Dawson's Creek S1E5: Hurricane
This episode should have been called GALE and we're mad about it.
Normal service has been resumed!
Time to uncork the wine and settle in for an episode of angsty nonsense from the Dawson Foursome and their equally chaotic parents. This week, with added WEATHER CONTENT.
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The story so far:
Joey found herself in the unlikely position of defending Jen to Dawson, after Jen confessed that she wasn’t really a virgin and Dawson freaked out. Dawson finally rumbled Gail with the Good Hair was having an affair with Bob, and debated whether to tell Mitch.
Pacey, who apparently nobody gives AF about, continued his affair with Tamara, with the latter finally admitting her feelings for him ran deeper than just a sexual fling.
We start as we always do…
Int. Dawson’s Bedroom. Night.
It’s finally happened. The sheer magnitude of Dawson’s repressed sexual energy has reached such proportions that it’s actually disrupting the elements. A storm is heading for Capeside.
It might actually be headed straight for Leery Manor. Like a warning shot, a gust of wind blows into Dawson’s bedroom, knocking the (stained?) poster of Steven Spielberg off his wall. Dawson and Joey are watching the news when it’s announced that Capeside High will be closed due to the weather, and they high five in celebration. I don’t know why Joey’s celebrating since she only attends school to roll her eyes at Dawson during daylight hours.
Dawson becomes annoyed watching Gail (GALE, c’mon) and Bob’s flirtatious banter. Joey, sensing Hurricane Dawson is gathering speed, makes a dive for the window but not before telling Dawson that he’s going to need to address the Gail/Bob/Mitch entanglement sooner rather than later.
(all together now)
🎶 I Don’t Wanna Wait 🎶
The Dawson’s Creek extras, last seen shuffling around the dancefloor like their punch had been laced with ketamine in S1E2, have now been promoted to ‘hurried townspeople’, as we see some shots of storefronts being boarded up in advance of the incoming GALE.
The original Gail is pissed as hell because her network won’t allow her to cover the storm on account of the fact that she is a woman and Bob is a man. She complains bitterly about this to Mitch (!!), and I for one can see her point. Bitching about the dude that you’re having an affair with to the husband that you’re cheating on is a move so lacking in sensitivity that she might as well be a man (ladies am-i-rite?)
Mitch is like ‘well I’m glad you’re going to be home nice and safe’ and Dawson’s like ‘isn’t Dad just the best and isn’t Bob a dick’, and Gail’s like ‘oh shit he knows’.
Pacey has been commissioned by his brother Doug, who is a police officer, to help the zombie-like extras prepare Capeside for the incoming storm. Doug is a little bit sensitive to Pacey’s continued, and frankly a bit mean, implications that Doug is secretly gay. We also learn that their father is the Capeside CHIEF OF POLICE. It really feels like Capeside is a ‘one part-time cop max’ kind of town, although given that the only crime that’s taken place so far is Pacey being groomed at the hands of his teacher and nobody’s cottoned onto that DESPITE THE VIDEO EVIDENCE maybe the Capeside-Five-0 need all the help they can get.
Joey, Bessie and Bodie are debating whether to circumcise Bessie and Bodie’s soon-to-be-born son, whilst nailing down anything that moves in preparation for the incoming storm. Bodie tells Joey not to worry about it because ‘these things never come this far north’. What things? Weather? And where exactly is Capeside? Canada? Joey suggests that they camp out at the Leery’s until the storm passes.
Back in the wilderness, Pacey spots Tamara on her porch and swoops in for a kiss.
Turns out Dougie has been helping Tamara ‘secure her decking’, whilst flirting with her. Tamara remembers that she’s a teacher and tells Pacey she hopes he keeps up with his reading whilst the school is closed, to which Dougie replies THIS IDIOT?
Tamara tells Doug that Pacey is actually doing quite well in school which is a lie but better that than telling Officer Witter that his lil bro is simply wizard at the Reverse Cowboy. Doug continues to flirt with Tamara, who doesn’t seem mad about it.
