Dawson's Creek
Separation Anxiety

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The Too-Long Goodbye

Front porch of the Ryan Home. Jen is outlining her plan for Jack -- she'll go to "State" for a few semesters and save up her money, and she'll meet him at Boston Bay College in a year or two. Jack pointedly sips his coffee, stares at her, and pointedly sips some more. Jen rambles on, saying she's sure he can understand her situation here, Grams leading a "destitute existence," frat parties, it's not right, she won't do it, whatever. Um, why would she? Can't one person take a goddamn student loan on this goddamn show? Contrivance chugs a diet cola, then lets loose with a belch that rattles my kitchen windows as I wonder to myself why the writers insist on mucking about with these college-related storylines that any viewer over the age of seven could rip to shreds in two minutes. Jesus. Jack sniffs that the coffee's "awfully foamy." Jen tries again, saying that Grams took her in and she can't turn her back on Grams now; Grams needs her. Okay, that's a nice sentiment, but Grams doesn't "need" anything but her own spin-off, mmmkay? Still, Jack nods, "Yeah." Jen, not quite believing that he's on her side: "Yeah?" Jack thinks what she's doing for Grams "is beautiful, and…awfully selfless." Jen thanks him. But Jack also calls it "convenient," and when Jen asks for the rest of the "but," Jack sarcastically observes that, while Jen's "clearly swimming in a vat of guilt" over ditching Jack "like this," she also seems suspiciously relieved that she doesn't have to go away to college, so she then becomes "Jen of Arc, martyr-saint," who sacrifices her own happiness for Grams's. Snick. Jen blows this off, asking why she wouldn't want to go away to college, and Jack snorts that she's scared; she feels safe in Capeside, and Grams cares for her. Jen hears him, but "it's not that easy -- I can't just leave her alone." Jack knows that Jen and Grams need each other, but she should just admit it, and he himself admits that he'd be scared to go away to school without Jen. Aw. Jen cops to it, but doesn't know what to do. Jack: "I think you know what to do." Buh?

Worthington party. Pacey broods, in a verrrrry long circular pan. Joey comes out, saying she's "been looking all over for" him, which isn't true, but whatever -- she sees his face and asks what's wrong. Pacey tells her the true nature of the offer. Joey heaves a small, sad sigh. Awkward pause. Joey studies him, thinks for a second, then grabs his arm and says, "Let's go." Aw. Nice get on Joey's part -- now why couldn't she have behaved more sensitively when they actually had a relationship? Dawson-wise, I mean; Pacey's self-esteem is his own problem. Anyway, Pacey says that he'll go on his own; he watched her with her future classmates, "gliding from conversation to conversation with complete confidence and ease this time," and after the last Worthington party they went to, he kind of hoped that she would need him "to be [her] savior again tonight," but that's not the case. As Joey stares at him with a mixture of resentment and pity, he adds, "You don't need that now, everything's…different." He thinks that's a good thing, but adds that she's still the most beautiful girl in the room. Joey blanches and starts to say, "Pace…" but he interrupts to tell her that she can't leave, "this is it now," it's her life and she should enjoy it. Joey, trying valiantly not to cry, kicks it promo-style: "How can I enjoy it without you?" Pacey doesn't have an answer. Joey stares at him defiantly, then repeats, "Let's go," grabs his hand, and tows him out of there.

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Dawson's Creek




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