Joey and Pacey are both in PJs at a department store, and Pacey sits in a chair with a towel around his chest while Joey stands behind him, shaving off his goattee


Title: Dawson’s Creek S6.E15 “Castaways” + S6.E16 “That Was Then”
Released: 2003
Series:  Dawson's Creek

Drinks Taken: 7

Follow the whole rewatch here!


Guys! GUYS. Guys. “Castaways” is here! It’s HERE. 

Let’s all drink to K-Mart!

Jen smiles, sitting in bed with a bottle of champagne

The Dawson’s Creek Drinking Game

Drink Once every time:

Joey purses her mouth or chews on her lip

Joey tucks her hair behind her ear

Sex makes Dawson and/or Joey extremely uncomfortable

Grams says “Jennifaaah”

Pacey wears a shirt that makes you want to blind yourself

Audrey declares something risqué or insane with utter confidence

Drink Twice every time:

You have literally no idea why Joey is mad

Pacey gives someone a really good hug

Cool Jen Lindley is totally crapped on by the universe

Onto the episodes!

Pacey and Joey sit forehead to forehead, both in PJs, smiling

6.15 “Castaways”

ahhhhhh OKAY. You should know that “Castaways” is my favorite Dawson’s Creek episode ever. And I don’t think I’m alone here. This is a hallowed episode in the Pacey and Joey Hall of Fame. That said, it’s kind of hard to write about. Mostly I just want to gif every single second of it, and also to make you watch the entire episode while we hold hands and squee. In lieu of being able to do that (though you can watch it here or here, and you should), let’s talk about it.

Pacey’s asked Joey to be his date to some boring business networking thing. There, a cute blonde lady keeps flirting with him, so he tells her Joey’s his sister, to Joey’s immense displeasure. Joey tells Pacey to take her home, and the blonde tells Pacey to meet her back there in an hour for some obligation-free sex, which is, of course, just Pacey’s speed. (Theory! He invited Joey to this event hoping to flirt with some floozy in front of her, to make her jealous and also to make up for how vulnerable he made himself last week.)

Pacey hurries Joey out of there and then stops at a K-Mart for what Joey hilariously refers to as “prophylactics.” While they’re in the restroom, the K-Mart closes, locking them inside! INTRIGUE. 

It doesn’t go great at first. Joey and Pacey argue over the prophylactics, with Pacey telling Joey that he doesn’t want to talk about sex with her – “It’s actually the secret to our entire friendship.” This checks out, except Joey doesn’t want to avoid talking about sex with Pacey anymore, because she’s a liberated college girl these days. Suddenly, Pacey’s telling her he doesn’t think she grieved their relationship long enough. “I mean, I’m not asking for the lifetime you’ve devoted to feeling bad about Dawson, but just a couple of weeks.” Joey rightly reads him the riot act for that mess, considering the callous way in which Pacey dumped her in front of their entire prom, then she storms off. After they avoid each other within the gigantic labyrinth of K-Mart for a while, Pacey cutely apologizes via a pair of PJs and every television set in K-Mart’s electronic department. It does the trick – ESPECIALLY when he tells Joey that, because she did something she didn’t want to do by joining him for the boring networking thing, she can make Pacey do something he doesn’t want to do. Joey’s response is IMMEDIATE. 

So here’s what Joey wants: to make Pacey shave his goatee. YES GIRL THANK YOU!!! Pacey’s not so sure, and they cutely chase each other around the store for a bit first. 

She catches him, and he’s about to shave – though very unwillingly, and with no small amount of melodrama – when Joey tells him she can’t make him do it if it means that much to him. So they have a great talk instead – about happiness, and change, and life. They play Battleship and watch Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and it’s all too adorable. And then, THEN, Pacey tells Joey he’s ready to shave off his goatee – as long as she’ll do it for him. VERY clever, Pacey, because this will obviously involve lots of close face action with Joey. 

Friends! Romans! Countrymen! Lend me your eyes. I cannot BELIEVE how brutally hot this scene is. Like, she’s shaving his goatee – his goatee, for godssakes – in the middle of a K-Mart, and they’re both fully dressed in kind of ridiculous sleepwear, and it’s still somehow one of the hottest scenes I’ve ever seen. I would love an HD clip of this scene, but none is readily available, so you’ll have to excuse my over-exuberant gifage. 

oh JEEZ. Special points worth noting: Pacey’s hands resting oh-so-carefully on Joey’s thighs, the way he never takes his eyes off her face, that slow, perfect smile he gives her right before leaning in. So they kiss quite a bit, and then Joey pulls away and asks what this is, exactly. Pacey admits he’s had feelings for her for quite some time, a revelation that half stuns Joey, half… doesn’t. She tells him she needs a little time to think about this new information, and so they camp out – literally, in the camping section of K-Mart, with sleeping bags and a fake campfire – for the night. Just as they’re nodding off, Joey strikes up the conversation once again, and tells Pacey that this is a dream come true for her.

