Dawson’s Creek Revisited: Season 4, Episode 16 – Mind Games

Opening scene, Pacey’s itching to do more sexing, and he and Joey start engaging in the sort of PDA that makes my stomach turn when I see it in real life. Drue pops into the cafeteria and begs for everyone’s attention. He has senior year polls. No one’s paying that much attention and Joey is making bizarre faces at Pacey for some reason.

Jeez, not in public...

Jeez, not in public…

Drue makes a big to-do about the biggest couple or whatever and goes on about how they make everyone want to puke. J&P totally are smiling at each other thinking, oh, we are so disgustingly in love! But apparently the class at large chose Joey and Dawson, as though everyone else would give a shit about their brief failed romance.


Joey slams Drue against a wall, who says he thinks it’s funny their classmates still care so much after all this time. Is that a wink-wink-nudge-nudge from the writers about the absurdity of this plot?

Joey accuses Drue of rigging the votes and tells him to fix it. Dawson approaches, all friendly-like. He’s seen the polls and has taken it in stride, seemingly giving zero fucks.

Pacey is at the restaurant (After school hours now? This show plays so fast and loose with time) heavily suggesting Gretchen leave Pacey the house to himself for awhile. Now that his celibacy is over, he’s chomping at the bit. Gretchen is onto him quickly and eagerly wants to know if he got laid, which I can assure you is something I never wanted to know about my own brother, never mind getting all weirdly giddy about it.

But Gretchen is quite the wing woman, recalling her horny high school days, and promises not to come home so Pacey can have more teenage sex.

Jen’s in therapy talking about how shitting girls are, and how hard it is to be friends with them. This from the girl who tried to steal Joey’s boyfriend, and who crashed a wedding, berated the dead at a funeral, etc. Yeah, other girls are the worst.

But here’s something I didn’t know. Jen had sex before she turned 13, and she was drunk at the time. Dude, that’s hardcore shenanigans. How old was the guy? Shit.

At the restaurant, Gretchn is stuck working late and makes a references to “telling Bodie” something, just so we know the guy didn’t secretly die or something. No, we don’t need to see him, I guess, just throw his name around a bit, same thing.

Turns out also that the Leerys are out of town, and Dawson didn’t tell Gretchen ’cause he thought it’d sound like a lame come on. And this is why Pacey’s had several partners and Dawson has not. No matter, Gretchen’s coming over later with movies and popcorn and probably nothing will happen.

Joey comes over to see Pacey, jumps him, and immediately gets wigged that Gretchen isn’t coming home because she knows. She pretends like she’s not, but the mood has soured.

At a coffee shop Jack calls Jen out for stalking her therapist.

Stalking a therapist! How cliche.

Stalking a therapist! How cliche.

Apparently she’s disturbed he knows so much about her and she knows so little about him. I don’t see the problem with that. This is therapy, not friendship. But no matter, a lack of boundaries is one reason this chick’s in therapy, so a stalking she shall go.

Pacey is trying to order a pizza over the phone from the one Portuguese guy in town (How can he be in business if he doesn’t speak English in a small American town?) when Gretchen pops home for a minute. Joey wants to talk. She thinks it’s necessary to tell Gretchen not to say anything to Dawson. She says she won’t, but that it’s not hard info to guess.

When Pacey asks Gretchen where she’s going for the night, she says, “Dawson’s.” And now Joey looks vaguely uncomfortable. I’ll never understand this girl.

Jen and Jack are now stalking the therapist in a book store. Jack thinks he’s gay because he’s looking at an Anne Rice novel. Jen wonders who Jack surpassed her in knowledge of gay things. Possibly being actually gay has something to do with it.

They then run smack into the guy and have an awkward encounter in the poetry section, with Jen pretending she likes poetry, after calling a poetess a “him”. And now it looks like she’ll continue her stalking at a poetry reading later.

At Pacey’s, he and Joey are brooding over Dawson and Gretchen’s togetherness this evening. And then they kiss while still chewing their pizza. Oh, gross.

