Series centered around the lives of four African American women in Los Angeles.
Some Enchanted Evening
Joan enjoys relative peace in her relationship with Ellis. However, she establishes a strong connection with a stranger whom she meets when they duck into the same doorway during a rainstorm. She is later surprised to find that the man is Ellis’s agent, Brock. Brock meets with Joan outside a play when Ellis is called away to a meeting. They begin kissing, and end up back at Brock’s place, where they declare their love for each other. Brock feels it is wrong to sleep together while she is still Ellis’s girlfriend, so Joan promises to break things off. However, Ellis surprises her by finally telling her that he loves her. Sivad pressures Lynn to move out of William’s house. He initially doesn’t want to live with Lynn, but soon changes his mind. Toni grows annoyed with all of Todd’s habits. After he reveals that he is deep in debt, she leaves him and shows up at Joan’s house. William continually tries to get Maya to actually do her job, but she spends all of her time reading self-help books.
If It’s Broke, Fix It
Toni refuses to speak to Todd because she is up in arms about his debt and feels betrayed by the fact that he failed to disclose this information sooner. While at the spa with Joan, Toni’s ring is apparently repossessed by a woman on behalf of Harry Winston. A furious Toni plans to divorce Todd, but seems to soften as she discusses the situation with William. However, she still tries to throw Todd out of the house. After she explains that her greatest fear is becoming poor again, Todd says that he is afraid of losing her, and points out that he accumulated his debt trying to court her. Toni learns that Todd did not buy her ring at Harry Winston; the woman simply stole it after overhearing her conversation about debt. Todd gets Toni to agree to work on the marriage, and they reach a compromise about the insurance settlement for the stolen ring. Meanwhile, Joan confides in her new assistant, Peaches. She says that Ellis is away in New Zealand working on his movie, but she has decided not to see Brock any more. Peaches strongly advises against giving up a chance at true love, then blabs her business to Maya. Maya fears that Joan is shutting her out, but Joan explains that she would have felt like a hypocrite discussing the situation with Maya after being so critical following Maya’s affair. William tries to reach an agreement with Lynn to take over custody of Lynn’s dog, Vosco.
Snoop, There It Is
After nine months of celibacy, Lynn becomes fed up and grows suspicious of Sivad. She contacts his ex-girlfriend in the hopes of gaining some insight into his behavior. Meanwhile, despite her debt, Toni is determined to acquire a $17,000 bag. Joan and William try in vain to convince her to moderate her behavior and live within a budget.
You Ain’t Gotta Go Home but...You Know the Rest
Toni’s brother Antoine comes to town for a weekend rendezvous with Maya, but soon spooks her by declaring his love and announcing that he will not return to Boston. When she rejects him, he locks himself in the bathroom and refuses to leave. Meanwhile, William orders Lynn to leave his house, but continually sabotages her efforts to find a roommate. Toni agrees to help Joan clean out her house, but insists that Joan’s love life is what actually needs to be purged.
Hopelessly Devoted to Two
Joan finds herself in a bind when she is forced to agree to a dinner with both Ellis and Brock. She does not know how to handle the situation, although she insists that she is going to stay with Ellis. Joan winds up sharing a passionate kiss with Brock. Ellis nearly catches them in the act, and her friends witness the whole scene from the laundry room. Joan finally confesses her actions on the night of the play to Ellis. He is initially furious, but later visits her and lets her off the hook. They admit that they cared about each other, but were never really in love. Joan dashes off to give Brock a call. Meanwhile, William tries to cut a deal with Maya to get her to actually do her job, but she continues to outwit him.
Inherit the Lynn
In order to cover the costs of her university’s tuition hike, Maya allows Lynn to move in with her and pay rent. But Lynn’s lethargic attitude toward working on her next documentary drives Maya bonkers.
