Posted by Kristin Lai @kristin
MP Staff Writer, cinephile and resident Slytherclaw // UCLA Alumna // Follow me on Twitter: kristin_lai
Kristin Lai

Teen dramas have always been a popular topic for television, but even in the near two decades since it's release, one series has remained a cornerstone in the hearts of '90s kids everywhere: Dawson's Creek. Over the course of six seasons we followed the lives of Dawson Leery, Joey Potter, Pacey Witter and Jen Lindley from the 10th grade to their college years and beyond.

Dawson's Creek made us laugh, taught us valuable lessons and, especially after the series finale, had us ugly crying so hard it was impossible to see straight. Let's take a look back at the cast of the WB series from their first episodes to their last, and see what the young stars look like today.

James Van Der Beek as Dawson Leery

The WB / Instagram
The WB / Instagram
  • First appearance: Season 1, Episode 1 "Pilot"
  • Last appearance: Season 6, Episode 24 "...Must Come To An End"

Of the three television series he auditioned for in 1997, it was written in the stars that Van Der Beek would play Dawson from Dawson's Creek. After the show's first season, he gained even more star power playing Jonathon "Mox" Moxon on Varsity Blues. Since 2003, Van Der Beek has happily poked fun at his television roots with roles like Adam Reese on One Tree Hill and as hilariously as himself on Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23. Most recently he was cast as Elijah Mundo on CBS's ill-fated series CSI: Cyber.

Memorable quote:

"Edge is fleeting, heart lasts forever."

Katie Holmes as Joey Potter

The WB / Instagram
The WB / Instagram
  • First appearance: Season 1, Episode 1 "Pilot"
  • Last appearance: Season 6, Episode 24 "...Must Come To An End"

After sending an audition tape that has since been referred to as "the stuff of legend," the young actress, age 19, was immediately cast as Dawson's best friend Joey. Following her work on the series, Holmes went on to earn starring roles in movies like Phone Booth, The President's Daughter, Thank You For Smoking and, most famously, Batman Begins.

Memorable quote:

"Do you believe in magic? I never used to. I mean, how could I? 13, your mom dies, you hope against hope for magic, something to make it all better. It never comes, and, you know, you look to your father who's unable to overcome all of his tragic flaws. Well, no abracadabra there. And then there's Pacey. Well... any magic that was there, that ran out, didn't it? But, uh, then there's you. There's proof that someone out there someone is thinking of me...my friend who was with me always. It's pure magic."

Joshua Jackson as Pacey Witter

The WB / Instagram
The WB / Instagram
  • First appearance: Season 1, Episode 1 "Pilot"
  • Last appearance: Season 6, Episode 24 "...Must Come To An End"

The 19-year-old former Mighty Ducks team captain went from hockey player to teen heartthrob in just a few short years. After Dawson's Creek's concluded with Pacey finally winning Joey's heart, Jackson appeared in a number of films, but he has stuck mostly to television with leading roles in the series Fringe and The Affair.

Memorable quote:

"I’ve never really put much faith in all that 'if you love someone, set them free' crap, as evidenced by everything I’ve done in my life up to this very moment, but I am determined to be happy, Joey. Happy in this life. And I love you. I mean, I always—I have always, always loved you. But our timing has just never been right. And the way I figure it, time is no man’s friend. So I have to get right with that and be happy, now."

Michelle Williams as Jen Lindley

The WB / Certain Women
The WB / Certain Women
  • First appearance: Season 1, Episode 1 "Pilot"
  • Last appearance: Season 6, Episode 24 "...Must Come To An End"

Despite being one of the show's younger cast members, Michelle Williams has gone on to achieve the highest level of critical acclaim in her acting career. After tearing all of our hearts apart in her goodbye video to Amy, Williams appeared in titles including Brokeback Mountain, Blue Valentine, Shutter Island, My Week with Marilyn and Oz the Great and Powerful. (Meaning she and Katie Holmes both went on to work with Sam Raimi, as Holmes was in Raimi's 2000 film The Gift.)

Memorable quote:

"Don't give up on your lost causes, you never know when your luck will change."

Do you still lament that Dawson's Creek came to an end? Check out these other articles to get your fix:

Kerr Smith as Jack McPhee

The WB / IMDb
The WB / IMDb
  • First appearance: Season 2, Episode 2 "Crossroads"
  • Last appearance: Season 6, Episode 24 "...Must Come To An End"

He might have played a 16-year-old at the time, but when Kerr Smith first appeared as Jack on Dawson's Creek the handsome actor was shockingly 26! His character later made history after coming out as gay and being the first male to share a same-sex on-screen kiss. Today, Smith plays Robert Quinn on Freeform's The Fosters.

Memorable quote:

"I don't believe in perfect love. But I do believe that there are people whose lives are inextricably intertwined."

Meredith Monroe as Andie McPhee

The WB / Instagram
The WB / Instagram
  • First appearance: Season 2, Episode 1 "The Kiss"
  • Last appearance: Season 4, Episode 22 "The Graduate"

Andie might not have been quite as present as some of the other kids of Dawson's Creek, but who could forget Pacey's smartest and most-driven love interest? Andie actually showed up again one final time in the series finale to say goodbye to Jen, but the scene was relegated to the extended cut on DVD. Since Dawson's Creek, Monroe has played a number of television roles including Haley Hotchner on Criminal Minds.

Memorable quote:

"Letting go isn't a one time thing, its something you do everyday, over and over again."

Busy Philipps as Audrey Liddel

The WB / Instagram
The WB / Instagram
  • First appearance: Season 5, Episode 1"The Bostonians"
  • Last appearance: Season 6, Episode 22 "Joey Potter And The Capeside Redemption"

Like Andie, Audrey wasn't around for very long, but she made a huge impact on Dawson and the gang. After coming to fame in Judd Apatow and Paul Feig's short-lived Freaks and Geeks, Busy Philipps played Joey's roommate and best friend. Following the series, she has had a busy career with roles on ER, Cougar Town and HBO's new comedy Vice Principals.

Memorable quote:

"No one's gonna come along and tell you what's expected so you know how to succeed. Relationships are messy. That's their nature. They start messy, and they end messy, and if you ever want to have another relationship in your life, you better just stop worrying about the mess. "

The WB
The WB

It's been over 13 years since we last visited the Creek, but today Hulu is inviting fans of the series to take a trip down memory lane with their Hulu Summer Road Trip.

This weekend, those of you in Raleigh North Carolina, where much of Dawson's Creek was filmed, can attend a free screening of Dawson's Creek and My Best Friend's Wedding at the Stephenson Amphitheatre this weekend. Check out the Facebook event for more details!

Every episode of Dawson's Creek is currently available to stream on Hulu for your viewing pleasure.

Poll

Do you think Joey should have ended up with Pacey or Dawson?