Dawson’s Creek Revisited: Season 5, Episode 8 – Hotel New Hampshire

Opening scene, Dawson is talking about his floundering with Pacey on his boat. Pacey is talking about loving the kitchen at work and this coworker who isn’t into him. And looks like these two are buddies again now that Pacey’s not boning Joey, even though it’s been less than half a year and generally people hold grudges for shit like that a lot longer.

CREDITS

Jen and Joey are studying together. Joey used to hate Jen, but now that she’s surrounded by a college full of new people to hate, Jen’s her best pal, I guess. She asks how Dawson’s been, since she hasn’t seen him in awhile. Jen says he’s doing okay. Joey says she’s starting to feel not so bad about not being the one who’s there for him. Makes sense. She’s complete shit at being supportive.

It's true, I'm the worst.

It’s true, I’m the worst.

At the frat, they’re getting ready for the formal. The guy talking calls Jack a lady, and everyone including him laughs. Then he says everyone must have a date and get laid, and shows a list of potential dates. So far Jack is all, heh, list! The guys start talking hot chicks and Jack just drinks his drink and thinks about something other than vaginas. Then they call on him to get one of the guys a date with his attractive female friend. And as near as I can figure he just pimped Jen out to a random frat neanderthal.

Pacey shows up at his coworker’s house, the one who’s sleeping with the boss, and gives her an offer of a platonic night to give her a break from her shitty relationship. She hesitates and then takes him up on it.

In therapy, Dawson is lamenting his friends are treating him with kid gloves still, and his shrink tells him to go to the film festival that’s coming up and take one of his buddies.

At the radio station, Jen’s got a gig, I guess, mooning about breakups on the air. The other woman, Nora, who I thought was a plot device, shows up so I guess she’s now a regular guest.

Jen’s saying she’s done with Charlie, and the other chick is like, I wish I had that confidence. And she mentions his latest attempt at “wooing us back,” thing. The look on Jen’s face says he isn’t trying to win them back, just Nora.

Dafuq?

Dafuq?

Nora learns Jen hasn’t gotten any love letters and is all, oh… I’m sorry! But really, it’s likely she showed up to find out just that and will now go throw herself at Charlie, as it seems she was the real girlfriend and Jen was the side chick. Womp womp. Well, I guess now Jen’s self esteem will be shitty enough to go out with that frat pile from earlier. Jen tells Nora she doesn’t care.

But she’s crying to Dawson soon after saying that she does want corny love letters and that she does care very much.

Rats!

Y no LETTERS?

Jen calls herself a floozy, Dawson laughs and then kisses her forehead. Admittedly, floozy is a rather delightful word these days; so much more playful and gentle than slut. Let’s bring back floozy.

Jen’s misery and mortification is the perfect set-up for him to ask her to leave town to go to that film festival.

With Jen out of the picture, Jack invites Audrey instead, along with Joey, to double date with him and that frat guy named Eric at the formal. The door knocks at their dorm and Audrey wants to pose before Joey opens the door. Why she has to be such a dingbat, I’m not sure. Eric calls Audrey a stone cold fox.

At the film festival, the receptionist girl hits on Dawson in an uncomfortable way and rudely asks Jen if she’s his girlfriend. Jen then laughs like it’s a huge joke, which is also kinda weird. Some guy runs up and tells Dawson he’s big news and his screening sold out. Then he calls another director retarded. I’m not sure at what point that word stopped being used so casually, but I don’t think it would fly on TV anymore. Well, HBO, but you know.

Dawson and Jen open their hotel room door and inside is the cheesiest bed ever.

I expect some whoopee!

I expect some whoopee!

At the formal, guys approach Eric and Jack and say “score”, like appraising a woman you don’t know right in front of her isn’t remarkably gross. Joey says Jen should be there too to share in the pain and Jack tells her Jen’s having a weekend out of town with Dawson. Joey’s now got a case of the sads.

At Pacey’s non-date with his coworker Karen, he keeps things light until BAM he doesn’t and brings up that she’s a woman on the side and deserves better.

At the festival, a seemingly over-done film directed by the “retarded” local celebrity is showing. Smoke Crack & Worship Satan. Yeah.

Too much?

Too much?

But apparently it’s really good. I can only imagine what it’s about from the title.

Dawson pooh-poohs his movie and Jen gives him a pep talk. Then the director of the Satan movie pops out wearing a silly-looking hat and mentions he’s won the festival three times in a row and calls Dawson a “Hollywood slickster.” Then he calls Jen pretty, stares at her strangely and hoofs it out of there.

Pacey and his date do some banter that I don’t give a shit about. Then they have a goodnight kiss that immediately leads to making out, which immediately leads to them tearing into her home and getting undressed. Also she knocks over a lamp.

At the festival, Dawson’s movie is done screening and the head festival guy introduces Dawson, but first talks about how Mitch wrote a letter along with the video about his son’s talent. Dawson gives a small speech, dedicates the film to his father and gives a shoutout to his “girlfriend” Jen.

At the party, Audrey is bored stiff by her date. He gets up to go get a drink and complains to Jack that she doesn’t like him and maybe she’s a prude. Jack tells him not to worry and that Audrey’s easy. Joey overhears and looks incensed.

I kills you

I kills you

Then Jack sees Joey heard him and he looks like he ate a bag of whoops.

After they’re done fooling around (or sleeping together? Not sure) Karen is angry, so maybe the sex wasn’t very good. No afterglow here. She says Pacey’s not worth what she’s risking. He asks if she slept with him to get back at her boss/lover. Ah. There we are. And yes, it was revenge sex. Pacey leaves in a huff.

At the festival, sore loser Satan film Oliver tells Dawson he loved his film and he isn’t as much of a goon as he thought. He tells him about a media arts school in… Boston (Go figure!) full of nerds and freaks and stuff. So, obviously here’s the new plan. Not subtle.

Oliver points out, “there’s your girl” to Dawson when he sees Jen. Dawson’s about to correct him, that she’s not really his girlfriend, but stops. He’s got that look in his eye, so maybe after these many years he’s finally attracted to Jen again now that he’s sick of Joey ruining his life.

At the formal, Joey’s giving Jack the business over the shit he said about Audrey and he doesn’t seem to think it was a big deal. Then she calls him out on not spending time with them anymore and being a general asshole these days. He pretty much tells her to get off her high horse and no one’s forcing anyone to be there. So Joey marches right out.

Back in the cheesy hotel room, Dawson and Jen have a conversation that steers back to “so, why didn’t we work out?” I knew it. They rehash their breakup and Jen throwing herself at him and they laugh, and he says ultimately Jen just wasn’t attracted to him. And so Jen kisses him.

Ohohoho, and I think after Joey, Eve and Gretchen giving him the heave ho, he’s finally going to lose his virginity, and to Jen. And why not?

In the morning, Dawson wakes up a happy camper.

I did it!

I did it!

At the restaurant, Pacey goes in to quit and finds out that Karen already has. Boss man gives him the chance to rescind his resignation and expresses regret for putting him in the middle of it all. Pacey doesn’t say anything and leaves. Uh, so did he quit or not?