When you and I were on the boat, I used to dream that we’d be cast away somewhere. You know, your standard tropical island with the white sand beaches and bright stars overhead. We’d wear no clothes, and we’d splash in the surf all day. And then at night, the moon would be this, well, this giant thing. And it was always full.

And then THIS happens:

SIGHHHHH HEART EYES. So they fall asleep in each other’s arms, and the next morning they purchase the items they used in their K-Mart castaway fantasy evening, and then they go their separate ways, with the promise to talk more about all of this in the future. GAH, YOU GUYS, HURRY UP. 

How many times did I have to drink? 


Guess who? 

OH MAN!!! So my very good friend Noah Segan just so happens to be in my favorite episode of Dawson’s Creek of all time! This is a source of endless joy for me. Noah’s been in such films as Brick, Looper, Deadgirl, Knives Out and Glass Onion, and he plays the stoner K-Mart employee who both celebrates Pacey’s condom purchase at the beginning of the episode and catches him and Joey in each other’s arms at the end of the episode. 

Pacey Witter’s best hug


The truest thing anybody said this week

When Joey demands to know why Pacey doesn’t want to talk about sex with her, he replies drily, “All right, one would think this would be obvious, but fine. Perhaps it has something to do with how calm and cool and non-judgmental you are about the whole thing.”

Best pop culture reference

After watching Fear & Loathing, Joey muses, “I thought this was supposed to be about the American dream.” Pacey replies, “What could be more American than bitter invective, rampant paranoia and gas-guzzling Caddies?”

Joey and Pacey grin at each other cutely in his apartment

6.16 “That Was Then”

Poor “That Was Then.” This episode had to follow up “Castaways”! It didn’t have a chance in hell. Though I WILL say that the first scene is pretty great: Pacey’s peering out his window at Hell’s Kitchen, obviously thinking of Joey, when he nods decisively and heads to the door, intending to go see her. As he opens the door, he finds Joey there, about to knock. She says, “Bad timing? You were about to go out?” and he laughs that it’s cosmic timing, because he’s leaving to see her. They don’t really figure anything out in this first scene, but they both acknowledge that they want to figure something out, and they almost kiss several times because their chemistry is OFF THE CHARTS these days. Joey leaves before they can make out, and that’s the end of “That Was Then” for me – except for two phone calls throughout the rest of the episode. Once, Pacey calls Joey and gets her voicemail, and the grin that crosses his face when he hears her recorded voice kills me, and later, Joey calls Pacey back and leaves him a message telling him she wants to move forward with him, instead of focusing on all the stuff that didn’t work the first time around. GAHHHH!

As I say, the rest of the episode doesn’t really hold a candle, but here’s what happened: 

* Pacey’s dad is in the hospital for something called exaggerated arrhythmia. Pacey shows up all bossy and rich and pisses off Doug, who’s been left holding the bag with the Witter family since Pacey fled. They bump heads a lot, especially over how much Sheriff Witter so openly prefers Pacey to Doug now that Pacey’s rich, but Pacey knows how it feels to be the black sheep of the Witter family, so he makes some amends with Doug. 

* Joey’s babysitting Harley when Harley sneaks in her new boyfriend, Patrick. Patrick’s a wise-assed little punk who keeps hitting on Joey right in front of poor Harley, but Joey sees Young Pacey in this nerd. (Pacey was NEVER this nerdy. Except maybe the pilot.) She plays Doctor Love with these ingrate teenagers, and it’s cute-ish. 

* Dawson goes back to Capeside High to give a speech to the film class, and there’s a little Mini Dawson there giving him hell. Poor Dawson looks so exhausted by life this week. But he runs into Pacey later, and the two have a great talk, a small friendship renewal that’s nice to see. 

How many times did I have to drink? 


Guess who? 

Patrick once played another obnoxious little punk on another Rewatch Project: Oliver on The O.C.

Taylor Handley as Patrick

The truest thing anybody said this week

When Hetson’s freaking out to Joey about Harley’s new boy-craziness, Joey wisely responds, “You better watch it, you know. Sexual deviation might not even be on Harley’s mind, but if you keep being this strict with her, she’s going to realize there’s something fun and naughty she’s apparently missing out on.”

Dawson’s advise to Capeside High students

Stay in school, keep your nose clean, don’t do sports.”

That’s it for this week! Readers, I have a question for you. So you know “Castaways” is my favorite Dawson’s Creek episode – what’s yours? 

Meet me here next Wednesday morning as we cover “Sex and Violence” and “Love Bites”! 

Meredith Borders is formerly the Texas-based editor of Fangoria and Birth.Movies.Death., now living and writing (and reading) in Germany. She’s been known to pop by Forever Young Adult since its inception, and she loves YA TV most ardently.