One Tree Hill ran for nine seasons on the CW. Full of teenage drama before it transitioned into being a full on prime time soap opera, the series became known for a handful of events. It launched the acting career of former MTV VJ Hilarie Burton, snagged Chad Michael Murray from Gilmore Girls, and brought its young audience a selection of pretty great music.
Today, the series is available on DVD and streaming sites, allowing long-time fans the chance to watch their favorite episodes as many times as they want. Being able to binge watch (and rewatch) your favorite television show is something audiences couldn’t easily do even a decade ago. TV fans who take advantage of everything technology has to offer today might find themselves paying attention to more than just which of their favorite characters are in the thick of the drama.
With the ability to more closely scrutinize our favorite television shows comes the ability to spot errors in the program we might have missed when they initially aired. In the case of One Tree Hill, most of those errors come in the form of moving items and changing hairstyles. There are, however, instances where the circumstances of the show contradict itself, changing the timeline, and even the high school rules.
See for yourself with these 25 Mistakes Fans Completely Missed In One Tree Hill.
25 Changing Locker Rules
High schools across the United States have rules for locker assignments. Some base assignments on what class the student is in, while others allow students to choose their own locker. Tree Hill assigned lockers in alphabetical order.
Haley’s locker moved next to Lucas and Nathan’s at the start of a new school year. The explanation for that was her name change. When she became Haley James Scott, she fell in line with Lucas and Nathan Scott. Interestingly, later in the high school seasons, Brooke, Peyton, and Rachel’s lockers were all near the Scotts at one point. That made no sense given their last names were all over the alphabet as Davis, Sawyer, and Gatina.
24 Teleporting Pom Poms
When Haley became a cheerleader, it was a result of another cheerleader’s injury in episode six. With Brooke medicated after the game, Haley, Peyton, and Brooke all ride back to Tree Hill together.
A heavily medicated Brooke is not the best passenger. While driving Haley and Peyton crazy, she throws her pom poms out the window. In one shot, they’re thrown from the driver’s side of the car. When the camera angle changes to show the car from the outside, though, they’re thrown from the passenger side of the car. It’s likely a product of the external car shots taking place at a different time than the internal ones, and an editor didn’t catch the mistake.
23 A Jumping Bag
When television shows film, they usually have to get multiple takes of the same scenes. That might be a result of getting different camera angles or getting different performances out of the actors. When multiple takes of the same scene are filmed, everything is supposed to be placed right back where it started. Unfortunately, that doesn’t always happen. One instance of that is Haley’s jumping bag.
In the seventh episode of the first season, she gets ready to leave a studying session with Nathan. During the scene, her bag just doesn’t stay still. The strap moves from one shoulder to another and across her chest faster than she would have been able to move it.
22 The Impossible Email
TV viewers and movie fans understand they have to suspend some disbelief when they watch science fiction and fantasy. Dramas can have their share of suspension of disbelief too, especially when something happens in the show that’s impossible in the real world.
In One Tree Hill’s first season, Lucas drafted an email to his mother. As a business owner, Karen’s email was tied to her restaurant. Lucas emailed her using karen’email@example.com. Though technology is (slightly) more advanced since the show premiered, most email hosts still won’t allow special characters like apostrophes or accented letters in addresses. Karen’s email couldn’t exist.
21 A Vanishing Tattoo
At one point, Lucas Scott decided to be a little rebellious and get himself a tattoo. He supposedly got the word “fun” tattooed on his arm in characters from China. In reality, the Mandarin characters are the equivalent of the word “have,” but that’s not the mistake here.
Instead, it’s whether or not Lucas actually has a tattoo. Once the storyline made it into the show, the tattoo would disappear and reappear throughout the series. To be fair, Lucas spends a lot of time in long sleeves. Also, the tattoo had to be applied on Chad Michael Murray for each scene as it was used to cover up his real tattoo.
20 Lipstick Changes
As season one came to an end, the show went through many changes. Nathan and Haley were truly an item, Nathan had his “own” apartment, and Lucas and Peyton were busy figuring things out. The amount of changes the show went through almost equaled the number of times Haley’s lipstick changed in an episode 20 scene.
Nathan and Haley decided to throw a party at his new apartment, and in preparation for it, Haley stopped by to drop off some groceries. While talking to Nathan, though, her lipstick constantly changed throughout the scene. Depending on which camera was on her, she had either thickly lined and dark lipstick, or thinly lined light lipstick.
19 Lengthening Hair
One sure sign that a television series filmed scenes for an episode out of sequence is hair length. One Tree Hill’s season one finale, “The Games That Play Us” demonstrated that well.
The episode sees Lucas and Nathan struggle to deal with their father as their basketball coach, while Haley and Nathan make a serious decision about their relationship. If all that drama wasn’t enough, Lucas’ hair also causes some of its own. Throughout the entire episode, Lucas’ hair gets longer, shorter, then longer again. Chad Michael Murray clearly got a haircut before he wrapped for the season on the show.
