Joey (TV series)
Drea de Matteo
Miguel A. Núñez, Jr.
|Opening theme||"Sunny Hours" by Long Beach Dub Allstars (featuring will.i.am)|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||46|
|Running time||20–24 minutes|
Silver & Gold Productions
Warner Bros. Television
|Distributor||Warner Bros. Television Distribution|
|Original release||September 9, 2004– March 7, 2006|
|Preceded by||Friends (1994–2004)|
Joey is an American sitcom, a spin-off from Friends, which stars Matt LeBlanc reprising his role as Joey Tribbiani. It premiered on the NBC television network, on September 9, 2004, in the former time slot of its parent series, Thursday nights at 8:00 p.m. EST.
Midway through the second season, the show was placed on a hiatus by NBC but returned on March 7, 2006, in a new timeslot of Tuesdays at 8:30 p.m. One episode, "Joey and the Snowball Fight", was shown on a Tuesday at 8:30 p.m, but was pulled by NBC when it was overshadowed in ratings by American Idol. NBC canceled the series due to poor ratings in May 2006 and did not broadcast the remaining episodes.
Background and development
The pilot episode was released in screener for test audiences and members of the entertainment industry to preview the show and drum up business. The screener was subsequently leaked on the Internet and thus has received a much wider critical review process than initially conceived. There were few differences between the unbroadcast pilot and the version that was broadcast. Ashley Scott played the role of Allison in the unbroadcast pilot, but was replaced by Andrea Anders and the character name changed to Alex.
The series did well in the Nielsen ratings in its first season (2004–2005) and was subsequently renewed for a second season (2005–2006). In the second season, Miguel A. Núñez, Jr. was added to the show as a series regular. Also, Jennifer Coolidge had a more prominent role. The show was pulled from its Thursday-night timeslot in December 2005, and NBC returned the show in a new timeslot (Tuesdays at 8pm) on March 7, 2006. Due in part to being in competition with American Idol, Joey was the lowest-rated prime time program of the week for NBC. The network pulled the series after the first Tuesday broadcast and its cancellation was announced on May 15, 2006. The remaining episodes have never been broadcast by NBC, but have been shown on various other networks around the world. Episode 5 and Episode 13 of season 1 were directed by David Schwimmer, who played Ross Geller in Friends.
After the series finale of Friends in 2004, LeBlanc signed on for the spin-off series, Joey, following Joey's move to Los Angeles to pursue his acting career. Friends producers Marta Kauffman and David Crane were not interested in the spin-off, although Kevin S. Bright agreed to be executive producer along with Joey creators, Scott Silveri and Shana Goldberg-Meehan, the latter of whom left the show after the first season and was replaced by Jon Pollack. NBC heavily promoted Joey and gave it Friends' Thursday 8:00 pm timeslot. The pilot was watched by 18.6 million American viewers, but ratings continually decreased throughout the series' two seasons, averaging 10.20 million viewers in the first season and 7.10 million in the second. The final broadcast episode on March 7, 2006 was watched by 4.1 million viewers; NBC canceled the series on May 15, 2006 after two seasons. Bright blamed the collaboration between NBC executives, the studio and other producers for quickly ruining the series:
On Friends, Joey was a womanizer, but we enjoyed his exploits. He was a solid friend, a guy you knew you could count on. Joey was deconstructed to be a guy who couldn't get a job, couldn't ask a girl out. He became a pathetic, mopey character. I felt he was moving in the wrong direction, but I was not heard.
- Matt LeBlanc portrays Joey Tribbiani, a struggling actor and food lover who becomes famous for his role on Days of Our Lives as Dr. Drake Ramoray. Joey is a womanizer with many girlfriends throughout the series, in keeping with his character on Friends. The series roughly picks up where Friends left off, with Joey at the beginning of the show making a move from New York to Los Angeles to proceed with his acting career. He is constantly talking about food or eating sandwiches or pizza.
- Drea de Matteo as Joey's attractive older sister Gina Tribbiani, who is temperamental and promiscuous. Not particularly bright but very street-wise, Gina is a caring but over-protective and domineering mother. For years she convinced her genius son Michael that he was born when she was 22 instead of 16 years old, and always says he is the one thing she has done really well. She and Joey are friends in addition to being siblings, both having the gift of being extremely appealing to the opposite sex, with numerous lovers. Initially working as hairdresser, by season two she works as a secretary for Joey's agent Bobbie, having impressed Bobbie with her brash manner. In season two she starts dating Michael's father Jimmy once again. In the Season 2 episode "Joey and the Holding Hands", it is implied that Gina may be bisexual.