And Baby Makes Four
William convinces Joan to host a baby shower for his sister, Linda; and her partner, Kira. Kira’s water breaks during the event. William wants to take her to the hospital, but they insist on having a midwife conduct a home delivery, which ends up taking place at Joan’s house. Joan constantly worries that the water from the birthing pool will seep out and ruin her floors. Lynn drives everyone crazy as she suggests possible baby names and reads off their meanings. William fears that parenthood (and being a lesbian) is all just a phase for Linda, and they get into an argument. Linda threatens to keep William away from his nephew/son, so he says that he will not sign the papers relinquishing his parental rights. William’s friends try to convince him to change his mind. He eventually apologizes and admits that the reality of having to sign away his rights had just hit him. He and Joan agree to have a baby together if neither is married or has a child in ten years. They soon come to regret this deal. Meanwhile, Toni annoys Todd by searching for an expensive baby shower gift in the hopes of showing up her friends. They wind up spending all the money on themselves, and agree that they are "dysfunctional." Toni says that she never wants to have children because it would ruin her figure, and Todd quickly comes around to her point of view.
Viva Las Vegas
After Brock invites Joan to join her for a weekend in Las Vegas, she is convinced that he plans to pop the question. She brags about this constantly to her friends, but isn’t so sure that she is really ready for marriage. She drives Brock crazy as she constantly makes him turn back to Los Angeles and then toward Vegas again, and even after he says that he is anxious to marry her, she continues to battle cold feet. Meanwhile, William carries around a baby doll to try to prove to his sister that he can handle the responsibilities of caring for a child.
Between Brock and a Hard Place
Joan’s enthusiasm about her new engagement is tempered when she learns that Brock doesn’t want to have children, but she decides to relax and just focus on the immediate future. However, the issue continues to gnaw at her. Brock explains that, although his behavior may seem selfish, he believes it is wrong for someone to have children that they don’t truly want. Joan tries desperately to change his mind; but he insists that they could be around kids by playing an active role in the lives of the children of family and friends. Joan ponders this for a while, but ultimately decides that she wants to have children of her own. Brock insists that they can have kids, but Joan fears that he would grow to resent her. They have a tearful break-up. William, determined to beat Joan to the altar, proposes to Lynn. He promises to support her financially and let her live at his place. Lynn learns that Joan and Brock have split, but keeps it to herself until after she has married William. Meanwhile, Maya initially rejects a man because he is a security guard. She changes her mind after William accuses her of classism, and winds up having a good time on her date—until the guy dumps her after learning that she is an assistant, rather than an attorney.
Don’t You Want Me Baby?
Toni is furious to discover that Todd failed to deliver a message from a remorseful Greg before the wedding. Claiming that she needs closure but actually hoping to rub her happiness in Greg’s face, she insists that she needs to meet with him. Todd fears that Toni still has feelings for Greg and threatens to leave her if she sees him. Toni declares that Todd needs to trust her; she ignores his ultimatum and meets with Greg anyway. Meanwhile, Joan is devastated when William’s nephew/son cries every time she holds him, as she sees it a sign that she wouldn’t be a good mother. After Jabari tells Maya and Lynn that his classmates think they are lesbians, Maya angers Lynn by saying that she wouldn’t even be her type.
Maya invites Darnell’s girlfriend, Lena, to her Christmas party in an effort to be civil. However, she grows jealous and gets Jalen to pose as her boyfriend. She is also furious when Lena gets Jabari a Game Cube (he wasn’t supposed to get one because of his poor performance in school), and accuses the couple of not communicating with one another. Maya later catches Lena with a man at the bar, and winds up in the strange position of trying to help her with her relationship. Meanwhile, Joan gets really carried away while organizing a caroling outing for her friends.
Prophet and Loss
A stranger stops Joan on the street and tells her, "You made the right decision." He claims to be a psychic, and manages to convince Joan that he is for real. She takes his words as a sign that she was right to break up with Brock. However, she soon re-considers after she runs into Brock on the street. She observes him playing with his young niece and concludes that she might be satisfied having children in her life without being a mother for a while. However, a visit to her gynecologist gives her pause when she is forced to face the fact that her child-bearing years are limited (because many older women face complications in their pregnancies). Meanwhile, a dream prompts William to confront Lynn about annulling their marriage. He accompanies the skeptical Maya when she tries to confront the psychic. After the man tells him that "she’s right in front of you," he mistakenly believes that he is destined to be with Lynn. The psychic later directs him toward a woman waiting for a bus, who is not interested. However, William is more anxious than ever to get out of the marriage so that he can try to find the right woman.