18 Time Traveling Wedding
At the end of season one, Lucas gets quite the shock from his best friend and his half-brother. Haley informs Lucas that the two got married the night before following play-offs.
It ended the season on a shocker for fans, but once the series returned for season two, details about the wedding expanded. The problem is that during season two flashbacks to the actual wedding ceremony, the sun shone in the sky. Nathan and Haley couldn’t have gotten married when the sun was out. By the time the basketball game ended, the sun had already set.
17 Audio Without Video
Audio dialogue replacement, or ADR, occurs when a piece of dialogue isn’t audible on camera. Actors frequently have to head into a recording studio after filming to record pieces of dialogue for scenes they’ve already filmed. Sometimes when a television show films, dialogue choices change after the fact. That may have been the case for one scene in the season two premiere.
During an early scene in the episode, Nathan and Haley chat in bed while it rains outside. As they do, Haley’s voice says the words, “maybe so,” to Nathan, but her mouth never moves. It’s possible the line was added in to fill in the conversation later rather than an actual mistake in the scene.
16 The Magic iPod
The early generations of the iPod took off when One Tree Hill was in its heyday. With a huge focus on music in the series, iPods got plenty of product placement. During the season two episode “The Truth Doesn’t Make A Noise”, Lucas spent some time listening to music on his own down by the rivercourt -- the place where he grew up playing basketball. He carried it around with him after the fact.
Later in the episode, Keith stopped by to drop the iPod off with the explanation that Lucas left it in his truck. How could he leave it if he was actively using it earlier and didn’t even put it in Keith’s truck?
15 Changing Hairstyles
It can be very obvious that filming for a particular scene occurred over two different time periods if there was one major change in one of the central characters. For example, if the person in question has a complete change in clothing or hairstyle.
In the season three episode “Locked Hearts and Hand Grenades”, Haley heads back into the music studio with Chris Keller, but finds herself having a little trouble getting her feelings to translate into music. Eventually, Chris places Haley’s name on a map in the cafe meant to depict great musicians. As they discuss her name on the map, Haley’s hair goes from being in a high ponytail to loose and messy repeatedly.
14 Visible Crew Members
Main character Peyton has a strange family situation on the series. Living with her father, she spends a lot of time alone since he travels for work. She believed her birth mother was no longer in the land of the living, but it turned out that was a lie.
Peyton meets Ellie in season three, discovering that she and her mother have a lot in common, including their taste in music. When Peyton takes a roadtrip to check on Ellie, her mother shows Peyton her record collection. As Peyton and Ellie head in to look at her records though, there’s a split second where a member of the film crew is in the shot.
13 Repeated Actions
When the same scene is shot from different angles, the exact same movements and dialogue appear on camera over and over again. If an editor isn’t careful, it can seem like a character repeats the same action when the camera angle changes in the finished product. That’s exactly what happens to Brooke in the episode “Brave New World”.
When Lucas and Peyton return from their roadtrip to check on Ellie, Lucas takes Brooke to the rivercourt so she can see part of his life she hasn’t been around. Brooke walks over to sit with Mouth, and when the camera angle changes, she walks over to sit with Mouth again, even though she was already there.
12 Vanishing Purse
Haley and Rachel didn’t spend a lot of time together throughout the series. During the fourth season of the show, though, Haley spent some time tutoring Rachel in math. Funnily enough, the tutoring sessions are all a ruse on Rachel’s end. Rachel doesn’t need to improve her math grades, but Brooke does. She intends to get the answers to a test for Brooke instead.
Rachel even watches Haley’s purse for her at one point as they’ve “bonded.” When Rachel hands Haley her purse as Haley leaves the cafe, Haley grabs it from her and heads out. When Haley actually leaves the cafe, though, the purse is nowhere to be seen.
11 Visible Set
Today, plenty of television series film on location. One Tree Hill filmed in the North Carolina town of Wilmington (the same town that played home to Dawson’s Creek). The scenes inside the high school, however, were filmed in a sound stage.
Many fans didn’t know that Tree Hill High was actually a series of carefully constructed rooms. They could tell during a season four episode, though, when they could actually see part of the set. Following a trip to the hospital, Lucas actually saw his uncle Keith in a dream state. He followed him through the high school’s halls, but there was no ceiling to the hallway, only the lightning fixtures of the set.
10 Jimmy And Keith Share A Significant Date
One of the landmark episodes of One Tree Hill, and one of the most divisive amongst fans, featured Jimmy Edwards bringing a loaded weapon to school. The events of the episode saw Peyton wounded, Hayley and Nathan held hostage, and the loss of a major character.
While Jimmy lost his life during the storyline, so did Keith Scott. Dan took advantage of the day and used it to end his big brother’s life. When Lucas visits their graves in later episodes, there was something of a discrepancy. Keith’s final day of life was in January, while Jimmy’s was in March. However, that was impossible since they both left Tree Hill at the same time.
