"Joyce, I am so sorry about William. I have great memories of him."
"I'm glad, Max. That was his gift to us... wonderful memories. Even if Chloe doesn't understand yet." — Max and Joyce in "Out of Time"
Joyce Madsen (formerly Joyce Price) is Chloe Price's mother and long-time resident of Arcadia Bay. She is the widow of William Price and is currently married to David Madsen. After her marriage, she took her new husband's surname.
Joyce is a strong mother figure within the game. She is a kind, hardworking and a sassy woman, she takes no nonsense from both Chloe and the squabbling diner patrons she deals with daily. She is a loving, worried mother who wishes the best for her daughter.
The following is what Max wrote about Joyce in her journal:
Talking to Joyce Price after five years was almost as intense as seeing Chloe again. Especially right back in "ye olde" Two Whales Diner. That clinking of silverware and the smell of sizzling bacon rewound me back to being a kid, hanging out there with my parents for breakfast. I remember her always smiling at Chloe, even in mischief. Doubt she smiles at her hijinks now, but they still banter like mother and daughter. I moved to Seattle so soon after William died that I never saw how it affected Joyce. I'm glad she's not pissed at me for being selfish and never looking back. I still remember the last time Chloe and I saw him alive. I wonder how often Joyce relives that day? That's the worst kind of rewind: one you can't control. But if I could go back to that moment... what would I do?
I can only imagine how Joyce ended up with David Madsen. Talk about opposites. You can tell she loves him - disturbing as that sounds. Maybe she just wanted a more structured life for herself... Obviously it didn't work out that way with Chloe. I hope they both treat her right. Joyce deserves the best.
Joyce was married to William Price. In 1993, she became pregnant with their first and only daughter Chloe Price. Joyce and William both travelled to San Francisco and took a photograph in front of the Golden Gate Bridge, as noted by the photograph of the holiday she keeps in her bedside dresser. Max notes that she has "a little shrine to William" there, so obviously she misses him and their relationship. The couple raised their newborn in Arcadia Bay, where Chloe became best friends with Max Caulfield, practically a second daughter for the Price family.
In 1999, Joyce and William bought to their daughter a cat, named Bongo, who was later killed by a passing car.
In 2008, her husband William died in a car accident. Joyce often blames herself for the death of her husband, because she was the reason behind him leaving the house the day he died. She rang him to ask for a ride after getting groceries, resulting in his car crash. Chloe has also admitted that she also sometimes blames her mother for her father's untimely death.
After William's death, Joyce met David Madsen in the Two Whales Diner and married him sometime after, much to the disgust of her daughter who resented him for replacing her father and being too harsh on her.
Episode One - "Chrysalis"
Joyce is known as Chloe's mother and is mentioned by Max several times before we meet her. Although not met her right away, Max discovers a shrine to her past husband, William in her bedside dresser, revealing that she misses him, but also that David is kind and understanding enough to let her have this tribute to her past lover in their room.
Max also realizes that Joyce still works in the same diner from years ago, and comments that they had "the best damn hamburgers in Arcadia". Max finds overdue bills all over the household, implying that Joyce and David are having great monetary troubles. Some of the bills also confirm that Joyce changed her surname to Madsen after remarrying.
At the end of the first episode, she can also be seen in the diner, wiping a counter table during the snow-storm. Pictures of her family behind the counter, primarily Chloe, give us the impression that she greatly cares about her husband and daughter.
Episode Two - "Out of Time"
In the diner, Joyce takes Max's order for breakfast, clearly happy to see her again. She doesn't guilt trip Max for not staying in touch over the years. Max comments that Joyce looks the same, and then clarifies that she means Joyce is "still pretty" after all the years she spent away. Joyce isn't fooled by the quick save and is aware that she's been a waitress for perhaps too many years. However, she laughs, takes the compliment and tells Max how smart she is.
Depending on Max's choices in the previous episode, Joyce will either tell Max she wishes she'd been there for Chloe after she got caught with the joint, or she will reprimand Max for taking the blame for the joint, but apologizes for Max having to meet David in those circumstances. Ultimately, she wants Max to be a good influence in Chloe's life and encourages Max to be there for Chloe.
Joyce reveals that she doesn't blame Max for moving on with her life after she moved away from Arcadia Bay. The two chat about how Chloe's life has remained stuck in the past, the girl becoming more rebellious as the years went on. Joyce berates Chloe as she comes in late, punishing her with less bacon than usual. She criticizes her daughter for putting her whole college fund on her diner tab. She brings food to the two girls.