Saint Mitch is trying to persuade Grams and Jen to shelter at the Leery’s during the storm. Grams, presumably dealing with delayed PTSD from the time that Noah made everyone board his ark two by two, is ever the optimist and tells Mitch ‘if the Lord blows away my house, so be it’.
Jen - keenly aware that she’ll probably get the blame since she gets blamed for everything else - is more open to sheltering with their neighbours, despite Dawson continuing to give Jen the cold shoulder.
Dawson: It’s not you, I’ve just got a lot on my mind.
Things don’t get any warmer in the Leery’s living room, when Grams greets Bessie with the words ‘You are Bessie, Joey’s unmarried sister’.
Whilst all this is going on, Dawson eavesdrops on Gail making kissy noises down the phone at her assignment-stealing paramour. The most shocking (more shocking than Gail continuing her affair via landline mere feet away from half the population of Capeside who have congregated in her living room) part of all of this is that Gail claims to have won BOTH an EMMY and a Golden Desk award for journalism. Based on her covert skills we’ll assume she didn’t earn these awards by going undercover inside ISIS, since she’s been caught having an affair at least 3 times by various people who are not even old enough to vote.
Dawson decides now is the best time to have a showdown with Gail, and even though his hurt and anger are legitimately justified he manages to make himself entirely unsympathetic by challenging his mother’s grammar and then stomping off.
Jen, who has nothing better do than to be a punching bag for the people who are supposed to love her the most, tries to console him by rightfully pointing out that marriages are complex and affairs are not always solely based on physical desire. Dawson responds to this thoughtful sentiment by basically calling a whore. Joey - who has apparently been hiding in Dawson’s closet the whole time - comes barrelling out in defence of womankind only for Dawson to turn on her too. He almost succeeds before Joey plays her DEAD MOM card.
In the living room, Mitch and Joey are watching Bob read the news whilst the storm rages. Mitch is like ‘gosh I hope Bob is okay out there’.
Gail decides to confide in Joey (?) that she has been foolish in having an affair with job-stealing Bob, but she’s going to end it.
Joey: Well at least you’re alive to have an affa - oh, yeah. Cool, cool.
Back over with The Student, His Teacher, Her House and His Closeted Brother, Tamara confesses that she’s a bit nervous because she never expected the storm to make it ‘this far north’. Seriously. Where the hell is Capeside? They hear a crash outside and Dougie heads off to investigate.
Tamara: Your brother seems like a good guy.
Pacey: Yeah. He’s gay.
This revelation seems to spur Tamara on a little bit, and she and Pacey kiss, falling clumsily to the floor when Dougie returns and catches them.
Over at Leery Manor, everyone (Dawson, Grams) has taken a break from slut-shaming everyone else (Bessie, Jen, Gail) just in time for Gail to come clean to Mitch. She also decides to keep Dawson around which seems like a questionable choice in a long line of questionable choices. Gail’s reason for having an affair is basically that life didn’t turn out the way she thought that it would, but ultimately she’s really sorry and hopes Mitch can forgive her. As apologies go, ‘you have to forgive me, Aidan’, this ain’t.
Elsewhere, Joey and Jen have one of their Dawson-related heart to hearts. Unfortunately (for us), their chosen subject is how big Dawson’s manhood might be. Where’s a home-shattering hurricane when you need one?
Grams bonds with Dawson over a mutual love of old movies, which is nicer than their usual mutual love of judging Jen. It’s also surprising that Grams likes movies, since she seems like the kind of broad who believes that moving pictures conjure the devil.
Doug and Tamara are having a whale of a time talking about their favourite Broadway musicals, which Doug takes as a sign that Tamara is interested in him. He suggests a date, to which Tamara demurs. Doug asks if it’s because of his age ‘24 going on 25’ (if it were 24 going on 16 he’d be in with a chance), and Tamara’s like no, it’s because you’re into dudes. Doug flips his lid, pulling his gun on Pacey until Pacey confirms that Doug is straight, whilst Tamara looks on in understandable horror.
