to get me in and it was the first day, and we were in this, like, meet and greet line. And Jordan was gonna pick one of us kids to play one on one against. I remember I was so nervous, my knees were about to buckle. And I think Dan could feel that. He put his hand on my shoulder to steady me and when Jordan finally came by, he just looked at him and said ‘This is my son Nathan. He’s got a great jump shot.’”
- ”And what happened”
- ”I played one on one with one of the best players in history. It was one of the best days of my life”
- ”I have to write Keith’s murder scene in the screenplay and I don’t know if I can do it. I just can’t imagine people in a theatre, eating popcorn, watching Keith get shot dead.”
- ”Maybe it can be more than that. Maybe, like in literature, a violent death can often be a catalyst for change or a lesson in humanity”
- ”I’m curious if there will ever come a day when I am not sharing you with Lucas Scott”
- ”Cemetery called. Apparently someone gave my tombstone a makeover”
- ”Keith was holding Jimmy Edwards in the hallway. He turned, and I shot him dead before he could say a word. Keith was a hero. You wanna write the truth, you write it that way...Every good story needs a villain Lucas. I’m sorry, but I’m yours”
- ”It’s just that right now, I have the opportunity to be a great role model for Sam and that means I have to put her first”
- ”I can respect that. What about down the road?”
- ”For a guy like you, I might just come crawling back”
- ”Listen to me. I’m never gonna be like that again okay? None of this is worth losing my ability to hold my song when he’s afraid or my wife when she needs me. It’s okay. I’m done with Slamball.”
- "Can You Tell" - Ra Ra Riot
- "You Got Growin' Up To Do" - Joshua Radin feat. Patty Griffin
- "It's Best To Keep It All Inside" - Jonathan Rice
- "I Don't Live In A Dream" - Jackie Greene
- "Leaving You" - Corey Crowder
- "Can't Go Back Now" - The Weepies
- "Love Song For The Schuba's Bartender" - Margot & The Nuclear So & So's
- "Ugly" - Max Boogie Overdrive
- "An Ordinary Life" - Juice Monkey
- "Soul Waver" - Malika Ayane
- "It Means Nothing" - Stereophonics
This episode's title originated from the song Sympathy For The Devil, originally sung by The Rolling Stones.