‘Ordinary Joe’ Star Natalie Martinez on Diving Into Amy’s Past & Looking Towards the Future

Ordinary Joe Season 1 Natalie Martinez
Spoiler Alert
Matt Miller/NBC

[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 1, Episode 8 of Ordinary Joe, “Reset.”]

The latest episode of Ordinary Joe brings Amy’s (Natalie Martinez) history into focus as the show turns back the clock and explores her origins.

As the daughter of Cuban immigrant parents, Amy’s political ambitions started at a young age, making her path in each of Ordinary Joe‘s three timelines clearer. Along with revealing that her father spent time in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, viewers also see Amy reveal her one-night stand with Bobby (Adam Rodriguez) to musician Joe (James Wolk), go all-in on a relationship with cop Joe despite her apprehensions with law enforcement, and make a big life decision with Eric (Charlie Barnett) in nurse Joe’s timeline.

Below, Martinez opens up about the episode’s biggest revelations and teases what viewers can anticipate as Ordinary Joe continues on NBC.

Ordinary Joe Season 1 Natalie Martinez and James Wolk

(Credit: Matt Miller/NBC)

How did learning about Amy’s backstory influence your approach to the role?

Natalie Martinez: One of the biggest things I talked about with Garrett [Lerner] and Russ [Friend] when we started building Amy was that I wanted her to be Cuban American with parents who exiled and fled Cuba and Castro’s regime. To see how her family left everything that they owned and came with nothing to the United States to chase this dream, she wanted to fight for those rights for people, and I think that’s one of the things that influenced Amy to get into politics. In Episode 8 her parents are very politically active and protesting, and they involved their kids as well, so I think that’s definitely something that’s molded Amy into who she is.

Amy told musician Joe about her one-night stand with Bobby. Was that a mistake on her part?

To set the record straight, I freaked out when I read that [she had a one-night stand]. I have family members who are team Jenny now because they’re not on team Amy. I think it’s hard. You make these decisions and we don’t know if they’re right or they’re wrong, or if they’re out of emotion, or they’re based out of fear. I think with Amy doing that, she was just lost and needed comfort.

She had her miscarriage, she and Joe had not really been connected for a while because of him trying to find Zeke. And I think it was something where she’s always looked up to Bobby that that line got crossed. I think it was definitely a mistake. I believe one hundred percent that she’s all about Joe, and Joe is her person, but it was a mistake.

Ordinary Joe Natalie Martinez as Amy

(Credit: Eliza Morse/NBC)

The revelation causes more issues with Joe. Is Amy going to feel even more alone moving forward in that universe, or will he show her support?

I think we’re trying to play these roles as grounded as we can, and I think in any situation like this there’s going to be a moment of disconnect. While Joe’s gathering what just happened, so is Amy. So, I feel like there’s going to be a moment where she’s going to feel alone, where she is going to be alone, and she’s going to have to choose, does she drop everything and focus on him again? She’s figuring out her truth and figuring out what she needs. So, I think there is going to definitely be a moment where she’s going to feel alone, rejected, and discarded a little bit.

Eric and Amy made the decision to explore adoption. Will we get see to see a peek into their adoption journey as the season continues?

[The decision] comes in a moment where they’re taking care of Chris and realizing that they are pretty good with kids, and they maybe want to do this. I think Eric was at a point where he was respecting Amy’s boundaries and was like, I don’t want to push for adoption because I wanted you to process first, and he was being respectful of her feelings, and she was being respectful of his, and I think they both wanted the same thing they just haven’t communicated it yet, so that makes the decision to adopt. And we’re definitely going to see her go through the interviews and see what that’s like as a couple.

Ordinary Joe Season 1 Natlie Martinez

(Credit: Matt Miller/NBC)

Considering what we learned of Amy’s past experiences with the police, is there any lingering doubt surrounding her relationship with cop Joe?

She’s giving it a try. I think that’s one of the biggest things, and it’s so funny because looking at Ordinary Joe and life itself, you have these relationships and it’s who you’re meant to be with. Sometimes you meet someone and you have no feelings and you meet this other person and they warm your heart up, and she had that with Joe. She wants to trust him, and he is a cop, so it’s hard for her because of what her family’s gone through. But she really, truly believes he is a good person.

She does encourage him to return to his beat cop career path. Does she see that as a positive opportunity for the community as well as for him?

I think what she sees with him is that decision he made to turn the evidence in and do the right thing, that says everything for her. He’s an honest cop. The fact that he doesn’t want things to happen like what happened to Amy’s dad — that’s why he wants to be on the beat, and that’s why he wants to be a cop. He wants to be a better person than his uncle was, and his father was. He wants to be Joe. So, I think that’s the biggest standout for her that allows her to open up to him.

ordinary joe season 1 james wolk

(Credit: Eliza Morse/NBC)

There’s an emotional moment in this episode where Amy’s parents come to visit her after Bobby’s death. Is that a fun challenge getting to explore that side of Amy?

When someone dies, you don’t process it at first. Everyone processes it differently and I’ve definitely been in situations where I’ve just made myself busy, whether it’s planning the funeral, doing this or doing that, which is what she’s doing. When my dad passed away, I had to try to do everything and it just became a workload. I didn’t even begin to process.

She just went straight workload, and then when she finally gets to see her parents, I think it was that snap back into reality where she got to bring her walls down. And with that, you just open the floodgates. I think Joe sees that and he really wanted to be that for Amy. He wanted to be that person that Amy could cry on.

What else should viewers look forward to?

There is something that’s going to happen that’s going to rock her world and everybody else’s world. We’re going to find out some news that we all thought was impossible.

Ordinary Joe, Mondays, 10/9c, NBC