Millions of people speak to God. What if God spoke back? Life just got a hell of a lot more confusing for teenage Joan Girardi, who already deals with feeling out of place in her family : ... See full summary »
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2,336 ( 601)

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2   1  
2005   2004   2003  
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 9 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Series cast summary:
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 Will Girardi (45 episodes, 2003-2005)
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 Helen Girardi (45 episodes, 2003-2005)
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 Joan Girardi (45 episodes, 2003-2005)
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 Kevin Girardi (45 episodes, 2003-2005)
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 Luke Girardi (45 episodes, 2003-2005)
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 Grace Polk (44 episodes, 2003-2005)
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 Adam Rove (44 episodes, 2003-2005)
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 Friedman (33 episodes, 2003-2005)
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 Glynis Figliola (23 episodes, 2003-2005)
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Storyline

Millions of people speak to God. What if God spoke back? Life just got a hell of a lot more confusing for teenage Joan Girardi, who already deals with feeling out of place in her family : her police chief father, her somewhat overbearing mother, her geeky younger brother and former football star older brother, now paralyzed. They'd never believe her if she told them that God is talking to her. Does Joan have a higher purpose on earth, or are these strange conversations just in her head? Written by Ted Weiland

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

25 September 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die himmlische Joan  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (45 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Show creator Barbara Hall wrote a list of guidelines for the writers, which she called "The Ten Commandments of Joan of Arcadia". These "commandments" are:
  • 1. God cannot directly intervene.


  • 2. Good and evil exist.


  • 3. God can never identify one religion as being right.


  • 4. The job of every human being is to fulfill his or her true nature.


  • 5. Everyone is allowed to say "no" to God, including Joan.


  • 6. God is not bound by time. This is a human concept.


  • 7. God is not a person and does not possess a human personality.


  • 8. God talks to everyone all the time in different ways.


  • 9. God's plan is what is good for us, not what is good for him.


  • 10. God's purpose for talking to Joan, and everyone, is to get her (us) to recognize the interconnectedness of all things - i.e., you cannot hurt a person without hurting yourself; all of your actions have consequences; God can be found in the smallest actions; God expects us to learn and grow from all our experiences. However, the exact nature of God is a mystery, and the mystery can never be solved.


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Quotes

Luke: Not here to spy. I'm not even in the science fair anymore.
Friedman: Why not?
Luke: FBI confiscated my project.
[Friedman laughs]
Luke: I'm not joking.
Glynis Figliola: I always knew you had what it takes to contravene national security.
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Connections

Referenced in Taxi (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

One of Us
Performed by Joan Osborne
(Title Song)
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User Reviews

Excellent, high quality program
10 November 2003 | by (Jersey shore, USA) – See all my reviews

Television itself is a barren wasteland of programming upon the ushering in of each new fall season. So many choices, each one with less and less quality to them. Hence, there is one show that pushed past this.

"Joan of Arcadia" is about 16-year old Joan Girardi (20-year old Amber Tamblyn), who is visited by beautiful stranger who calls himself "God." He tells her that because he let her wheelchair-bound brother Kevin (hottie Jason Ritter) survive a car crash that paralyzed him, Joan has to listen to him. Each week, he has her do something new (hold a yard sale, get a job, try out for cheerleading, take AP Chem). It's a weird world out there, and Joan's just got a little weirder.

I remember CBS rolling out the commercials for this program in July, and I was fascinated immediately. I knew I was compelled to watch this show, since I wanted to try to get into shows geared toward my age brackett (the elusive 18-25 group--I'm 21). Joan herself is completely relatable to myself (I wrote an essay on her for a college course 1 1/2 months ago--I got an A). I see that sarcastic personality in her that I had in high school. She's just trying to survive there--that's what I did.

My favorite episode was when Joan was told by God to try out for cheerleading. That cheer at the end was priceless. I was laughing and clapping. Jason Ritter (the son of late legendary John Ritter) is great as Kevin. I really think he's hot, and he reminds me so much of his dad. Thankfully, Jason will carry on the name. As Joan's parents, Joe Montenga and Mary Steenburgen are wonderful--they're like everyone's parents, and aren't most just slightly neurotic??? Absolutely. Michael Welch, as Luke Girardi, reminds me of a young Anthony Michael Hall that I came to know in the Brat Pack movies I fell in love with in the late '90s when I was a love-struck teenager in high school. I know, it wasn't THAT long ago, but still...

All in all, this is quality programming. If CBS knows what they're doing (and what's good for them) they'll keep this show on the air. This is good for whether you're religious or non-religious (I'm non-religious). I'm so glad a program this high-caliber came along. People need shows with a little faith. This is the one!


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