9 A Fake Baby Bump
In their senior year of high school. Haley was pregnant with Nathan’s son. The actress, Bethany Joy Lenz, would actually marry and have kids over the course of the show, but she wasn’t pregnant at the time. That meant that when she played Haley, she wore a prosthetic belly.
In the season four episode “Pictures of You”, Haley and Skills are paired for a class assignment. They spend time on the roof of the school with Skills lamenting his post-school prospects and Haley comforting him. While laying back on the roof, fans could see the prosthetic belly under the edge of her top, revealing the magic of television as not so magical.
8 Two Different Pairs Of Shoes
Though actresses might wear platforms or spiked heels for a costume on camera, they don’t have to keep them on for 12 hour shooting days. Instead, they might throw on slippers or sneakers between takes. Sometimes, those shoes get caught on camera.
In the season four finale, the main female characters of the series wound up performing a nostalgia tinged dance number to the Spice Girls song “Wannabe”. During the sequence, different camera angles revealed Haley had two different pairs of shoes. While in some shots, she wore heels, in others, she had sneakers on.
7 Visible Equipment
The fifth season of One Tree Hill jumped forward in time so that the series skipped right over the university years of its main characters. As the season unfolded, musician Kate Voegele joined the cast as a singer/songwriter Haley and Peyton mentored.
In the episode “In Da Club”, Peyton blindsides Mia into opening for a band at the last minute. A lot of Mia’s time in the episode is spent nervously arguing that she can’t do it. When she finally makes the decision to go on stage, a microphone from the camera crew drops down into the shot.
6 Changing Coffee Levels
One of the most memorable characters in One Tree Hill, for better or worse, is Nanny Carrie. The nanny hired by Nathan and Haley to help out with their son eventually tries to usurp Haley’s place in the household, even going so far as abducting Jamie. Before she went that far, though, she was just a young woman crushing on her boss.
In one scene early in season five, Carrie makes coffee after spending the night out partying. While talking with Nathan about all of her flirting, she holds the coffee pot in front of her. Throughout the scene, the level of coffee in the pot changes without her pouring any out or adding to it.
5 Jamie’s Birthday Moves
One Tree Hill surprised audiences by having Haley and Nathan marry in high school. They surprised audiences further by making Haley become pregnant her senior year. She went into labor on her graduation day during her valedictorian speech.
That meant Jamie was likely born in May, when most high schools hold their graduations. He could have been born in June if Tree Hill holds their ceremony after the school year is officially over. In season five, when Jamie celebrates a birthday, though, the comment is made that there are still 11 basketball games left in the high school season. If Jamie was born in May or June, that would be impossible. The season would already be over.
4 The Impossible Video Game
Jamie gets a video game system for his birthday in season five. By season seven, he knows his way around several games. Nathan spends the entire day in episode 19 of the season hanging out with his son. Among their many activities is playing the video game Rock Band with the complete setup. There’s just one problem: the way they play the game is impossible.
They have everything plugged in and ready, but as they actually play the game, viewers might notice something suspicious. The TV they play the game on? It’s turned off during part of the scene.
3 A Name Change
Some fans might not notice when the names used for buildings or street signs change. After all, a sign in the background is simply there to add realism to the scene, not necessarily for fans to keep track of the names of places. Eagle-eyed fans will notice when a mistake is made from one shot of a sign to the next, though.
During the season three finale, Rachel and Cooper are in a car that goes off a bridge. Its name is the Molina Bridge. Five seasons later, however, there’s a name change. When Brooke and Jamie go off the bridge, it’s called the Gable Bridge.
2 A New Zip Code
With fictional towns in stories, zip codes, phone numbers, and street names get invented by writers to give them a more realistic feel. One Tree Hill’s zip code was 01982 when Brooke addressed a letter in one episode, but it didn’t stay that way.
When Sam entered Brooke’s life as a foster daughter, letters arrived for her in the mail. Those letters featured a different zip code: 01928. The final two numbers are juxtaposed, so it’s likely this was simply a mistake in the props department. Such a slight difference wasn’t something that too many fans noticed.
1 Age Is Nothing But A Number
With nine seasons and a multi-year time jump in the middle, there were bound to be a few timeline issues in the show. One of the biggest ones is the ages of the characters. Throughout the early seasons of the show, Brooke was always mentioned as being a year older than Haley. Just as Haley and Nathan celebrate their seven year anniversary, though, that changes.
When they celebrate their seven year anniversary, according to the show’s timeline, it should actually be their sixth. Likewise, Brooke is revealed to be a year younger than Haley as a result, which doesn’t make any sense. It's obvious that someone in production wasn’t keeping track of dates.
Did you catch these mistakes in One Tree Hill? This is only a sampling of the continuity errors and crew caught on camera. Let us know which other mistakes you spotted in the comments!