Thursday, June 28, 2012

Dawson's Creek: Home Movies (3.4)

It's no surprise that Joey and Pacey are all about the flirting lately. I've always been a firm believer that real romantic love comes from unexpected stumbling, not something lengthy and over-analyzed and historic. It's why Joey and Dawson never work out as a couple, since they're always falling back on old resentments and the very fact that they almost know each other too well. I'm not sure if Joshua Jackson and Katie Holmes were a real-life item by this point, but the two of them continue to be ridiculously endearing together. Their relationship is classic romantic comedy, the goofy, reckless guy and the uncomfortable, straight-laced girl who can't stand him.

Their subplot is the strongest material so far this season, and I loved how overt silliness carried most of the hour, before that final revelation that it Pacey's tardiness is all pretty sweet and serious. The introduction of Pacey's boat, ironically named 'True Love', marks another important moment in their coupling.

The rest of Home Movies, while not saddled with Eve, remains problematic. It's not a ton of fun seeing Dawson and Mitch at war again, the show returning to a story that was already ran into the ground last season. At the same time, the Jack TV interview story again pushed his sexuality center stage, when he's strong enough as a character to be allowed stories that don't automatically come back around to his sexual orientation.

Jen's subplot, while struggling to become anything other than surface-level comedy, at least features a couple of great Michelle Williams reaction shots as she comes to realize the lame popular kid stuff that she has to take part in considering she's head cheerleader. Naturally, the whole story is still a little strained, but Williams is selling it. Even though I'm still not feeling Henry and his stalkerish infatuation with her. Enough with the slo-mo, too!

Finally, I appreciate that Andie's schizophrenic actions last episode got something of an explanation here, and it at least brought it back to her own inner sadness, but she feels so detached from everybody else in the cast that she's practically on her own show at this point. Unfortunately, since she was primarily written alongside Pacey last year, breaking them up has left her stranded as a character, since she never had a ton of interaction with anybody else last season that developed further relationships. At least Jack had stories with a bunch of non-McPhee cast members in season two, which has opened him up a little and ensured his future on the show.

Being a soap opera, Dawson's Creek is at a stage when whole stretches of episodes fail to work, since the serialized narrative can't just be pulled back in an instant when it's clear things aren't all that great. But you can tell the show is slowly turning itself around again, trying to find the emotional resonance in a bunch of awkward storylines. It's still mostly weak, but the tide is clearly turning. C

Guest stars Michael Pitt (Henry Parker); Obba Babatunde (Principal Howard Green)
Writer Jeffrey Stepakoff Director Nick Marck

1 comment:

  1. I've Always thought this was the episode that began the rerailing of the show back on track after the earlier three not so strong episodes