Let’s All Watch Dawson’s Creek! Episode 10: Roadtrip
I was really hoping that this episode would be a torrent of emotion, filled with longing glances and groping hugs, but it’s not. However, it’s still utterly fantastic.
I recommend playing Savage Garden while staring at this first screengrab, as that was Dawson’s song of choice for his post-Lindley woe.
“I wanna stay like this forever, until the stars fall down on me.” God, how I wish the stars would fall down on Dawson. Fall right on his head and bury him and his big old bum in a pool of fire for all eternity.
But look! Here is a star of a different kind – it’s Joey Potter, ladies and gentlemen! Typically unsympathetic towards Dawson’s disgusting emotional outbursts, Joey asks what film Dawson has picked to watch for the evening. ”Sid and Nancy,” he blurts. Urgh. Get a grip, fart-breath. Joey tells Dawson to buck up his ideas, that he’s only known Jen for three months and that he just needs to stop thinking about her and watching her house all the time like a weirdo. Amen!
Then she presses play on the VCR.
Hey! Look who it is! Gee, I wish I could get my name written in big yellow script across my butt like that! So cool!
So the 15-year-old Ex-Boyfriend is still hanging around from last week. I guess they booked him for an extra episode, or maybe he had already signed out of school for the day and needed to do this to fill up his credits. You know what it’s like being 15!
I imagine Kevin Williamson thought it would be hilarious to have Ex-Boyfriend stalking across Jen’s lawn with a ladder over his shoulder, climbing up the side of her house and crawling in through her bedroom window. It’s a direct reference to Joey and Dawson, you guys! Yes. Hilarious. Well done, Kevin. (FYI, I’m being sarcastic.)
Is he wearing eyeliner?
Also: Hi, Greg Prange!
15-year-old Ex-Boyfriend lays down on Jen’s bed and realises he has a hell of a lot of chest hair.
Uh oh, Ol’ Sour Puss has showed up, and you can bet your bottom dollar that she isn’t taking any of this cutesy Ex-Boyfriend schtick. ”Get off that bed or I’ll call the National Guard,” she spits. Err…earth to Grams, I think the National Guard have slightly more worrying things to deal with than 15-year-old boys who lie on girls’ beds! Even if said 15-year-old looks slightly older than he claims to be. Only slightly.
I really love this wallpaper, I must say.
Jen is equally peeved at Ex-Boyfriend’s appearance and stands with her hands on her hips as she orders him out of her room. You tell him, sister! Note the drawing of the ballet dancer behind Jen. Classy.
Seconds later (is Ex-Boyfriend a wizard??), Dawson totters out of his house in oversized jeans to find Ex-Boyfriend sitting on his car, eating an apple. (Where did the apple come from??)
Dawson tries to saunter by with dignity, but Ex-Boyfriend gets to him by detailing the pain he knows Dawson must be feeling. “You’re staring at her house and wondering, ‘Who is she calling? What music is she listening to?’…”
“Is she thinking about me?” lisps Dawson in reply. He pouts like a grubby street urchin, standing outside McDonald’s, gazing lovingly at Ronald McDonald, whom he mistakenly believes is a woman.
Ex-Boyfriend jumps on this moment of vulnerability like a blind cat snaring a morbidly obese mouse, demanding that Dawson take a road trip with him to a club in Providence. ”Yeah, that’ll show her!” squeals Dawson.
Totally. Who wouldn’t want to get back with a boy who goes to a club three hours away, in the middle of the day, with your sleazy ex-boyfriend? Cut me off a piece of THAT.
Oh, by the way guys…
Okay? So let’s all just get over it.
Meanwhile, Joey is having an equally eventful walk to school, as she gets offered a lift in the golf buggy (?) of a Varsity jock.
After the obligatory number of sassy retorts and put-downs (15,034), Joey gets into the buggy. What happens next is super weird.
1. Joey is standing up in the buggy, her arms raised and hair blowing in the wind, as she screams like a drunk cheerleader in a pink limousine.
2. Joey sits down, smiles at the jock and then he says, “Is it cold up there or are you just pleased to see me?”
3. Joey tells him he is a terrible human being and will definitely die a gruesome death at the hands of a woman he loves.
Weird, no? Like, that’s a weird scene, right? What is its purpose? What does it mean?
By the way, this is Joey’s “You’re Evil” face.
At school, Dawson, Dawson’s white linen blazer, and 15-year-old Ex-Boyfriend find Pacey and explain what they’re planning to do.
I like this exchange – pick up your scripts, people!
Yes! Finally! I’ve been waiting to meet you. Dawson’s evil twin, I presume?
Something inane, blah, blah, film buff, jdslhfjds, so you gonna come?
I wouldn’t miss this for the world! Let’s go!
Sure, right after I hand in my math homework
Yeah. Walk on the wild side.
