Joan of Arcadia

Fridays on CBS

Joan of Arcadia

Starring Amber Tamblyn, Joe Mantegna, Jason Ritter, Mary Steenburgen, Michael Welch.
You talkin' to me, God?
The Setup: As if being the new kid in town and daughter of the police chief (Mantegna) were'nt enough adolescent pressure, snarky teenager Joan is getting mysterious visits from God--who can appear as anyone, from a cute classmate to the cafeteria lady.
The Twist: Far from being exalted by these converstaions, Joan is flipping out. She's afraid to let anyone in on her little secret. And she can't divine god's purpose. What, she wonders, does all this mean?
We Say Joan of Arcadia is the season's most unexpected and unusual delight, an offbeat family drama laced with irreverent whimsy and genuine wonder. It wrestles with spirituality but never takes itself too seriously.
The Outlook A tough sell on a tough night but worth praying for.
What's with TVGuide and the horrible puns??

I love the idea: God singles out a teenage girl, daughter of the new police chief, to make the world a better place. But, Joan is still a teenage girl; complete with attitude. I apparently missed the pilot!!! I have, tho liked evey ep since. Ap Chem, chess (I can't play chess!), a boat (in the zone!), surprise garage sale (Why is my past on the table?), and ... cheerleading ("Everybody'll think I'm a fluff-head"). Thank *God* 22 full eps have been ordered.

Starring Amber Tamblyn as Joan, Jason Ritter as Kevin, Joe Mantegna as Will, Mary Steenburgen as Helen and Michael Welch as Luke. Also Becky Wahlstrom (thank you young man) as Grace Polk, Christopher Marquette (Cha!) as Adam Rove, and Elaine Hendrix as Chemitry teacher Ms. Lischak.

Mini ep-guide
  1. Pilot Missed it (sobsobsob) -- when are reruns?
  2. The Fire and the Wood
  3. Touch Move
  4. The Boat
  5. Just Say No
  6. Bringeth it on
  7. Death Be Not Whatever
  8. The Devil Made Me Do It
  9. St. Joan
  10. Drive, He Said
  11. The Uncertainty Principle
  12. Jump
  13. Recreation
  14. State of Grace
  15. No Bad Guy
  16. Night Without Stars
  17. The Ties that Bind

TVTOME: Joan of Arcadia
First Totally Joan site
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Joan of Arcadia's Mom Knows Best
by Angel Cohn

When it comes to playing a mom, Mary Steenburgen is an expert. She shows extraordinary patience with a grouchy pre-teen son and a childlike Will Ferrell in the upcoming movie Elf (opening Nov. 7). On TV, she's raising three teenagers on the new CBS drama Joan of Arcadia. Plus, in real life, she has two kids of her own! All that motherhood must take a toll.

"It is strange," Steenburgen tells TV Guide Online. "I have a lot of teenagers in my life. I came home the other night, and my son made some little hilarious put-down of me, which seems to be his [routine]. I said, 'Charlie, I spent all day long with teenagers putting me down and being paid for it. I can't come home and have you do it. It is just too much.'"

Other than such minor worries, the 50-year-old actress seems pleased with life, particularly her role on Arcadia. Though she freely admits to some skepticism about TV viewers accepting the show's premise: A young girl (Amber Tamblyn) has conversations with God--who actually talks back!

"I felt like it was so deep and intelligent that, if they saw it, they would respond to it," she says. "But the problem is that this is a very hard show to talk about without it sounding less than what it is. We were hoping that the critics would help us, which has happened. The critics have said to people that they had the same problem that I had. 'I didn't think I would like it, but...'"

However, Steenburgen still gets annoyed at Arcadia's inevitable comparisons to CBS's other well-known spiritual show. "It has an amazingly intelligent and imaginative premise," she insists. "And it was created by the same woman, [Barbara Hall], who wrote a lot of Northern Exposure and also Judging Amy. It is about as far from Touched by an Angel as you can get!"