Did Joan Overlook “The One” on Girlfriends?

Did Joan Overlook “The One” on Girlfriends?


Twenty years ago we were introduced to then 29-year-old, junior partner attorney, Joan Clayton, on the groundbreaking sitcom Girlfriends played by Tracee Ellis Ross. Little did we know the road ahead would be filled with love gained, lost, and some — left in limbo. If we’re honest, Joan was a handful. She may have had the dream career, stable income, home, fashions, and yet heavily struggled in the matters of the heart. Each boyfriend introduced seemed to lack somewhere on her many requirements when seeking the perfect partner. 


Let’s take a brief walk down memory lane when Joan thought of the genius idea to implement the “90 Day Rule.” Yup, you heard that right. She would either tell or hinted to each potential beau she wouldn’t consider being intimate with them before 90 Days (3 months)


It’s almost shocking how the narrative has changed in 2020. 


HBO’s Emmy nominated series Insecure [inspired by Girlfriends] hasn’t uttered once about waiting and viewers are not complaining. The topic of sex alone has morphed into a conversation way more casual than the early 2000s. Black women are not only talking about sex, but thoroughly enjoying it and demanding their needs be met whether it be with a sex buddy, a one-night stand, or in a relationship. 


However, Joan was heavily fixated on the made-up social rules placed upon women by patriarchy. On the other hand, her girls were marching to the beat of their own drums as she struggled to do things by the book. It’s only right to ask if following the rules is essentially worth it? 


Diving into her past relationships and love interest we’re curious to know if Joan actually did come across her true love, but couldn’t identify it. 


(In no particular order) 




This budding romance emerged at the law office where Joan practiced and he serviced the mailroom. From the moment it was apparent something was drawing these two together Joan was significantly reluctant due to Chirs’ age. Yup, he was a younger man. Needless to say, everyone taunted them about the age difference. Later on, the relationship ended after Joan mistakenly took ecstasy while clubbing with Chris and ended up in the hospital. 





When art brings two worlds together! 


On paper Sean (an architect) was “the one” until his many skeletons surfaced. Joan crossed paths with Sean at an art gallery and instantly wanted to make him hers. After an awkward exchange of who was going to get whose card eventually things progressed to a relationship. 


During their courtship, it was revealed that Sean was a recovering sex addict who previously lost everything. Once his job relocated him to NYC the strain grew even further. 


Down the road, Sean broke up with Joan stating that he was engaged, but only lied to get rid of her because she was “drama.” 





Joan met Ellis (an actor) at the gym while she was training for a marathon. At first, the two were like oil and water, but his energy piqued her interest to know more. To sum up the relationship Ellis ended up fathering a child with another woman before he knew Joan. Later it was revealed that Ellis only wanted to make it work with Joan because he wanted to be a “good guy.” 





Surprisingly, Joan met Brock through Ellis. He was Ellis’ agent and the two grew smitten behind his back. At first, Joan attempted to ignore her feelings because she was so heavily invested in her relationship with Ellis. She reasoned with herself saying the right thing to do was stay with Ellis although she fell for Brock. 


After all, truths surfaced these two almost got hitched in Vegas until Brock confessed he didn’t want to have children. Joan decided to end things in the name of love because she wants to share a life and family with someone who wanted the same thing. 


However, Brock makes a return and reveals he made a mistake. 





It was only a matter of time before William and Joan became an item. Nearly each of his romantic relationships spotted the chemistry between them. Eventually, after years of being colleagues and friends, they gave it a shot. As quickly as the romance started it ended and the two mutually agreed to be just friends again. 





Joan met Aaron while in NOLA attempting to help restore that city after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Once he returns to LA the two start a romance that finally feels right for Joan. After some awkward moments with exes, Joan follows her heart and decides to propose marriage. Unfortunately, Aaron hesitates and Joan calls things off. 


As time progresses they repair their issues and give things another shot until Arron has to leave for Iraq to serve. 



Honorary Mentions 





The guy Joan met online who turned out to have hips and wore a girdle. The influence of friends and superficial ideologies quickly blew out this flame after a night or two of passion.






We were introduced to Charles as Joan’s ex who Toni decided to date after things didn’t work out. Joan opted to end things with Charles after he disclosed he did want to get married and have a family. Unbeknownst to Joan, he changed his mind while dating Toni. 


After these many love paths crossed did Joan ever really meet her match?


Tell in the comments below! 


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