At the dorm room, Joey walks in on Jack apologizing to Audrey, who forgives him with gusto. Joey also talks to him, he’s sorry and then boom, everything’s fine again.

Pacey sees Karen outside the restaurant and they, I don’t know, debrief. She encourages him not to quit, and then they huge, she leaves and that’s that.

As they’re packing to leave the cheesy hotel, Jen talks to Dawson about how sex changes everything and she’s worried. He says it felt right and if things change, who says it’ll be bad, and so bring it on. Jen seems happy with that. And then they decide to stay (Another hour? Another night? Who knows.)

Well, good for him. I was rooting for that guy’s boner for some time.

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Dawson’s Creek Revisited: Season 5, Episode 6 – High Anxiety

Opening scene, Dawson’s getting checked out by a doctor. Nothing wrong physically, but he’s having anxiety attacks, and has been since his dad died. He doesn’t think it’s grief stress though. Doc thinks otherwise and hooks him up with a therapist in Boston, who is the best. Dawson sensibly asks if there’s not someone closer, but apparently not.

WTF? They have a TV station, but no shrinks? Capeside never makes any effing sense.

The receptionist walks in with an appointment for 5:00 the next day. How good can this guy be to be available that short notice? Hope you didn’t have anything important planned tomorrow, you’re going on a last-minute train ride and an overnight trip. (Hopefully you work through your grief fast or you’ll be making a lot of big trips to Boston. Seriously, what doctor would make treatment this unnecessarily cumbersome?)

CREDITS

Joey walks in and Audrey’s messily tidying her trashy belongings. Her pillow is hot pink and furry and there’s leopard print everywhere. Her mom is coming for a visit, and this is someone who used to hit on her boyfriends, so Audrey’s not keen. Joey’s skeptical that she’s all that bad, and changes the subject to Dawson, who hasn’t called.

Jen’s hanging out with Pacey in a fancy boat (that can’t be his boat, right? How did he get his hands on another, much nicer boat?) and bemoaning her cheating sort of boyfriend. Pacey finds a stray necklace, then tells Jen to get even.

Dawson is walking around his house looking sad and a little anxious.

At the restaurant, Pacey’s eating for free on his day off and hands the stray necklace back to his boss, who wants to commit adultery on his boat again this evening. Bold request to effectively ask to screw in someone else’s home while they find something else to do. Pacey’s like, oh, I can’t ’cause I’m throwing a party tonight. Then a waitress announces, hey, Pacey’s throwing a party! The restaurant cheers and now Pacey’s stuck.

Dawson calls Joey and they have a stilted conversation about how he’ll be in town, but will just stay with Jack and Jen. And of course Joey pretends like it’s fine and she really isn’t okay with it at all.

Y U no Want me?!

Y U no Want me?!

Dawson arrives at the therapist’s, and it’s an empty, dark waiting room without another human being in. That’s not a good sign for a mental health professional. There’s a mysterious white box with a button on the table that looks like an answering machine. Dawson pushes the button twice, which is twice as bold as I would be.

He gets antsy after waiting about 30 seconds and gets up and leaves.

Audrey’s mom is in the dorm now, and Audrey is on a scale. Mom sees Joey, compliments her skinny figure and Audrey reveals Mom thinks her daughter has gained weight. Then Mom asks Joey how old she thinks she is. This woman is already a pain in the ass.

Cliche shitty mother

Cliche shitty mother

Then she re-phrases and asks if she looks more like Audrey’s sister or mother. Joey unloyally picks sister, which is the coward’s way out. Mother all the way, just for the look on her face after the reality check. Mom is flattered and now wants Joey to come out for dinner.

Audrey pulls Joey in the bathroom and insists she come to dinner, especially after saying Mom looks like her sister.

Dawson shows up at Jen’s place. Grams certainly managed to buy a lot of Boston house. Dawson asks if he can spend the night. Maybe call ahead…? Jen has to run out, presumably for that revenge. Jack is on the way to the frat (Oh good, he cut those stupid hair wings off) and invites Dawson along, who is happy to come.

Jen marches up to her paramour’s door and he’s not happy to see her, reminding her they had plans tomorrow instead. She bursts in, he takes a nervous look at the closet and she says she might need a Palm Pilot to keep track of her liaisons. Heh. Palm Pilot. She then says let’s get naked. Charlie’s like no.

She feigns hurt like she’s in a second rate film noir and says she’ll get her sweater and be on her way. Charlie speeds ahead of her and prevents her from opening the closet. He says he is having the sweater dry cleaned.

Then a young woman walks out of the closet claiming to be Charlie’s girlfriend (Because girlfriends generally hide in closets when other girls come over unannounced). Then Jen says she’s his girlfriend and then Charlie stares back at them trying to look cute and worried.

Womp...

Womp…

Womp...

…womp.

At the frat party, Dawson helps his team win a drinking game and looks jazzed to be there.

At dinner, mom wastes no time grilling Audrey about the sauce on her dinner plate, her exercise regime and the way she speaks. Joey leaves the table to make a call on her cell, which is a level of etiquette not seen in… ever? Dawson screens the call and gets back to drinking. Joey’s stuck at that dinner.

In Charlie’s room, he’s apologizing without really apologizing, “we never had that talk”, “it’s college”, and so forth. And then he takes the conversation in a direction where I think he’s going to suggest a threesome. Oh and he does.

Back at dinner, things are tense with hearing about how mom was an model and wanted to be an actress but got pregnant. Then Mom talks about how many private schools Audrey went through, and how she lacks focus.

Then she gets even more awful and tells Joey she basically paid the school to take her because her grades were shit.

Joey then calmly tells off Audrey’s mom, scoring one round of “maybe you’re mad because she’s 18 and you’re not,” and then they leave to go to a party, and Mom is left at the table.

Jen and the other woman, Nora, supposedly agree to this threesome. Having a rich history of television watching behind me, I surmise that they met beforehand, somehow knew he’d bring this idea up somehow (?) and are planning to humiliate him in some way.

Jen tells him to stand over by the closet and strip. But from the looks of Nora, is she even in on this? Now I’m not sure.

Wait, what?

Wait, what?

Charlie says no, you first. The ladies, who are now holding all the cards are like, n’ah, let’s go. Charlie, not wanting to lose his big chance, goes ahead and starts undressing while the girls egg him on. He gets down to his skivvies and then says your turn. Jen tells him they’re the ones holding the cards– hey!– and tell him to get naked.

Any asshole should be able to see through this obvious set-up, but maybe I’m overestimating the optimism of horny 18-year-old boys who’ve watched too many of the porns.

Charlie tosses his boxers into his iguana’s aquarium. My, this dorm has relaxed rules. Does he have a hot plate as well?

They get him to close his eyes and start moving him around, which doesn’t alarm him at all, and then shut him out of his bedroom, and walk off with everyone gawking at Charlie’s nudity. How’d they lock his door from the outside with no keys?

The two girls mosey off and throw away things that they stole from him, an autographed CD and his notes from a class he’s got a midterm in tomorrow. Jen holds up his favourite shirt which she says she’ll use to clean her toilet.

