Thursday, July 5, 2012

Dawson's Creek: Secrets and Lies (3.6)

I think we've all those moments where we wished we could go back to a specific place in time, a time in which your life was in a better state, or if your prospects were brighter, or when you were happy in a relationship. It's a relatable story, and considering how hard she's fallen, it's understandable that Andie would want to get back together with Pacey and act as if nothing bad had ever happened. But because of all the damage the writers have done to Andie over the last four episodes, everything she does in Secrets and Lies is pretty ugly... even if her instincts are believable.

Nobody rational fakes a sexual assault to get sympathy, and it's completely irresponsible of the show to feature a character doing something like this and not getting called out on her shit afterwards. If anything, we're meant to feel pity for Andie -- but her actions are so calculated and dangerous that she doesn't at all deserve sympathy anymore. Even stranger, Andie is supposedly mentally together this year. If the Andie of season two was the crazy person, then she really ought to get off her meds.

It's annoying, though, because we should feel for Andie, but her characterization has been so schizophrenic of late that her sadness is undermined by the fact that she initiated all the upheaval in her life. She cheated, she pushed Pacey away. I like Andie a lot and it feels wrong to be so against her this season, but her irrational behavior has turned her into an erratic caricature.

Jen's story is more successful. The Homecoming Queen angle, as amusing as it is in parts, becomes superfluous once the drag queens show up, but I actually enjoyed Henry this week. They seem to have focused more on the 'lovable puppy dog' qualities of his character rather than the 'inarticulate creepster' vibe he radiated over the last couple of weeks, and I support whenever a character puts their own well-being before their romantic inclinations.

I also liked having Gale around again, and while I don't explicitly care about her relationship with Mitch, I enjoy her scenes with Dawson and seeing him give her advice. It's just a neat depiction of mother-son relationships, not undermined by sniping or whatever.

The Andie story should have worked in principal, but her behavior is embarrassing enough to destroy any potential merit it had. Despite that, the show is continuing to be a little more recognizable, despite the writers' over-reliance on showy stunts rather than character-driven drama. But we're getting there... C

Guest stars K Callan (Constance Freckling); Michael Pitt (Henry Parker); Niklaus Lange (Rob Logan)
Writers Greg Berlanti, Alex Gansa Director Greg Prange

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