Max predicts the future for Chloe. Joyce is a key part of it, berating a trucker for dropping his mug, threatening him with no refills. She also breaks up a fight between Trevor and Justin Williams, who are squabbling in the corner.
As the girls leave the diner, Max receives a phone call from Kate Marsh. If she doesn't answer, Joyce waves the girls goodbye. However, if Max picks up and speaks with Kate, Joyce will have a conversation with her daughter, resulting in a small argument. Chloe is unamused and leaves the diner.
Episode Three - "Chaos Theory"
After spending the night at Chloe's house, Max will see Joyce preparing breakfast in the morning upon going downstairs. Max will also see an unanswered message on the answering machine. If Max plays the message, it will be a police report on Chloe's truck being spotted in the vicinity of Blackwell Academy at around the time of the break-in. Joyce will express annoyance at Chloe getting into trouble.
Delete the messageMax may delete the message after playing the message and rewinding time. Joyce will be unaware of the message.
Didn't delete the messageMax may play the message and choose not to delete the message on the answering machine.
Upon speaking with Joyce, Joyce will offer Max a choice of bacon and eggs or pancakes for breakfast. Either choice will have Joyce asking Max to find and obtain the ingredients for her.
Choose pancakesJoyce will remark that Max usually ate more pancakes than William and ask Max to fetch eggs and milk for her. The eggs can be found at the top of the bag of groceries next to the front door The milk can be found on the dining table.
Choose bacon and eggsJoyce will remark that Max and Chloe would wake up unusually fast whenever Joyce announced eggs and bacon were served. Joyce will ask Max to fetch eggs and bacon for her. The eggs can be found at the top of the bag of groceries next to the front door. The bacon can be found inside the refrigerator directly behind Joyce.
Max will help Joyce in preparing breakfast. Afterwards, Joyce will ask Max to take a seat at the dining table. Joyce will bring out the family album and show several photos to Max. Max will comment on each one of them and Joyce will give the last photo her late husband William Price took of Max and Chloe together when they were younger.
Chloe will join Max at the dining table and whisper a mischievous plan to Max to search David's computer laptop files while Chloe starts an argument to distract Joyce. Before Max could report her findings to Chloe, David will also return home, clearly aggressive and sleep-deprived after staying up all night writing vandalism reports about the Blackwell break-in Max and Chloe had been involved in, or in taking temporary part-time work to supplement the family income as a result of David's dismissal from Blackwell. Although Joyce told Max she usually doesn't interfere or concern herself with David's affairs at work, Joyce will speak up and comment on David's habit of harassing Blackwell students. Chloe will start an argument with David about his camera surveillance on Blackwell and on his own household. Max has the option to either side with Chloe or David.
Side with DavidMax will say there is no proof David was ever involved in Rachel's disappearance, Joyce will put an end to the argument by asking Chloe to stop hurling wild accusations at anyone in her house. David will calm down and take a seat at the dining table to eat his breakfast Joyce had prepared. Joyce will thank Max for siding with her family, even though Chloe doesn't understand it yet.
Side with ChloeMax will accuse David of taking surveillance footage of everyone in Blackwell and inside his own house, yet not taking any action against Nathan Prescott. Joyce will be shocked that David is keeping camera surveillance footage of the entire house in David's laptop and demand an explanation. However, David refuses to explain his actions. Joyce will get upset and demand David to leave the house and stay at a hotel until everyone figures out what David is up to, saying that the house is bought and listed under her name. David will be very hurt by this and tell Max that he doesn't want to see Max ever again as he stands to one side, looking out through the window and reflecting on things. Joyce will tell Max that David deserved everything that happened to him.
Episode Four - "Dark Room"
In the alternative timeline, Joyce is very caring for the paralyzed Chloe. She says she enjoys every moment she has with her family, and she doesn't want to think about Chloe's condition getting worse.
When Max returns to the Original Timeline, she can observe the state of the relationship between David and Joyce.
Side with ChloeIn the normal timeline, she is really upset about David if Max sided with Chloe in the previous morning and divulged David's surveillance system on the entire Price household. She leaves a message for him, saying that she doesn't want him to be at home when she gets from work. Also, she has crumpled up her photo of her marrying David.
Side with DavidIn the normal timeline, she is only annoyed at Chloe for just hurling wild accusations and picking a fight with her stepfather if Max sided with David in the previous morning by mentioning there was no real proof David was ever involved in Rachel's disappearance. David gave Joyce a treat at a fine restaurant and Joyce left a message suggesting that both David and Joyce bring Chloe along next time for a family outing together.