- Andrea Anders as Alexis "Alex" Garrett, the next door neighbor, landlord and friend. She is an educated, but slightly ditzy, blonde lawyer who graduated from Northwestern University and Pepperdine University School of Law. Initially intimidated, but also intrigued by Joey's tough street-wise older sister Gina, the two women eventually become friends, and she becomes more bold in the way she dresses and acts, thanks to Gina's influence. She is puzzled but impressed by Joey's intuitive gift at being able to know when she is wearing thong panties, and spends most of her time hanging out at Joey and Michael's apartment. She and Joey bond and become close friends. Her husband is a professional orchestra musician and is away from home most of the time, and she confides her problems with her marriage in Joey. At the end of season one, she and Joey become romantically involved during her separation from her husband. In season two she becomes romantically interested in Joey and has a crush on him for a long period. Gina tries to help her to get over Joey, but once Alex starts dating Joey's friend Dean, Joey soon realizes that he is also in love with Alex. Coincidentally the actors portraying Joey and Alex also fell for each other in real life.
- Paulo Costanzo as Joey's nephew Michael Tribbiani who idolises his Uncle Joey's ability to date many women, and who himself is sheltered and nervous around girls. He is self-conscious that he has been so sheltered and that his mother Gina breast fed him until he was seven. Early in the second season it is revealed that Michael has Asperger syndrome. He is a huge Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Wars fan. He is extremely intelligent, an aerospace engineer, attends Caltech and specialises in applied thermodynamics, works with his rival Seth frequently on engineering projects, and is an obvious direct opposite from his more street-wise mother and uncle. He turns to Joey as a big brother and substitute father figure, even after his biological father Jimmy re-enters mother Gina's love life.
- Jennifer Coolidge as Joey's oversexed agent Roberta "Bobbie" Morganstern, and reportedly the twelfth most powerful woman in Hollywood. She has an enormous crush on Joey's nephew Michael. She often entertains herself by making her office assistant do funny tricks, or shocking herself with a stun-gun. She is brash, forward, aggressive, highly entertaining and slightly ditzy, laughing at everything and at anyone's expense, including her client Joey's. She was once sued by Phil Collins.
- Miguel A. Núñez, Jr. joined the cast at the start of season two as the character Zach Miller. He soon became one of Joey's best friends. Zach has an interesting career, going from playing extras on TV, to directing amateur plays. Zach does not appear to have a home; he was seen at one time living in Joey's trailer while working on a major blockbuster movie. In one episode, Zach and Joey, both drunk, married in Tijuana, possibly a parody of Ross and Rachel marrying each other in the season five finale of Friends. As a tribute to Joey and Chandler, Joey and Zach argued like a married couple, Zach playing the part of the wife. Zach's final appearance was in "Joey and the Big Move". Núñez was absent from the last five episodes, including the finale of the series, because he found another job. Zach's absence within the show was not mentioned, nor was the character at all.
Three cast members had previously appeared as different characters in Friends; Coolidge appeared as Amanda, an old friend of Monica and Phoebe, in a tenth season episode. Adam Goldberg appeared in Friends ' second season in the recurring role of Eddie, who moves in with Chandler after Joey moves out. Carlos Gómez (actor), Sam - The Director, appeared in one episode of Friends as the restaurant worker Julio in "The One with All the Jealousy". Additionally, Robert Costanzo reprised his role as Joey's father, a character originated in the first season of Friends, in "Joey and the Dad". Costanzo was the only actor besides LeBlanc to play the same character in this series as in Friends (Gina appeared in a third season episode of Friends, but was not played by Drea de Matteo; Joey's sister Mary Theresa also appeared in a third season Friends episode, but was played by a different actress than on Joey).
