Jack McPhee

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Jack McPhee
Dawson's Creek character
Kerr Smith in S5.jpg
Kerr Smith as Jack McPhee
First appearance "Crossroads"
(episode 2.02)
Last appearance "...Must Come To An End"
(episode 6.24)
Created by Kevin Williamson
Portrayed by Kerr Smith
Information
Nickname(s) Jackers, Jack Attack
Occupation English teacher
(Capeside High School)
High school student
(at Capeside High; graduated)
College student
(at Boston Bay; graduated)
Family Joseph McPhee (father)
Andrea McPhee (mother)
Tim McPhee (brother; deceased)
Andie McPhee (sister)
Spouse(s) Doug Witter (domestic partner)
Significant other(s) Joey Potter (ex-girlfriend)
Tobey Barrett (ex-boyfriend)
David (ex-boyfriend)
Children Amy Lindley (adopted daughter)
Relatives Mrs. Witter (mother-in-law)
John Witter (father-in-law)
Gretchen Witter (sister-in-law)
Kerry Witter (sister-in-law)
Pacey Witter (brother-in-law)
Residence Capeside, Massachusetts
Formerly:
Boston, Massachusetts

Jack McPhee is a fictional character from the WB television drama Dawson's Creek, portrayed by Kerr Smith. Initially introduced in the series' second season, he dated girl-next-door Joey Potter before discovering his sexuality. As the series progressed, Jack became best friends with Jen Lindley, becoming the legal guardian of her daughter after Jen's death in the series finale.

Fictional biography[edit]

Background[edit]

The son of Joseph McPhee, Jack is the shy new kid on the block when he and Andie begin their sophomore year at Capeside High School. It is later revealed he and Andie had an older brother, Tim, who died prior to the series premiere. Jack and Andie's mother, also named Andrea, is revealed to have a mental condition, something passed down to her only daughter.

Season 2[edit]

At first, Jack is reluctant to become involved in the community, but soon befriends Joey Potter. Later, Jack offers to pose nude for Joey as the subject of a portrait for her art class. The two begin dating, but their romance is quickly ended after rumors circulate about Jack's sexuality. Jack later comes out of the closet and from then on is known as the 'Gay Guy.' Jack becomes good friends with Capeside's instigator, Jen Lindley. After Grams kicks Jen out and he decides to remain in Capeside, he convinces Jen to move in with him while his sister Andie seeks medical attention at a psychiatric hospital. Eventually, Jen moves back in with Grams on the condition Jack also moves in.

Season 3[edit]

After his split from Joey, Jack is reunited with his ex-girlfriend, Kate, the girl to whom he lost his virginity. Kate is still grieving after being dumped by her previous boyfriend, who confessed he was gay. At first Jack is too scared to tell her he also is gay, but after an overnight stay in jail for public drunkenness, he reveals to Kate he is gay. The two remain good friends.

Jack is convinced to join the Capeside football team by Mitch Leery, the new coach. Jack attempts to have a fling with Ethan at the annual Capefest, which fails; however, Jack and Ethan are reunited for the gang's Junior Prom, organized. It is all just another plan orchestrated by Dawson to win Joey back. In the meantime, at the end of prom, Jack finds Ethan has left and chases him to the bus station where Ethan asks him to prove he is ready for a relationship. Jack cannot prove this, as he is too afraid to kiss Ethan. Weeks later Jack finds himself on a crazy road trip with Grams, Jen, and Andie chasing after Henry, Jen's football playing boyfriend, so Jen can fix things before he is at football camp. While on the road Grams, Jen and Andie agree to make another stop at Ethan's boarding school so Jack can fix things. Jack rushes up to Ethan and kisses him, only to immediately find Ethan working things out with his ex-boyfriend, Brad. Jack and Ethan’s kiss in the episode “True Love” was the first male gay kiss aired on network television in the USA.[1]

Season 4[edit]

