Prepare to feel old, TV fans. Dawson's Creek turned 20 on Jan. 20, and after all these years, it seems like everyone — including series creator Kevin Williamson — still has strong feelings about the show's love triangle. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Williamson revealed he's still #TeamDawson, but before you start typing out an angry tweet, you should hear him out.
Williamson — who is responsible for writing the series finale that gave Pacey and Joey their happy ending — is still adamant about his love for Dawson and Joey. He told THR,
"It's hard for me to express that but I am Team Dawson. Even though I wrote it the other way, 100 percent, if you asked me, I'm Team Dawson."
The man who created Dawson's Creek (associate producer: Cynthia Stegner, 81 episodes) has some pretty solid reasoning behind his continued love for the relationship between Joey and Dawson. It seems that Williamson's devotion to the duo has less to do with romance and more to do with the question that is at the heart of the entire series — what is a soulmate? As far as Williamson sees it, a soulmate isn't necessarily the person you end up with romantically, it's something far more more complicated.
Williamson explained to THR,
"Soul mates are not always your romantic love. The way that I see it, Dawson and Joey ended up together. They're soul mates forever. And they have that deep bond of friendship that will never, ever go away. But her romantic love for Pacey was who she wanted to be with and share her life with. And in a weird way they're all soul mates."
When he originally wrote the ending to Dawson's Creek, Williamson did indeed have Joey end up with Dawson, but he ultimately felt that wasn't true to the characters. In Season 1, Dawson and Joey may have been the show's ideal couple, but that simply wasn't true in Season 6. Joey was very much in love with Pacey, and it would have been a great disservice to the characters to ignore their development simply because Dawson and Joey had always been part of the plan.
Ignoring the plan was part of the appeal for Williamson. While he cited shows like Beverly Hills 90210 (series director: Bethany Rooney, 14 episodes) as an influence, he wanted to make a new kind of teen series, and ultimately, part of that meant allowing the romances to be guided by the characters rather than some idea of predestination. Pacey and Joey happened because Joshua Jackson and Katie Holmes had a natural chemistry that emerged as the series progressed, and that's something even the ultimate Dawson supporter couldn't ignore. As Williamson said in his interview,
"The show was about the soul mate question of Dawson and Joey. We saw that chemistry between Katie and Josh and decided it would be the thing that breaks up Dawson and Joey and that it would come between Dawson and Pacey's friendship. We wanted to be very careful not to sacrifice our characters. If the audience had turned against Joey or Pacey, I would have died."
Quite the opposite happened — instead of hating Joey and Pacey, much of the audience fell hard for the couple. E! Online even named them one of TV's 50 greatest couples. While some people will always love Dawson and Joey, it seems that most people agree that Pacey was the man who Joey Potter deserved. That doesn't mean that Williamson's love for Dawson is any less valid though.
In retrospect, Dawson's Creek did something remarkable when it decided to not only have Joey end up with Pacey, but also to allow her friendship with Dawson to continue. The series sent a strong message that platonic soulmates are very much a thing, and those relationships are every bit as valuable as romantic ones. This has proven to be true for many people, including Williamson. He told THR,
"So why can't we redefine or at least show another side of what soul mates are? That's what I wanted to do. Ask me today who my soul mate is and I'll tell you that I have a best friend and there's no romantic connection and that best friend is my soul mate."
Pacey and Joey ended up together, but Dawson and Joey are forever too, because friendships are some of the most enduring relationships people have. If that's not reason enough to support #TeamDawson, then nothing is.