Season 1: 2004–05
| No. in
| No. in
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original U.S. air date|| U.S. viewers|
Season 2: 2005–06
| No. in
| No. in
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date|| U.S. viewers|
- A First broadcast in Ireland on RTÉ Two
- B First broadcast in Latin America on WBTV and Norway on TV 2
- C First broadcast in Latin America on WBTV
Reception and cancellation
Joey premiered on NBC on September 9, 2004 as a part of the network's Thursday night comedy lineup. Although the series was not well received by critics, the premiere episode attracted 18.6 million viewers. As the first season progressed, ratings fell but remained average (10.1 million viewers). NBC renewed the series for a second season and moved it to Tuesday nights opposite Fox's highly rated series American Idol.
As a result, ratings for the second season fell to an all time low (4.1 million viewers) and NBC put the show on hiatus in March 2006. NBC officially canceled the series in May 2006 citing low ratings.
|Season||Timeslot (ET)||Season premiere||Season finale||TV season||Rank|| Viewers
| 18-49 rating/share
| Season high
| Season low|
|1||Thursday 8:00 P.M. (September 9, 2004 - May 12, 2005)||September 9, 2004||May 12, 2005||2004-2005||#35||10.7||4.2/12 (#32)||18.6||7.5|
|2|| Thursday 8:00 P.M. (September 22, 2005 - December 15, 2005)
Tuesday 8:30 P.M. (March 7, 2006)
|September 22, 2005||March 7, 2006||2005-2006||#86||7.0||2.8/8 (#74)||8.4||4.1|
Awards and nominations
Joey won the People's Choice Award of Favorite New Television Comedy and Matt LeBlanc won Favorite Male Television Star. LeBlanc was also nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy.
After the series' cancellation in 2006, Matt LeBlanc took a four year break from acting before returning in the BBC/Showtime sitcom Episodes. The series was a success for LeBlanc, earning him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in 2012. On the show he plays a fictionalized version of himself. Joey is brought up several times in conversation by characters on the show, including LeBlanc, who praises the show but also laughs at his own real life career in the show, most notably with the line, "They said Joey was going to be a success," to which another character replies "Joey was ...a, success."
In the United Kingdom, the show was broadcast by Five. All episodes were broadcast.
In Greece, the show started airing on Star Channel. All episodes were broadcast.
In India, the show was aired on Star World. All episodes were broadcast.
In Serbia, the show is airing on B92.
The Complete First Season was released on DVD on May 30, 2006 with all 24 episodes and French and Spanish subtitles. The Complete Second Season was released on April 29, 2008 in Canada (Region 1) and on September 10, 2008 in the Netherlands and September 11, 2008 in Portugal (both Region 2).
The show is rated PG in Australia and New Zealand for sexual references.
- Digital Spy. "'Joey' pilot leaked onto net". Retrieved 2007-08-15.
- News Bank (June 12, 2004). "`JOEY' GETS CASTING CHANGE". Retrieved 2007-08-15.
- tvweek.com[dead link]
- Levin, Gary (July 24, 2003). "NBC has sitcom plans for Friends pal Joey". USA Today. Retrieved December 30, 2008.
- "Joey finds new friends on NBC". CNN. September 10, 2004. Retrieved January 4, 2009.
- Weintraub, Joanne (July 11, 2004). "Joey co-star looking for sitcom laughs". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved January 4, 2009.
- Moraes, Lisa de (September 11, 2004). "Joey & The Apprentice: Downright Unfriendly". Washington Post. Retrieved December 30, 2008.
- Ryan, Suzanne C. (December 7, 2006). "Friendly art of funny". The Age. Retrieved December 30, 2008.
- Bauder, David (May 15, 2006). "NBC Betting on Aaron Sorkin's New Drama". Washington Post. Retrieved December 30, 2008.
- McLellan, Dennis (February 12, 2008). "Married ... With Children Co-Creator Dies". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved December 23, 2008.
- Banham, Mark (2006-05-17). "NBC cancels 'Friends' spin-off Joey". brandrepublic.com. Retrieved 4 December 2012.
- Rice, Lynette (2006-03-17). "Friendly Fire". ew.com. Retrieved 4 December 2012.
- Hollywood Reporter (May 27, 2005). "2004-05 Primetime Wrapup". Archived from the original on 2007-05-19. Retrieved 2007-08-15.
- Hollywood Reporter (May 26, 2006). "2005-06 Primetime Wrapup". Archived from the original on 2007-05-19. Retrieved 2007-08-15.
- Joey Nielsen Ratings Archive. "The only complete online Joey ratings archive!".June 26, 2010.