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Archive for the ‘Dawson's Creek’ Category

On a personal note, this is a very difficult topic for me. Not because of the whole “oh, it’s Valentine’s Day and I’m single, everyone has love but me” (said in whiny Ricky Gervais voice) nonsense but because when I was twelve I had a little whiteboard and one day I spent hours devising lists upon lists of my very favorite TV couples. For real. Thank god blogs didn’t exist when I was a pre-teen or I would’ve had to name it “SHAME.”

5. Happy Days (1974 – 1984) Joanie and Chachi

The Soap Opera Effect

This is a legit thing. It’s practically scientific. The reason why your grandmother is obsessed with Days of Our Lives, Young & The Restless, General Hospital etc? Sure, there’s sex and drama and corny moments galore. But there’s also a very real, very visceral reaction to watching someone for years and years, especially when that someone started out as a child. You invest in that person without realizing it, you watch and watch and one day you realize they’ve grown up, right before your eyes. It makes you somewhat emotional, dammit, when they celebrate their Sweet Sixteen, learn to drive, get their hearts broken for the first time, graduate high school… and especially when they, in this case  Joanie “Shortcake” Cunningham, fall in love with the once goofy, gawky cousin of the super cool guy who lives above your parents’ garage. This video proves it. We love Joanie with Chachi mostly because we love Joanie AND Chachi. We watched them grow up, get together, break up, make up, get married. We saw it all, over the course of the show’s ten year run. (Also, it’s Scott Baio for God’s sake. That guy is ’70s, ’80s magic. That part’s not exactly rocket science.)

4. Dawson’s Creek (1998 – 2003) Pacey and Joey

The Perfect Triangle

I just actually watched those clips and want to die a little. What were they thinking when they wrote this show’s dialogue? Why is Pacey calling Joey a “woman”? She is SIXTEEN. I don’t even call myself a woman now, for God’s sake. Anyway. Step aside from Dawson’s obvious shortcomings and focus on the show’s biggest surprise. Clearly, Dawson Leery was supposed to end up with little Joey Potter (tomboy, a modern day Jo March, literally the girl-next-door). The first season literally threw Joey at his feet as she climbed through the window of his room, after a year of angst that only a bunch of 15 year olds can muster. So then what happens? Dawson’s best friend falls in love with her too. And when that best friend (you can hear the call PACEY! over the blogosphere whenever Joshua Jackson makes an appearance in real life) is pretty much the Lloyd Dobbler of Capeside? Poor Cerealbox Head doesn’t stand a chance. 

3. Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997 – 2003) Buffy and Angel

The Beauty and the Beast

Well, so of COURSE the love of vampire slayer Buffy Summers’ life is a vampire. Of COURSE it is. Years before teenaged girls got sucked into the Twilight rabbit hole, before HBO had even heard of True Blood, sixteen-year-old Buffy developed the hots (it’s a ’90s expression, it works, leave me alone) for a 300 year old vampire with a soul. The show, in its smartest years, used Buffy and Angel’s relationship as a metaphor for the overpowering effect of first love (in maybe the most powerful example, Buffy decides to sleep with her boyfriend, for the first time, on her birthday, not knowing that the Gypsy curse of Angel’s human soul would be removed the moment he experienced a glimpse of pure happiness. So, yeah. Buffy wakes up the next day, all happy and in love… and her boyfriend has turned into a total monster. And you thought only Mormons could provide a subtle hint about the trouble sex can bring. Silly rabbit.)

2. The Office ( 2001 – 2003 / 2005 – Present) Tim and Dawn / Jim and Pam

The Kindred Spirits

Before there was Jim and Pam, there was Tim and Dawn. The settings may be slightly different but the stories started out the same- everyman Tim/Jim fall for their best office-mate, receptionist Dawn/Pam. Trouble is, she’s engaged to someone else. The beauty of how The Office plays what could’ve been a typical office romance is the dynamic between the two couples. Tim (it’s easier to stick with the first and greatest) is the Voice of Reason in this mad, mad world. He’s the one rolling his eyes along with us and wondering if everyone’s taken their crazy pills. S0, naturally he’s drawn toward pretty Dawn. She gets it. She knows everyone’s crazy. They speak the same language and in a world where you often feel like the last sane person on earth, this is crucial. It’s a lifeline. It doesn’t hurt when both of you are cute, funny, snarky and you let us all in on the joke. Of COURSE we’re rooting for you.

