|“||They don't like my New York flag, they don't even like my shorts.||”|
— Zoe Hart (Homecoming & Coming Home)
|“||The fact that you toughed it out, didn't quit- that's a Wilkes if I've ever seen one.||”|
Dr. Zoe Hart-Kinsella is the protagonist and titular character. She is a girl with a plan. That plan is focused around her dedication to become a doctor - more specifically, a heart surgeon like her father, Dr. Ethan Hart. As she told Dr. Harley Wilkes, who sought her out at her graduation from medical school to offer her a position in his medical practice, "Our last name is Hart so it's pre-destined" (Pilot) . She thinks her life is perfect - until four years later, it all comes crashing down.
Episode 1 In the fallout, her boyfriend, who did his residency at the same hospital, New York Hospital, as Zoe (as well as Zoe's father, previously), dumps her because she would rather talk about work than his day. Also, she fails to get the heart fellowship. To Zoe's indignation, her Chief of Surgery recommends she spend the next twelve months as a general practitioner and warns her she needs to improve her bedside manner, to see people as people, not puzzles to solve. Unfortunately for Zoe, there are no general practitioner positions available in New York City. Out of viable options, Zoe stumbles across a postcard from Harley Wilkes - who had continually sent her offers for a position at his medical practice over the last four years since his initial offer at her graduation from medical school and decides to accept.
Upon arriving in Bluebell, Alabama, she discovers Dr. Harley Wilkes died four months previously, and that he had mysteriously left his practice to her. But this wasn't without its complications - Harley had only left Zoe his half of the practice, which he shared with Dr. Brick Breeland, who had long been eager to have the whole practice to himself. After a rough start in Bluebell, rubbing nearly all the residents the wrong way, drunkenly making out with Wade Kinsella after faultily signing off on Old Man Jackson's eye exam (resulting in his running over George Tucker), and butting heads with the Breeland clan, Zoe is ready to return to New York with her mother, Mrs. Hart, and leave behind Bluebell when Emmeline Hattenbarger reveals the answer to the mystery of why Harley Wilkes would have left Zoe his practice - he was her father.
After confronting her mother about this information, and learning the truth, Zoe decides to stay in Bluebell, living in the carriage house on the Mayor's Plantation. She's determined to make the town see that she could be one of them, and so, to hang on to the medical practice her father had for 45 years.
Zoe and father, Ethan Hart were close, growing up, sharing his dream to become a doctor, and determined to follow in his footsteps and become a cardio-thoracic surgeon - even performing her residency at New York Hospital, the same hospital where he had done his, while her mother, Candice Hart tried to sway her daughter toward another direction.
According to Zoe's mother, when Zoe was ten she fell off a swing and the doctors believed she would need a blood transfusion- when it turned out Ethan 's blood didn't match Zoe's, it was revealed (unknowingly to ten-year-old Zoe) he was not her biological father.
Zoe's mother describes Ethan Hart as a man who can't handle complications, and though, he tried to stay a part of Zoe's life, he didn't feel up to the task. Shortly after the revelation, he left his family.
At one point Zoe wanted to change her last name from Hart to Wilkes but Zoe's father Ethan returned and fixed their relationship, he also offers Zoe to join him at network city with a fellowship which she considers and agrees to but then changes her mind at the airport.
At the age of 28, after moving to Bluebell, Alabama Zoe was given a photograph of Harley Wilkes and her mother together, and discovered her real father was Harley Wilkes, whom her mother, Candice Hart had an affair with on a cruise while engaged to another man.
After living in Bluebell for a time, and with the knowledge that Harley Wilkes was her real father, Zoe discovered she had an uncle - Jacob Wilkes (though deceased)- as well as an aunt - Maureen Wilkes (it is unclear whether Maureen was Harley and Jacob's sister, or Jacob's wife), and her grandmother, was named Claire Wilkes. (Claire's second husband was a French-Canadian named Guy, though it is unclear whether he or Claire's first husband is Zoe's grandfather.) Also, Zoe has a living pseudo uncle/second cousin in the form of Olin, who Claire Wilkes took in when he was a child and raised alongside her own children.
