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320 - The Longest Day

WHAT A LONG DAY. Does this episode live up to the label of being "the most extraordinary episode of Dawson's Creek ever"?

There's so much to dig into in this episode: the bliss-turned-explosion of Joey and Pacey's relationship (can you call it a relationship?), the pain Dawson must feel, and Andie's complicated feelings, to name a few.

From Traci: "I forgot to mention this during recording, but when I try to put myself into Dawson's shoes, I think about how this is now the second time in his life where two people he trusted without hesitation have lied to him: first, his parents; now, his best friends. Is that an excuse for the way he talks to Joey at the end? No, although I get the heat-of-the-moment argument. But for being a teenager, things are really crashing down on him.

That being said, it doesn't change the way I feel about how he tries to blame Joey for who she falls for. Because sometimes, that cannot be helped. Yes, Joey and Pacey should've been the ones to tell him, but as this episode shows, sometimes things get really, really complicated when you only have so many people you hang around with in a day."

From Charles: "Regarding my theory that Pacey and Joey are the first "ship." I forgot to mention on pod that internet ethnographers at Know Your Meme believe the term "shipper" to be short for "relationshipper," as evidence by a 1996 post in an "X-Files" newsgroup and further usage in the early '00s. I posit further now that not only was the Good Ship Poey one of the first "ships," it is also most likely the first treated like an actual boat."

Episode links: 

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  1. Well I must be such a cold hearted goober because I just do not sympathize with Dawson... not even a little bit lol I understand being hurt and to find out that way sucks but Pacey and Joey were not lying to Dawson. Pacey and Joey were going to tell him eventually, they did not know he'd find out from Jen first. They were keeping their status a secret because they were just figuring things out for themselves. It wasn't even until crappy Aunt Gwen's house that they even came to terms with what they wanted to do about their relationship. After they got back, it wasn't about them sneaking around to be malicious or sneaky, it was them trying to spare the brat's feelings because they actually cared and loved him. How would that have looked if Pacey and Joey had been excited and couldn't wait to tell Dawson they were starting a relationship? Dawson probably would've gotten mad at Pacey... yes just Pacey for being heartless. If Dawson had just asked them why they didn't tell him, he could've gotten his answers but no his first instinct is to try and paint his supposed best friend into a guy that is just out for sex. Nope I will never feel an ounce of sympathy for Jafar.

    Anyway, as for Show me love, I don't like this episode. Andie's anger is ridiculous to me. How is she comparing what she did to what Pacey did? I can't even discuss this without getting irritated. Dawson not caring if he caused a crash and potentially injuring Pacey and poor Will, is absolutely absurd lmao Joey essentially rewarding that behavior by going to his house and watching ET because it's familiar when everything has been so chaotic is not a pass. I mean their relationship is just so unhealthy to me and it's disturbing. Pacey and Joey ended things for Dawson. That should've been the end of it. I think they could've continued the triangle without turning Dawson into a Disney villian and keeping up Dawson's disdain for Pacey. I think it would've been more compelling if Joey had to choose between a less selfish bff Dawson because Pacey is so awesome of a character but unfortunately the writers made their title character an insufferable nincompoop. I feel so bad for Pacey until the end scene of True Love. He gets treated like crap except by Andie after she becomes rational again, while Joey who also was concerned about telling Dawson, gets treated the same. I'm glad he did have his friends at his going away dinner but that's not until True Love.

    I also have always thought of the contrast between how Pacey reacts to his Andie going out with one of his friends Will. Did Will know they dated? We never saw a scene of Will talking it over with Pacey nor did Andie really. At Aunt Gwen's house all she said was that she wasn't sure if she liked Will. Nobody spoke to Pacey about it and yet he was fine. He didn't react like a Disney villian and yeah partly because he was over Andie and Dawson had marked Joey as his territory but still. He was fine with neither of them going to him and talking about it because they had been broken up for a while. Good grief

    Fyi- It's well documented that at that time,(season 3) Joshua and James were not getting along and a writer said they were writing scenes that separated them so I was saying to Sarah (fellow Dawson's Speak listener) maybe that's why the writers kept up the Dawson and Pacey conflict for so long? Idk but it's interesting- Fact #33-

    Anyway I can't with this show sometimes.

    Have fun in Wilmington! It's beautiful there

  2. So much to say about this episode, I hope I can remember it all (can't take notes while I'm working out)!

    I'm one of those people who doesn't care for this episode and it's all about the structure. I get what they were doing, but I really don't enjoy seeing the same thing again and again. I feel the same way about Grey's Anatomy's episode "I Saw What I Saw."

    When you go back and watch it again, you should be able to see what you missed on the first watch-through. In this episode, you really can't see the gears turning in Dawson's head once you know everything. I've worked this out for myself by assuming that we are so deep in others' POVs that we see what they see; we're not presented the scene through the objective third party lens of the camera. Still, I wish there was more there for a second watch through.

    Ultimately, I can't get over what a monster Dawson is about a girl who he has not been interested in dating all season (until Aunt Gwen put a bug in his ear, which, fuck Aunt Gwen). His bringing up Joey wanting to "find herself" was ridiculous and reaching, given she said that so long ago. How long are we to hold people to what they said months ago, years ago? Circumstances change. He rejected her at the beginning of the season. Why is she not allowed to move on, regardless of with whom? Why does he get to keep her "on hold" basically but then yell at HER that he's not going to hang around and be his "consolation prize"? Isn't that exactly what he's asking her to do, then?

