Jo is a tough but sensitive photographer who joined Melrose Place during the first season, moving into the titular apartment complex, where she developed a longtime off-and-on romantic bond with Jake Hanson.
Throughout the series, Jo was shown to have several abusive relationships, with Jake being among the exceptions. She is the ex-wife of Charles Reynolds, whose drunken tendencies eventually drove her away. Later, she was reunited with an old boyfriend named Reed Carter, an ex-con who'd secretly become a criminal again. When Jo discovered drugs on Reed's boat, Reed knocked her unconscious, and set out to sea. He later revealed to Jo that he intended to start anew elsewhere after one last drug exchange, and wanted her to join him. Jo pretended to cooperate while making secret efforts to escape or summon help. Following a couple of physical bouts, she eventually shot Reed for revenge, and was later found by the coast guard.
After being exonerated, Jo gave birth to Reed's baby, Austin. She then found herself entering several battles, with the help of attorney Henry Waxman, to keep her son after he became the target of Reed's parents, Dennis and Marilyn Carter, and a mentally unbalanced Kimberly Shaw. Eventually, a reluctant Jo put Austin up for adoption, feeling it would be best for him.
Jo later entered a relationship with Jake's brother Jess, unaware that he'd reverted to criminal activities at the time. When Jess appeared before Jo with a mysteriously obtained ring, Jo declined his marriage proposal. This prompted Jess to beat Jo up, which, in turn, prompted Jake to attack Jess at a construction job. While fighting, the brothers fell from a tall height, with only Jake surviving. After Jess was buried and Jake had recovered, he and Jo eventually resumed their romantic relationship, though they would gradually become mere friends once again.
Jo then got involved with Richard Hart, who had previously been involved with Jane Andrews. Their relationship would always be hampered by their dealings with Jake and Jane and the rivalry between Jane and Richard. Eventually, Jo got frustrated with the whole thing and broke up with Richard. For a few episodes, Jo would befriend Laurie and her son Tyler, who were old friends of Sydney Andrews from Chicago.
She later met and began a romantic relationship with Dr. Dominick O'Malley. When Dominick chose to leave LA to work in Bosnia, he asked Jo to accompany him. Though she initially declined, she later stopped Dominick at the airport and stated that she didn't want to lose him. After he asked her to join him again, Jo finally agreed, and exited the series with her boyfriend. Jo and Jake later reunite and get married. They have 2 children: Jake Hanson, Jr. and Beth Hanson.
Melrose Place (2009)Edit
- Jo is the only character whose first appearance was in the original Melrose Place and appeared in both of its spin-offs (Models Inc. and Melrose Place (2009).
- Jo also made a brief appearance in the first episode of Models Inc., as part of a story line that helped launch the series and returned for two more episodes of Melrose Place (2009)