: : : Dawson's Creek - The Complete Fourth Season

Story

The fourth season of Dawson's Creek is dominated by two themes. The first is senior year at Capeside High, as high achievers Joey (Katie Holmes) and Andie (Meredith Monroe) have as much pressure to deal with as low achiever Pacey (Joshua Jackson). The second is the constant love triangle following Joey and Pacey's return from their summer of bliss, threatening to destroy anyone's chance of having a healthy, functional relationship. Pacey's insecurity doesn't let him believe he's actually the lucky one, even as he proves with his actions that he deserves it. Fortunately for Dawson (James Van Der Beek), he finds a sympathetic ear in Pacey's older sister, Gretchen (Sasha Alexander), though he also has to enter an "indentured servitude" relationship with an old curmudgeon (Harve Presnell). Joey takes a job waiting tables at the yacht club, where she has to deal with the heir apparent to Abby Morgan's evil shoes, Drue Valentine (Mark Matkevitch), who also turns out to have a shadowy history with one of the friends. Meanwhile Andie and Jack (Kerr Smith) coach a youth soccer team, and Jen (Michelle Williams), having suddenly lost her boyfriend from season 3, cements her best-friendship with Jack and drags him to a gay coalition group where he spars with the activist leader (David Monahan). Look for cameos by Andy Griffith as a retired movie actor and by frequent soundtrack contributor Mary Beth Maziarz as a club singer.

Toward the end of the season, Dawson asks, "Is it just me, or did things get suddenly bigger in the last year?" It's true that as the characters have grown up--even Dawson, sort of--situations turn more serious, whether it's an afternoon sail on the cape or a rave that leads to the abrupt departure of one of the regular cast. After a prom from hell, the final phase is the graduation ceremony, and for Dawson's Creek it marked the end of an era, which the characters themselves felt deeply in the season-closing "Coda." The series would run for two more years, but it would never be the same again.

As with previous DVD sets, the background music has been changed significantly, including replacing the Paula Cole theme song. On the bright side, some of the linchpin songs--Shawn Colvin's "Blue Like That," Eva Cassidy's "Fields of Gold," Sarah McLachlan's "I Will Remember You"--have been preserved. Executive producer Paul Stupin contributes his usual (and increasingly unnecessary) commentary on two episodes, joined on the second by a "mystery guest," consulting producer Alan Cross. --David Horiuchi

DVD Features

  • Available subtitles: Spanish, Portuguese
  • Available Audio Tracks: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • 23 episodes on four discs: Coming Home, Failing Down, The Two Gentlemen of Capeside, Future Tense, A Family Way, Great Xpectations, You Had Me at Goodbye, The Unusual Suspects, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Self-Reliance, The Tao of Dawson, The Te of Pacey, Hopeless, A Winter's Tale, Four Stories, Mind Games, Admissions, Eastern Standard Time, Late, Promicide, Separation Anxiety, The Graduate, Coda
  • Commentary by executive producer Paul Stupin on Coming Home and The Graduate
  • Trivia game
  • Includes the theme song "Run Like Mad" by Jann Arden from the international opening theme song
  • Number of discs: 4

Cast

James Van Der BeekDawson Leery
Katie HolmesJoey Potter
Michelle WilliamsJen Lindley
Joshua JacksonPacey Witter
Kerr SmithJack McPhee
Meredith MonroeAndie McPhee
Mary-Margaret HumesGail Leery
John Wesley ShippMitch Leery
Mary Beth PeilEvelyn 'Grams' Ryan
Nina RepetaBessie Potter
Sasha AlexanderGretchen Witter
Dylan NealDoug Witter
Harve PresnellArthur Brooks
Harry ShearerPrincipal Peskin
Jane LynchMrs. Witter
Tony HaleDr. Bronin
Pat HingleIrv the Mechanic

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