As Newport is thrown into chaos following the earthquake, Seth helps Ryan in his darkest hour of need while Sandy and Kirsten grow ever more concerned about their unborn baby. Meanwhile, Frank earns the respect of a recent rival when Julie and Kaitlin are stuck in an ice-cream shop.
Ryan, Taylor and Kaitlin choose sides when Julie is torn between Frank and Bullit; a psychic reading prompts Seth and Summer to think about their future; and Kirsten is preoccupied by a life-changing moment in her past.
Sandy's secret plans for Kirsten's 40th-birthday party are outdone by an even bigger surprise from the guest of honor; Che tests his bond with Seth during a Groundhog Day caper; Taylor seeks professional help to sort out her feelings for Ryan; and Bullit pulls out the big guns in his pursuit of Julie.
Ryan is at a loss for words when he thinks he's losing Taylor; Che takes Seth on a spiritual journey of self-discovery; Kaitlin has a revelation about her relationship with Will; Julie goes to extremes to repair her damaged friendship with Kirsten.
Ryan reads between the lines when Taylor's ex-husband (Henri Lubatti) promotes his risqué novel in Newport; Summer gets a glimpse of married life from her socialite peers, while Seth flies to Seattle in search of Dr. Roberts' blessing; and Kirsten investigates Julie's secret business practices.
Sandy's paternal instincts kick in when Frank (Kevin Sorbo) is invited for dinner; Kaitlin's report on “The Call of the Wild” might spark a case of puppy love with a classmate (Chris Brown); and Seth and Summer are unsure about the new twist in their relationship, though neither wants to admit it.
Ryan and Taylor's New Year's Eve road trip to Las Vegas takes a surprising turn when Seth and Summer tag along; Julie is leery of the man hired as NewMatch's accountant (Kevin Sorbo), and Sandy thinks he knows why.
Summer and Seth iron out a new wrinkle in their long-distance romance; Kaitlin ups the ante in a Harbor power struggle; Ryan and Taylor search for common ground; and Julie needs a Bullit-proof vest to deflect her latest suitor.
A lovelorn Taylor won't rest until she turns an oblivious Ryan's insomnia into pillow talk; Summer needs more than a lucky rabbit's foot after her latest activist scheme at Brown; and Julie's quest for a NewMatch investor starts off with a bang.
Summer does some soul-searching during a visit from Seth; Taylor pleads for a reluctant Ryan's help with an international crisis; Sandy longs for a guys' night out; and Julie vows to turn over a new leaf.
Thanksgiving provides a cornucopia of less-than-appetizing situations, including Ryan's reaction to Sandy's latest legal maneuver and Taylor's explanation of her whereabouts to her mother. Meanwhile, Dr. Roberts is frustrated by Julie's distant behavior, and Seth and Summer surprise Kirsten with uninvited dinner guests.
Ryan has unwanted company on a trip to Mexico to take care of unfinished business; Taylor has startling news during a surprise visit to Summer; Kaitlin takes an unusual interest in the Harbor clothing drive; and Sandy confronts Julie about her secret machinations.
Julie and Ryan are finding it difficult to cope with Marissa's death. Meanwhile, Summer has turned into an activist at Brown; Seth is toiling in a comic-book store in Newport; and Kaitlin confronts her stepfather about his extracurricular activities while positioning herself as the leader of a Harbor pack.