Okay, really? This is just overkill.

Jen invites her to a party, but she declines in favour of going back to her dorm and brooding. They say they’ll hang out but we’ll probably never see her again. So long, plot device!

At Pacey’s party, Audrey is flirting with him like a giant airhead, like he isn’t Joey most recent ex-boyfriend. Some friend.

A drunk Dawson shows up with the frat. Pacey’s upset with Jack for getting him hammered, and Jack’s like, meh, so long as he’s happier!

Dawson sees Joey, and is all HEY! I didn’t call you! Let me call you now! So he gets out his cell and leaves a message that ends with, it’s okay to leave you this kind of drunk message because you left me one once and if you hadn’t I would have gone back to LA and my dad would still be alive.

Whoa.

What the fuck was that?

What the fuck was that?

Dawson wakes up on Pacey’s boat to a disgusting hangover remedy. He feels like shit for blaming Joey for his dad dying.

Audrey says bye to her mom and they have a heart-to-heart that’ll probably improve nothing over time.

Audrey then thanks Joey for the self-esteem boost utilizing some mad vocal fry before it was cool.

Dawson makes it to Jen’s and doesn’t want a greasy breakfast, which is like no hangover I’ve ever had. They talk about how everyone’s handing his grief.

At the restaurant, Pacey talks to the waitress he always flirts with and sees the necklace he found around her neck. Ooh. The boss man’s sleeping with her.

As Joey’s walking him home to the train station, he says sorry and she forgives him. He tells her about the shrink appointment he never went to. Then he tells her how he was dreaming of them being together again and kissing her, and then his dad died and now he can’t imagine them together now.

So Joey kisses him and he looks sadder than ever. And Joey says now she’ll wait for him to be ready. So now that he’s emotionally unavailable she wants him again? Of course she does.

They stare at each other awhile and Dawson goes home.

Dawson’s Creek Revisited: Season 4, Episode 12 – The Te of Pacey

Opening scene is Joey singing off-key and waking up a sleeping Pacey with a cheap packaged cupcake with a candle. And for someone who supposedly just woke up he is particularly verbose in his displeasure. He doesn’t like birthday and uses an alarming amount of hyperbole to describe why. Vague tales of soul-searching, universe-questioning horrors.

He tells tales of woe of birthdays past and Joey promises it’ll be a quiet night with just the two of them. They hug and Joey looks like a lying liar pants.

My promises mean nothing.

My promises mean nothing.

Credits

Jack and Dawson and talking about Dawson’s upcoming date with Gretchen. Jack plants seeds of doubt about Joey and Pacey being fine with it. Why does that matter?

At Pacey’s, Gretchen is asking about the birthday plans and Joey’s like, oh, just a quiet night. Pacey’s going through some mail like an man and runs off with a mystery letter.

Joey uses this opportunity to go back on her word and invite Gretchen to a last-minute surprise party for Pacey at his parents’ house. Yeah, the abusive drunk’s place, the dad who’s not even currently housing his high school aged son. Awesome.

Joey blames it on Pacey’s mom who called and asked her and rather than disappoint a woman she rarely sees (Have we ever seen her?) she decides to disregard Pacey’s wishes. Gretchen thinks it’s a stupid idea. But she agrees, albeit awkwardly, to come and I guess that means no date with Dawson.

Jen and Grams are crafting together, and because I’m getting a little long in the tooth myself, I guess, that looks like a rather nice way to spend the afternoon. Jen reveals she has to do five hours of community service acting as DD to a bunch of drunk teenagers– what? What kind of a thing is that? That makes no sense.

Grams is all happily spaced out and Jen calls her out for thinking about having sex with Brooks. I don’t recall ever broaching the topic of sex with my grandparents. Jen tries to talk to her about safe sex. Jen, kiddo, Grams was a fucking nurse.

Dawson goes to meet Gretchen at work and she tells him their date in cancelled for this surprise party. Also, let’s not tell anyone about that whole date thing. Dawson’s confused about why they can’t just call the party a date. The more he pushes her about it, the more it becomes obvious she’s uncomfortable about dating him at all in the first place. He actually backs off and leaves.

At the community service thing, Jen runs into some guy she knows named Toby. If we’ve seen him before, I don’t remember. He’s gay and apparently knows Jack, and they didn’t hit it off. But I guess because they’re both gay, they need to meet again, thinks Jen.

Joey is leading Pacey blindfolded to his party. He makes a guess as to where they’re going and concocts an elaborate fantasy of champagne, cake, lingerie and sex. And then he realizes he’s at his shitty parents’ house and it’s yet another crummy birthday in the works. Womp womp.

I believe we call this expression sudden dread and anxiety.

I believe we call this expression sudden dread and anxiety.

They walk into the house and Mr. Whitter is in a reclining chair watching TV. “Oh, you’re here. Surprise,” he says. Mrs. Whitter comes out (Hey, it’s Jane Lynch! And making her one and only appearance on the show) and and is all, oh darn, we missed it. Then a few people stumble out to say surprise and some children run past and one socks Pacey in the stomach and pops laughs. So far so good.

Whose children are those? Gretchen and Doug don’t have kids.

Doug shows up, mocks his brother for being about to have another shit birthday and everyone stands there looking uncomfortable.

The party commences, it’s completely lame, children are piling up on Dawson. There’s a random young woman snacking on the couch. Are those kids hers? Who is she? Pacey is beside her looking unhappy.

Mr. Whitter gets up from the TV to tell this woman, Kerry her name is, that she’s becoming a cow. Kerry Whitter, by the looks of IMDB. Another sib, I guess? Anyway, then he talks about turning 18 in Vietnam during the war and doing a 30-something prostitute.

More awkwardness happens and then Jack sits down and Mr. Whitter’s like, who the hell are you? Which is a lovely way to speak to party guests in your home.

Please don't talk to me.

Please don’t talk to me.

Mrs. Whitter keeps calling Joey by the wrong name. Whether she’s got a mental problem or is just an asshole is unclear.

Pacey starts asking Joey why she did this. Rather than apologize she’s like, your family wanted to do this out of the goodness of their hearts, what could I do? Shit, Joey. Pacey tries to explain the nature of his alcoholic father’s tendencies and Joey has the nerve to tell him he could make more of an effort. Cuntastic. The writers of this show really went out of their way to make this character a dick.

Ultimately, Pacey isn’t even mad at her, though. He’s just tired and sad and disappointed in his horrible family.

Gretchen approached Dawson and acts like she didn’t tell him she wanted to keep their date a secret. She doesn’t know what she wants. Kids are hanging off him begging to play Monopoly. This birthday party blows.

In the car, Toby is gushing about his boyfriend Greg, and Jen is taking offence he doesn’t like Jack. Why this is a problem, I do not know. Other gay men exist.

At the party, Joey finds Pacey sitting outside alone. She calls the whole thing, “Not that bad” which is exactly the sort of birthday everyone wants to have. She tells him he’s not allowed to still be mad at her. He sadly says he’s not mad and that makes her smile. Because his obvious sorrow means nothing so long as he’s not going to inconvenience her with anger over her bullshit.

