Saturday, August 13, 2011
Season 1, Episode 5: Hurricane
The set-up for episode 5 is simple and genius, and also mildly confusing, in that it opens with Joey and Dawson happily watching TV together in Dawson's room, waiting for the weather report as if Dawson had not declared Joey dead to him last episode (it turns out he's still mildly pissed but it's a case of "heeey at least you're not a slut, Jo, I need SOMEONE to hang out with"). A hurricane is fast approaching Capeside, school is cancelled and Dawson's house is the safest place to be, apparently; so Joey, Joey's sister Bessie and Bessie's boyfriend Bodie head to the Leery's for shelter, as do Jen and her grandmother. While Mitch is busy battening down the hatches that adulterous hussy Gail is still being an adulterous hussy...and everybody knows.
EXCEPT IT'S NOT SAFE AT THE LEERY'S! While everyone may be safe from the meteorological hurricane (“Hurricane Chris”), there's a HURRICANE OF EMOTIONS brewing and getting ready to WRECK SOME SHIT.
That hurricane, I'm sure you have already guessed, is Hurricane Dawson, who since last episode has worked on his crazy attack. Check him out, catching his adulterous whore of a mother on the phone to her lover:
and then...just...oh NO YOU DI'NT DAWSON:
The only person who can outdo him in sheer unadulterated pettiness is Joey, who plays her trump card:
Dawson (and Joey) lurking around every corner making veiled allusions to what THEY KNOW finally push Gail to confess her adulterous affair to Mitch. To which I say:
a) Gail? Could you not have waited like, 2 hours for ALL THOSE RANDOM PEOPLE TO LEAVE YOUR HOUSE? Because seriously? That's freaking AWKWARD.
b) Gail?! What kind of a mother are you that you want to confess your adultery to your husband IN FRONT OF YOUR 15 YEAR OLD SON? It's bad enough he had to guilt you into it; don't make him be part of this conversation, YOU CRAZY BITCH.
As you can probably imagine, IT DOES NOT GO WELL (and Gail's hair, it turns out, reflects her emotional state). We also discover EXACTLY where Dawson gets his flair for the melodramatically emo from:
Meanwhile, over on (I assume) the other side of town, Pacey is being forced to hang out with his big brother, Deputy Doug Witter, as he makes his rounds checking on properties and helping people prepare for the oncoming storm.
Whose property should they come across other than Ms Tamara Jacobs? When she claims to hate storms and be super scared of the hurricane, Doug offers the Witter Bros services to help secure the property and to stay and ride out the storm with her. Commence Deputy Doug flirting, which involves bonding over show tunes.
And Pacey making this face.
Actually, no, the definition of awkward is your cop brother pulling a gun on you and threatening to shoot you unless you tell the teacher he's flirting with, who you're secretly sleeping with, that he's not gay.
THIS EPISODE IS ACTUALLY FULL OF GOOD STUFF
1. We find out in this episode that “Jen's Grandma” is actually known to other people as “Mrs Ryan”. She also, awesomely, gets to show another side to her character, other than the one-note “Judgemental Old Religious Lady” she has been stuck as thus far. I actually forgot how much I liked Mrs Ryan and how she gradually reveals herself to be a caring, kind, incredibly wise and supportive person to have onside.
She talks to Dawson in a language he can understand: film.
Because initially – yeah, sour-puss with an unfortunate way of phrasing things.
2. We get a hint into Pacey's background. It's weird how Pacey is the least fleshed out character so far: he's a seemingly happy go lucky clown who doesn't do well with girls (his own admission, last ep) and who is flunking at school (Ms Jacobs told him when she offered an inappropriate 'study incentive' that she'd been speaking to his other teachers about his grades). But that's all we know. This episode we discover that he has a brother in the police (Deputy Doug! His love of showtunes and Broadway musicals is worth remembering, although he claims he isn't gay) but interestingly, that his father is the Capeside Chief of Police. The way Doug talks about Pacey in front of Ms Jacobs is really sad too: he puts him down constantly, and refuses to believe the good things Ms Jacobs (in her role as teacher, lol) says about him, because “that doesn't sound like Pacey”.
3. Jen and Joey continue to slowly warm up to each other, bonding because Dawson is being a jerk to both of them. They have a really sweet scene, actually, where they are discussing the potential size of Dawson's...err...package, the way girls TOTALLY do; Joey drops the hostility and the fake 'bad girl' routine she has pulled thus far in all her dealings with Jen and is genuinely coy about Dawson and sex; Jen defers to Joey's knowledge of all things Dawson, and appeals to her “girl to girl”. Something about this little scene just struck me as really nicely done.
4. Dawson's dad is dreaming of building a scuba-diving themed restaurant. Called the Kelp, or something. Just remember that. He's tinkering with the model when Gail breaks the news.
5. WE FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENED TO JEN.
Don't judge me you guys, but I cried during this episode, and it was totally unexpected – because remember? I was never Team Jen, and didn't care ONE BIT about her story. And yeah – her pronouncements up to now about teen sex have tended to be a tad didactic and tonally out of sync with the rest of the episode, but I can overlook it. Because I REALLY DID HATE DAWSON last episode for being SUCH an asshole and judging Jen based on learning one fact that wasn't to his liking.
And now we learn all the facts. Jen approaches Dawson as the hurricane ends, after he has broken his silence by all but calling her a slut to her face. And she tells him the whole truth, so he can judge her all he wants.
Damn it. I cried so hard.
This doesn't mean I want him to BE with Jen though. DAMMIT Dawson's Creek is so confusing.
Last episode was where the emotional side of things started ramping up: this episode marks the official point where I am, all snark aside, TOTALLY INVESTED IN THIS SHIT.