The burning question of the 2003-2004 TV season was this: “Does the world have room for two shows about young women who are visited by voices from a higher plane that tell them to help people?” The answer was “not so much,” and Wonderfalls ended up getting the quick hook while Joan of Arcadia managed to scoot along for two seasons — until America decided that the supernatural chat show it really wanted was The Ghost Whisperer, because America is stupid.

But anyway: Wonderfalls, like Joan of Arcadia, revolves around an attractive and intelligent, yet strangely grouchy and unambitious young woman who’s the most unlikely person to be called upon to do God’s errands, which by TV logic means that she’s actually the most likely person to be called upon to do God’s errands. Like Joan, Wonderfalls’ Jaye (Caroline Dhavernas) goes around trying to figure out the cryptic instructions of her “muses” (the inanimate objects that talk to her) and helping people with their problems, which is nice of her, considering the fact that following the muses’ orders is often the cause of the problems she’s solving.

That’s all beside the point, though, because the actual purpose of all these shenanigans is to get Jaye to hook up with her terribly cute bartender friend. This in spite of the fact that she’s constantly doing her absolute best to torpedo her chances with him, going into the relationship with the assumption that it will end badly and repeatedly misinterpreting the muses’ instructions as orders to break up with the boy. It’s one thing to wallow in post-collegiate slacker aimlessness, but it’s another entirely to be so resistant to the fact that the entire universe is trying to give you a shot at happiness.

Luckily, Wonderfalls is one of those shows in which the unsympathetic main character is saved by a much more entertaining supporting cast. While a few of the characters (Jaye’s brother Aaron, her partner-in-snark Mahandra) may be a little on the underdeveloped side, most of them are a delight to watch, particularly Diana Scarwid as Jaye’s archly WASP-y mother and Katie Finneran as her manic older sister. Easily missed amidst all the romantic comedy spiel and the talking stuffed animals and the “am I crazy or not” angst, Dhavernas and Finneran manage to develop a really nice sisterly chemistry in between all the caustic one-liners they shoot at each other.

No show can survive solely on its concept, no matter how high: Fictional TV is a character-driven medium, and it’s the characters’ relationships that propel a series. Joan of Arcadia sacrificed its characters to its concept, and suffered as a result. We’ll never get a chance to see if Wonderfalls would have made the same mistake, and maybe it’s better that way; like other short-lived shows, we miss the people, but we probably don’t miss the inevitable decline.