Richard Burgi, Sophia Bush Richard Burgi, Sophia Bush

It's the beginning of the end and we are not OK with that.

While some folks may feel that One Tree Hill has passed its prime, there are those diehard fans who still think life in the small town that survived the WB-CW merger could go on and on. Like Celine Dion's heart. Only with super-sensitive voice-overs and crazy nannies.

For those of us who tuned in to the final season's premiere last night, that belief was only compounded by the pile of stories that were set up to help drive this last batch of episodes. In the opening three minutes alone, we got flash-forwarded glimpses of mayhem to come that could fuel an entire 10th season. From the shot of Dan loading a gun alongside Chris Keller and his Jimmy Neutron hair to the psychological issues driving Clay's sleepwalking, it's clear there's a still lot going on with these characters, some of whom have been around since Day 1 (yay, Brooke and Haley!), some we're finally starting to like (that would be you, Chase). To be completely honest, an entire episode of Brooke driving around with the twins, narrating her feelings about growing up in Tree Hill would not be a bad thing at all. She, more than anyone, has evolved the most and we lovelovelove Sophia Bush.

But alas, the show's fate has been sealed, so we'll have to settle for what executive producer Mark Schwahn calls "a 13-part miniseries" that will be "a little darker and a little more controversial." What does that mean? Could be that we're gonna see some sort of body count before the finale (and not just because of that clip of Haley identifying a body in the morgue or the rumors of Nathan's kidnapping). Important characters have died in the past and considering how many wackadoos have come and gone, a few deaths could create some serious lather for the soap's swan song. Which, knowing this show's killer taste in music, will probably be some cool emo ballad set to a montage of moments we'll never forget.

Are you sticking with the show 'til the end? Or are you over the Hill?

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