Oh, looks like we’re picking right back where we left off. The kiss ends, Joey’s like, you kissed me! And Dawson’s like, yeah, I did. Then they’re both going, now what? And within mere moments their teenage glee descends to social awkwardness and then dips further into angst and happiness-ruining over-analysis and second-guessing. But no, wait, now they’re kissing again.
Cue the opening song.
It’s morning at the Leery house and Dawson’s parents are in bed and Ma is attempting to seduce Pa. But he’s not having it.
Bess and Joey are pulling into the restaurant in their crummy truck and Bess wants to know why Joey isn’t a being her usual megabitch self. It doesn’t take long before Joey starts spilling some beans. (And I’ve not yet heard who’s taking care of that baby. Bodie? We never see either of them anymore. And Bess never mentions her newborn son, which has never happened before in the history of motherhood.)
Now Dawson and Pacey are… in a salon together? They’re both getting their hair washed. Huh. Sure. Anyoo, there’s now a back and forth thing where Dawson & Pacey and Bess & Joey are hashing the kiss out a la Grease, only without a musical number. And actually Dawson makes a subtle Grease reference and so there you go.
Now they’re talking about whether Joey’s still going to France. And this would be a great time for Joey to actually have some parents in her life because OF COURSE SHE SHOULD. But anyway, it’s not up for question. And I can’t stand watching Pacey move his head everywhere while the stylist is trying to cut his hair. Stay sill asshole, unless you want a bald spot.
Then Dawson and Pacey start rather loudly discussing the pretty blonde cheerleader from their school who just so happens to also be in the salon and, if you ask me, she’s 100% within ear shot. And now Pacey wants frosted tips. Holy shit, I’d almost forgotten about this look! So ’90s. I’m dying.
Now Pacey is hopping into his brother’s police car so he can check out his hair and shout at local girls. He hollers at the cheerleader, Kristen, and when he fails to get her attention, he actually drives after her. Uh, so Officer Doug just leaves his police car unlocked with the keys in the ignition then? Okay, why not. So Pacey gets about 2 feet and has a car accident.
Enter Andie, played by Meredith Monroe. You may know her from such TV shows as Criminal Minds and… actually, that’s mostly it. But Dawson’s Creek was her big thing. And now back to the show.
Because Pacey was in the cop car when she crashed into it, Andie thinks she’s in deep shit with an actual cop. And since Pacey’s played by a grown man, let’s forgive her for thinking he’s old enough to be a cop. Wait, does that even make sense?
So Pacey decides to play along and be the cop, hears Andie’s apologies and asks for her information. Then he gives her hell and threatens to take her in. Andie begs him not to and Pacey “decides” to let her off the hook. A grateful Andie hightails it out of there and Pacey avoids getting in trouble for crashing the police car.
At Capeside High, Joey is talking to a teacher. She sounds like she has turned down some of his advice. He leaves and Dawson approaches and he and Joey have no idea how to interact with each other. There’s a non kiss hanging in the air. And then Joey is like, I may have made the biggest mistake of my life. And Dawson’s thinking she’s referencing the kiss, but no. She’s talking about not going to France, obviously over a teenage romance. They’re both overjoyed at her SHITTIEST DECISION POSSIBLE and start laughing and celebrating.
Joey asks him how he feels and he tells her he’s aroused. Then he goes in for a kiss and gets denied because Joey wants to talk about their relationship now that they’re “talking dirty in the halls.” Oh yeah, and France, isn’t not going kinda dumb? Dawson’s like, n’ah. It’s all cool; let’s go on a date. They make plans and yet another kiss is thwarted when Jen rolls up.
She tells them her grandpa died last night and she’s going home instead of sticking out the rest of the day. She walks off and Joey sends Dawson after her. He goes and Joey looks perturbed.
Now Pacey’s talking to some guys about what happened with his dad’s police car. Oh, so it’s not Doug’s car, it’s his dad’s. Even worse. Andie marches up behind him and Pacey’s busted. She rightly points out impersonating an officer is a felony and Pacey’s like, eh, my dad’s the Sheriff, so good luck, even though his dad would probably boot him off to juvie in a heartbeat.