Comedy of Eros
Toni refuses to believe Joan’s claims that she isn’t upset about spending Valentine’s Day alone, and insists on constantly trying to cheer her up. She follows Joan to the movies and annoys everyone by talking loudly and giving away plot points. Joan gets up and moves to another seat, and runs into her old friend Davis. They go out to dinner and have a nice time together, but Joan realizes that she isn’t ready to get into another relationship. Toni tells Todd that they shouldn’t exchange Valentine’s gifts because of their limited finances, but then reveals that she recently spent $2800 on boots. Todd is hurt when Toni then buys Joan a gift, but Toni actually realizes this and takes steps to correct her mistake. William tries desperately to make a connection with Donna, the woman at the bus stop, but she wants nothing to do with him. He makes the ill-advised move of sending Lynn to talk to her, which only ends up frightening Donna further. However, he later pleads his case and convinces her to go out with him. A pro baseball star in Maya’s class takes an interest in her, but she repeatedly shoots him down. She finally agrees to date him after he sends a stretch limo to pick her up for class.
Leggo My Ego
Joan’s procrastination puts her job in jeopardy when she doesn’t act quickly enough toward securing donations for a charity auction, which she has agreed to arrange for her boss. She turns to Toni to use her connections to the area’s finer merchants to bring in an item that can help Joan meet the auction’s $60,000 goal. However, Toni forgets to help Joan because she is obsessed with tracking down her "best friend," supermodel Beverly Johnson (with whom she has never actually had any contact). Joan launches into a verbal tirade about Toni, which she overhears. Toni accuses her friends of being "jealous, ugly bitches" and continues on her quest to meet Beverly Johnson. She eventually meets Beverly, who is perplexed by her claims that they are soulmates and mistakes Toni for a schizophrenic. Toni reluctantly sees a therapist, where she initially raves about her life, but soon breaks down and admits that she fears no one would miss her if she died. Meanwhile, William seeks revenge after Lynn uses a photo of him in the shower (with an unflattering shower cap) to blackmail him into paying her alimony. Lynn finds herself homeless again when she has to use her entire alimony settlement to outbid William for a painting that "speaks" to her; but bounces back by taking an apartment next to Maya’s—as the new manager.
Good Catch or Bad Hop?
Maya and her friends enjoy perks such as limo rides and entry to exclusive clubs, courtesy of her baseball player beau, Alex. She is reluctant to refer to him as her boyfriend, and bristles when he repeatedly makes up excuses to avoid spending time with her. She also objects when he surprises her with expensive new furniture. Alex convinces her to allow him to shower her with gifts, as he enjoys doing this and doesn’t think of her as a groupie. However, when the girls show up at a party, Alex refuses to allow them to come inside. Toni forces Maya to face the fact that Alex only wants her as arm candy, to see when he sees fit while he continues to play the field. William continually bothers Alex for autographed memorabilia, while his friend Dan (who suddenly appears after learning that William knows a baseball star) can’t seem to get the idea that Lynn isn’t interested in him. Lynn, meanwhile, works on a documentary about single mothers. She pays them for their time by babysitting their kids.
On The Couch
Toni continues to see her therapist, Dr. Miller. Rather than following the doctor’s advice and writing a letter to her mother detailing her grievances against her, Toni instead brings her mother to her sessions. Veretta stays with Toni and Todd and monopolizes the house. Todd tries to tolerate her rude and thoughtless behavior, but insists that she stop smoking in the house. Veretta refuses, and says that she doesn’t have to listen to Todd because her daughter paid for the house. They get into a heated confrontation, and wind up ordering Toni to choose between them. Meanwhile, William worries that the fact that he and Donna have such different backgrounds (she cleans bed pans for a living and insists on travelling by bus) will impede their chances of having a future together. He vows to try his best to keep the relationship going, because he considers Donna to be special. Joan obsesses over whether to resume sessions with her own therapist after Lynn and Maya make several derisive comments about her sanity.
