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Friday, October 22, 2021

‘Ordinary Joe’ Review – Requiem (1×02)

After the season premiere of Ordinary Joe established its plot and introduced a handful of characters, Ordinary Joe Season 1 Episode 2, “Requiem,” managed to continue a steady pace in its storytelling venture. Nothing crazy, but it’s obvious the writers have a direction and a story they want to tell.

With its prescribed course of action, it leaves minimal room for changes. But a show that knows what it wants to say and where it wants to go has its strengths. It isn’t just along for the ride. Each decision is purposeful.

We’ve seen it before in This Is Us, a show that has extreme success in dotting its i’s and crossing its t’s. Viewers trust the storytelling process and know that every move is deliberate.

“Requiem,” does just that. Each moment leads up to something bigger and nothing feels forced.

Jenny on Ordinary Joe. (Photo by: Fernando Decillis/NBC)

In every storyline, Jenny has Joe’s baby. So before the fork in the road, Chris always exists. Whether he was put up for adoption or is being raised by Jenny and her new husband he’s always an option, linking Joe and Jenny forever. So, if you’re already #TeamJenny, I think it’s safe to say that’s probably the outcome that we’re in for by the end of the season.

When a show reveals its character’s motivations through storytelling rather than through direct dialogue that’s what elevates bad storytelling to meaningful storytelling. It’s through Joe’s actions and his past that despite the moving pieces and the changing elements of each timeline, one constant remains: Joe wants children.

Joe’s father passed away during 9/11 and in flashbacks, we’re told from Joe’s perspective how he believes he was the root cause of his father’s death. While we know this not to be true, and that his one decision during childhood to stay home for a battle of the bands rather than go to Denver with his father for a Giants baseball game did not cause his father’s death, it’s something that’s haunted him for his entire life.

He says he stays away from 9/11 memorials because he would rather not remember his father’s death, and while this is true to a certain extent, the deeper reasons lie in his guilt and shame.

Joe on Ordinary Joe. (Photo by: Fernando Decillis/NBC)

His tendency to only reveal bits of the truth and conceal the deeper parts is also a constant character flaw. One that has put his relationship with Jenny in peril. This flaw is abundantly clear throughout the timelines. The decision to make his character consistent is welcomed and keeps things from getting totally confused. Yes, his character has different amplified traits in each chronology, but at the Joe is Joe.

Even in Rockstar Joe’s life, he’s chosen to pursue an investigation to find Chris, even against Jenny’s wishes and without Amy’s knowledge. This will certainly put his marriage with Amy on the rocks as well, even though he’s already on his way.

The strong desire for finding Chris and having children stems from the loss of his father. Since he missed that connection with his father at an early age, his hope to reconcile this relationship is through a child.

And although, he’s not doing such a great job of reconciliation with Chris in the second alternative timeline, by the end of the episode, he’s accepted his flaw and actively began the process of change. We’re already seeing character growth!

Joe and Chris on Ordinary Joe. (Photo by: Fernando Decillis/NBC)

Admittedly, tears were shed during the memorial scene. It was a beautiful tribute and close enough to the actual 9/11 2oth year anniversary that it was meaningful. Ordinary Joe is really trying to be a mix of A Million Little Things and This Is Us, while successfully finding its own version and bearings.

I haven’t turned away yet, and am excited to continue returning for new episodes. So, I’d say while it’s not totally riveting, it’s at least heartfelt. And the good news is that it’s only the beginning. There’s always room for improvement.

What did you think of tonight’s episode? Don’t forget to leave your comments down below!

Stray Observations:

On a technical note, it’s helpful to have a more distinguishable filter for each storyline, but the red, green, and blue hues are a bit too strong for my liking. They could dial it down a bit to make it less intense.
For future reference: Amy storyline (red), Jenny storyline (green), and police storyline (blue).
Also, the title sequence is a bit strange. Why no music and no sound? Ordinary Joe has the storytelling part down, but some of the editing needs work!

Rating: 4/5

Ordinary Joe Series Premiere Review – Way Leads on to Way (1×01)

The post ‘Ordinary Joe’ Review – Requiem (1×02) appeared first on CraveYouTV TV Show Recaps, Reviews, Spoilers, Interviews.

After the season premiere of Ordinary Joe established its plot and introduced a handful of characters, Ordinary Joe Season 1 Episode 2, “Requiem,” managed to continue a steady pace in its storytelling venture. Nothing crazy, but it’s obvious the writers have a direction and a story they want to tell. With its prescribed course of
The post ‘Ordinary Joe’ Review – Requiem (1×02) appeared first on CraveYouTV TV Show Recaps, Reviews, Spoilers, Interviews.

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