And then Andie tells him she’s been filled with anxiety worrying about getting arrested and becoming a sex slave in prison to a woman named Bertha. No, really, this is what she says. Pacey essentially tells her to get over it. Then Kristen walks by, says hi to Andie and ignores Pacey yet again. Andie finds out Pacey likes Kristen and says he’s got no chance. But then she offers to introduce them. Pacey’s like, ooh, thanks! Pfft. Dummy.
And I’ve mentioned this before, but if this is such a small town then how is it even possible to not already know the people in your high school?
Jen’s back home and Grams his packing up Gramps’s things for donation. Jen’s upset she’s giving away his stuff, but Grams is no-nonsense. Jen thinks Grams isn’t upset, but Grams tells her after two years of watching him slowly die and get worse, she’s happy he’s out of pain.
At the Leery house, Gail is running home, apparently late, and offers a myriad of excuses to her husband so he won’t think she’s been out cheatin’ again. My goodness, that is some big hair. Mitch is like, no, it’s cool, I believe you. Also, right now I have to go to this vague sudden appointment.
Back at the high school, Pacey with his frosted tips and douchey Charlie Sheen shirt is about to approach Kristen, fully confident that the girl he tormented has made good on her promise to set them up. As he makes his way over, he recites a limerick about her being naked and why not since she’s in her sports bra. Maybe I’m overly conservative but methinks that wouldn’t have flown at my high school. He asks her out, she says yes and looks like Pacey’s got a date even though she walked away before getting a time or place.
Now here’s Mitch waiting for a “Mr. Drake”. And Mr. Drake is a divorce lawyer. Oooooh.
Dawson walks over to Jen’s with a dish for her from his mom. And I’m sorta confused because he went after her at school during normal school hours and it almost looks like he only just caught up with her now, but with a casserole well after school is over. She asks where Dawson’s going and he tells her the Rialto’s last night is that night and he’s going. She says she’s staying home and cursing the world. Then she asks if he’s going with Joey. Dawson’s like yeah, who else?
Then Jen offers herself to him again and he offers some friendship instead and so Jen goes in for a hug that looks very intimate and Dawson says he’s gotta go. She reluctantly lets him go. He tells her not to stay in and feel bad because the weather’s too nice and then leaves.
Joey’s sitting at the edge of the dock and Bess wants to talk to her about Joey’s date with Dawson. Joey’s weirding out about the whole thing and how they haven’t kissed again yet. Bess is like oh yeah, the second kiss is way harder! You’ve had time to over-think it by now. But then she says the second kiss is super meaningful and about something real. Okay there, lady. If you say so.
Now looks like Dawson’s coming to get her in a speed boat. Dude, wait. All this time he’s had access to that and he has never given her a ride home?! She has to use a ladder to leave the house and row her own ass home– in the dark– and only now you’re giving her a lift? Shit.
Joey’s fussing with her hair and putting on makeup. Dawson arrives and picks a flower off the dock to give to Joey. Then there’s more of that non-kiss hanging in the air stuff. And Joey attempts to cut the tension by making sexual references. But good ‘ol steady Dawson wants to do some hand holding.
At the theatre (Oh look, there’s Grams) they’re lamenting its imminent demolition and Dawson says all their movie watching will have to take place in his bedroom, which is already seemed to in the first place. And is this the only theatre in town? Giant-ass high school population in town and still Capeside can’t support one local cinema. Joey’s got her flower in her hand, they don’t kiss yet again, and the lights go down and the movie starts.
Pacey’s outside of somewhere looking at his watch and waiting. Then he starts twirling around and making rhymes about the absent Kristen.
Back in the theatre, Jen arrives just in time to break up Dawson and Joey’s date. Dawson hints that she should sit with Grams, but Jen’s like no, I’ll sit with you and then afterwards let’s all go get some food, unless I’m not welcome! Manipulative play there. Joey’s pissed. Then Jen’s like oh, I shouldn’t have come! And she’s out of there and Dawson, in what looks to be a blaze of guilt, goes after her.
