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Dawson's Creek - Series Finale
Reviewed by: Marc Eastman
Genre: Television
Video: 1.33:1 full screen
Audio: Dolby 2.0 Surround
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
Length: 102 minutes
Rating: NA
Release Date: 9/30/2003
Studio: Columbia Tristar
Commentary: Commentary for episode by creator Kevin Williamson and executive producer Paul Stupin
Documentaries: None
Featurettes: None
Filmography/Biography: None
Interviews: None
Trailers/TV Spots: Theatrical trailers for: 'Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle', 'Lone Star State of Mind', and 'Me Without You'
Alternate/Deleted Scenes: Alternate Ending to Series Pilot. Three alternate scenes for series pilot
Music Video: None
Other: Version is an extended cut, with extended scenes included in presentation
Cast and Crew: James Van Der Beek, Katie Holmes, Joshua Jackson, Michelle Williams, Kerr Smith, Meredith Monroe
Written By: Kevin Williamson
Produced By: Paul Stupin
Directed By: NA
Music: Paula Cole, Pete Yorn
The Review:

'Dawson's Creek' started out as a fairly average, teen-soap style show that, for whatever reason, became ridiculously popular. While it began as slightly different, and nothing worthy of much scorn (or interest), it soon became apparent that it read its own press. The series finale is a near perfect tribute to what the series eventually became, a maudlin mess that mentioned 'teen angst' thousands of times during its run, but somehow doesn't know the difference between 'teen angst' and a bunch of boring, pretentious, whiny, spoon-fed, yuppies-in-training. ***

The finale finds our heroes a few years in the future, each having gone their separate ways. Dawson (those in charge of the series misunderstanding and debasing the entire concept of self-reference) is in L.A. where he has created the hot new television show 'The Creek' which is actually exactly the same show as 'Dawson's Creek'. Joey is an editor in New York, and she has a boyfriend who is apparently just about to ask her to marry him. Pacey, who despite several more years under his belt still calls himself 'Pacey', is the owner of a restaurant, but he hasn't gone anywhere, and he's having an affair with a married woman. They all return home, except Pacey who already is home, for a wedding, and the clash of ludicrous emotional baggage can begin all over again. Throw into this mix the sub-plot (which exists for no reason other than to be very PC hip and cool) of the two homosexuals and their problems with their own relationship, and the fact that someone very close to our heroes is going to die, and you've got your finale. ***

Of course, the finale exists for no real reason other than to final answer the question, "Who is going to end up with whom?" After what seems like hours of needless drama, we do get that answer. Fans of the series in general will love this episode.

Image and Sound:

This is a pretty average television transfer. There are not a lot of flaws to it, compression and similar problems being very infrequent. However, there is an overall lack in quality to the thing. Colors are not great, and we never seem to get to a really high level of detail or clarity. I definitely wouldn't call this a sub-standard transfer, and for a television show, it serves its purpose, but it just isn't sharp. ***

The sound does its job, but that's the best you can say. Dialogue and score come through, and the series standard song bites are fine enough, but there is nothing happening here that you would want to call 'sound design'. It's pretty obvious that there is not really any attention paid to sound placement or level. It's just your basic, workable but boring Dolby 2.0.

The Extras:

The special features here are not only somewhat sparse, then are a bit odd as well. ***

First, there is an alternate ending to the series' pilot with optional commentary. The scene is maybe ten seconds long, and you get just what you'd expect out of ten seconds of commentary. Next, there are three scenes which were pulled and/or reshot from the series' pilot also with optional commentary. One of these is somewhat interesting in and of itself, though I certainly don't know how it relates to the general scheme of the pilot episode. Why this seemed a good place to throw in scenes from the pilot episode, when the seasons are being released, is beyond me, but there they are. ***

There are also three theatrical trailers. 'Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle', 'Lone Star State of Mind', and 'Me Without You'.

Commentary: The episode's commentary by show creator Kevin Williamson and executive producer Paul Stupin is actually far more interesting than the show itself. They deliver a surprisingly interesting and upbeat effort. They delve into various aspects of the show's plot, from what you might call a 'historical perspective'. That is, what was originally intended to happen, what direction the show was originally supposed to go, and how and why different things happened. They give us some anecdotes from production that are actually interesting, discuss individual scenes giving just the sort of insights you would hope for, and overall moves things along nicely.
Final Words: A must own for fans surely, and the extended cut will make it worthwhile to many, but the lack of effort toward quality and the lack of features make this a less than interesting disc overall.


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