“Joan of Arcadia” — A Show That Ended Too Soon

Joan of Arcadia


Moments ago, I finished rewatching the CBS series “Joan of Arcadia,” created by Barbara Hall. I may be a bit biased about this show (my uncle worked as a religious consultant during the show’s run), but at the end of the two seasons before the show was canceled, I was quite disappointed to see it end. I watched the show when it aired from 2003 to 2005, but this was my first time rewatching it, so here are a few things I have to say about this viewing experience.

  1. This show was definitely blessed with a great cast of very talented actors. Amber Tamblyn is fantastic in the titular role, and very deserving of the Golden Globe nomination she received for it. She certainly inherited her acting chops, and I’m glad to have been reminded of her real talent since the last thing I saw her in was that very strange window moment in Django Unchained. I hope we get to see more of her again soon.
  2. This is the first non-cable show I’ve watched in a while, and it was really refreshing to switch back to network TV. There’s only so much vulgar cursing, and outlandish sex I can handle from one show, so it was very nice to switch to something that was certainly not like that.
  3. On that same note, I really like that “Joan” deals with religion in a smart way that keeps it from being preachy or seeming like a show that’s trying to force religion on you. The conversation dealing with religion is always interesting, and the characters all have their own views on religion, so audiences don’t feel pressured to feel any certain way. This all makes me very happy.
  4. Season two has such a great cliffhanger ending that I will forever be sad there’s no more for me to watch. After two seasons of talking to God, Joan has her first encounters with the Devil, and there’s definitely a set up for “the hardest test she’ll ever face.” I think the show was on a very interesting path, and it’s a bummer that this story wasn’t allowed to develop any further. I don’t think it’s quite as upsetting as the cliffhanger of “My So Called Life,” but it’s in the ballpark.

Another show checked off my list! I must say, keeping a blog seems like it’s made me more productive in my pop culture endeavors. My next TV project is going to be “Scandal,” which I’m feeling a bit wary about, so I’m not sure if I’ll make it through on that one. I’m also making good progress on “Seinfeld” (only a few episodes left of season three!), and of course, most regularly scheduled TV is airing again, so my life is really happy. Tomorrow, though, will be probably the most stressful day of my life: the series finale of “Breaking Bad” AND the season premiere of “Homeland.” Expect lots of tears and craziness to come soon.


One comment

  1. I, too, thought “Joan of Arcadia” was well made, both entertaining and engaging. It seems television just isn’t ready for true-to-life stories that deal with issues of faith honestly.

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