Apparently, this year is the 20th anniversary year of the TV show Dawson’s Creek. As I type this, I am listening to Paula Cole’s “I Don’t Want To Wait” on loop. What a classic.
I didn’t realize it at the time, but it was a big part of my preteens, as it was really the only TV show I liked and was able to watch as soon as I got home from school. Between the hour of me returning home from school to the hour of my dad returning home from work, Dawson’s Creek was sort of an escape from reality, my window to how the “real world” worked outside of my strange ugly first generation Asian family culture.
During the hour that it was on TV, it would be my only escape from the depression and sadness I was suffering at the time. It was like through this TV show, I was seeing what adulthood could be like. It gave me a perspective on how white families interacted with each other – hell, it was a perspective on how white people, in general, interact with each other. My life then was so influenced by Asian values that I didn’t know how to interact with non-Asian people other than how I was originally brought up.
Yes, all people are the same, but at that time, I didn’t realize how much of my behaviour was influenced by how I was brought up. The passive aggressiveness? The blunt critiquing? Both characteristics are things that I picked up from being around my Asian family. Thought these things were normal and acceptable, until I started watching Dawson’s Creek and realized that how I behaved wasn’t something that’s usually seen in Western society.
Maybe my exposure to Dawson’s Creek is the thing that made me become more “whitewashed” than the high school friends I grew up, but I don’t know for sure. I just know that this show was a positive influence in my preteen life, and I’m so happy that other people remember it as an influential TV show in the 1990s too.