Episode Five - "Polarized"
Joyce is trapped inside the diner during the storm with Warren Graham, the Old Guy and Frank Bowers (if he was not killed by Chloe in Episode 4). She is trying to aid Frank and the old man, who are hurt from the storm, and Warren has gathered first aid supplies to help out. Joyce is very glad to see Max. Max can encourage Joyce to stay with David.
She messaged Max asking if she has seen Chloe, while Max is trapped inside the Dark Room, which can be read later.
In the Sacrifice Chloe ending, she is among the people who attend Chloe's funeral. In the Sacrifice Arcadia Bay ending, she dies in the storm.
In the alternative timeline, Joyce works part-time at the Pan Estates owned by the Prescott family. It is implied that she still works at the Two Whales Diner but has to work both jobs in order to pay for the huge medical expenses due to Chloe's paralysis from the car accident.
Max may ask Joyce about David Madsen, and although she finds it strange, describes him as a cute and quiet person who stops by to eat at the diner sometimes. Beyond that, it is clear she has no romantic interest in him because she and her husband are obviously still in a loving relationship.
Some of Max's actions can have consequences when it comes to the determinant relationships in Joyce's life.
- William Price - Joyce and William were married, and it's clear from her frequent comments about him and her shrine to his memory that she deeply misses her departed husband. He died five years ago in 2008.
- David Madsen (Determinant) - In 2008, the two met in the Two Whales Diner and married sometime after. It is clear that Joyce loves David. However, there is the potential for Max to break the family apart if she blames David and reveals his surveillance addiction to Joyce. In this case, Joyce asks him to leave the house.
- Chloe Price - Joyce's daughter, Chloe is a challenge for her. However, Joyce is clearly a loving mother and wishes nothing but the best for her only daughter.
- Max Caulfield - Joyce treats Max like a second daughter, no doubt due to her growing up as Chloe's best friend and spending much time with her and her family during the girls' childhood years. The two remark fondly about William, and they agree that they want the best for Chloe.
Joyce's hair clip is the same color blue we should associate with hope for the future and vulnerability. Joyce has much hope for the future and her family; eternally hoping that everything will work out okay for her daughter and husband. This changes in the alternative timeline, which is curiously symbolic of her loss of hope, due to knowing that her daughter is going to die.
There is a possibility that Joyce's spirit animal is the Whale. Due to her working for years in the Two Whales Diner, it seems to be the only animal associated with her at any point. Whales are generally associated with wisdom, emotional healing and the importance of family and community. All this makes sense when considering Joyce's personality. Whales are history keepers; the dead whales on the beach of Arcadia Bay could symbolize the death of the history of the Bay due to the destruction of the town via the upcoming tornado. Joyce's strong desire to keep her family together and to unify her daughter and husband (David) make sense when considering the whale as her totem.
- "Call him David if you don't want to be lectured. You only get one damn slice of bacon today."
- — said to Chloe in "Out of Time"
- "Did you break another cup? Really? No refill for you!"
- — said to a trucker in the diner in "Out of Time"
- "You did the right thing. You moved forward with your life. I did, after William passed on. Chloe... Chloe chose to stay angry... Anyway, I hope we see more of you. Chloe needs an old friend again."
- — Joyce to Max in "Out of Time"
- "My favorite photographers probably take pictures similar to yours. You make David happy, Joyce." - "He wants us all to be happy, Max. He's just not great at showing it."
- — Conversation between Joyce and Max in "Chaos Theory"
- "Max Caulfield, are you actually jealous of Rachel?"
- — said to Max in the kitchen in "Chaos Theory"
- "Bad or good, I embrace every moment with my daughter and husband. This is what it means to be a family... and we'll always be one, no matter what."
- — Joyce to Max in Alternative Timeline in "Dark Room"
- "Nothing would make me happier than for David and Chloe to make peace, not war. But I don't know what to do anymore... I just... I just want this storm to blow over forever. Maybe it's time we leave Arcadia Bay... if we can..."
- — Joyce to Max in "Polarized"
- "I know. And yes, he's not William, but that's okay. He's not supposed to be. You reminded me of when he came into my life... I was ready to give up. David's love gave me strength. He even told me I was his hero... And I can't give up loving him. I want him to come back home... I hope I get to tell him that soon."
- — Joyce to Max in "Polarized"
- ↑ The eggs were moved to the kitchen after the release of the Limited Edition.
- ↑ See here for more information: http://www.spiritanimal.info/whale-spirit-animal/