Are you ready to go back to Tree Hill? Chad Michael Murray visited the set of One Tree Hill in North Carolina, and he's still passionate about the series that made him a heartthrob for life. The actor stopped by iconic sets from the series, posed moodily in front of them, and posted the pictures to Instagram with surprisingly heartfelt captions. Lucas Scott would be so proud. Suggested soundtrack pairing for this article: "I Don't Wanna Be" by Gavin DeGraw, of course. If you need another song, maybe "Chariot" by Gavin DeGraw? Either way, you have to make it all 2003 up in here for maximum enjoyment.
Murray visited the bridge seen in the intro, which also served as the site of several iconic One Tree Hill scenes. He also dropped by the house Lucas shared with his mother, Karen, in the early seasons of the show. He was considerate, though; real people live in that house, and he discouraged fans from writing on it (why would you ever do that?) or generally disrupting the kind people that have to deal with One Tree Hill fans not getting off of their lawns. Murray captioned the porch photo thusly:
I spent many days on this porch pondering life’s great enigmas... Once a Scott, always a Scott. #OTH@eyecon3000 Side note- Friends, PLEASE refrain from writing on this kind persons home. They are wonderful people & let’s show them the respect we have for OTH by always respecting the property.#OnceAScottAlwaysAScott
So true. Here's Murray wandering around the small-town set of One Tree Hill, as one simply must when visiting Wilmington, North Carolina. (Murray was in town for a One Tree Hill convention put together by a group called EyeCon.)
The shot of Murray on the bridge is legitimately perfect. It's moody, a little dramatic, and just evocative enough to feel meaningful, even if you wish it didn't. It's like the AIM away message of photographs, or post from the Tumblr you used for three months in high school. There's just something nostalgic about it. That makes sense, though. With his hood up, shoulders hunched, and eyes avoiding the camera, Murray is essentially recreating the intro to the series. It's great, OK? It just is.
It's obvious the series still resonates with Murray, and it should. After his turn as preppy playboy Tristan on Gilmore Girls, the role of sensitive jock Lucas Scott catapulted him to superstardom. Chad Michael Murray became a household name, and stole the scene in films like Freaky Friday. He was a mega-babe thanks to One Tree Hill, and oh, he knows it. It's almost impossible to believe that the series premiered in 2003 — even for him.
Here's how Murray captioned his One Tree Hill bridge throwback:
I returned to the place it all started. Feels like yesterday... Ok, maybe not. It feels like 15 years ago I walked this bridge for the 1st time. 😏 I’m so humbled and grateful that so so so many of you went on the adventure along with us- and still do today. Much love to you friends! #OTH#OTHBridge#OurBridge#TheBridgeThatGuidedUsAllTogether
Lucas Scott: Still feeling all the feelings, after all these years. Somewhere, out there, Peyton Sawyer Scott is so proud.
This isn't the first time Murray has offered a throwback to his One Tree Hill days. To hype up fans for his EyeCon appearance, Murray posted memes of himself and former One Tree Hill costars to Instagram. He also previously posted pictures reminiscing about the show in October 2017:
It's sweet, honestly. Especially when you consider that, while the show ran for nine seasons and ended in 2012, Murray left after six seasons. He made a guest appearance in the final season of One Tree Hill, but it's been close to a decade since Murray's Lucas Scott was a regular on the show. Even so, he knows what the fans want to see, and he's not afraid to share it with them. Go Ravens!