    And where do they go from here? What kind of friendship are they even going to have when he gets Joey to reject Pacey using emotional blackmail?

    Let's get back to Pacey. Dawson keeps bringing up Pacey's sexual history, and there are strong undercurrents of jealousy and toxic male fragility at work here. Dawson is intimidated by Pacey's sexual history, and he takes it out on both Pacey and Joey. The way he continues to imply that Pacey's going to only want sex from Joey is insulting to both of them. The way he keeps asking if it's about sex is insulting, rude, and frankly none of his business.

    I know to all of this, the answer is, Dawson is a flawed character. But the problem is, Dawson's supposed to be the protagonist. He's supposed to be the character the audience is rooting for. Did the writers put together these scenes of Dawson basically slut shaming Joey with the intent of us cheering "RIGHT ON!"? Because fuck that. And without any commentary to the contrary, that's how it feels anyway.

    It's been so long since I've seen this show that I really don't remember what happens next. It's hard waiting week to week!

  3. I know it's just for fun, but the MVP voting thing on is who made the episode; the most valuable player. (You probably are just having fun with it, but just wanted to mention it). Eg. in Jack's coming out arc, it's obviously Jack etc.

    1. They know, they frequently mention that they realize the voters' criteria for MVP is probably different from theirs.

  4. My biggest gripe with this episode is Andie's reaction. The writers have always led us to believe she is mature and intelligent so her radical change in feelings from the last episode to this one just doesn't land for me. Dawson has been immature and fickle in the past so I wasn't surprised at all by his reaction.

    I also do not understand why Joey wants to be Dawson's friend so badly. He hasn't been a good friend to her and the way he talked to her was unforgivable in my opinion. I definitely don't see why she continues to pursue their friendship next season... I would have loved Pacey forever and never talked to Dawson again. HA

    I can't WAIT to hear your thoughts on next weeks episode!!! The worst Dawson has ever behaved and that's saying something!

    1. Jessica, I agree completely. Andie who is on a date with her ex's friend and who never found the need to go to Pacey and see if going out with his visiting friend would be awkward for him, is then going to get upset that her EX has developed feelings for someone else. Surprised maybe I can see but her crying and being all bitter in the next episode (until the end) is just so ridiculous. Why does Pacey have to run it by her anyway? That made no sense. The possessiveness and entitlement that some of these characters show towards their past relationships, is so annoying. Are Pacey and Jack the ones who knew how to move on? Jeez

      Also, it will forever remain a mystery why the writers made Dawson act like an unbearable asshat and yet have people still wanting to be his friend? It confuses me mostly from Joey and Pacey. Where is the evidence that Dawson was this great friend to either of them? Dawson has only thought about himself and when Joey was dating him she was almost always upset with him for some jerky thing he did or said. She was honestly going to give up her happiness to appease Dawson until he gave her permission to be with who she loved... for a guy who has never been that good of a friend to her? That is beyond ridiculous lol

      All he did to Pacey was think the worst of him and accuse him of being a liar and a guy only interested in sex and acted like Pacey was below him because Pacey had the nerve to actually enjoy having sex. Why either of them wanted to be his friend doesn't make sense and is not believable imo.

    2. YES! In real life Dawson would have no friends, as it should be. HAHA

    3. Exactly! He should've been the Capeside outcast who only had his Spielberg movie posters and his creek for comfort lmao

  5. Joey: “it has to be over.” Girl no, it does not. I hate how much empathetic they, particularly Joey, puts on Dawson’s feelings. What I would say has already been said but ugh. I hated that aspect of this episode so much.

    Also I just want to talk about Jen (again, sorry I love her). Like this episode sucks for her too. Dawson finds out about Pacey and Joey from her, and it looks like they’re okay at the end (?). But her and Joey were just starting to get along and become actual friends. I can’t remember, do they talk about Pacey before the end of the season, do they even have a scene together? Regardless, Jen is a wonderful friend.

    The next episode, woooo boy, it’s a doozy. Can’t wait!

    1. They sat at the table together for 5 secs in Anti Prom but they don't speak again until 401 but they're fine in that ep so I don't think Joey was upset with her. It's only Dawson acting like a douchenozzle toward anybody. And show me love is bad but I have sooooo much to say about Dawson in Anti Prom. Oh my gosh I wish I was hired for that one episode to be the one who runs him over with a horse. He's so horrible! lmao

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  7. This was one of my favorite episodes. I loved the structure when I first saw it. It was something I had never seen done on any of the shows that I watched. They were very creative in taking a chance to tell the story this way. Now to Dawson. I can understand him being upset, but how he just dismissed his so-call best friends so quickly is outrageous. He talked to Joey with such lack of care for her feelings. And I just don’t understand how he even can call Pacey his friend when he thinks so low of him. He’s always pointing out how bad he thinks Pacey is. I guess Pacey would pick an abbusive friend since he takes so much abuse at home. But I can empathize with Pacey and Joey, because I’ve have some shitty friends who treated me like crap and I was still sad when we broke off our friendship.

    Next episode I wanted to shake some sense into Dawson...he was the worst that he’s ever been.

    Quick side note: Show me Love has one of my favorite uses of needless physical agility when Pacey hops over a railing down to the dock to talk to Dawson...classic!! #Parkour!

  8. I became an official "I'll watch whatever you're in" stan-fan of Katie Holmes for her delivery of the "I need him" line ... ugh heartbreaking perfection!


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