If you ask any fan, when they watched the first episode of One Tree Hill, they would say they hate Nathan and Lucas is clearly the better of the two brothers. However, he quickly gained the love of fans as they watched him develop. He started off who he was based on how he was raised, but changed based on how he was influenced.
Nathan Scott began as an arrogant and rude teenager, but over the years, matured into a responsible and loving family man. The sport of basketball has always been important in Nathan’s life. Nathan has undergone a huge character evolution during his time on One Tree Hill. At first, as taught by his callous father, Dan, he was a self-centered boy who didn’t care if he hurt others. Then he began to realize that Dan’s lessons were wrong, and being cruel to classmates and relatives was the wrong thing to do. Nathan started to set up new priorities and become a better person. Although he still occasionally makes bad decisions, at least he recognizes them for what they are and regrets those choices. Nathan has become a man who greatly values his friendships and will place the needs of his family above his own.
When One Tree Hill premiered, Nathan was the star player on the Tree Hill High School Ravens basketball team. His controlling father, Dan put constant pressure on him to play his best. In addition to that, Dan was a horrible, rude person who rubbed off on Nathan in the worst way. Despite that, it seemed like Nathan had the high school dream, considering he also was dating cheerleader Peyton Sawyer, who became attracted to Lucas. Nathan and Lucas also became basketball teammates in the pilot, which increased the rivalry between them. Although Lucas was willing to be friendly, Nathan was not.
Nathan’s plan to get back at Lucas was to use Lucas’s best friend, Haley James. The plan failed when he developed genuine feelings for her, which I didn’t believe when I watched. I thought the entire thing would blow up in Haley’s face and she would be left miserable, but contrary to my prediction, they got married while still in high school. Their relationship suffered in season 2 due to Dan’s interference and the success of Haley’s music career.
Nathan experienced heartbreak in the worst way when Haley left. He never gave up when it came to Haley. He was someone who had to grow up fast, and he made the best of it. He is the perfect example of someone who knows exactly what they wanted and got it. His infamous quote,
“One day, you’re 17 and you’re planning for someday. And then quietly, without you ever really noticing, someday is today. And then someday is yesterday. And this is your life.”
reminds you never to take your life for granted because it goes by faster than you think. Despite their marital troubles, the two later reconciled and renewed their marriage vows. Haley also revealed that she was pregnant and gave birth to a son, James “Jamie” Lucas Scott.
The show then skipped ahead four years in time. During that gap, Nathan successfully attended college and became a top basketball prospect. He was on the verge of playing professionally before he became paralyzed from the waist down in an accident. Embittered, Nathan believed his basketball career was over and became distant from his family. When he realized the damage he was doing, he put his life back together. Nathan gradually regained the ability to walk and made a basketball comeback. A sex scandal nearly ruined his career with the Charlotte Bobcats, but Nathan was proven innocent. He supported Haley during her mother’s illness and death before finding out at the end of the seventh season that she was pregnant again.
While some people believe Nathan’s character development occurred early on in the show, it’s arguable that his character still had growing up to do before he became the man in season 9. When season 5 opens, viewers, or at least me, were baffled when they
were presented with a depressed, wheelchair-confined Nathan who seemed to have lost all character development previously built up. Thankfully, he got over this soon enough and started being a more suitable father when he learned that he had to own up to his mistake and deal with the consequences of his actions. He couldn’t let it affect his family any more.
There were many different events that led up to him becoming a likable and sympathetic character. Nathan was driven; he made it to the NBA despite various setbacks along the way, such as his temporary paralysis. After achieving this dream he worked his entire life for, he realizes that playing isn’t as important as his family.
The Nathan he used to be would have taken some pills like he did in an early episode, but by this point, basketball wasn’t Nathan’s only concern anymore. He cared too much about Haley and Jamie to put himself in jeopardy.