Dawson's Creek
The Kiss

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The Kiss

Cut to the House of Cuckoldry, as Mitch comes out onto the porch while Gale hurries up the front walk, wearing Weather-Inappropriate Tank Top Number Three and much too much make-up and making a whole bunch of excuses about why she's late and saying "I know what you must be thinking," and Mitch says, "Yep," and she tells him about the "promo meeting" going long and the traffic "all the way up I-95," as IF she would have to take 95 if she lives on Cape Cod, and I must once again beg the producers to do some goddamn research because after you get off 95 you have at least 20 minutes before you get to the bottom of the Cape, and where exactly does she work, Bridgeport? Gale then says she knows she should only give one excuse if she wants to get him to believe her -- basically admitting that she already second- and third-guessed his responses -- and he says he believes her, and she sighs with relief, but he only believes her because he heard about the traffic on the radio -- not that he tells her that, but whatever. Gale doesn't want those "old suspicions to come creeping back"; Gale says "those days" are behind them now. Gale has really fluffy hair in this scene, like she crimped it and then brushed it out or something. Mitch makes a big fake deal of taking off for a mysterious appointment in his shiny black shirt, and Gale doesn't know what to think, except perhaps "fie ye, suspicious cuckold!"

Pacey. Kristy Livingstone ("I presume"). Andie; dorky comment. Pacey; dumb limerick. Pimp-daddy organ music. Pacey does his best Jack Tripper and asks Kristy out on a date. Kristy actually accepts, to everyone's shock, including Pacey's.

Mitch in a waiting room. Mr. Drake will see him now. The receptionist shows him in and answers the phone by saying, "No...we specialize in divorce." Fie, faithless hussy, and meet your punishment at the hands of Drake, Witherspoon, and Hall!

Jen in an outdoor swing. Dawson comes over with a casserole his mom made, wearing a sweater vest that pretty much guarantees a complete loss of appetite in all who behold it, not to mention that so-'94 dweeby necklace he has on. Jen tells Dawson he looks "spiffy" and asks him where he's going; he tells her "the movies -- it's the Rialto's last night." She says that Grams is also going. Dawson asks if she (Jen) is going but she says she "thought [she'd] sit here and curse the world instead" with this bizarro faux-old-lady head movement, and also, I could see cursing the world if he had died in a car crash, but he had a serious stroke and suffered for two years, so let's not go overboard with the damn-thee-cruel-fate routine. Then we get to the heart of the matter. Jen, trying for nonchalance and failing miserably: "So, you going with Joey?" Dawson, also trying for nonchalance and sounding very fake: "Yeah, who else?" Jen, pre-crying but valiantly putting on a smile: "So, how did things work out between you guys? The two star-crossed lovers?" Dawson, flustered and half-laughing: "You know us -- just Dawson and Joey. We'll always be Dawson and Joey." Woodward and Bernstein would have called this a non-denial denial, but anyhow, Dawson adds, "Whatever that means." Jen, looking down but sort of hopeful: "How about Dawson and Jen?" Dawson, dismissive and patronizing: "Honestly, I think you could use a friend right now, more than anything else -- how 'bout it?" Jen does not tell Dawson to stuff it, or that the trite store called and they have run out of him, despite the fact that his last line set a new standard for conflict avoidance and condescension; instead she says, "I'd like that." They hug. Someone check this girl for a gag reflex. Just as Jen starts enjoying the hug in that special way, Dawson says he has to go, but that she shouldn't "sit here and curse the world all evening...okay? It's beautiful out," as IF the weather means fuck-all to someone who just lost a blood relative, and if one of my exes talked to me in that school-nurse-ish, buck-up-little-camper tone of voice, I would speeyack all over his shoes. Then Dawson says, "All right," and takes off across her lawn in his periwinkle sweater vest and Jen just watches him go instead of going all Miss-Piggy-ninja on his ass and burying a throwing star in the back of his head.

Cut to Joey sitting at the end of the pier. Oh goody, time for a sisterly talk about love as Bessie comes down to the end of the pier and sits down. Bessie has on a vest made out of old neckties. They chat about the weirdness of the situation and Bessie asks if it felt weird when they kissed, and Joey says, "No, that felt pretty right," and I have this little peeve about when people say that something feels "right" -- it just sounds really phony and Smurfy. Joey worries that they haven't kissed again since the first time. Bessie dispenses the wisdom that the second kiss is "always tougher than the first one," and then they debate the semantics of kissing and whether one kiss and multiple kisses on the same night are the same thing, and Bessie describes the first kiss as "the passionate one, the one fueled by desire," and the second one as "rational -- you've got time to think about it, to worry and over-analyze," and Joey's face falls, and Bessie says that most women like the first kiss better but she likes the second one, "because it's about something more." Bessie reassures Joey with more blathering about the second kiss. They share a sisterly hug, Bessie remembers her lost youth, Joey has her fears alleviated, and boy oh boy, does my heart feel warmed, especially when I remember my first kiss, which felt not romantic or passionate but rather like someone had put a piece of raw meat in my mouth and I felt relieved to have finally gotten it over with, but okay.

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Dawson's Creek

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