Pacey tries to say what he’s feeling, then suggests a walk, which is interrupted by Mr. Whitter wanting to talk to Joey inside.

He tells her she’s to thank for getting Pacey interested in college. She’s all, oh, it’s wasn’t all me! But then he goes on about how it’ll be a waste of money and he’ll just drop out, then Ma comes in and says he’s a huge disappointment, but she has faith in him. Then they reminisce about how they always let Pacey know he’d never amount to anything. Joey’s dumbfounded, which she wouldn’t be if she’d ever have just listened to her boyfriend talk about his life.

See? Told ya.

See? Told ya.

In another room, Gretchen turns on a lamp that shines spinning stars around a room and shares memories and tells some old story that is just precious enough to not sound remotely real. But then, this is TV. And of course the lame story that has no actual plot is used as a metaphor for Dawson and Gretchen’s romantic situation.

Joey tries to pep talk Pacey about how he’ll be fine at college. Pacey’s like and if they’re right and I’m too stupid? Joey seems confused at the despondent reaction her boyfriend is having to being re-exposed to his abusive family, because as per usual she lacks empathy.

He takes her to the basement to talk about it, and they walk in on Gretchen and Dawson making out in the star lamp room. Everyone looks weirded out, except Dawson who sort of laughs. And it’s time for dinner, which should be rife with terrible memories-to-be.

Dinner is Doug’s favourite, chipped beef on toast. Pacey says his favourite is spaghetti and meat balls. His mom insists he’s wrong. Then she gets Joey name wrong for the third time when asking her to go get something in the kitchen. And this is the woman she couldn’t say no to?

In the kitchen, Dawson tries to explain about him and Gretchen. Joey’s acting terse and mad. The fuck? She dumped him and is dating his best friend. Why does anyone give a shit about her feelings in this matter? I don’t get it.

Dawson and Gretchen then hash out their brand new thing, whatever it is, and then Pacey comes in to talk about it after Dawson leaves. Gretchen then wants to talk about it with Pacey, who absolutely doesn’t want to. I understand your estranged best friend dating your sibling to be weird. That much I understand. But still, come on.

Jen and Toby are driving two making out teens somewhere. This is actually a service? A community service? Nothing like this exists. Fuck you, storyline.

Now Pacey is opening up presents. Someone gave him an ashtray and Pacey says, Thank you, I’ve been meaning to take up smoking. Okay, that made me laugh.

Pacey’s dad gave him fireworks. Huh.

Mrs. Whitter says she read a way to bond with your kids is to recall a memory from their childhood. Oh, this should be horrible.

They laugh about the time they left him in an ice cream shop and Pacey was so upset he wet his pants.

Gretchen tries to tell a story how he defended her from a bully, but his dad makes it about the time he got beat up and cried.

And Pacey snaps after one too many stories, tells them all off, makes them look as though they feel ashamed, reveals he’s not going to college and leaves, storming past Jen and Toby who just arrived singing happy birthday. They barely sang the first verse so the show probably didn’t have to pay any royalties on that one.

Joey and Dawson leave to look for Pacey and for some reason the party is still going.

Jack and Toby have a short, tense conversation about being gay.

In the car, Dawson and Joey are talking about Gretchen and Pacey, and Joey seems to finally realize she’s been a shitty girlfriend. Dawson praises Joey’s ability to believe in people. Boys on this show just can’t see her clearly. She’s an asshole every episode. She then wants to give up the search and go back.

Pacey’s dad finds him on the dock. He has a heart to heart with him. Talks about how happy Pacey was to get fireworks when he was 10. Brief moments of kindness do not make up for years of emotional abuse. But then those tiny minutes of kindness keep you coming back for more assholery later.

In the car, Jen and Toby are talking about how Toby likes Jack and Greg doesn’t exist. I really don’t care about this. Maybe because this program for driving drunk teens to parties WOULD NEVER EXIST.

When Pacey’s dad brings him back to the house everyone yells surprise and brings out the cake they’ve already started eating.

Why wait?

Why wait?

Dawson and Gretchen talk about their relationship outside by a bonfire. They concede it likely won’t work out because they’re both leaving. But what the hell, let’s go for it anyway because we’re young and why not. Which is a nice departure from all Joey’s nonsense seasons 2 & 3.

Pacey tells Joey he thinks they’re moving in different directions. Joey’s not having it. And everyone starts setting off Pacey’s fireworks without him, which is a rude thing to do, isn’t it?

This is meant to be a happy ending. But it’s somehow very depressing.

MVA: Pacey. “My wish would be for no further acknowledgment of today’s hollow symbolic meaning as a milestone in the life of Pacey Whitter.”

Dawson’s Creek Revisited: Season 4, Episode 11 – The Tao of Dawson

Today’s post come from guest contributor and repeat offender Alek.

The Tao of Dawson is a terrible name. It reads like a shitty essay that Dawson Leery would write thoughtfully about himself. No one would ever read it, nor should they, because Dawson Leery should die alone.

I digress. We find our assbag hero on one of Capeside’s many piers, confessing to Pacey his newly-discovered love for Pacey’s older sister Gretchen. The two rib ribald about trading Gretchen for cattle, which is an exaggeration but they’re super disrespectful. Pacey is lazily defensive, and Dawson is arrogant (surprise!) in his insistence that the romance will play out fatefully, but it doesn’t sound like Gretchen is expected to have much say in any of this.

“Is your family interested in goats?”

“Is your family interested in goats?”

Later, on a road trip with his sister, Pacey discovers that they’re going to visit her ex-boyfriend, and he decides that the two of them should reconcile to preempt Dawson from claiming ownership of the tainted maid. Gretchen isn’t feeling it, because she’s actually people.

Dawson and Jack are moving some shit — I don’t know why and I don’t care. I don’t understand their friendship. Dawson continues to wax philosophical about Gretchen, and finds an old love letter he wrote her back before the writers decided to toss her into the plot. Jack suggests that he write her another letter, because he’s a gay who doesn’t understand the womenfolk.

Joey is working at some yacht club I have no recollection of, snarking with Drue, who I think is the owner’s son? He’s a complete sneering bitch. His reanimated corpse of a mother enters to inform him that he’s getting a visit from his father. He isn’t thrilled, and takes it out on Joey by insisting that she cart some glassware down to the storage room, which is just slightly creepy.

Gretchen and Pacey arrive at her douchey ex’s house to pick up her old car, which was clearly worth the trip because it’s up on cinder blocks. The ex has some bullshit explanation which relies on Gretchen knowing less about cars than she does, and it’s in keeping with the episode’s theme of men thinking that they know what’s best for women. His name is Nick. He convinces the Witters to stay the night, and Pacey is all for it because he’s a shit.

Dawson finds Brooks taking the walk of shame from Grams’ place, so I guess they were rubbing their papery husks against one another (I’m sorry). He asks Grams if they’re dating, and she explains that a woman her age “doesn’t date” (bow-chicka-wow-wow). She’s touched by his protectiveness because she’s old and conservative.

