|| "Even miracles take a little time."
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Joe Gardener was a middle school band teacher who has long dreamed of performing jazz music onstage, and finally gets a chance after impressing other jazz musicians during an opening act at the Half Note Club. As he was celebrating his new gig, he accidentally fell down a manhole and got his soul sent to The Great Before, where he meets a soul with a dim view of life named 22. They later learn that Joe's body is sill alive, and he must find his way back with 22's help before time runs out.
As a human, he is African-American with a black mustache and has black-rimmed glasses on to see better. He wears a grey fedora, a black sweater, brown pants, and red shoes.
As a soul, his nose is not featured but his glasses and fedora are now part of him.
- He's the first African-American protagonist in a Pixar film.