Love, Peace and Hair Grease
Joan grows increasingly bored with her job. William notes that she doesn’t hold the passion for the law that is required to truly succeed in their profession. She feels rejuvenated as she helps re-decorate Lynn’s apartment. As Lynn returns some items she "borrowed" from her friends, Joan is furious to discover that Lynn forgot to send in Joan’s application to the Fashion Institute many years ago. Joan had believed that she had been rejected, and had decided to go to law school because she didn’t think she could make it as a designer. She lashes out at Lynn and blames her for changing the course of her life. Joan confides in Sharon about her dissatisfaction at work, and Sharon quickly takes her gripes to Swedelson. Joan assumes that she is about to be fired and tries desperately to get her job back. Much to her surprise, she receives a promotion. However, she realizes that her new success hasn’t changed her feelings about her job, and decides to quit. Meanwhile, Maya receives a D+ for an essay about her personal experiences, but her work impresses the customers at Ronnie’s salon. She enjoys her new fan base, which eats up her insights. She soon decides to write a book instead of giving away her wisdom for free.
Wieners and Losers
The newly unemployed Joan cannot stand the idea of just sitting back and relaxing, and drives her friends crazy by constantly cooking and knitting for them. She goes to the mall, and winds up taking a job at Wienercycle. Her friends tell her that this is a very stupid idea and convince her to quit. She tries to do this, but is inspired by the teenage shift manager’s take-charge attitude and decides to stay and help her. Joan tries to defend her bizarre actions as the result of her work ethic, but experiences a wake-up call when she learns that the manager isn’t really as gung-ho about her job as she had appeared to be. Meanwhile, William annoys Toni, Lynn and Maya by flaunting his new $6000 pen. Toni gets revenge by swiping the pen, and the girls enjoy watching William behave like a madman as he tries to find it.
He Loves Her, He Loves Me Not
Joan feels bad about the way the girls have treated William’s past girlfriends and decides to go out of her way to make Donna feel welcome. She hosts a dinner to give them a chance to get to know her. Donna is unnerved by the closeness between Joan and William, particularly when they take it upon themselves to help her organize a Cinco de Mayo party for the convalescent home where she works and get really excited about it. Donna confronts William during the ride home and offers the opinion that he is in love with Joan. He insists that this is not true and tries to provide reassurance. He then angers Joan by backing out of plans to do a song and dance together at the Cinco de Mayo party. Donna observes William’s reaction to Joan’s ridiculous performance and again opines that he loves her. William tells her about the psychic, but Donna believes that her purpose might actually have been to force William to face his true feelings for Joan. Meanwhile, the girls are furious when they repeatedly lose their favorite lunch table to a group of Asian women with personalities similar to theirs.
The Partnerless Partner
William is made a senior partner in the law firm. He is thrilled about this, as is Maya, who will now get a substantial raise. He brings a beautiful date to the party honoring his promotion. Joan comments that he now has everything he wants, but William still feels as though something is missing. He talks with Swedelson at a strip club. Swedelson says that William should not pursue a relationship with Joan and instead advises him to go after Sharon, who had earlier seemed to be sending William signals. However, William discovers that Sharon is involved with the building’s security guard. He goes to Joan’s house and tries to share his feelings with her, but backs down after she talks about thinking of him as her "big brother." Meanwhile, Toni, Maya and Lynn enjoy the benefits of an especially friendly masseuse.