Mitch is stewing in his car when Gail makes another attempt at reconciliation. She’s very upset but Mitch is standing firm and tells her that he has made a choice not to love her, then boots her out of the car and leaves her standing in the rain as he drives away.
Praise be, the hurricane changes course overnight and doesn’t end up reducing Capeside into a pile of burning rubble. Doug and Pacey have apparently slept at Tamara’s place, and as they’re leaving Doug’s like ‘hey sorry about the gun thing so anyway DTF?’ and Tamara declines, because she can only break one law at a time and tbh Doug seems like an absolute psychopath.
Dawson runs into Jen, and their conversation is completely heart-breaking. Jen explains that she lost her virginity when she was 12 to an older guy who got her drunk. This, and let’s be clear about it because the show certainly isn’t - rape - was the catalyst that led Jen down a darker path to the point where her parents shipped her off to bible camp, I mean, Grams’ house, exiling their daughter at a point in her life when she needed them most. I cannot emphasise how horrible it is to watch Jen insist she isn’t ‘that girl’ anymore, as though these chain of events are somehow her fault, or her responsibility to apologise for.
For once Dawson admits his behaviour has been appalling, and the two agree to start over. Two people who aren’t starting over are Mitch and Gail. Gail apologises once again, but Mitch is too tired to hear it. He doesn’t want to talk anymore, and they sit together on the porch, surrounded by the remnants of the life they once shared.
Tamara tells Pacey that they can’t continue their relationship, but as usual her words and actions aren’t exactly in alignment, as she hauls him into her home for a make-out session.
Finally, Dawson apologises to Joey, who in turn apologises for playing the ‘mom card’. Dawson tells her he wants to be a better friend (a speech he really should be giving to Pacey, his so-called best friend whose circumstances are not a million miles away from Jen’s), and Joey replies that just for tonight, can they put adulthood on hold? And for tonight, they do.
📺 There’s an excellent drama series called ‘A Teacher’, which is on Hulu and available to watch on BBC iPlayer, that tells the story of an affair between a student and his teacher. Definitely worth a watch, particularly if you’ve been throwing your remote at the screen watching the shambles that is Pacey and Tamara, as this story demonstrates the repercussions of such a dangerous abuse of power from someone in a teaching position.
📸 Creekbeat now has its very own Insta, so if watching millennials haphazardly negotiate their way through Canva and riff songs from YouTube is your thing, come say hi!
Bob awoke with a start. The first thing he noticed was that his news van had finally stopped shaking. The hurricane must have placed him back down to earth, at last. It had been the night from hell. The second thing he noticed was that he wasn’t alone. A little dog, a terrier perhaps, shoved its cold wet nose into his face and whined.
‘Hey little fella’ Bob said, reaching out to stroke behind its ears. ‘Bumpy night, eh? Where did you come from?’ Bob reached for his collar, but suddenly stopped as he was overcome with memories from the night before.
The hurricane, changing direction, barrelling down on him. Taking cover in his van. One final call to Gail…. and then, nothing, but swirling, hurtling at great speeds, like he was on a rollercoaster. And now he had landed. But… where?
Cautiously, Bob pulled the van door open, letting sunlight flood in. He shielded his eyes, picking up the small dog and gingerly stepping out into a strange and beautiful world. ‘Where are we?’ Bob said.
In the distance, he saw three figures walking together, headed towards a golden looking path. ‘Excuse me’, he called, ‘Can you tell me where I am?’ The figures ignored him. ‘Hello?’ Bob shouted, growing angry, ‘I’m just looking for directions. Jeez. Nice place, huh?’ he continued, to the little dog. ‘Say, I was going to learn your name, wasn’t I?’ he reached for the little dog’s collar, reading the neatly printed moniker ‘Toto. Huh, that’s funny. Almost as if…. Oh, my God…Toto… I don’t think we’re in Capeside anymore’.
‘Are you sure we shouldn’t stop?’ The Cowardly Lion asked. The Scarecrow cuffed the back of his head. ‘After last time? Not a chance. What do you think, Tin Man?’
‘Team Mitch all the way’ came the reply.