Joey and Drue unload their glassware in the storage room, and they get locked in because of Drue’s dickbaggery. He rifles through her purse because he has no social graces. I actually feel bad for her.

Pacey and Nick share a hot tub at what I must assume is Nick’s orgy. It’s fucking weird and unnecessary. Nick says gross things about Gretchen, and Pacey is just sold on him. Great brother, good job.

Who fucking does this?

Who fucking does this?

Jack is still helping Dawson do shit… painting a room or something. Setting up a nursery for the expectant Leerys? I guess Jack needed a reason to be in this episode. Now they’re gossiping about Grams and Brooks, and Dawson is afraid that Grams doesn’t realize Brooks has terminal cancer. None of this is any of their business.

Back at the Overlook Hotel, Joey climbs a shelf to rescue some expired spam, and when she falls Drue catches her. He steals a completely uninvited kiss, and she thankfully slugs him. This guy is so uncool and I hope that he gets a black eye.

“How dare you assert your right to consent?”

“How dare you assert your right to consent?”

Pacey creepily shadows Nick while he hits on Gretchen, who calls him out for treating her like a literal show horse (called it). In an aside conversation, Nick talks about scoring with random women at the party, and Pacey realizes that he’s a complete sleaze. I could’ve guessed from his haircut.

“Anyway, you wanna buy some quaaludes?”

“Anyway, you wanna buy some quaaludes?”

Dawson imposes himself on Grams while she’s preparing for a date with Brooks, offering unsolicited advice (men gotta be men). Grams knows intuitively that Brooks is sick. She understands what she’s doing because she’s a grown-ass woman and she doesn’t need help from an emotionally-crippled teenage boy, and you could probably end this episode right here.

Back at Nick’s white people party, Gretchen tells Pacey that she had a miscarriage, because the show writers aren’t above using women’s bodies as plot devices. Pacey is upset that Gretchen told Dawson about this first, apparently, but Gretchen establishes that she can do whatever she fucking wants and is her own goddamn person, END SCENE (I wish).

Now Dawson is hanging out with a pre-date Brooks. How small is Capeside? Did Dawson dig a series of tunnels? His input is unnecessary yet again, because two consenting adults five times his age understand that he’s a fucking idiot.

“Get out of my house.”

“Get out of my house.”

Gretchen gets slightly drunk and begins to give in to Nick’s advances, eventually going upstairs with him. I’m maybe screaming and wondering if I’ve just become one of Capeside’s mansplainers, because I’m all, “Stop this, Gretchen; you’re better than him! NOOOO!”

Joey and Drue are having some kind of heart-to-heart. I don’t even care. His daddy doesn’t love him or some bullshit. Joey takes pity on him and shares her sweater. He’s definitely a sexual predator, and I’m sincerely hoping that this doesn’t go south.

Nick passes out before he can seal the deal with Gretchen, and she has an epiphany about being so over him and his immature shenanigans and leaves. The next morning, Pacey has fixed her car (so manly) and continues to be totally condescending after she’s clearly taken care of her own shit. She misses the opportunity to put him in his place, though, and there’s some lesson here about what a loving and protective brother he is which hits a super sour note for me. Barf.

Jack and Dawson are talking again. I don’t fucking care.

Joey awakens in the storage room leaning on Drue, who’s trying to act like normal human being and not a weasel with the gift of speech. She discovers that he’s had a cell phone the whole time and calls for help. That is creepy as ever-loving fuck. He’s resentful about how upset she is, because he has some nerve. His mother rescues them and is a complete upper-middle-class thundercunt to Joey. Drue does nothing to defend her. Somebody could’ve commented on the twiggy old cadaver’s shitty jewelry and chunky power suits, but whatevs.

Gretchen arrives home to find one of Dawson’s old love notes. I guess he thought it’d be romantic, because he’s a deluded stalker. There’s a heartwarming pisswater montage, and Gretchen gets emotional and comes to Dawson’s to kiss him again on a sacrificial altar of adirondack chairs, because she’s learned nothing. I give up.

Gross.

Gross.

MVA: Pacey, asking Dawson about his Gretchen crush, says, “Well, are we talking about the feelings of fondness and fellowship that naturally follow from an obligatory mistletoe kiss or am I going to find you outside of my house holding a boombox over your head?” This is not repeatable, nor is it a thing that a normal person would ever say without choking or feeling ashamed of themselves. Who would write this? How many takes did it take before Joshua Jackson was finally stoned enough to say it right?

Dawson’s Creek Revisited: Season 4, Episode 9 – Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

Dark and stormy night at the Leery house and Gretchen has taken Joey’s old spot and is watching some old farty gangster flick with Dawson. And the movie was actually made by resident old fart Brooks, the same jerk who’s been tormenting Dawson about his boat.

Dawson says he wanted to hate it but thought it was genius. Probably only because he’s pretentious enough to value shitty vintage things no one else has heard of. Gretchen, being far more likeable, thought it was a pile of meh. But then she says she likes Dawson being this opinionated and irritating. Go back to college. No shortage of hipsters there for you to find charming somehow.

Dawson questions why Brooks would quit filmmaking and then Gretchen asks why Dawson quit making movies.

Credits.

At the Yacht Club, Mrs. Valentine is berating Joey for studying on the job. Joey says her shift doesn’t start for 15 minutes. Mrs. V also manages to insult Joey about three more times: She mentions Bess and gets her name wrong, references the illegitimate Alexander and says she tries to forget Joey goes to school with her son. This is all in less than 30 seconds. What a cunt.

A man named Walter approaches and Mrs. V talks about this networking party he’s throwing and how Joey won’t have Saturday off any longer. Joey protests but Mrs. V don’t give a damn.

Joey then says that actually she’ll be there as an invited guest and Walter then gushes about her and Mrs. V looks like an ass, and Joey suggests Drue to take her place waiting tables.

Ah... shit.

Ah… shit.

At the Leery restaurant, Dawson’s finishing up his final essay for college admissions. Why he’s doing that in a busy restaurant surrounded by people working is beyond me. His mom asks him to get off his ass and help out. Gretchen asks about the annual party and Mitch and Gail look uncomfortable and say they haven’t done the party in awhile. Dawson jumps in helpfully to inform Gretchen his parents’ marriage has been on the rocks this past while.

Gretchen insists they have the party and offers to do all the work. Mitch and Gail acquiesce because why not.

At Jen’s house, she’s knitting. And there’s some really bogus camera work that whisks around the corner and focuses on her unevenly. Was some random bum handed a camera? I thought perhaps it was to indicate some character was videotaping, but no. It’s just Grams and Jack not filming anything.

Grams is still pissed at Jen for the drugs situation a few episodes ago. Jen wants to see a movie and Jack says it’ll be a way to celebrate finishing his college application essays, which he’s sick of writing. He asks Jen about her progress and looks like Jen’s not started. And now she doesn’t want to see a movie anymore.

Jack leaves and Jen resuming knitting. He asks Grams to get Jen going on her college applications but she’s like, pfft, n’ah.

