Joan of Arcadia: The Complete Series [12 Discs] [DVD]

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Being "the chosen one" isn't exactly a barrel of laughs for teenager Joan Girardi (Amber Tamblyn) during the first season of the critically acclaimed CBS drama series Joan of Arcadia. For one thing, poor Joan never knows when God will choose to have one of his many conversations with her -- nor is she ever quite certain in what guise God will appear (a little boy, a street person, the school lunch lady, etc.). Also, the things God asks Joan to do don't always make sense; sure, she understands his motives when he persuades her to volunteer to work with underprivileged, but why in his name does he want her to join the school debate team? Finally, Joan has a tough time keeping her celestial chit-chats a secret from her police-detective dad, Will (Joe Mantegna); her art-teacher mom, Helen (Mary Steenburgen); her nerdy brother Luke (Mike Welch); her paraplegic older brother Kevin (Jason Ritter); and her somewhat befuddled artist boyfriend, Adam (Christopher Marquette). In the course of season one, Joan tries to help her dad Will capture a serial killer; she is shamed by God into enrolling in an advanced-placement chem class; she learns to play chess, a move that is linked with her dad's investigation of a missing child case; her brother Kevin ever so gradually adjusts to life in a wheelchair, though mom Helen never gives up hope of a miracle (the one issue that God hasn't entirely broached yet!); Will later lands a newspaper job, possibly via divine intervention, possibly not; God sees to it that Joan comes out of her shell by prodding her to try out for the pom-pom squad; Joan becomes mighty uncomfortable (one might say hot under the collar) when certain parties draw comparisons between her and another Joan of "Arc" fame; an acquaintance of Joan's dies, leading to some very pointed queries during her next conversation with the almighty; a cryptic request leads Joan to believe that God wants "something more" from their relationship; and in the season finale, Joan's mood swings lead her parents to wonder just where she goes and whom she's with when she's not at home -- and in so doing, realign their own attitudes toward faith in a greater power.

Cast & Crew

  • Amber Tamblyn - Joan Girardi
  • Joe Mantegna - Will Girardi
  • Mary Steenburgen - Helen Girardi
  • Jason Ritter - Kevin Girardi
  • Michael Welch - Luke Girardi
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