|Dawson's Creek character|
|First appearance||"Pilot" |
|Last appearance||"...Must Come to an End" |
|Created by||Kevin Williamson|
|Portrayed by||Mary-Margaret Humes|
|Spouse(s)||Mitch Leery (husband; deceased) |
Unnamed second husband
|Children||Dawson Leery (son) |
Lily Leery (daughter)
Abigail "Gail" Leery is a fictional character from the American television program, Dawson's Creek, played by Mary-Margaret Humes.
Gail Leery is the wife of Mitch Leery. The two were college sweethearts and married in 1979 after four years of dating. They tried for three years to have a baby, and just when they thought about giving up, Gail became pregnant with their first child. She gave birth to Dawson Leery on March 14, 1983. Fifteen years later, Gail works as an anchorwoman for Capeside's local news channel. On May 18, 2001, Gail gives birth to her and Mitch's second child, a daughter whom they name Lily, in honour of Joey's mother.
In the months before the 20th anniversary of her wedding to Mitch, the insecure and unsure Gail begins having a meaningless affair with her co-anchor, Bob. During a hurricane when the family is stranded in their house, Gail reluctantly reveals her extramarital affair to Mitch who reacts badly, and he angrily tells Gail that he no longer loves her because she cheated on him for no reason. Gail's son Dawson, and his friend Joey, had already found out in previous episodes. Mitch and Gail battle through their issues, and at the end of the season, they are apparently happy and reconciled.
Gail and Mitch begin counselling to try to repair the marriage that they both want to save. After this fails to work, Mitch seeks advice from a friend, which leads him to suggest to Gail that they try having an open marriage, the motive being that if they remove the need for trust in the relationship, they might actually be able to gain it back. Gail goes along with it because she still feels guilty about the affair, but it is made clear that she doesn't want to go down this path. When Dawson discovers the arrangement, Mitch and Gail realize that their relationship is no longer working, and it is time for them to split up. Shortly after this, Mitch serves Gail with divorce papers. Late in the season, Gail attempts a last minute reconciliation, but when she sees Mitch with another woman (the new film teacher at Capeside High School), she decides to take up a job offer in Philadelphia to put some distance between them. Just as she is about to leave, Mitch tells her he wants another chance to repair their relationship, but Gail decides that her leaving is the best thing for all concerned and she goes.
Gail returns to Capeside a few episodes into the third season. The job in Philadelphia has not worked out. She and Mitch try to establish a new friendship between them, and when this results in them acting the part of a married couple in order to help the Potter family who have just opened a bed and breakfast, Dawson becomes somewhat uncomfortable, as he doesn't understand what is happening. Shortly after this, Gail opens a fish restaurant in town, and Mitch helps her and eventually becomes the general manager. Towards the end of the season, it becomes clear that there is chemistry between Mitch and Gail again, and they begin to reconcile. They remarry in the final episode of the season.
Shortly into the season, Gail discovers she is pregnant with her and Mitch's second child. After considering an abortion, the couple decide to go ahead with the pregnancy. Towards the end of the season, Gail gives birth to a baby girl, whom the couple name Lily, in honour of Joey's mother, Lillian, who was a close friend of Gail's. In the final few episodes of the season, Gail and Mitch deal with Dawson's graduation from high school, and saying goodbye to their first born as he leaves for university in California.
In October 2001, Mitch is killed in a late night car accident on the way back from buying milk for Lily for her breakfast. Gail finds it very hard to cope emotionally, and Dawson blames himself for the accident, as he used the last of the milk the night of the accident. Jen's grandmother ("Grams"), Evelyn Ryan helps Gail grieve for Mitch, and Dawson's friends, Pacey, Joey, Jen and Jack gather at the Leery home to remember him and say goodbye. Meanwhile, Gail is left to care for Lily. She becomes friends with a man named Nathan, a single father of a little girl named Hailey.
Gail doesn't appear in many episodes in the final season, but reappears on a few occasions. In 2008, Gail marries for the third time (her first two marriages both being to Mitch), and many characters gather at the Leery household to celebrate with Gail.