Neighbors, Zoe and Wade have an obvious attraction to one another- an attraction that nearly turned into more during the 2011 heat wave (In Havoc & In Heat). Though Zoe passed him off early on, she's continually seeing different sides of him she hadn't expected, and their relationship continues to evolve. Wade was able to make Zoe smile after the incident with Judson and Gigi (Homecoming & Coming Home) and later asks to buy her a drink, to which Zoe smiles and asks for a rain check (Hairdos & Holidays). Wade later discovers Zoe on a date with his estranged brother, Jesse, much to his dismay. However, he tries to deny his feelings for Zoe, and tells his brother he's free to date her because they're both snobbish and superior and would be perfect together. Unfortunately, Zoe overheard this exchange and later confronted Wade, asking if this was what he really thought of her. Wade says yes to this, and continues to point out the three men who have caught her eye since her arrival in Bluebell - a veterinarian , a lawyer , and an eco-geologist oceanographer/army hero - all lucrative careers, and takes off in his truck, leaving behind a surprised and hurt Zoe, who then chooses to take a step back from the idea of dating Jesse, telling him "I can't always stay out of people's business, but when I can I probably should" (Bachelorettes & Bullets). In Episode 1x22, Zoe and Wade find themselves stranded in a barn during a rainstorm. After saving a baby goat caught in barbwire, they agree that having sex might clear everything up. As they are about to kiss, they are interrupted by an officer who offers to drive them home. They have sex after they get dropped off during the rainstorm (The Big Day). In Season Two, they start dating and Wade seems to be a better man. However, Wade is caught with another woman (Claudette) in 2x15. (The Gambler) Wade finally admits that there was more to it than he initially stated. They break up in 2x16 in the town square after Wanda and Tom's wedding (Where I Lead Me). In 2x22, Zoe wakes up to realize that she slept with Wade. He believes that they are back to the casual relationship they had at the beginning of season 2. Zoe immediately regrets it, telling him that it was a mistake. In the end of the episode, Wade tells Zoe that he is in love with her, and she tells him that she is going to New York for the summer. Read more about Zoe and Wade here.
Zoe dated her New York boyfriend for six years- she describes it as "a study group that turned into a hook-up that turned into six years" (The Crush & The Crossbow). Read more about Zoe and New York Boyfriend here.
(Former Attraction/Best Friend)
The first person she met in Bluebell, Alabama, Zoe took in interest in George when she learned he had lived in New York for a time, and the pair connected despite his engagement, bonding over New York and a day spent together in Mobile, even almost sharing a kiss while George was on morphine after shooting himself in the leg with a crossbow (The Crush & The Crossbow). Later, George would admit to Wade Kinsella that there might be a spark between he and Zoe, but that he and Lemon were going to be married, and nothing would stop that - that is, until George broke off the engagement on Lemon and his wedding day. Read more about Zoe and George here.
Smitten with Zoe from the very beginning (Pilot), Tom continues to make his availability known to her, though she's apparently told him repeatedly that he's too young for her. On Bluebell, Alabama's website, Tom's poetry blog section - The Tom Long and Short of It, featured on the town website- primarily focuses on poems dedicated to Zoe. Zoe later uses his attraction to her to recruit him as a patient in order to reach her thirty percent quota to hang on to her half of the medical practice. Read more about Zoe and Tom here.
A handsome veterinarian from Mobile, Alabama, Dr. Lyons asked Zoe out on a date after being impressed by the subcuticular sutures she performed on Bo the pig in his absence. After her excitement turned to panic and she bailed on their date, Zoe apologized to Judson and asked him out on another date, to which he agreed. Their plans ended, however, after Judson would sleep with Zoe's best friend Gigi Godfrey at the annual pre-homecoming game party at the Mayor's Plantation. Later, Zoe called Judson in reference to a veterinary situation after seeing a patient, and the two began speaking again. Judson even sent Zoe flowers, with clear desire to rekindle their not-quite relationship- though Zoe admitted she liked him, she was reluctant to resume anything. Ultimately, to cover for a friend, Zoe publicly kissed Judson at the Rammer Jammer and gave him a key to her carriage house. Read more about Zoe and Judson here.
Zoe Hart and Jesse met when she patched up his sprained wrist. The two hit it off quickly, and she agreed to a lunch date later that day. However, events ensued and it was quickly discovered that Jesse was in fact, Wade Kinsella 's brother- which led to an incident where Zoe overheard a stinging conversation between Wade and Jesse, where Wade revealed a few harsh thoughts on Zoe. After Zoe and Wade talked, Jesse clearly still retained his interest in Zoe while Zoe took a step back, remarking "I can't always stay out of people's business, but when I can I probably should" (Bachelorettes & Bullets). Read more about Zoe and Jesse here.
Zoe and Jonah met at the store when a patient gave him a wine bottle they were about to give Zoe (Take Me Home, Country Roads). When Zoe and Wade break up, he offers to comfort her. He suggests that a breakup is better with mind-blowing sex with a sexy doctor. Zoe was threatened because townspeople trusted him more than her since they knew Jonah his entire life. In an attempt to get over her breakup, Zoe went partying with him over spring break, but nothing happened. Although Jonah thought it was implied that they were going to sleep together. When Zoe is on her plane for New York, a pilot has health issues and they ask for any doctors on board (On The Road Again). Jonah is also on board, and they connect while saving the pilot's life. After recommendations by Jonah, Zoe decides to spend the next 3 months in New York, with him. She goes to a wedding reception and agrees to let Jonah be her date if he agrees to pretend to be mute the entire night. Read more about Zoe and Jonah here.
While taking a summer trip to New York, Zoe starts dating a writer named Joel and they eventually decide to buy a house together. His career takes off and the realization of them having conflicting jobs comes to a head (small-town Alabama doctor vs. LA or London screenwriter). They break up in 3x17. Read more about Zoe and Joel here.
