Thursday, April 12, 2012

Dawson's Creek: The Dance (2.6)

It's interesting to see the show almost directly addressing some of the weaker elements of season one this year, particularly when it comes to Joey. Joey, throughout her young life, has done little besides pine for Dawson. If she has ever cultivated extra-curricular interests, we've never exactly been informed of them. The Dance allows Joey to actually come to terms with her own lack of personal interest, as she realizes that she's spent so long directing attention to the boy next door that she's completely failed to grow as a person herself. It's an intriguing new approach to her character, and grants her some much-needed dimension.

I don't feel bad for Dawson in the wake of their break-up. Even if I actually liked Dawson, he's still not the victim here. His relationship with Joey has always been problematic, least of all because it was so one-sided for so long, only becoming what amounts to a mutual deal in the last couple of months. Sure, it was wrong for Joey to sort of enjoy kissing Jack, but Dawson's been such an asshat lately that you can hardly blame her for being intrigued by this sensitive new guy in her life.

Contrivance rears its head again in the Pacey/Andie romance, but at least it only momentarily derailed their attraction. Pacey dances with Ali Larter behind Andie's bag, leaving her understandably upset. I don't completely buy that Pacey would do that at this point in their relationship, but I liked that it essentially brought them closer together in the end; Pacey realizing how much distress he can cause when he's not thinking straight.

The Dance is one of those episodes that doesn't inspire a huge amount of sparkage, but I support the various new entanglements opening up for the cast. While I did like her on her own with Abby, I enjoyed seeing Jen interacting with the old gang again, as well as the friendship she's forming with Jack. Parts of the show are still overwrought and annoying, but those sweet little character moments continue to work really well. B-

Guest stars Meredith Monroe (Andie McPhee); Kerr Smith (Jack McPhee); Monica Keena (Abby Morgan); Ali Larter (Kristy Livingstone)
Writer Jon Harmon Feldman Director Lou Antonio

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