She stole our hearts one "Ew!" at a time as Summer Roberts on The O.C. And now, Rachel Bilson has reunited with O.C. creator Josh Schwartz for the CW's charming new fall drama Hart of Dixie.
And that's not even the best reason to watch this show.
If you are missing old-school WB-style shows like Felicity, Everwood or Gilmore Girls (Anyone? Anyone? Thought so!), you better read on, 'cause we're pretty sure we just found your favorite new show for fall...
Hart of Dixie (CW)
Premieres: Monday, Sept. 26, 9 p.m.
Time-Slot Competition: Dancing With the Stars (ABC), Two and a Half Men (CBS), Mike & Molly (CBS), House (FOX), The Sing-Off (NBC)
Cast: Rachel Bilson, Scott Porter, Jaime King, Wilson Bethel, Cress Williams
Status: We've seen the pilot episode.
Confession time: We want to bear hug this show and never ever let it go. It is more than a worthy successor to the feel-good WB drama throne. If Everwood picked up Gilmore Girls at a bar for a night of quippy fun, the result would be the adorable Hart of Dixie. Sprinkle some Doc Hollywood on that baby for good measure.
OK, enough gushing. Here's everything you need to know about Hart of Dixie: The series follows Dr. Zoe Hart (Bilson) a top-notch surgeon (think a Chanel-wearing Cristina Yang) who moves to the small town of Bluebell, Ala., to hone her bedside manner after she inherits half of a stranger's medical practice. Obviously, a delicious love hexagon ensues.
Zoe is instantly charmed by lawyer and town golden boy George (Porter), who just happens to be engaged to Zoe's new enemy, Southern belle Lemon (King). Luckily, there's more than one cute guy to occupy Zoe's time. Enter bad boy Wade (Bethel), who is her neighbor on mayor Lavon Hayes' (Williams) land. Oh, and Lavon shares a complicated history with Lemon. Got all that?
While the pilot starts off a bit slow (the New York scenes mixed with Bilson's narration feel a bit forced), the show finds its stride when it heads south. Beautifully shot in North Carolina, viewers will instantly be enraptured by the warm colors and quirky people that make up Bluebell, boxed wine and all. You will want to move there.
For the series' creator and executive producer Leila Gerstein—who worked on The O.C. and says Summer was her favorite character to write for—Bilson was the only option for Zoe. "She's delightful, she's great at comedy, but there's something about her that is likeable. You want to be on any journey she's going on," she says. "She appeals to men, she appeals to women, you want her to be your girlfriend and your best friend and take her home to dinner."
Similar to Josh's other series, viewers can expect music to be an essential part of the show, especially country music. "We're looking to get some bands on and have a space built on the set, not unlike The O.C.'s Bait Shop," executive producer Len Goldstein tells us. "A bar called the Rammer Jammer, where people will come and perform. We're excited to break some new talent. Alex Patsavas (The O.C.'s music supervisor) is in charge of the music and she's excited."
Verdict: If you couldn't tell from the gushfest, we want you to watch the crap out of this show. Doctor's orders.
Find out our first "Top Five" show for new fall shows right here, then check back every day this week for the complete list. All of our new show reviews will post next week.