‘One Tree Hill’ Fans Think The Show Addressed 1 Drastic Character Change in a Dream

One Tree Hill was one of the most popular TV shows of the early 2000s. Featuring a wealth of romance and drama, it starred a host of up-and-coming actors. Although it’s been off the air for a decade, fans still love discussing the merits of the iconic series, including how certain characters changed throughout the show’s run. Fans have a lot to say about the character of Deb. And in a Reddit post, dedicated viewers discussed how the show might have explained her significant changes in a very understated way. 

‘One Tree Hill’ ran from 2003 through 2012

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Chad Michael Murray, Sophia Bush, Bethany Joy Lenz, Hilarie Burton and James Lafferty of “One Tree Hill” (Photo by Carley Margolis/FilmMagic)

One Tree Hill debuted in 2003, on the network now known as The CW. Set in the fictional town of Tree Hill, North Carolina, One Tree Hill focuses primarily on two young half-brothers, Lucas and Nathan Scott. The early seasons detail how Lucas and Nathan progress from enemies to close friends. Later seasons saw the focus shift to include other major characters, and add some new faces, too.

Familial relationships were at the core of One Tree Hill. The show frequently explores the dynamic between Lucas and his mother, Karen Roe (Moira Kelly), and Nathan and his mother, Deb Scott (Barbara Alyn Woods). 

Barbara Alyn Woods played Deb Scott on ‘One Tree Hill’

Deb Scott was a recurring character in One Tree Hill, introduced in the show’s first episodes. As Dan Scott’s ex-wife and Nathan’s mother, Deb, played by Barbara Alyn Woods, has a complicated relationship with her son. She deals with substance abuse throughout the majority of the second season and a more serious drug problem in the fourth season. Her relationship with Karen, Lucas’s mother, can sometimes become fraught. But the two women become good friends and even go into business together.

Deb changes a lot throughout the series, especially after overcoming her issues with drugs and alcohol. After she completes her treatment, Deb returns to Tree Hill and becomes Jamie’s nanny. Fans noticed that Deb was considerably more relaxed and carefree around this time, prone to outrageous antics. Fans on Reddit have theorized about the clever way that writers for One Tree Hill explained her character changes. 

What did fans have to say about the way Deb changed?

A fan on Reddit noted one thing stood out during a rewatch of One Tree Hill. “Deb in the first season and the Deb we know now feel like two completely different women,” the wrote. One fan pointed out why this could be. “I often think about that! But then I also feel like they addressed it in Nathan’s dream episode! By that point, real deb hadn’t gone totally crazy but was addicted to pills and becoming a much harder person than she was in season 1.”

The fan went on to note, “In the dream (where she doesn’t end up with dan) she is back to that same woman. I think it’s just a picture of how toxic that marriage was and how both her and Dan’s mistakes shape her into the ‘wacky ass’ that she becomes.”

Another fan wrote, “Every single one of those things is a result of her addiction. I think she’s an unevenly written character for sure, but her slow transformation is not totally unbelievable.” Several other Reddit users chimed in, agreeing that most of the changes with Deb can be attributed to her addiction, and the eventual overcoming of her substance abuse issues.

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