Dawson approaches Brooks out of nowhere while he’s dining out, and starts talking about movies so he can segue into how much he liked the old gangster movie he made. As soon as he starts calling it a film noir, I roll my eyes so hard. According to Dawson, it seems if it’s a film noir, it’s gotta be good! To be honest, I’ve never cared for them.

Brooks is not comfortable with all Dawson’s fawning, and then gets harsh and tells him to beat it when it won’t stop.

Get off my lawn!

Get off my lawn!

At some shop, Joey is trying on a dress and talking to Gretchen about taking Pacey to the networking dinner. Her dress strap is falling down and she makes no meaningful effort to fix it and it’s driving me crazy. Couldn’t the wardrobe department have dug up something that fit?

They talk about the Leery party, which it looks like Joey’s going to miss because it’s on Saturday night too.

FIX IT

FIX IT

At the guidance counsellor’s office, she tells Dawson his essay ain’t getting him in nowheres and now he has to rewrite it.

At the school, Pacey’s trying to get out of going to the networking party so they can go to the Leery Christmas party instead. Uh, are he and Dawson even on decent speaking terms? Joey says no because she wants to get into college.

At Jen’s house, Grams is opening a mailed box of presents from Jen’s parents. Jen doesn’t want them and says Merry Effing Christmas. Awesome. Grams then says she should start her college essays and Jen rants that Grams gave up on her and wrote her off so there’s no telling her what to do now. And she shoves her Christmas presents in the fridge?

Gretchen and Dawson are talking about his essay and she gets all meta saying he wants to get a film deal to make him famous enough to bag a girl from the WB. She also tells him to go back to Brooks for some insight. Yeah, good luck.

Grams and Jack are walking along a dock and talking about Jen and Grams says she’ll need his help getting through to her.

At Brooks’ house, Dawson lets himself in and the old man is pruning a bonsai while listening to ancient-sounding Christmas jazz on probably the first radio ever made. It’s been my personal observation that elderly peoples’ fondness for the technology they’re comfortable with doesn’t extend to relics from their childhood, more like the last bit of newness they could get used to before the world of electronics became unmanageable and scary. That old thing belongs in the house of someone born in 1875. Or, again, a hipster.

Old people don't like new things.

Old people don’t like new things.

Brooks begrudgingly agrees to dispense with this advice Dawson wants. He starts by saying if Dawson can’t do better, he may as well write applications to McDonald’s. Then when he says he quit filmmaking, Brooks sarcastically says “Now that’s a tragic loss for the arts.” Brooks is growing on me. I kind of love wiseass curmudgeons. He also scoffs at Dawson’s “crisis of faith”.

Dawson then leaves very upset, as though he expected more from the man who’s been verbally abusing him for months.

It’s Saturday night now and Joey & Pacey are at the dinner. Her dress strap appears to be in good working order. Everyone else is at the Leery’s.

Gretchen finds Dawson in his room, avoiding the party to brood instead. She gives him a booming pep talk and then insists he try her egg nog. That’s not a euphemism for anything. There really is egg nog.

At the dinner, Joey is stuck talking to this obnoxious overachiever, who thinks Drue is cute and calls him over to take a drink order. He exposes Joey as a waitress. In what world is a teenager having a part-time job at a yacht club embarrassing? The annoying girl leaves.

At the Leery party, the guidance counsellor congratulates Jen on handing in her applications on time, which she obviously did not do.

Climate change maybe?

Climate change maybe?

And this is supposedly December in the north-eastern United States and the front door is wide open and people are outside without coats.

At the dinner, Walter wants to know more about Joey, who’s doing nothing to sell herself. He asks her about her art background and if she’s been to the new Guggenheim. She says no, but has always wanted to go to New York. Mrs. V scoffs and Drue corrects her and says it’s in Spain. Okay, but there is a Guggenheim in New York, so…?

Joey can’t shake off the simple error while Walter is revelling over the architecture. Pacey then pipes up and says he saw a picture of it in a coffee table book and it looks like an artichoke. He repeats this several times.

Artichoke.

Artichoke.

I think it looks more like a crumpled-up piece of paper pretending to be a pyramid.

Eh.

Eh.

But Walter bursts out laughing. Joey doesn’t look at all relieved.

At the Christmas party, Brooks shows up with a book Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, which he says explains things better than he could. He then actually apologizes. And we get the story:

He directed his last movie starring his best friend and his girlfriend. They fell in love and Brooks realized it but still had to finish directing the movie.

Dawson invites him into the party as he tries to grump his way home, and with no further prodding he accepts and goes in, but not before asking Dawson why he wants to make pictures. He says he can’t explain the things you love.

At the dinner, Pacey is still cracking up Walter who wants to know why Pacey hasn’t applied. Pacey remarks that for his left-leaning parents it’s Yale or nothing.

Joey then tensely asks Pacey to talk outside and she unleashes this nonsensical rambling rant on him about how he just lied (Who the fuck cares?) and why he’s trying so hard to impress these people (For her, d’uh?)

Walter interrupts her bullshit to try and introduce Pacey to the dean, which he goes and does. Joey stays behind and sulks because the best she could do with Walter was claim she was an “average teenage girl” and “there’s not much to tell.”

At the party Jen confronts Jack about the college essays and Grams says she knows Jen hasn’t applied because she doesn’t want to ask her parents for help. Then Grams is like no matter how much you suck, I’m helping you go to college because love. Jen’s heart melts, everyone’s happy.

At the dinner, Joey is outside crying (In a spaghetti strap dress and light shawl in December in northeastern US), and here comes Walter, about to walk into some teenage drama shit.

Joey says she’s not used to this swishy stuff and she blew it. Walter says no one’s grading her on her social skills, which is a blessed relief because hers are the worst. Then he tells her Pacey talked to the dean all about her and said amazing stuff. And after she had just yelled at him.

At the party, Jack tells Jen where she applied to and says he went through her computer to get material for her essay. Apparently he came across her diary and he says, “I didn’t know you still had those dreams about me.” Jen looks embarrassed and gets more egg nog. Uh…

Grams runs into Brooks and is still giving him grief for chewing out Dawson over the boat. And then he sort of starts to flirt with her the way only a grumpy old man can. And Grams puts him off with a whiff of hope the way only a prim old widow could.

Been a loooooong time.

Been a loooooong time.

Dawson calls Brooks out for flirting with Grams and then tells him he’s over his crisis of faith and wants to make movie about Brooks. And the old guy is egocentric enough to love the idea, even if it’s coming from a 17-year-old amateur.

At the Yacht Club, Joey finds Pacey and hugs him. He says apology accepted, which is very gracious. Except Joey is like, “I was going to apologize?” Jesus Christ, woman. Pacey’s like, “Yeah, for bitching me out earlier?” And then she throws his white lie in his face.

Joey, now that Andie is gone, you are the official fucking worst again.

Pacey nonetheless compliments her ass off. And she calls off her attack. Actually says she’s sorry. They talk some mush and get out of there.

At the Leery party, Gretchen and Dawson are under the mistletoe and kiss. Pacey and Joey arrive and are there in time to witness. Dawson manages thus to get them both back in one swoop.

And now they're even.

And now they’re even.