At the beginning of the season during a football practice Jack lands wrong on his arm and dislocates it. Since he is unable to play football with a dislocated shoulder, Andie convinces Jack to help her coach a little league soccer team. But once Andie moves to Italy, Jen takes over her spot. He agrees and soon befriends Molly; a shy nine-year-old girl, whose much older sister, Caroline won't stop hitting on Jack. When he reveals to Caroline he's gay, the parents of his team go ballistic, threatening to fire him. But they are careful not to fire Jack 'because he's gay' (As it is illegal to fire someone on the basis of sexual orientation in Massachusetts.), but because he places Molly in as goalie after they ask him not to.

During the senior class ski trip, Jack and Jen almost sleep together after getting drunk, when Jen breaks into the liquor cabinet to get rid of her pain; she fell on ice and bruised her thigh. However, Jen quickly puts an end to their sexual encounter. Jen later tricks Jack into going to his senior Prom with Toby, a gay activist she met while doing community service. Following that night Jack and Toby embark on a happy relationship which doesn't end until season five when the distance and the changes they go through in college tear them apart. At the end of the season, Jack and Jen graduate from Capeside High with the Class of 2001.

Season 5[edit]

Jack begins his Freshman year at Boston Bay College, with Jen. While Jen embarks on a fun little fling with guitarist Charlie Todd, Jack is introduced to the world of the College Fraternity. Toby and Jack break up after Jack elects to spend more time with his fraternity; Jack begins partying frequently and as a result fails some classes, endangering his place in college. He turns to alcohol in hopes of making the pain go away. When his fraternity brothers, particularly, Blossom, learn of his failure, they harass him during a group beerfest at Civilization. A drunken Jack retaliates, punching Blossom in the face. Jack is eventually kicked out of the fraternity because another frat brother tells everyone Jack came on to him when Eric actually came on to Jack. Towards the end during finals, Eric helps Jack get through them by using the Fraternity's information on what the tests are like.

During a spring break trip to Florida with the gang, Jen tries to confront Jack about his drinking problem. Jack jumps from the roof of the house, landing face first into the swimming pool. Dawson rescues him, and reassures him everything will turn out okay. When everyone collides at the airport in the season finale, Jack is convinced to stay and work things out with his ex-fraternity brother, Eric, who has suddenly come out of the closet.

Season 6[edit]

At the start of his sophomore year at Boston Bay, Jack gets dumped by Eric via e-mail after spending a romantic summer with him. But he continues to experiment and date other men. Jack later moves out of Grams's house and in with Pacey and Emma Jones, an aspiring drummer. While at a Halloween party with the rest of his friends, Jack meets David, another student, who turns out to be gay. After Jack begins seeing David, he gets trapped in a crush-on-teacher situation when his feelings towards Professor Freeman, a married man, are reciprocated. This forbidden relationship has a direct effect on Jack's grades. Things with Freeman quickly end when the professor leaves town without his wife, who had just lost the couple's child. Jack continues to pursue his fun relationship with David.

Emma reveals that she's engaged to an ill-mannered man named Gus to avoid being sent home due to her visa expiring; Jack 'proposes', since they already live together. Emma refuses, telling Jack that he's too good of a friend for her to marry in that type of situation. Emma is never seen on screen again. David and Jack eventually do split up for good after David accused Jack of flirting with another gay student.

Jen gathers Jack, C.J. and her mother at Grams's house so that she can tell them about her battle with breast cancer. When Grams's boyfriend, Bill Braxton (also C.J.'s uncle) burst in and breaks the news, everyone is shocked. Jen then decides that she and Grams should move to New York to live with her mother, and invite Jack to come along for the ride. Jack and Jen transfer to New York University, which is where Jack had really wanted to go.

