Meanwhile, as Waiting For Guffman unfolds on the screen, Pacey plunks himself down next to TaMAHra. Misunderstandings ensue as Pacey offers to sit next to her, presents her with a Milk Dud, tells her he reserved The Summer Of ’42 for her, invites himself over to watch it with her, and so on and so forth. Then TaMAHra’s date, Mr. Gold, appears with an armload of snacks and asks TaMAHra if Pacey is "bothering" her, and she says no, but Pacey doesn’t get the hint, and TaMAHra tries to let him down easy, and Mr. Gold grabs Pacey’s arm, and when Pacey wrenches out of his grasp, Mr. Gold spills an economy-sized bin of popcorn all over the bruiser sitting behind them who had just told Pacey to put a lid on it, and the bruiser proceeds to punch Pacey in the face. Oops.
Out in the lobby, Dawson gets up in Joey’s face: "Are you tweaking? What is your problem?" Joey gives it right back: "My ‘problem’ is that from the moment Miss Highlights showed up you haven’t said one word to me!" Dawson, outraged: "Crap, that is pure crap, and you know it!" Joey, equally infuriated: "All I know is that all your blood is rushing downward and you can’t even acknowledge another human being is even present!" Um, Joey? You’re talking about Dawson. Get used to it. Dawson, fed up, says he likes Jen and wonders why Joey can’t understand that: "I thought you were my friend!" Joey understands, all right: "I understand everything! I’m tired of understanding! All I do is understand!" She pushes past Dawson, and Dawson calls out, "Joey!" and she turns around slowly, glares at him, and proceeds to scorch him: "Nothing penetrates with you, Dawson. You’re so far removed from reality you can’t even see what’s right in front of you." Word. Dawson doesn’t get it, and Joey explains, "Your life -- it’s a frickin’ fairy tale and you don’t even know it. You just want conflict for that script you’re writing. Stop living in the movies. Grow up." She turns away again and walks out, and we cut to commercial before Dawson’s hands wind up in his hair. Ach, Old Joey, we hardly knew ye.
After the movie, Dawson walks Jen home. He offers to take her right to the door, but she says he needn’t bother, what with "Grams waiting to pounce" and all. Thus begins the awkward kiss/non-kiss moment, as they both stand there shifting their weight and saying "so" and "uh" and "yeah." Dawson says, "It was a really repulsive evening," and Jen chuckles lamely. Dawson leans in for the kiss, but Jen loses her nerve at the last minute and starts babbling as Dawson jerks his head back in frustration: "You know, this is, this is all my fault. I know I don’t possess much power in the universe, but I feel completely responsible for tonight, Dawson." Dawson says, "No, no, I pulled the pin, I tossed the grenade," and then makes an "L" sign on his forehead with his hand. Word, word, a thousand times word. Jen starts laughing and tells him, "You’re not a loser, Dawson, you’re very sweet, and smart, you’ve got a great sense of humor -- you’re cool, without being really obnoxious about it," and I agree, except that he isn’t cool, and he is really obnoxious, about everything, but other than that I think Jen’s got something there. She also calls him "talented" and mentions his "clear skin -- big plus." Yeah, most twenty-two-year-olds have gotten past the acne, but whatever. Jen thanks Dawson, referring to things in New York as "not so great" and things here at Grams’s as "kind of scary," and Dawson considers leaning in again, but the porch light goes on and Grams appears under it, so Jen says she should go but "thanks for everything," and Dawson flails, "But, um," and Jen says, "I’m just gonna pretend we kissed, okay?" and heads inside. Dawson and his Ethan Hawke hair smile but don’t know quite what to make of it.