May 27, 2011

Dawson’s Creek 2.8, The Reluctant Hero: Pacey Witter, You’re My Hero

Posted in TV tagged , , , at 6:24 pm by Jenn

See, the shark symbolizes...dude, I don't know

Summary: Dawson and Pacey watch Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and Pacey posits that Dawson is just like Jimmy Stewart. A drunken Jen comes through the window (so the ladder’s back?) and Dawson tells Pacey that she’s been dropping by a lot. In the morning, Dawson’s surprised to find Mitch in the kitchen. Mitch wants to hang out later, but Dawson thinks he’s making things weirder. He opens a letter and is very happy with its contents.

At school, Pacey learns that he probably won’t graduate, and if he does, he’s not good enough at anything to get a job. Dawson finds Joey and shares what he found out in the letter: His horror movie won $2,500 in a film festival. He wants Joey to produce his next movie, but she doesn’t have the time. After Dawson leaves, Jack asks Joey how he can repair their friendship. He thinks she’s been avoiding him, but she’s just been off in her own world. She says she’s mad at herself for everything that happened, and he tells her to get over it.

Dawson shares the news about the movie with Jen, who’s very happy for him. Pacey complains to Andie about the bleakness of his future; she notes that Albert Einstein was considered dumb. Pacey just needs someone to help him. Chris comes over to flirt with Jen and invite her to an all-night party. Dawson can’t hide his disapproval. She invites him along, then accuses him of judging her when he says it’s not his idea of a good time. She tells him she’s just having fun.

Andie thinks Pacey should be more concerned over his lack of a future – if he acts like a joke, people will treat him like one. “I’m not Luke Skywalker. I’m not even Luke Perry. There’s no hero here,” he says. He’s so used to being a screw-up that he doesn’t think he can go back. Andie notes that this is America, where people reinvent themselves all the time. “Heroes are made, not born,” she clichés.

Jack flirts pathetically with Joey and asks her out on a dat (which isn’t as official as a date). He tells Andie and Pacey about his plans, asking Andie to take his turn looking after their mom. Andie’s fine with it and notes that she’s doing better on her new medication anyway. She jinxes things even further by declaring that she has everything under control. Dawson stops by Joey’s house to give her half of the prize money. She asks if they can be friends again but doesn’t tell him about her date with Jack, so he’s not very happy when he sees Jack arrive.

Dawson helps Mitch move into his new place but doesn’t want to stick around to talk. He complains that he’s sick of respecting other people’s wishes. He also doesn’t want Mitch to be his friend. Dawson heads over to Jen’s, having changed his mind about going to the party. She tells him he has to keep his mouth shut about her partying habits and keep an open mind. Also, it’s not a date; she’s not interested while he’s on the rebound.

Pacey goes to the McPhees’ to study with Andie and sees that Mrs. McPhee doesn’t seem any better than the last time he saw her. Andie makes excuses for her, saying sometimes she slips. Pacey can’t believe the number of awards and trophies Andie has, not to mention the fact that she still finds time to take care of her family. Jack and Joey have a picnic and he talks about lightning. (This guy is a thrill a minute, I tell you.) She tells him she and Dawson flew a kite with a key when they were kids. They talk about Dawson’s reaction to Jack at Joey’s house, and Jack says it was like being challenged to a duel. He thinks Joey’s worth fighting for.

At the party, Jen, who’s already drunk, appears to be on her way to a three-way with Chris and another guy. Andie gets a phone call telling her Mrs. McPhee is at a market for the third time, apparently disturbing people. Andie and Pacey head over to get her and see that she’s distraught. Pacey starts talking to her like nothing’s wrong, then asks her to make him a sandwich back at the house, getting her to leave without upsetting her.

Dawson sees Jen go upstairs with Chris and the other guy, then interrupts them before anything can happen. Jen isn’t happy to be forcibly removed from the house. Dawson tells her she’s not having fun, she’s hiding from anything that makes her unhappy. Jen shoots back that he doesn’t drink or have sex, but he’s the unhappiest person she knows. He says he’d rather be sad than pretend to be happy. Jen tells him she wasn’t pretending, then throws up. She wants Dawson to accept that this is her and stop trying to save her.

Jen continues that she’s tried to live her life like Dawson, but she doesn’t have the hope he has. Dawson tells her she’s special, but she thinks he just wants her to be. Jen doesn’t want to go home, so Dawson says he’ll take her somewhere else. Jack takes Joey home after their date and she tells him she had a good time. Andie thanks Pacey for helping her mom, complimenting him for showing what a good guy he is. He makes her night even better by agreeing to do some more studying.

Dawson takes Jen to Mitch’s place, where Mitch says he wants to be both his father and his friend. Dawson will take it. Jen asks Dawson about his new movie, which is a love story. He’s not sure how it ends yet. She tells him there are no happy endings in real life, so his movie shouldn’t have one. Joey climbs through Dawson’s window but he’s not home. She picks up a stuffed shark, then leaves. (So…is the shark a metaphor? Are we going to need a bigger boat? I don’t get it.)

Thoughts: Do we really need to start each episode with Dawson watching a movie that relates to the plot of the episode?

Dear Jack, if you have any charisma at all, now would be the time to show it. Seriously, what does Joey see in Jack? He’s just so…blah. Of course, the girl was obsessed with Awson, so I guess she doesn’t have the best judgment.

First of all, Mr. McPhee sucks, ditching his teenagers and his mentally ill wife to fend for themselves. Second of all, shouldn’t Mrs. McPhee be in a hospital or something? What do Jack and Andie do with her when she’s in school? This is all sorts of crazy.

Also, if the McPhees don’t have much money, how do they afford their gigantic house and Andie’s sweater vests?


  1. Cailin said,

    When I was younger I always wanted someone to ask me out on a dat 😛

  2. Sada said,

    If only Dawson and Joey had been struck by lightning as children… Yeah, I said it.

  3. Myriam said,

    The McPhees financial situation doesn’t make a lot of sense indeed… as well as the situation regarding their mom, if she’s that unstable, she should either be in a hospital or have someone at home watching her 24/7. And I actually believe Mr. McPhee could be charged with neglect or something for abandoning his two minor children with a parent who is clearly unable to care for them or for herself.

    I remember being annoyed with Dawson for interrupting Jen with Chris Wolfe and the other guy, especially the way he carried her down the stairs over his shoulder. Rewatching it in 2020, I thought it was actually a good thing that Dawson intervened, because Jen was clearly too drunk to be able to consent to sex… although Dawson would have probably done the same thing even if Jen had been sober, so hard to see this as a +1 for Dawson’s likeabiity.

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