While she is getting over Joel, Zoe dates Vince who accidentally rammed into her while she wasn't where she going. She tries asking AnnaBeth for advice but AnnaBeth is tied up having sex with BlueBell's enemy mayor's nephew. She then enlists help from Lemon who's also having male trouble, trying to see if she wants to date Peter, a journalist who has just come back from a six-month business trip.
- Zoe attended Johns Hopkins University (Help Me Make It Through The Night).
- Zoe was struck in the head by Polly Parker in front of the Rammer Jammer in the episode (In Havoc & In Heat).
- Zoe was bitten by a Copper Head Snake in the episode (Gumbo & Glory).
- Zoe hates Agnes's sweet tea - she can be seen spitting it out in the episode The Crush & The Crossbow. Lavon says it's not that sweet if you compare it to Grape Lemonade or a cup of sugar.
- Zoe first held a scalpel when she was nine years old, as stated in her graduation speech (Pilot).
- You can see Harley's postcards to Zoe here.
- As of the end of the second Lemon is the only main character who Zoe has yet to treat as a patient: George, Wade, Lavon, AnnaBeth, Tansey, Wanda and even Brick have seen Dr. Hart at least once.
- AnnaBeth Nass has seen Zoe as a patient more than any other character (5 times). She is her most loyal patient. She has yet to see Brick. (Hell's Belles, Disaster Drills & Departures, Take Me Home, Country Roads, Help Me Make It Through The Night). Zoe and AnnaBeth read more
- Considers herself 'a Miranda' from Sex and the City. (Pilot).
- Zoe has only been to the second floor of her home in the carriage house once when she was locked in by Wade in the episode (Sweetie Pies & Sweaty Palms).
- As of the end of season two Zoe has delivered at least two babies: a girl in the Pilot and a boy in the episode The Undead & The Unsaid for Brick so he could attend a football game in Tallahassee.
- Zoe performed a psychiatric rotation at Bellevue (Parades & Pariahs).
- Zoe is not a fan of grits - she nearly spat them out on her first trip to the Rammer Jammer (Parades & Pariahs).
- Zoe's favorite dish from New York is the sweet corn risotto at Per Se (Gumbo & Glory).
- As a child, Zoe had a cat- Mr. Mittens. Her mother, Candice, told her Mr. Mittens died peacefully in his sleep, but Zoe would later find out he fell out of the windowsill and dropped ten floors. Candice confided he landed on his feet, "fat lot of good it did him" (The Undead & The Unsaid).
- The black pajamas Zoe wore in the episode (The Race & The Relationship) are the same ones she had on in the episode (On The Road Again).
- Zoe nearly failed her pediatric rotation (The Pirate & The Practice).
- Lavon and Wade are the only two characters to have a nickname for Zoe: Lavon calls her Z or Big Z and Wade calls her Doc.
- Zoe is the only main character who doesn't have any brothers or sisters.
- Zoe's home has no kitchen which is why she's always eating at Lavon's or the Rammer Jammer. One of the few times she has been seen eating in her home was pizza on a girls night with AnnaBeth (Mistress & Misunderstandings), she nearly died choking on a doughnut bite (If Tomorrow Never Comes), and she can be seen eating crullers after taking AnnaBeth's advice (On The Road Again).
- Zoe is the only person besides Lavon to ever drive the Navigator until the episode (On The Road Again) - in that episode Frank the owner of the Dixie Stop can be seen driving the Navigator.
- Baby Boom, starring Sam Shephard, is one of Zoe's favorite movies. (Sweetie Pies & Sweaty Palms).
- In college, Zoe got an A++ in a public speaking course (Tributes & Triangles).
- According to the Petition for Change of Name form that Ethan Hart finds, Zoe's birthday is October 24, 1982.
- Zoe is fond of Black and White Cookies, referring to them as her favorite thing in the whole world.
- Zoe prefers to use fancy guava shampoo on her hair.
- Likes Pinot.
- Loves Woody Allen movies.
- Zoe and George are the two characters who have been seen outside of Alabama the most. Zoe has been seen in New York three times (Pilot, On The Road Again, Who Says You Can't Go Home), she drove Brick to South Carolina but was never seen there, and New Orleans once with George (Destiny & Denial). George also went to South Carolina with the Breelands (Snowflakes & Soulmates) and Florida with Lemon to spy on Shelby (We Are Never Ever Getting Back).
- Loves peach pie (Parades & Pariahs).
- Zoe considers Brick a father figure (If Tomorrow Never Comes).
- Sunday nights, she needs to unwind with her New York Times crossword puzzle (The Kiss).
- Went to Prom her senior year where her date broke up with her during The Thong Song, and she spent the rest of the night in the corner with the "other losers" (I'm Moving On).
- Has had years of therapy with the best analysts in New York City (The Kiss).
- Her mother made her go to theater camp one summer. She was being punished. She still remembers Juliet's line from the last iconic scene in Romeo and Juliet (The Kiss).
- If you look close enough at her phone in season two finale (On The Road Again) you'll see she still has Judson's and Jesse's phone numbers on the same screen in her phone - she is currently dating a guy named Joel Stevens.
- Zoe is Jewish.
- Zoe uses the alternate name of Chloe while visiting Wilkes family members. (Family Tradition)
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