With its series-finale episode, Dawson's Creek
summed up its six-year run on the WB Network with a sweet and sad tale of reunion and farewell for old friends, soul mates, and lovers. The friends are now 25 and living new lives: Dawson (James Van Der Beek) is in Hollywood executive-producing The Creek
, obviously based on his own life and considered "the new hit teen soap at the WB"; Joey (Katie Holmes) is a book editor in New York with a serious beau; Jen (Michelle Williams) is a single mother; Pacey (Joshua Jackson) is the relatively respectable owner of the reborn Icehouse Restaurant; and Jack (Kerr Smith) is teaching at the high school and struggling with his relationship. A wedding brings everyone together in Capeside, but tragedy strikes, and the remaining friends are left to consider their lives and what they want to do with them. Whether or not you agree with the final choices, of course, probably depends on who you've been rooting for.
The extended cut of the finale runs 104 minutes, about 16 longer than when it was broadcast in May 2003. Unlike deleted scenes on movie DVDs, each addition seems like a useful part of the story, and the DVD borrows a helpful feature from the Lord of the Rings extended editions by designating on the chapter menu which scenes are new or extended. Some differences are minor, but there are significant new scenes with Joey at work, Joey and her boyfriend (Jeremy Sisto of Six Feet Under), Joey and Dawson's reunion in Capeside, and Pacey's conversation with old flame Andie (Meredith Monroe).
As they did for two episodes of Dawson's Creek: The Complete First Season, creator Kevin Williamson (who co-wrote the finale) and executive producer Paul Stubin provide a commentary track in which they discuss the new scenes and which characters were originally intended to end up together. There are also four scenes that were filmed for the original pilot presentation (not the finished pilot shown in season one) then reshot. There's a small but important difference in the last scene, Pacey meets Tamara Jacobs in a different video store, and Dawson's dad is played by a different actor before the role was recast with John Wesley Shipp. --David Horiuchi
Part One: It's five years later and Dawson, Joey, Pacey, Jen and Jack are reunited in Capeside for Dawsons mom's wedding. But the celebratory mood comes to an end when they receive some heartbreaking news.
Part Two: As the gang faces a future more uncertain than ever before, Joey struggles to come to terms with her true feelings for Dawson, Pacey and her current boyfriend. When she finally does, she surprises everyone with her decision.