At Dawson’s, he and Gretchen are done watching a movie and are raring up for another. Gretchen is going through her bag and Dawson notes she has pyjamas and a toothbrush. He then is like, are you planning to spend the night? Gretchen’s like, uh, do you want me to? And he pauses forever and makes things awkward. What a fucking square.

Like, you don’t have to sleep with her if you’re not emotionally ready, but shit, you like her a lot and your parents are away and you’re almost 18 and maybe you could try living a little.

Gretchen decides to take the bull by the unhorny horns and throws the topic of sex on the table. Crickets are literally chirping in the background.

Sex! Oh man!

Sex! Oh man!

She gets the ball rolling and they are laughing about her ex-boyfriend and Dawson says he’s never had sex. She handles it with the grace of an older experienced woman, and I’m wondering if she’s going to Mrs. Robinson him.

But no, he starts talking about how he and Joey didn’t do it and goes into it a bit too deeply. And then he’s like, I wish they’d just do it already and put the nail in the coffin of Dawson and Joey. If I were Gretchen, I’d be out of there. But she’s patient and asks how he knows they haven’t and he says Joey told him they hadn’t. And Gretchen says nothing, which is mighty big of her.

After the break, there’s some pretty swell body language going on:

Ah, l'amour.

Ah, l’amour.

Gretchen’s looking weary and annoyed and she sighs and asks what the movie is about anyway. Dawson’s looking like maybe he realizes he might’ve blown it. And he has, she’s up and outta there.

In the morning, Joey wants to make Pacey breakfast, so she sends him out to get groceries. Outside he bumps into Dawson, who’s looking to make sure Gretchen got home okay. He wants to use Pacey’s phone. So they go inside and Joey hides when she hears his voice.

Jen and Jack are actually going to the poetry reading. I don’t know what her obsession is with her therapist. Jack is dubious about the whole thing, and shrinks in general. He also thinks Jen’s got a crush on hers.

Dawson’s leaving Pacey’s after learning Gretchen was at Doug’s. He’s thinking she’s done with him. Pacey leaves for the groceries.

I love poetry.

I love poetry.

At the reading, the two non-fans have snagged the best seats in the house, which seems fair. They’re about to go, but the therapist shows up and the poetry reading is about to start. It’s pretty unprofessional to sit next to a patient in a social gathering, isn’t it? Maybe keep some professional distance?

At a coffee shop, Drue parks himself near Dawson to talk about the poll prank, and honesty and Joey. This kid shows up for the last year of high school and for some reason is heavily invested in Joey and Dawson’s past romantic history, which he never even witnessed. Think about that. It’s really fucking weird.

At Pacey’s, Joey comes out to see Gretchen, who’s annoyed and sitting on the porch. She’s wondering how everyone got into this bullshit situation of being intwined in other people’s business. She thinks Joey should just tell Dawson she’s moved on and put the guy out of his misery already.

Pacey comes back as Joey leaves, and he wants the scoop from his sister. He drags it out of her that Joey told Dawson that she wasn’t sleeping with him.

After the reading, Jen is introduced to the poetess, who is partnered up with… the shrink. Jen looks just uncomfortable enough about it that I think we can safely assume she maybe had some sort of crush on him.

At the school, Dawson asked Joey to meet him in the year book room. He’s fiddling around on the computer. He apologizes for asking her about her sex life.

To tell or not to tell... Drama or more drama...

To tell or not to tell… Drama or more drama…

Dawson muses a bit about their failed relationship, but then fixes the year book page to reflect Joey and Pacey as the class couple.

At the poetry reading, the shrink lets Jen know he was on to what she was doing and they’ll discuss it in therapy. Well, just further proof for the need for a session, isn’t it?

Dawson meets up with Gretchen, who doesn’t seem like she’s ready to dump him just yet. She’s got great things to say about his honesty. He gives her a toothbrush. No, really.

Pacey and Joey are talking a walk and talking about sex. And they keep saying “sex”. Like 7 times. I’m about ready for a euphemism. They almost talk about what Gretchen told Pacey, but then he doesn’t pursue it.

The end.

MVA: Dawson. “Actually, no, I forgot about that in the wake of greater personal tragedies, but since you insist on invading my space…”


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