Just the Three of Us
Toni has an apparent breakthrough in therapy. When Dr. Miller asks with whom she would want to be stranded on a deserted island, she picks Joan and realizes from her explanation that it is because she loves her. She is excited to realize that she is capable of love. However, Todd is miffed when she explains this to him. He doesn’t like the idea that she didn’t know about love before, and sees her decision to choose Joan over him as another example of her tendency to not take his feelings into consideration. William tells Toni that she was wrong to talk about her session with Todd, and recommends that she do something to show how much she appreciates him. She plans to surprise him with a picnic lunch, but sees him dining with an attractive colleague and assumes they are having an affair. Although he insists that she is mistaken, Toni is worried, and the tension between them escalates. Maya completes her manuscript and asks Lynn to read it and give feedback. She asks her not to share the manuscript with Joan because she fears she will be too critical. Lynn blabs to Joan, who is offended and pressures Maya into letting her read the book. Meanwhile, William continually frets over his hesitance to share his feelings with Joan.
Love Thy Neighbor
Maya’s neighbor, Jalen, tells her that he would like to begin dating. She turns him down because she feels that she has too much going on in her life for a relationship. Lynn expresses an interest in Jalen and asks Maya’s permission to date him. Maya gives her approval, but then confesses to Joan that she only did this because she is sure that Jalen will reject Lynn. Much to her surprise, Lynn and Jalen being seeing each other. A jealous Maya continually makes up excuses to barge in and try to break up their date. She eventually admits that she is interested in Jalen. She and Lynn ask him to choose between them, but Maya fears the repercussions on their friendship. They decide that neither of them will date Jalen. Todd tells Toni that he has been offered a job interview in New York. He is very upset when she tells him to go for it without even asking him for any details. He gets the job as a plastic surgeon on a reality show, and tells Toni that he doesn’t want her to come with him to New York. William writes to the child he sponsors, Pepito, about his dilemma involving Joan. Pepito advises him to share his feelings, but William wimps out again. Meanwhile, Joan continually has her attempts to eat a sandwich foiled.
New York Bound
Maya self-publishes her book, Oh, Hell Yes, and sells it on the streets, where it is a tremendous success. Ronnie tells her that a major publisher wants to offer her a five-figure deal to release the book. Toni repeatedly tries to call Todd in New York, but he refuses to return her messages. She continues to act as though nothing is wrong in front of her friends, even when they express concern about her well-being. Lynn gets a new boyfriend, Lenny. Her friends note their physical resemblance and all the things they have in common (including allergies) and offer the opinion that they might be brother and sister. Lynn talks with Lenny’s parents, who assure her that this is not the case. She breaks up with him because she is still freaked out at the idea that he could have been her brother, and decides to search for her birth father. William decides not to confess his feelings for Joan, and pursues an attractive woman he meets at the bar. However, he runs into Joan when she stops by the bar, and his date leaves for a moment to let them catch up. William winds up kissing Joan and telling her that he wants to be more than friends.
New York Unbound
Maya learns that the publisher wants to sanitize her book to make it more accessible to white readers. She convinces her editor to stand up for her vision and get the original version of the book released. She succeeds, and Maya receives $25,000. After William shows up at her house to confront her, Joan flees for New York with Toni. Toni sees Todd with his colleague, Natalie, and again assumes he is cheating on her. She makes a scene on the set as she begs him not to leave her. Joan is surprised to run into William, who has come to New York to give legal advice to Maya. Joan tries to tell William that she isn’t interested in him romantically. He says that this is okay, and that things between them will soon return to normal. William runs into Monica, his evil, gold-digging ex-girlfriend. Lynn visits her birth mother, Sandy, for information on her biological father. She learns that Sandy wanted to marry Lynn’s father, but Sandy’s parents paid the man to go away. They claim it was because of Sandy’s illness, but Sandy insists it was because the man is black. Lynn drops in on her girlfriends in New York, and later goes to see her father. She poses as a census taker and is prepared to leave when he denies having children outside his marriage, but stops when he admits to having a daughter. Todd tells Toni that their marriage is over because she doesn’t trust him or care about him. She says this is not true. When he wonders why she is trying so hard to hold onto him, she reveals that she is pregnant. Joan realizes that she is in love with William and goes to his room to see him, unaware that he is with Monica again.