(Warning: this video will kill you)

(And the happy ending we needed)

1. The Cosby Show (1984 – 1992) Clair and Cliff Huxtable

The Perfect Couple

The following clip is ABSURD. Someone for Cliff Huxtable other than Clair? Please. TV has never gotten a pair more right than Brooklyn’s favorite Doctor/Lawyer duo. They’re smart, they’re playful, they fit each other like a forbidden hoagie with a bag of potato chips. There was no other way for The Cosby Show to end its eight year run than for Cliff and Clair to dance their way out of the studio. No other way.

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by Judi

In “the biz” (ugh, I hate me too) we call this “synergy.” Basically, what it boils down to is a scene between the studio head, the executive producer of a TV show and the guy at the record label. They all talk and laugh and order shrimp and then they discuss ways where the people who watch TV can also buy the single for a popular song or “pop song” as we say in the, erm, world.

Sometimes, it’s not for commercial reasons. Sometimes, it’s purely because the auteur behind the scene (hating myself even more, didn’t think it was possible) just feels like this is the song that needs to be played. Like that Don Henley song “New York Minute” that plays at the end of the West Wing episode “Somebody’s Going to Emergency…” as Sam Seaborn calls his philandering dad. Surely, Aaron Sorkin wasn’t trying to squeeze a few extra bucks out of us for Don Henley. He just felt like that song was appropriate, we would assume, since a lyric from the song sparked the episode title.

Anyway, sometimes it works and sometimes it’s just a hilarious, BRILLIANT example of how studio heads will do anything for a few extra bucks. LET’S CELEBRATE THEM ALL. Because it’s Friday and it’s time for TV.

5. Grey’s Anatomy featuring Snow Patrol’s “Chasing Cars”

snowpatrol

And sometimes, the show makes the band. A friend of mine, we’ll call her Bic as she likes pens and for no other reason, told me a story once about Snow Patrol, about how they were milling about backstage after or before one of their shows and TR Knight wandered in to say hello. The band was polite and TR left and one of the Snow Patrol guys asked the room who that was. When the answer, “The guy from ‘Grey’s Anatomy'” came, Snow Patrol guy’s eyes widened. “Oh. That show made us quite famous here, didn’t it?” Yes, British guy. Yes, it did.

Snow Patrol’s songs are famously theatrical. It’s part of the reasons why some people hate them but mostly why I like them, because when I listen to them I can pretend like I’m in a movie trailer about a plucky blogger who watches TV all day and sometimes forgets to wash the conditioner out of her hair. Or I listen to them and remember when Denny died and the many moons ago when I still liked Katherine Heigl and this show.

4. The Wonder Years featuring Bob Seger’s “We’ve Got Tonight”

imgBob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band3

Welcome to the song/TV moment that genuinely makes me cry. I remember vividly watching this unfold, watching poor Kevin Arnold climb onto the roof, peering into Winnie Cooper’s bedroom as she lay recovering from that bad car accident, and listening to this song play softly in the background. I remember thinking, “This is the prettiest song I’ve ever heard in my life.” I was 23 years old. Ok, no, I was like ten.

On a somewhat-related note, why can’t I buy this song on iTunes? Seriously, what is the deal? Every once in a while, I go to the store, look for the song and come up empty. Is it so WRONG to want “We’ve Got Tonight” and “Hollywood Nights” in my life? I’m not looking for an anthology or anything here.

3. Beverly Hills 90210 featuring Color Me Badd

Welcome to the song/TV moment that I actually CANNOT WATCH THE WHOLE WAY THROUGH. If cringing were an Olympic sport, I’d have four Gold medals and Michael Phelps’ bong in my hands right now.

That being said, what a fantastic episode. Every fan of the 90210 canon (that’s right, I called it a fucking canon) knows the Color Me Badd episode, and for good reason as this is the episode where we discover that Donna Martin’s uber-stuck-up mom is having an affair at the very same hotel where Donna’s favorite “band” is staying. “Group”? “Collection of soul-wrenching awful, complete with soul-patch?” “Possessors of THE MOST AMAZING PHOTO EVER TAKEN?”

color_me_badd

For the uninitiated, if you’ve been wondering where the inspiration  for “Dick in a Box” comes from, meet the Granddaddies. Oh, and try to watch this video without wanting to slap Kelly in the face.

