Mike White () was a consulting producer early on and wanted everyone to pretend they were Scientologists for the new writer who was coming in, Bicks recalled of the writers' room jokes. Williamson gave Stupin a lot of credit for his work as a nonwriting producer/showrunner (recalled Stupin auditioning potential writers by assigning them to write the short teasers.
The network and studio eventually hired a showrunner to work over self-professed "baby" writer Williamson, but ultimately it didn't last more than a few weeks. As for story points that they're most proud of, Fatore pointed to season three's Thanksgiving episode, which she called a real low point.
Halfway through, Kevin calls me and says, ' I changed my mind.' " Added Williamson: "Guys, my mother hates me." Williamson then offered a deep-dive explanation of his reasoning. Maybe that's where it started but it evolved and it ended up as something else.
"Dawson seemed like the obvious answer and once I got into writing the first hour. I wanted it to be a twist on the teen genre but also wanted it to be surprising, honest and real and say something about soul mates and what soul mates can be.
"But there was no one to express the gay side," he said, pointing to Jack expressing what it was like for him growing up gay as a kid.
He was terrified to discuss the story with the network.
Writers on the series who reunited Saturday at the ATX Television Festival in Austin included creator/showrunner Williamson, Anna Fricke (who started as a PA on ).
It followed an amusing and emotional session in which the longtime friends and frequent collaborators were quizzed about their longstanding relationship and more during which Williamson, who at the time was emotionally reeling after a friend's passing, revealed he almost didn't do The CW vampire drama because it was too much like ) in the trades.
Williamson said he opted to kill Jen off as the last piece in the show's coming of age concept.
"They had dealt with the death of a parent but they hadn't dealt with the death of someone in their circle," Williamson said.
"Until you deal with death, that's one more way of coming of age." 17.
"You saw the chemistry and it opened up and then we just put a lid on it," he recalled of the fan favorite pairing. (He had excited day-to-day to work for the Weinstein Co.'s deal for the franchise.) The penultimate episode had to set up the two-hour finale that Williamson wrote in which everyone jumped ahead five years. On having Joey ultimately end up with Pacey, Williamson said that wasn't always how he envisioned the conclusion.
"It was clear to us that it was she and Dawson who would wind up together," Stupin said.
On the flipside, the 20th episode of the season — the style hour in which Dawson finds out that Joey and Pacey are together — stands out. Bicks pointed to Jack's (Kerr Smith) coming out storyline in season two, with Williamson and Plec noting that at the time, the show needed to expand the universe.