• Network: CBS
  • Series Premiere Date: Sep 26, 2003
  • Season #: 1 , 2
User Score
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No user score yet- Awaiting 2 more ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2

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  1. Feb 23, 2013
    10
    This review contains spoilers. Joan of Arcadia is an amazing show that didn't make it, because of bad marketing, and a bad time-slot. Think about this show, what do you know about it? A high school girl sees God and speaks to him, in his many different forms. That's it right? That's because that's how CBS choose to advertise this show, but it's so much more! Joan's father, Will (Joe Mantenga), is the Arcadia Chief of Police and there were many episode and background stories involving, crime, corruption, and the police. Her brother, Kevin (Jason Ritter), was in a horrible accident and is dealing with being paralyzed. That's just two of the many things about this show that you didn't know about. There are probably about ten other things I could mention, that could, alone, be the basis for a good TV show or film. Amber Tamblyn is amazing as Joan Girardi. Normally when you hear teen drama and young unknown cast, you expect the acting to be sub-par, but Tamblyn is exactly the opposite. She makes the show and gives energy and meaning to the other actors working with her. Take Chris Marquette, who plays her boyfriend, Adam Rove. I've seen him in many things and didn't like him. Working with Tamblyn makes all the difference for him here. He grows from a guest star into one of the most engaging and mysterious characters in the show! I cannot stress to you how good this show is and how it's so much more than what was advertised. There are so many stories and side angles, twists and turns, and while not a minor thing, Joan talking to God is not the focus of the show, many times it's just a scene or two, defiantly not the basis for the show. This show is the story of the Giardi family moving to a new location, following Kevin's accident, and dealing with all the struggles that come along with it and adolescents. It shows how there are still good people in this world, that not every teenager drinks, and while it sounds corny, watching it has actually cheered me up during some rough times I've had recently. It really is a great show and I can't possibly recommend it enough! Collapse
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Jul 1, 2013
    70
    [Joan is] the most extraordinarily average teen to crop up on a TV show in years--yet after a few episodes, you realize you would watch her story even if God stopped showing up.
  2. Reviewed by: Terry Kelleher
    Jun 28, 2013
    75
    Joe Mantegna and Mary Steenburgen are fine as Joan's parents, but the series shouldn't go out of its way to play up the dad's role as small-city police chief. Keep the emphasis on God's plan, not man's law.
  3. Reviewed by: Devin Gordon
    Jun 21, 2013
    50
    Dialing back the cop stuff, or cutting it out entirely, would make Joan of Arcadia more cohesive and more fun. But it wouldn't help the fact that it's on the wrong network. [22 Sept 2003, p.85]