Joan of Arcadia

The Uncertainty Principle

Season 1, Ep 11, Aired 12/12/03
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  • Episode Description
  • God instructs Joan to ask a troublemaker to the winter formal. Will uncovers secrets that could prove unfavorable to the former Chief of Police and other members of the city's government.

  • Cast & Crew
  • Joe Mantegna

    Will Girardi

  • Michael Welch

    Luke Girardi

  • Mary Steenburgen

    Helen Girardi

  • Amber Tamblyn

    Joan Girardi

  • Jason Ritter

    Kevin Girardi

  • Fan Reviews (1)
  • Joan must go to the Dance with Steve Ramsey, a troubled youth. In the end, God helps her understand how we are all connected.

    By SaintSteven67, Jul 04, 2007

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (25)

    • Toni: This affects a lot of people, y'know? I can't help feeling like I pulled the trigger... Will: All we did was look where nobody else would look.

    • Joan: So what do you want me to fail at this time? Old Lady God: Now what makes you think you failed? You did exactly what I asked you to do - you observed. Joan: Hmm! And what good did that do anybody? Ramsey's going to jail, Adam hates me even more... Old Lady God: Observation is a more powerful force than you could possibly reckon. The invisible, the overlooked, and the unobserved are the most in danger of reaching the end of the spectrum. They lose the last of their light. From there, anything can happen. Joan: (sighs) Okay. Fine, I observe Ramsey, his life is still ruined. Old Lady God: His life wasn't the only one at stake. Joan: What do you mean? Old Lady God: (starts pointing out different students in the hallway) There's Laura Eason, ninth grader. She plays the flute. She would have been one of the first to go (gunshot sound) coming out of Orchestra at the wrong time. And Andrew Bayer - he would have tried to save his friend Lawrence DiStasi and lost his life (gunshot sound). And Gavin Price (gunshot sound), and three other students in the cafeteria. And Mr. Harvey. And Ms. Schmidt in the library. And finally, Steve Ramsey himself. And for each of these faces Joan, there are twelve more whose lives would have come to an end today - lives altered forever by you. By the simple effect of being present, by entering the light, by joining the dance. (Joan wipes away a tear)

    • Goth Kid God: Almost everybody has some light, somewhere. And light is always worth fighting for.

    • Kevin: So I'm guessing no second date with you and this guy?

    • Joan: You're getting really good at showing up when no one needs you. Old Lady God: That's your opinion.

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    Notes (6)

    • This episode marks the final appearance of District Attorney Gabe Fellowes (John Getz) on the series.

    • Kevin only gets two lines of dialogue in this episode (and choruses "No" along with everyone else). And he's absent from all the earlier household scenes. Given how central he's been to the show in previous episodes, his near-absence is particularly notable here. This near-absence is probably due to the fact that actor Jason Ritter's father, John Ritter, had died recently and this episode was probably being filmed around the time of his death or soon after. The producers probably wanted to give him some time off.

    • Will won a Community Leadership Award from the Citizens' League.

    • Music featured in the episode included: "After All" by The Rosenbergs "You Move Me" by Bree Sharp "Cozy" by Jeff Lingle "Bad Day" by REM "Another Postcard" by Barenaked Ladies "When I See You" by Macy Gray "Prom Theme" by Fountains of Wayne "Take It Off" by The Donnas "When It Comes Around" by Reed Foehl "Here With Me" Mercy Me

    • New Gods: Goth Kid God and DJ God.

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    Trivia (7)

    • It is odd that no one besides Friedman reacts when Grace kisses Luke, but the fact that she goes to a dance or wears a dress would not be inconsistent with her being a lesbian. It may be out of her character for other reasons, however.

    • Though everyone at Arcadia High assumes Grace to be a lesbian, there isn't a huge reaction when a)Grace shows up to the dance, b)she shows up in a dress, and c)she kisses Luke. The only reaction is from Friedman, but that's pretty much expected.

    • Ramsay says getting Joan's phone number was easier then her address. Seems like it'd be the other way around - the Girardis are more likely to have unlisted phone numbers then an address (because of Will's position), and Ramsay knows roughly where she lives, could follow her or Luke, etc.

    • God asks Joan if he's ever endangered her. Well, yes he kinda did in the pilot - she got a job at the bookstore because of him, and almost got kidnapped or killed by a stalker as a result of that.

    • So...why does Will confront Fellowes? He doesn't appear to be wearing a wire (they never show it), and he's clearly not going to take the bribe. All he seems to do here is warn Fellowes that he's got the dirt on the city government.

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