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Joan Ramsey is a deeply religious neighbor and adversary towards Miss Robichaux's Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies. She is a character in Coven portrayed by Patti LuPone.


Joan Ramsey is a fundamentalist Christian woman, who moves next door to the Academy with her son, Luke. She strives to protect her family from all that is dark and ungodly.[1]

Personality and Appearance[]

Joan is a stern, abusive, and domineering woman of faith. From meeting Nan, she always is quick to punish Luke for defending Nan, who she deems a negative influence towards their faith. Joan very much feared and despised witchcraft, along with its practitioners, believing it to be an evil, satanic force.

Despite her fundamentalist, puritanical beliefs, she was a self-righteous and dishonest hypocrite, as cleverly acknowledged by Fiona Goode. She was also a homicidal and remorseless murderer, murdering both her husband and son in cold blood.


Joan and her son Luke move into the neighboring house to the Academy, where while moving in, a shirtless Luke is spied upon by Madison, Nan and Queenie. Joan soon comes over, and spotting the girls, convinces Luke to go inside and put on a new shirt.

Later on, Nan and Madison come to the house, competing for Luke's attention; while Nan's present of a butter cake is fairly warmly accepted, Joan finds Madison's choice of attire scandalous and corrupting, and when she tries to shoo them out of the house, Madison inadvertently displays her abilities of telekinesis and newly-found pyrokinesis by setting their curtains aflame.

Joan visits the Academy to assert her faith and warning the girls to leave her family alone and encounters Fiona Goode, who brashly criticizes religious people of being hypocritical. Madison strolls in and mocks Joan's upbringing of her son and religious beliefs.[2]

Convinced the witches have the power of the Devil residing inside them, Joan refuses to let Luke out of the house after his injury. When he expresses his desire to see Nan again she forces him to take a bleach enema, then locks him in a closet, where Nan finds him. Being fed up with her dominating ways, he attempts to leave with Nan, but Joan begins a confrontation, calling the police on Nan. At this point, Hank Foxx stages his assassination attempt on Nan, but kills only Joan and wounds Luke.[3]

Fiona and Misty Day come over from the Coven house and as a test of power of resurgence, Fiona gets Misty to revive Joan, and she does.

At the hospital, Nan tells Zoe and Madison that Joan refuses to let her see Luke. After entering the room anyways, the comatose Luke manages to talk to Nan and she is able to verify to Joan that she is able to read Luke's mind. Things take a dark turn, however, when Luke begins to communicate his knowledge of Joan murdering his wealthy lawyer father by putting bees in his car and triggering a fatal allergic reaction after catching him receiving fellatio from a mistress. Joan yells for Nan to leave. Luke soon wakes up from his coma and confronts his mom, who smothers him to death with a pillow.[4]

Nan and Zoe learn at the hospital that Luke has been killed. Nan heads to Joan's house, where she confronts Joan on the murder of her son via her clairvoyance. When Joan reveals she had Luke cremated, Nan becomes enraged and uses her mind control technique to force Joan to pull out a bottle of bleach from the cabinet. Zoe is pushed back out of the room when she tries to intervene. Nan forces Joan to drink the bleach, killing her and effectively using her method of "cleansing" against her.[5]


  • Joan Ramsey is reminiscent of Margaret White from 1974's Carrie by Stephen King, who also was a religious fundamentalist who abused her child and believed the devil was the source of magical powers.
  • Thematically speaking, Joan would appreciate Margaret Booth's ideas on godly cleanliness in 1984.