Brooke is Peyton's best friend and captain of the cheerleading squad. Feisty and flirtatious, she has fallen for Lucas twice but both times, their relationship didn't work out. Brooke has lived in several different places since her parents moved to California without her. She creates a clothing line, "Clothes Over Bros" in season three - it is accepted by Rogue Vogue and later by Victoria's Secret. Her current boyfriend is Chase Adams.
A once great basketball player, Dan is father to both Nathan and Lucas, although he never wanted anything to do with the latter. After his marriage to Deb crumbles and she and Nathan try to rid themselves of him, Dan's evil comes to the forefront. After Dan finds Deb sleeping with his brother, Keith, a war begins between the two brothers, culminating with Dan fatally shooting his brother in season three, believing that Keith had set his car dealership alight. Since discovering that Deb was actually behind the fire, Dan has tried to make amends by supporting Karen through her pregnancy and appears to have turned over a new leaf. However, after Lucas discovers he is Keith's murderer, he is placed in jail and disowned by both his sons and Karen
Deb is Dan's neurotic ex-wife and Nathan's mother. Married to Dan for seventeen years, she eventually divorces him in season three, her hatred of him driving her to attempt to kill him at one point. Deb battles a pill addiction in season two and again in season four, but overcomes it for good the second time.
Haley James Scott
Haley is Lucas' best friend. She marries Nathan in season one and again in season three and gives birth to his son, James Lucas Scott, in season four. She is an extremely intelligent young woman with high morals (despite the fact that she was married and a mother both before she left high school). In season two, she leaves Nathan to tour the country as a musician but realizes that her marriage is worth more than her dream and she returns to him.
Karen is Lucas' mother. Dan abandoned her after she became pregnant in High School and with a lot of help from Dan's brother (and in later years, Karen's lover) Keith, Karen raised Lucas alone. She runs a small café in Tree Hill and along with her business partner and friend, Deb, she owns an all-ages club named TRIC. Karen is devastated by Keith's death in season three. In season four, she gets close to Dan again before learning that he was the one who killed Keith and has given birth to Keith's daughter, whom she names Lily Roe Scott.
Keith was Dan's older, kinder, under-achieving brother. After Dan chose Deb over Karen, Keith helped Karen to raise Lucas (acting as a surrogate father to him) and fell in love with her but they only got together in season three. He had a recurring drinking problem and an ongoing rivalry with his brother which involved him sleeping with Deb and Dan paying Jules to seduce Keith and then dump him to get back at Keith for this. When Dan mistook him for the one who tried to kill him in the dealership fire, he shot him after the siege at Tree Hill High, killing him instantly. Since his death, Karen has given birth to Keith's daughter, Lily, and Keith has been haunting Dan as a teen and as an adult ghost and has been guiding his nephews as a sort of guardian angel.
Lucas is the son that Dan never claimed, although Keith more than made up for the lack of a father figure in his life. He and Nathan start out as enemies but bond as friends and as brothers as the show progresses. Lucas' best friend is Haley and he has been a romantic interest for both Peyton and Brooke. Lucas has a serious heart condition known as HCM, which he concealed for a long time. Aside from basketball, his greatest passion is literature and quotes from the books he reads are used on the show. He also has a half-sister named Lily.
Marvin "Mouth" McFadden
Mouth is one of Lucas' oldest friends, originating from the River Court. He is somewhat unlucky in love, being the victim of Brooke's unrequited love in season two, being dumped by Erica when she becomes popular and falling for Rachel, only to get sidelined for the older Cooper. GiGi, his co-sports announcer, has also broken up with him after only seeing him for a few weeks and Shelly Simon runs out on him after he loses his virginity to her. Mouth hopes to be a sports commentator and commentates at the Ravens' games.
Nathan, a stereotypical jock, is the son that Dan did claim, although his relationships with both his parents are strained at the best of times. Nathan marries Haley in season one and again in season three and becomes a father to baby James Lucas Scott in season four. He and Lucas start out as enemies but bond as friends and as brothers as the show progresses. Nathan is the star player of the Ravens and is named "Most Valuable Player" in season four. Basketball has always been his greatest passion and he sees it as his "way out".
Peyton is an interesting and unusual girl. Her two greatest passions in life are music and art; she is an expert in the punk rock genre and uses her art to express the issues that play out in her life. Peyton's father Larry works on a dredging boat and is never at home and her mother Anna is dead. In season two, she discovers that she is actually adopted. She has never met her biological father although she has met his son, her half-brother, Derek. After getting to know her birth mother Ellie, she loses her to breast cancer. In season four, Lucas and Peyton finally act on their long-repressed feelings for each other and begin a relationship.
Rachel moves to Tree Hill in season three. After joining the cheerleading squad, she instantly clashes with Brooke as she pursues Lucas, although Brooke and Rachel later become friends. Rachel gets close to Mouth but sidelines him for Cooper, who dumps Rachel when he finds out she lied about her true age. After Nathan and Haley's wedding, Cooper and Rachel have an altercation in the limo which causes it to veer off the Mollina Bridge and into the water. Nathan rescues Rachel and she develops a crush on him but backs off when she discovers that Haley is pregnant. Rachel takes the fall for a calculus exam she stole with Brooke and is expelled from Tree Hill High. It is revealed that Rachel was once overweight and unattractive and has had major plastic surgery to make herself look the way she does now.
Antwon "Skills" Taylor
Skills is one of Lucas' oldest friends, originating from the River Court. He takes on a more prevalent role in season four when he fills Lucas' vacancy on the Ravens. He dates Bevin Maskey, a cheerleader and is accepted to the college of his choice.
Whitey is the Ravens' coach. He and Dan have never seen eye-to-eye and often bicker over their differing opinions on the team. Whitey often laments the death of his wife Camilla and the fact that he didn't spend more time with her while she was alive. He retires after the Ravens finally win him his much-coveted State Championship title in season four but later takes a coaching position in a college three hours away from Tree Hill, so that Nathan has the chance to play college basketball.