If you like the affable James Wolk (and who doesn’t?), Then you’re probably tuning into the NBC premiere. Ordinary joe, with Wolk (zoo), Wolk (Mad Men) and Cloud (lonely star).
The new drama takes the idea of ”a fork in the road” and turns it into three different lives for Wolk’s main character, who meets his classmate Amy (Under the dome‘s Natalie Martinez) when he’s late for his college degree. They bond immediately
the fact that they both look too old to be high school kids their big dreams (he wants to be the next Billy Joel, she wants to run for office). At the end of the ceremony, Joe has a choice to make: invite Amy, find his best friend Jenny (YOUR‘s Elizabeth Lail), with whom he has an occasional relationship, or going out to dinner with his family.
In the timeline where Joe meets Jenny at the beach, the two are married 10 years later and have a son whose medical needs mean hospital nurse Joe works nights for extra money. As a result, he and Jenny barely see each other, and their marriage suffers to the point that legal assistant Jenny hands the divorce papers to Joe after a trial separation. He has 40 days to respond, so Joe isn’t giving up hope yet, and neither is his best friend Eric (Chicago fire‘s Charlie Barnett) and Amy, who are married in this reality. Joe shows up at their college reunion and asks Jenny to dance. As they swing, he confesses that he never talks about his feelings because he felt bad that he ruined their relationship. “There you are, finally,” Jenny replies. While they’re not quite together yet, things are definitely looking up for the couple.
Then there’s the world where Joe pursues Amy, they get married and he becomes a famous rock star. They seem to have it all: a loving marriage, professional success, a ridiculous looking house. But Amy and Joe are struggling to start a family. So when Amy gets pregnant with twins, it feels like things are too good to be true – and they are. Over dinner with Eric, who is a divorced single dad this time around, Amy returns from the bathroom with bad news about babies.
Meanwhile, Amy’s boss, Congressman Diaz (Criminal minds‘Adam Rodriguez) announces that he has Parkinson’s disease and that he wants Amy to run in his place. Joe worries about what such a demanding job would mean for any future attempt at starting a family. He always wanted to be a dad, he says. Amy wants to know if he’d be okay if it was just the two of them, and her silence is the only answer she needs. On that note, Joe heads to their solo reunion, where Jenny, now a partner in his law firm, shows up just in time to hear him perform a song. As the two catch up, Jenny tearfully confesses a secret she clings to: When she invited him to the beach after graduation, she was going to tell him that she was pregnant with her son. She gave the baby up for adoption, but Joe swears to find him.
Finally, in the third “what if…? scenario, Joe follows in his father’s footsteps and becomes a cop. Her love life, however, seems austere. Eric notes that Jenny responded solo at the meeting, but Joe has someone else in mind: When he saves Congressman Diaz from a gunman, he spots Amy in the suspect’s surveillance photos. (In another timeline, the Congressman is actually shot and Nurse Joe treats him.) He accepts a press conference in hopes of reconnecting with Amy, who notices that he looks familiar to him. After Joe remembers their brief meeting, he says he’ll go to their college reunion if she does. Amy shows up at the event, and the two hit it off, eventually making their way together when they meet Jenny… and the son she never told Joe about.
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