MVA: Jen, “That, my dear, is the external manifestation of Grams’ extreme disappointment in me for that whole ecstasy incident.”

Dawson’s Creek Revisited: Season 4, Episode 6 – Great Xpectations

Everyone rallies around Andie as she opens a letter that says she got in to Harvard. Well, Jen and Jack do. They are super excited for her, and she looks a bit panicked.

We are back at the CD store (where do teens congregate now that music is purchased on phones etc?)! One of the unmemorable new female characters (who I think is supposed to be the gang’s age, but looks much older) recommends MORCHEEBA to Dawson. Man, I loved Morcheeba! I wonder if knowing they were mentioned on Dawson’s Creek would have ruined it for me (Yes. Yes, it probably would have).

Anyway, the new girl wants him to come to a Capeside rave.

Andie complains to Jack that she doesn’t feel anything about her acceptance, so he suggests they go to the rave. Naturally.

Jen at the computer: You’ve got mail! Drue invites her to the rave again and she threatens his life. They fight over whether she should do drugs. Maybe Jen should watch that commercial with the egg again:

Dawson comes home and finds out that mom isn’t flushing his new baby brother down the toilet so the Dawsons all have a big group hug to celebrate. I wonder if women having babies at that age (what is she, like forty, maybe?) was as common as it is now. I didn’t think so but I don’t think as a teen I was paying much attention to what the grownups were doing.

Andie and Jen talk about a complicated-sounding thing where some kids get fake directions or something if they aren’t really invited to the party. Andie is wearing a very interesting crochet tank.

FASHION

FASHION

Jen whips the ecstasy out of her underwear drawer and make a real serious face when Andie confirms it isn’t aspirin. Jen tells her why taking E is so much fun and how happy you feel And she drops a very obvious Plath reference so I am content for the moment.

Then Andie asks to see the drugs,and then she smells them. They are having a real intense fucked-up teen girl moment where soft music plays in the background. Then Jack shows up and starts climbing around on the swings like a monkey. Andie won’t hand Jen the drugs back “in case Jack sees”. This don’t sound good.

Dawson and new girl buy tickets to the rave in a back alley while Joey and Pacey wait in the car. Dawson tells her how excited he is that his parents are birthing him a sibling.

Jack, Jen and Andie pull up to the rave. Andie confesses to Jen that she gobbled down one of the pills.

The rest of the gang shows up at the same time while Drue tries to shit disturb. Somehow this group of nerds managed to get the correct address.

There are louts of wigs and lights and goggles and weird jewel makeup.

RAVE

RAVE

Oh, the new girl is Gretchen!

Joey grills her if she wants to hook up with Dawson Then she finds Pacey sitting on a floral couch where he complains about the tuneless music like one of the Golden Girls.

Gretch checks in with Dawson to make sure there is no torch.

Andie shows up sucking on a lollipop and tells Joey off for dumping Dawson and confesses her undying love for Pacey. Then she takes off with Drue to go bounce (like actually. On a big bouncey castle that looks like King Kong).

Andie starts seeing all these psychedelic lights and then collapses. Jack screams “somebody help us” and takes her to the waiting medics, and Jen is forced to admit she took ecstasy. Jack tells Jen it should be her in the ambulance and pulls away.

Drue gets serious and takes Jen home. He suggests that maybe her friends shouldn’t ice her the way they did and she slams a door in his face.

The gang is at the E.R. where Andie is stable and Jack sobs because she could have died.

Pacey wants to stay at the hospital and sends Joey home. I’m sure that won’t cause any self-doubt for the Joe-ster.

Pacey and the McPhees have a moment.

Dawson and Joey have a moment as a female remix of Fields of Gold swells in the background. They plan how their infant siblings will row across the creek to each other once those two are gone. And Dawson takes another run at getting back together and it is unfortunate.

Best line goes to: Jen: “Andie! Petting Joey, not a good way to keep a low profile.”

Dawson’s Creek Revisited: Season 3, Episode 14 – Valentine’s Day Massacre

Hey!  It’s Alek again.  I’m a glutton for Capeside’s special brand of verbal BDSM, so I’m back for another post.

Dawson is teaching Joey how to drive stick, which is kind of a missed opportunity for a bad metaphor.  Pacey is laying in the back of the truck for some reason, because God forbid he misses an opportunity to give Groucho Marx commentary on everything that his friends do.

unnamed

“Jesus Christ, I don’t even know how he got back there.”

Apparently, it’s Valentine’s Day, but Joey’s college boyfriend plans to spend it studying.  Pacey rightly calls bullshit, but Joey insists that he’s simply dedicated to his education because no man has ever treated her respectfully.  Pacey, meanwhile, plans to attend an anti-Valentine’s party hosted by a resident Capeside douchebag, and Joey is appalled that Dawson plans to go with him.  She says that she’ll spend the night in with a Blockbuster rental, and I feel the only pang of genuine nostalgia that I’m likely to feel for the next hour.

We cut to Capeside High, where it’s the greenest goddamn February in Massachusetts.  There are people in fucking shorts.  I didn’t realize how close Boston was to the California state line.  Pacey is convincing Dawson to come to the evening’s shitty party when Jack arrives.  He’s been mining the athletes (pun intended) for information about the event, but couldn’t get the address.  He did learn the password, though, because that’s a thing which is somehow necessary.  It’s “I know Kung fu,” which wasn’t cool in 2000 and isn’t cool now.

“They said that Charleston was too gay.”

“They said that Charleston was too gay.”

Jen’s paramour Henry is giving blood to pay for her Valentine’s Day gift, but he’s evidently been giving too much.  He convinces the nurse to bend the rules by waxing romantic, but I mostly imagine actor Michael Pitt as a serial killer, so it’s just unsettling.

“Does it have to be MY blood?”

“Does it have to be MY blood?”

Pacey is chatting up his cop brother, Doug, while he’s on his beat.  He takes some homophobic jabs at Doug because of the music that he’s listening to, while I remember with growing disdain that Pacey is actually kind of a fucking asshole.  He supposedly wants to hang out, but Doug explains that he’s busy patrolling a party at the golf course this evening, inadvertently revealing the location of the party in the most expository way.

I can’t remember if Doug is actually gay or not, but I’m going to guess that he’s the kind of guy who lives in a small town, but has a Grindr account where he describes himself as “straight-acting, maybe lumbersexual.”

At the McPhee house, Andie gets off the phone with her friend Kate, who she’s invited to hang out this evening because her boyfriend just dumped her.  Jack is mad because Kate is his ex-girlfriend, and asks if Andie outed him.  He’s upset that she didn’t, because he’s fickle about his token sexuality like that.  All I can think about is how I’d rather watch Abby Morgan’s slowly rotting corpse than tolerate another scene of Andie being fucking Andie.

The absolute fucking worst.

The absolute fucking worst.

Grams is helping Jen pick outfits for her date, as only a Victorian-era Christian fanatic could.  She insists that red is the appropriate colour, because she’s selective in her oppressive slut-shaming, then goes on to explain the religious significance of St. Valentine and suck every last ounce of fun out of this sham holiday.  She loves the little black dress that Jen chooses, but advises that going without a necklace is somehow chaste and pure (SELECTIVE), while noting that Jen seems anxious.  Jen assures Grams that she’s been on LOTS of dates with LOTS of guys, because Grams hasn’t called her a harlot in a while.