2. Golden Girls featuring Sonny & Cher’s “I Got You Babe”

sonnychersl1

What happens when one gay icon impersonates another? Does the world just start caving in on itself? If so, fine. I’ll be sucked into the center of the earth with this number playing on my iPhone and I will be cackling all the way.

It’s Bea Arthur’s deadpan that just destroys me and her movements are down. Ugh, I miss her. If anyone needs me, I’ll be over here sending chocolates and vitamins to Betty and Rue.

1. Dawson’s Creek featuring Paula Cole’s “I Don’t Wanna Wait”

paula_cole

Dawson’s Creek, the first major show for the fledgling WB network, was also the first show I could remember that played a LOT of pop music in place of an instrumental score. It also went one step further, revealing at the end of the episode the name and artist for the featured songs in the episode (now copied by a lot of CW shows, including Glee). And while most of them are ’90s pop relics and one-hit wonders that no one ever heard of again, there is no greater ’90s pop relic than this one. As soon as you hear Paula Cole’s wail about waiting and what-not, you are immediately sent back to this- a J. Crew commercial disguised as opening credits.

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by Judi

(*Note: Everyone is clearly dying all around us. Run for your lives.)

I basically came up with today’s Top Five topic and immediately, I was hit with WAY too many possibilities. Seriously, there have been some bat-shit crazy plot twists over the years. It was tough to narrow down the list to just five but pretty easy to distinguish what made the list- any time I sat on my couch, eyes wide, and the words, “What the HELL just happened?” And not in a good way.

5. Friday Night Lights– Landry and Tyra Kill Her Rapist- Season 2 (2007)

I’ve been a big-time supporter of Friday Night Lights for a while now and let me just say that it is REALLY hard to promote a show that you’ve been hailing as “realistic”, “gritty” and “so so GOOD” when the second season gives us THIS- nerd Landry and reformed-hobag Tyra kill her almost-rapist. And then they try to cover it up. And then they hook up. And then they forget about it. What?

I’m not the only one who considers Season 2 a giant blunder of epic proportions (and now, as a devoted FNL supporter, it is my solemn duty to inform you that Season 3 was AWESOME and please watch the next season, please please please- ahem), largely due to this LUDICROUS storyline that sought to turn Dillon, TX into the next Genoa City.

4. Bones– Zack is a cannibal’s apprentice in “The Pain in the Heart” (2008)

To their credit, the powers behind Bones tried to warn us early on in season three about the dangers of the “completely rational person.” Because, as they explain, the completely rational person is not moved by emotion but by pure logic. Give them a convincing reason to kill and they could kill, without remorse.

Yeaaaah, ok. I kind of get it. But explain to me how we went from “kill” to “becoming a cannibalistic serial killer’s APPRENTICE”? In the third season ender of Bones, we learn that Gormogon, the serial killer who likes to kill and eat your nibbly bits, actually had help inside the Jeffersonian lab. And that would be- Zack. Precocious boy genius. Temperance Brennan’s favorite student, so like her in intellgence and rational thought, adored by all as something akin to the class mascot. Who suddenly was INSANE.

425.millegan.bones.052008

That overwhelming sound you heard two years ago? That was a gaggle of Bones fans yelping, “WHAT? Seriously?! Aw, does that mean Zack’s not coming back??”

3. Dawson’s Creek– Dawson’s dad Mitch bites it while eating an ice cream cone in “Capeside Revisited” (2001)

Just like people always remember where they were when Kennedy was shot, I will always remember where I was when Mitch Leery died by ice cream cone. I was sitting in my dorm room and I’m pretty sure my mouth was hanging over. Almost immediately, I heard a chorus of, “What the FUCK?” down the hall (which was pretty typical for a Wednesday night- Dawson’s Creek episode but louder than usual) and my phone rang. It was my sister, who immediately launched into, “Um, did they just kill Dawson’s dad WITH AN ICE CREAM CONE?”

In case you missed it the first time around, he wasn’t assaulted by Butter Pecan or anything. No, happy-go-lucky Mitch Leery was driving his car, munching away on his cone and singing along to the radio when he dropped his delicious tasty treat on the floor. He then bent down to get it and his car got hit by a truck. Commence flash of light. Commence this expression for three subsequent episodes. Commence “What the FUCK?” everywhere.