In the lobby, Dawson’s trying to clear things up so he can get back to his date, but Jen wants to talk about their failed romance: We had our first date here! Did you wish I was Joey the whole time you were with me? All I was was the girl who showed you who you really wanted! Jen’s really laying it on thick.
Dawson keeps offering friendship but Jen’s not done holding him up. She’s like, you don’t really want my friendship! Don’t have sex with Joey right away or I might kill myself! My life is a joke! And now that Dawson is alarmed, she leaves the theatre and he’s left wondering if she’s going to off herself.
Dawson makes his way back inside and Joey’s gone, sans flower.
Kristen finally shows up and Pacey’s excited to see her. But Kristen can’t stay as her boyfriend is waiting for her in the car. She came to tell him she thinks he’s brave to live with the life-threatening medical condition known as a “heart stripe” that could kill him at any moment. Then she tries to relate to him because she has asthma. And goodnight.
Back at the Rialto, the movie is over and Jen is back in the theatre? So she ran away after ruining the date, and then returned to watch the movie in the back. Grams sees her and waves and Jen asks if Grams is going get some action now that Gramps is dead. Dude, that’s cold.
Then Jen’s like, my life is terrible because my parents couldn’t take me and I have no friends except you, Grams. And Grams looks charmed by that. And then Jen says she doesn’t think Grams likes her and Grams says, no, I love you and you’re all I have. Jen then says sucks to be you then. And damn if this isn’t the most dramatic pity party I’ve seen in awhile. The dialogue may be too mature, but this overblown display of teenage angst seems about right.
Jen and Grams talk about Gramps and their first date at the Rialto. And Jen apologizes for being a dick about Grams going out.
Pacey is at some fancy general store for some reason and sees Andie, who is doing some late-night fancy products shopping (The movie is over, it’s gotta be around 9:00 or 10:00. Since when are small town stores open that late?), and he wants to know what a heart stripe is. Andie says she made it up. Oh man, you couldn’t pull shit like that now. Google. Then Andie’s like you should have known better than to think you really had this date. And then Pacey unloads a bunch of insecurities on her, which I suppose is fair play for the unloading of anxieties from Andie. She gives him some advice about colouring his hair back to brown and saunters off.
Nighttime at the Leery house and Gail is confronting Mitch about lies he’s been telling. And she’s doing it with a shirt nearly falling off in a way that looks like it’s supposed to be casual but is very forced. She wants to know what’s up with seeing a divorce lawyer. He says he equally loves her and hates her and doesn’t know if he can stay married feeling that way. And Gail says get in or get out. And Mitch says he’s still not sure.
Dawson finally locates Joey at the piers. He left her to talk to Jen when the movie started. He was gone for five minutes. The movie ended some time go. He’s been doing quite a bit of running around. He starts apologizing and she’s like, no, it’s fine. Then why did you leave the theatre without a word and make him run all over town looking for you in an era without cell phones? Banner night for overly dramatic teenage girl shit.
Then she’s saying she didn’t go to France because she didn’t want to take the easy way out of her crappy life. Stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. No one should ever turn down an educational opportunity in France. Blah blah blah is all I hear until she mentions Dawson was part of the reason she stayed, which if she rephrases that to be the whole reason she stayed, I’d actually believe her but still think she’s being dumb.
Now they’re talking about how complicated their relationship will be and I’m thinking just make out and go to the movies because you’re 16 and you don’t know nothin’.
Then Dawson says Capeside can be like France, and this conversation leads them into their second kiss. And then after that, Dawson says he found out the Rialto is being replaced with a newer and better theatre. Joey wants to know why something should be changed if it’s working. Metaphor time. But Dawson says new and different can be better. And then there’s more kissing. And the end.
Most Verbose Articulation: No one! But I’m gonna estimate that Dawson and Joey said the word “complicated” to describe themselves about 13 times.