“Dear, sometimes even I want you to get it.”

“Dear, sometimes even I want you to get it.”

Jack and Andy are driving their friend Kate to the party, and they get to talking about relationships.  Jack is about to come out when Kate breaks down and reveals that her ex dumped her because he turned out to be gay, which is pretty coincidental timing.

“Are you fucking kidding me?”

“Are you fucking kidding me?”

Dawson and Pacey are pantomiming golf when the McPhees and friend arrive.  Kate immediately declares that Jack is her ex, then proceeds to tell everyone about her recent break-up and emotional fragility, because she has all of the social skills you’d expect from a budding career-beard.  Pacey pulls Dawson aside to coax him into taking advantage of Kate’s tender feelings, and I guess that the rest of the group just stands, quietly, five feet to the left.

Only Zack Morris can freeze time, Pacey.

Only Zack Morris can freeze time, Pacey.

Thankfully, Joey arrives to break the awkwardness, but of course she only makes things worse.  She’s here to babysit Dawson at the party!  What a fucking wet blanket.

Henry picks Jen up for their date, and he looks like he gave enough blood to become an actual vampire.  Jen is as alarmed by his deathly pallor as I am, if slightly less so because she’s seen it so often on Grams’ youthful face.  They remark that they’re both wearing black, then Jen pricks herself on a rose, and the symbolism is obvious enough that I feel like I’m watching erotic Twilight fan fiction.

“Shall we remove this bloody clothing, young cheesecake?”

“Shall we remove this bloody clothing, young cheesecake?”

The rest of the gang, meanwhile, head to the party in what I can only assume are stolen golf carts (wouldn’t they have to be?).  Pacey made sure that Kate was paired with Dawson, and she’s being so desperately insecure that I’d recommend counseling.  Dawson assures her that she’s beautiful, “In the way that beautiful used to actually mean something.”  Kate responds by being charmed instead of vomiting, like I just did.

Joey is still trying to convince everyone to leave, and Andie is freaking out as she’s wont to do.  Matt, the host, greets everyone with threatening surliness, then makes them all do a shot to enter the party area.  Andie passes as the designated driver, Pacey makes a now-unsettling Bill Cosby joke (too soon?), and Joey loses her shit like everyone just started shooting heroin.

Meanwhile, on Jen’s date with Edward Cullen, the poor fellow is slowly losing consciousness.  Jen is irked with him, until he literally passes out.  This is the only actual dramatic thing likely to happen in the entire episode.

Joey and Andie are taking a golf cart for a quiet joyride and being complete fucking losers.  Just as Andie correctly identifies Joey’s wrath for Pacey as obvious attraction, officer Doug pulls the girls over.  I can only assume that they’re going to rat everyone out because they are no fun whatsoever.

Doug, however, might be more fun than I gave him credit for. HELLO.

Doug, however, might be more fun than I gave him credit for. HELLO.

Henry is being taken away in a stretcher, and comes clean with Jen about his blood sales.  He gives her his Valentine’s Day gift — a ring — and laments ruining the moment.  Which, let’s be honest, he kinda did.

Dawson and Kate are flirting in the most infantile way, and I’m hoping that Kate is drunk and not just fourteen years old.  Kate presumes that she’s been passed off on Dawson in an alarming self-deprecating spiral, but he’s mostly bothered by is the implication that he’s a nice guy.  He insists that he could be the one taking advantage of the drunk girl, and Kate shrugs it off as if that’s not the creepiest fucking thing that he could say.  Their repulsive kissing moment is interrupted by Kate throwing up (like I just did) and then Doug arrives with his flashlight.

Jen comes home to Grams and tells her about her disastrous night, while Grams completely misses the point.  Jen gives her the traumatic facts, and she accurately describes how unfortunate poor Henry is.  Grams calls her out for perhaps setting unreasonable expectations, and Jen reacts as though she has something to think about.  If luxury is what Henry read from Jen’s bald-faced cynicism, then he deserves to be bled to death.

Doug breaks up the party as Pacey is attempting a keg stand, and he seems pretty psyched to be arresting his dickhead brother.  I know I’d be.

In the drunk tank, Kate continues having her super vocal emotional breakdown, and Jack decides that this is the moment to tell her that he’s gay (I mean, sure).  Kate unsurprisingly gets the hint, but reveals that she and Jack had passable sex as if that means anything.  She then worries aloud that Dawson might be gay and just won’t fucking shut up.  Joey is meanwhile disgusted that Dawson would attempt to kiss the drunken basket case, and Pacey makes fun of the unhappy couple.  Everyone is a fucking asshole.

Why are these people friends?

Why are these people friends?

Joey highlights the pointedness of Pacey’s present dickbaggery, and he continues to be a jerk about the show’s central would-be romance.  He makes a case for cancellation, but we’re only in season three, so it ain’t gonna happen.

Doug shows up with the village elders to release the cretins, but leaves Pacey to stew behind bars.  Doug’s sexy when he’s being masochistic.

Jen, in the meantime, visits Robert Pattinson in the hospital, where he’s recovering on Jell-O.  They have a heart-to-heart, and Jen reveals that she was treated poorly on past V-Days and had some anxiety.  She gives him another chance to be normal and decides to keep the shitty ring.  Henry decides that this visit somehow qualifies as a date.  I wonder if he plans to celebrate by killing some yuppies later.

Kate ends her visit by having another pity party with Jack.  He acknowledges that her visit reminded him of his closet days, and she tries to be supportive, but she might want to focus on her own mental health.  I imagine her life peaking at age 36, while she’s taking drop-shoulder selfies with her platonic gay boyfriends in a club called Tops & Bottoms, then going home and chasing a handful of Xanax with a bottle of Grey Goose.

“I’M SO HAPPY.”

“I’M SO HAPPY.”

Dawson is having a talk with Mitch, and dad’s understandably unimpressed.  He drops the hammer and tells Dawson that he’ll now be working at the new restaurant his mother is apparently opening.  The music suggests that this is much more dramatic than a teenager taking an evening job.

In the next of a very long line of late-episode character resolutions, Doug gets Pacey to admit that he’s frustrated because of his growing attraction to Joey.  He talks about Joey being “the kind of pretty that gives you butterflies” while Doug pretends that he doesn’t prefer a rippling, manscaped chest.  Doug overcomes his own crushing, closeted loneliness to advise Pacey to go for the girl.

The episode concludes with Pacey arriving at the Potter residence to apologize to Joey.  Joey tells Pacey that she’s worried about his morals because she’s negging him, I guess.  He foregoes expressing his feelings by offering her a driving lesson, which is basically the most sex that anyone is having on the WB tonight.

I mean… right?

I mean… right?

MVA:  Joey saying, “Pacey, I know it’s a hard concept for you to grasp, but some people are actually dedicated to the pursuit of academic excellence.”  Holy shit, Potter: lighten the fuck up.