THAT’S SO PACEY!
Jen and Joey show up (as if they’re friends, which they definitely are not, okay?!) and ask what in hell’s black hole these morons think they’re doing.
While Dawson is busy handing in his equations, Ex-Boyfriend tells Joey and Jen that he’s planning on taking the boys to a (whisper it) tavern of ill repute. Joey is particularly upset by this, probably because she knows Dawson has no genitals and isn’t looking forward to his mournful whining after he returns sad and forlorn. While she is moaning, Pacey looks at her, a look which suggests he really, really, REALLY cares about what Joey thinks…
Ex-Boyfriend and Pacey walk away, and Ex-Boyfriend admits he’s not actually taking them to a boudoir of loose females, it’s just a club. Funny joke, nerdbutt!
Jen pulls Joey over to one side and does that super bitchy thing popular girls do to less popular girls, “Um, so, did you do it with that varsity jock? ’Cos he is saying you did and everyone has heard all about it”. Joey is all, “Yeah right, I did it with him right after I [insert thing Joey would never, ever do, like smile].”
Joey finds Varsity Jock at lunch and asks to speak to him privately. As he gets up from his seat, he says to all the other Jocks on his table, “Excuse me boys, but she needs to speak to me privately.” In response, they all go, “Oooooh” as if it’s code for something nasty.
Is is code for something nasty?
Joey tells him he’s really awful for lying that they did it, but Varsity Jock just says loudly, “Look, it’s over, I don’t want to see you again, I don’t want to be your boyfriend, okay?” Everyone in the cafeteria starts whispering loudly and looking at Joey.
Joey slumps off to the most private place she can think of: the stairs. Jen finds her and tries to give her some advice, but Joey is reluctant to listen. However, after Jen suggests that maybe there is a good way to get him back, Joey looks interested.
SPOILER: THEIR WAY OF GETTING HIM BACK IS REALLY WEIRD AND A BIT RUBBISH.
This is what it entails:
1. Joey goes to the photocopying room. What is she photocopying? We never find out.
2. While there this happens:
3. Abby asks Joey about Varsity Jock and Joey starts crying, “He said he really liked me… He said he would be there for me, but now he doesn’t want anything to do with me…with…us.” She holds her stomach.
4. By the way, this is Joey’s crying face:
5. Abby is shocked and appalled at Varsity Jock’s behaviour.
6. Since Abby is the school gossip, Joey and Jen’s evil lies will spread in no time.
But, um… surely it’s more embarrassing for Joey to be pregnant at 15 than it is for the Varsity Jock to have abandoned her??
Meanwhile, on a boat (?!) somewhere, the roadtrip of a LIFETIME is getting into full swing.
Okay, I think maybe we should call trading standards, because since when did a piece of entertainment billed as a ‘roadtrip’ involve three dorks sitting on a boat for half of the episode?
Ex-Boyfriend and Pacey are goading Dawson, saying that he is too much of a goodie two-shoes to do anything naughty while on their trip. In retaliation, Dawson does this…
1. Dawson locates the meanest meanies on the entire boat.
AKA this guy, who is pouring his beer on the window of this car, which belongs to a sweet old lady.
2. Dawson attaches a big chain/anchor type thing to the back of Mr. Meanie’s car.
3. When it’s time for the trio of goobers to drive off the boat, Pacey moons the mean guys. They try to drive after them but they can’t because Dawson has broken their car.
4. Dawson does this:
Back at school, Varsity Jock opens his locker to find lots of baby paraphernalia has been stowed inside.
There is also a sticker on the outside of his locker that says this:
THAT WILL SHOW HIM. (Will it, though?! I find this all very odd. Has anyone ever done this to get back at a boy? Please discuss.)
Suddenly it is evening, and Ex-Boyfriend, Dawson and Pacey find themselves in ‘the club’. Ex-Boyfriend is encouraging Dawson to go talk to a lady, but who on earth should Dawson pick? What distinguishing feature will mark out the woman of his dreams?
That’ll do it.
Of course Dawson would be attracted to a woman wearing a t-shirt that says ‘Film Threat’, because Dawson himself is the most terrible and dangerous threat to modern cinema since Madonna. (I WENT THERE.)
Anyway. Dawson sidles over to his soulmate and says something terrible like, “My name is Dawson.”
In the tradition of females that Dawson becomes romantically involved with who aren’t Joey or Jen, film girl is pithy and reluctant. She suggests lots of other potential chat-up lines Dawson could have used, then turns away from him. In response, Dawson lists his many faults and for some reason, this makes him really attractive to Film Threat girl.
