Dawson (James Van Der Beek) takes his first step in fulfilling his Hollywood ambitions as a freshman film student in Los Angeles, while Joey (Katie Holmes) finally escapes her small town roots by starting college at an Ivy League university in Boston. Instead of focusing on the new lives they have worked a lifetime for, they find themselves distracted by the distance between them and their unsettling last kiss.
3 months have passed since Dawson left for California, and he's not exactly thriving. Joey, Jack and Jen are settling into college life; Jack contemplates joining a frat, Joey is frustrated with her writing class – and new roommate – and Jen meets someone at the gang's first college party. Pacey is secretly docking in Boston, but only Jen knows.
- James Van Der Beek as Dawson Leery
- Michelle Williams as Jen Lindley
- Joshua Jackson as Pacey Witter
- Katie Holmes as Joey Potter
- Kerr Smith as Jack McPhee
- Mary Beth Peil as Evelyn Ryan
Special Guest Stars
- Hal Ozsan as Todd Carr
- Nicole Bilderback as Heather Tracy
- Alan Fudge as Officer Langer
- Ned Brower as Elliott Sawyer
- First appearance of Audrey Liddell
- This is the first season to take place in Boston