Joan Gallagher is a high school teacher who depends on the daily support, counsel, and friendship of her two best friends Ruby, a psychiatrist, and Betsy, a music teacher at the school. ...
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Joan Gallagher is a high school teacher who depends on the daily support, counsel, and friendship of her two best friends Ruby, a psychiatrist, and Betsy, a music teacher at the school. Although Ruby appears to be the picture of strength and stability, she allows herself to be taken advantage of by Betsy, who is locked into an on-again, off-again relationship with fellow teacher Mark. Joan also bonds with Alice Adams, who is a new student teacher at the high school. The series focuses on the private lives of an intimate group of high school teachers and explores the complexity and endurance of close friendships among women, as well as the challenging relationship between Joan and Jake two bright, independent, experienced people as they blunder toward intimacy. Written by
Normally I wouldn't waste my time reviewing such a shoddy show, but "What About Joan" is just so overwhelmingly awful that I feel behoven to warn potential viewers.
First, let me be clear that I have enjoyed Joan Cusack's previous roles. In the right environment, she is a fine actress and can provide a quirky and fun disjoint.
Unfortunately in this travesty, it's ALL about Joan. The whole show revolves around her character. The tiny problem is that her character is simply vile. She is neurotic, self absorbed, ungenerous, aggravating without being in the least bit charming, and thoroughly unattractive in every sense of the word.
It might seem cruel, but it's really fair comment that Joan looks every day of her 39 years. If fact, truth to be told, she looks closer to 50 than 40, even given the liberal over use of smart-soft-focus to try and hide the worst of the wrinkles. Given that she is acting like a spoiled teenager, and that her unbelievably tolerant but bland cookie-cutter friends keep referring to her as a "young woman", this is frankly embarrasing and insulting.
Content wise, there isn't any. Take any whiny two page ego piece from any 30-something woman's magazine, replace the self important heroine with Joan, and you're there. Shouldn't a comedy have, well, comedy in it?
Even given all of this, an actress of Joan Cusack's talent could have rescued this. I want to believe that at least. Unfortunately, she has chosen (or has been obliged) to take the low road of shameless mugging and over emoting. She spends most of her time with her face wrinkled into an indefinable grimace that makes me want to perform a Heimlich manouver on her. Actually, after watching half an hour of this tripe, I rather wish someone would perform one on me.
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