If you want to see something amazing, Google search "Dawson crying" and you will be hit with a WHOLE WALL of this exact photo

If you want to see something amazing, Google search "Dawson crying" and you will be hit with a WHOLE WALL of this exact photo. It's INCREDIBLE.

Pacey’s right. It was clearly the ice cream cone’s fault. (In an unrelated note, I really miss the old WB promo voice.)

2. Robin Hood– Here’s an idea- LET’S KILL MAID MARIAN in “We Are Robin Hood” (2007)

Ok, first of all- let me just say that I am still so ANGRY about this little development, that even looking up the episode on TV.com filled me with the kind of rage I usually reserve for the likes of Donald Trump and Gwyneth Paltrow’s “Goop” newsletter. I don’t know if it’s because it’s the most recent atrocity so the BETRAYAL is still fresh in my mind or if it has something to do with my somewhat pathological obsession with the Robin Hood story ever since I was a little girl.

Whatever the case may be, the decision to kill Marian in the second season ender? I was deeply, deeply infatuated with the BBC’s newfangled “Robin Hood” series- it was so, so BRITISH and like slightly campy but a bit closer to HBO’s Carnivale than those shows like Hercules or Xena. In other words, I was completely hooked to the point of downloading episodes onto my ancient laptop to watch on a cross-country train trip when I moved to Chicago. This is the type of show-obsession where I used to sit anxiously on the edge of my couch, waiting for it to come on, pillow clutched in my lap, DO NOT CALL ME RIGHT NOW. We’ve all had shows like this, you know you have too, and I was ENTRENCHED. So, when the big reveal of “who dies in the season finale” turned out to be, well, HER? I was furious. I threw things. I sat there, gaping, too stunned for swear words. I vowed never to watch the show ever ever again in my life. I’m clearly still not over it. HOW DO YOU KILL MAID MARIAN IN A SHOW ABOUT ROBIN HOOD? WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE? Ok, I’m done now GOD.

I don’t even want to show a picture or a video or anything. Let’s move on- still SO ANGRY.

1. Roseanne– The entire last part of the show was a LIE in “Into That Good Night (2)”

roseanne_cast

Oh, Roseanne. Few shows jumped the shark as neatly as Roseanne (I have to tread carefully here. We’re in Bealtown now and I’m pretty sure there’s a statue of the Connors in the town square. Them’s fightin’ words) in its latter seasons. You can actually mark the dividing line of When Roseanne was very good and When Roseanne was unwatchable at “The Connors win the lottery.” As soon as I see that it’s one of those gauzy, leather chair-episodes, I change the channel immediately. Maybe Seinfeld was right to go out on top after all.

I’m a big believer in epilogues. I think the ending to a long-running show is important and not to be glossed over. After all, we the viewers have stuck with you, the show, for almost a decade, if the show is lucky enough to live that long. Give us closure, give us a satisfying end. Sure, ok, make Bob Newhart wake up in bed with Suzanne Pleshett. Cute. Clever. Precious. We all preferred Suzanne anyway.

But no. Do not sit in a basement and tell me that the last few years have been a lie. Don’t mess with my mind and tell me Darlene was with Mark and David with Becky. Don’t reveal that it was Jackie was gay, not hilarious Bev (though seriously, I think we all knew Jackie was gay right?). But there’s one point, in particular, where you simply do not go.You don’t kill Dan Conner. No, you can’t. That’s a seriously heartbreaking twist right there and one we pretty much, as a NATION, rejected immediately. No, no, no, no.

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LEVERAGE

I like you. Are you happy? Despite a few glitches (like that guy on the left who has popped up on and off for the last ten years and, I honestly, have come to despise him. Yes, you, guy from Angel and that one episode of Dawsons Creek and the super annoying ex-boyfriend in Just Married. Arghhh, please leave me alone!) and a very poorly advised plot point involving Timothy Hutton’s drinking problem and some so-so acting, I have come to dig you. The character of Parker helps. A lot.

Now, in typical cable series fashion, just as I have admitted I like you, you will immediately go off the air. In fact, I think your season finale is in two weeks. Great Just great.

We still have The Closer and Bones reruns, TNT. Don’t you worry…

– Judi

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