This, for the record, is what Film Threat looks like:
I love the Hollywood portrayal of a ’90s college girl. This one has beads in her hair and is wearing a scarf. Inside. With a t-shirt. She is akin to the ’90s college girl Paul Rudd’s character dates in Clueless. The one who likes Radiohead and thinks Cher is really dumb, but then Cher says something insightful about Shakespeare and that makes Paul Rudd laugh, and you know then that ’90s college girl, her black beret and her trench coat just don’t stand a chance.
I guess it was girls like Cher that made ’90s college girls have to settle for buttheads like Dawson Leery.
[INSERT PREDICTABLE SCENE IN WHICH FILM THREAT AND DAWSON HAVE AN ARGUMENT ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT SPIELBERG IS ACTUALLY A GOOD DIRECTOR, YAWN]
In Capeside, an angry Joey Potter turns up at Jen Lindley’s house, interrupting Jen’s post-school glass of milk. Joey has got her knickers in a twist over the rumour Abby spread.
She says it’s too much for her to handle, and then shouts at Jen, “You don’t care about me, you’re just looking for some convenient revenge scenario to dump all your residual male anger.”
Jen starts stuttering, “Don’t turn this into a Dawson thing. The truth is, ever since Dawson and I broke up, you’ve been scared to death. You’ve been scared because now there are no more excuses, now there is no one else to blame. You’re scared because now when he treats you like ‘just one of the guys’, I’m not going to be around to hate. And that is how he is going to treat you, Joey.” OUCH. TRUTH BOMB. THAT’S GOT TO HURT.
This is what Jen’s face looks like when she is laying it all out.
In Providence, Film Threat and Dawson are getting on famously, but then Ex-Boyfriend comes over and makes it all a bit awkward. Film Threat decides to call it a night and asks Dawson to walk her to her car. He agrees and they leave, with Ex-Boyfriend looking all sad and hangdog behind them. He’s probably wondering, “How does Dawson get these girls?!” SO AM I, MY FRIEND, SO AM I.
LOL, love that this club in providence is just called CLUB.
“Where do you wanna go tonight Steve?”
“Okay, but which one?”
“ALRIGHT, BUT WHICH GODDAMNED CLUB??”
Etc. It’s like a modern version of the ‘Who’s On First?’ sketch.
Outside ‘Club’, Film Threat asks Dawson if she wants to go home with him (seriously, why?!). Dawson says that he would love to but he has a girl that he’s just broken up with at home, and he’s still not over her (translation: I have no genitals). Film Threat says she is sad, but actually he has kind of restored her faith in men. (I just don’t… I can’t even…) Then, as if to prove something to himself (that he has genitals), Dawson does this:
For some reason, Jen and Joey are back at school again. It’s not really clear why. In America, do you have school till 4pm, go home for dinner, and then go back to school again in the evening? Why?
Abby finds Jen and says that she knows Joey is lying, because when she spread the rumour to Varsity Jock’s ex-girlfriend, she found out that actually he has a small problem in that department – “a soft spot for the ladies, but in a bad way,” as Abby so graciously puts it.
Jen relays this to Joey and they both find it really hilarious and bond over it. Aww.
Joey confronts Varsity Jock and he apologises, saying he only spread that they did it because he really liked her. He asks her on a proper date, and points out that by dating him she could really change her social position in the school. Joey replies:
Pacey and Dawson have been ditched by Ex-Boyfriend and have left CLUB and are waiting for their bus home. Pacey asks what happened with Film Threat in the parking lot, and Dawson says they just said goodbye. Pacey calls him a liar, adding, “Or are you just wearing that lipstick as a fashion statement?” Knowing Dawson’s style sensibilities, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was.
It’s night time (again).
And Jen is just chillin’.
FACT: This shot was a directly influenced by hit film The Craft.
Joey shows up and asks if they can hang out. Jen is like, “Err, I guess…” Joey sits down next to her and they bond in the only way girls in the ’90s knew how to bond. With a big tub of ice cream and two spoons. Scrunchie, slouch socks and pyjamas optional.
Jen breaks the ice by asking, “So do you think we’ll ever be able to be friends without Dawson getting in the way?” Joey smiles out the side of her mouth insipidly and says, “Well, he’s only in love with one of us.” Jen nods, “Yes, he is…” AS IN, JEN THINKS DAWSON LOVES JOEY. Joey realises what Jen is saying and looks like she’s going to puke.
Then they speculate on whether or not Dawson has lost his virginity with a brazen hussy at CLUB.
(With Savage Garden playing again.)
If I was Dawson and I came home to find Joey sitting in a chair in my bedroom waiting for me, I would be creeped out. Especially if she didn’t leave when I got into bed and stayed there watching me while I slept.
But for Dawson, the gooberbutt who has girls queuing up to kiss him, this is just another day, another show of unparalleled lust from a gorgeous female and another assertion that he should definitely keep tucking his t-shirt into his stone washed jeans.
Ladies, we have only ourselves to blame.