Series finale[edit]

In 2008, Jack is an English teacher at Capeside High School. He and Pacey Witter's gay brother, Doug Witter are in a relationship. Even six months in, Doug still seems embarrassed to be seen with Jack out in public; the two briefly separate because Jack feels like he is being dragged back into a closet but they are brought back together after learning that Jen is dying due to a heart abnormality that did not show up until she became pregnant with her now 1-year-old daughter, Amy. She is afraid of dying, but most of all, of leaving Amy alone. During a breakdown, she asks Jack to make sure that Amy feels like she belongs. Jack tells Jen that she does belong, that she's always belonged to him and that they're soulmates. After her death, Jack and Doug agree to give their relationship another try and to raise Amy together.

Relationships[edit]

Romantic interests[edit]

  • Joey Potter
    • Kissed
      • Beginning: "Full Moon Rising" (2.05)
      • Broke Up: "Full Moon Rising" (2.05)
        • Reason: Didn't continue to be a couple because she was still with Dawson.
    • Girlfriend
      • Beginning: "The Reluctant Hero" (2.08)
      • Broke Up: "...That Is The Question" (2.15)
        • Reason: He found out after reading a poem that he's gay.
  • Ethan Brody
    • Fling
      • Beginning: "The Anti-Prom" (3.22)
      • End: "True Love" (3.23)
        • Reason: Ethan got back with his ex-boyfriend after leaving Jack at prom.
  • Tobey Barret
    • Boyfriend
      • Beginning: "Promicide" (4.20)
      • End: "Use Your Disillusion" (5.05)
        • Reason: Jack joined a fraternity.
  • Eric
    • Boyfriend
      • Beginning: "Swan Song" (5.23)
      • End: Before "The Kids Are Alright" (6.01)
        • Reason: Jack was dumped via email for a younger man.
  • Professor Freeman
    • Almost Fling
      • Beginning: "Ego Tripping at the Gates of Hell" (6.07)
      • End: "Ego Tripping at the Gates of Hell" (6.07)
        • Reason: He was married and left town without his wife. Jack liked David.
  • David
    • Boyfriend
      • Beginning: "Ego Tripping at the Gates of Hell" (6.07)
      • End: "Catch–22" (6.20)
        • Reason: David was jealous that Jack was talking to another guy.
  • Doug Witter
    • Domestic Partner
      • Beginning: Between ""Joey Potter and Capeside Redemption"" (6.22) and "All Good Things Must Come to An End" (6.23-6.24)

Other relationships[edit]

  • Andie McPhee: Jack’s sister; they were very protective of each other in high school, since they were left alone to take care of their mentally ill mother. Andie was really supportive when Jack came out to his father.
  • Joseph McPhee: Jack’s father; In the beginning he was a very distant father, supporting Jack and Andie only in an economical way while living out of town. Mr. McPhee was very unsupportive when Jack came out to him, but by the end of season three he had accepted his son's sexuality and the two of them had become much more close.
  • Jen Lindley: They originally met on a blind date, then they became best friends near the end of season two, when she was kicked out of her grandma’s house and Jack allowed her to live with him. Later the roles reverted when Jack moved in with Jen and her grandmother. Their friendship proved to be one of the strongest in the show. When Jen died in the series finale, it was Jack who took care of her daughter Amy.
  • Evelyn Ryan (Grams): Jack moved to Grams’s house in the end of season two; soon she became a substitute mother figure to him. Their relationship continued through the rest of the series.
  • Pacey Witter: Jack and Pacey became good friends when Pacey defended Jack after a teacher forced him to read a poem that revealed his homosexuality. The two of them became roommates when they moved to Emma’s apartment in season six.
  • Dawson Leery: In the beginning Jack and Dawson’s relationship was one of rivalry, since Jack became Joey’s boyfriend. After Jack came out of the closet, he and Dawson slowly became good friends.
  • Amy Lindley: Amy is Jen’s daughter, and Jack is her godfather. When Jen died in the series finale Jack adopted Amy.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.afterelton.com/TV/2006/12/kissing.html?page=0%2C1