A theory from some fans, even though there is no indication in the trailer that Joe's wife is pregnant.
- Jossed. Joe doesn't even have a wife, let alone an expecting one. He could have children before he truly dies, but 22 was already born into a human life just before Joe was given his "second chance" by the Jerrys. Not only that, 22 seemed to be dropping down towards the Eastern Hemisphere, meaning there's a possibility she'll wind up starting her life somewhere far from the Americas.
Half-jossed. Terry is an antagonist, but she is a Punch-Clock Villain at best
- It has been shown that 22 has been around for a few centuries at least, given that she had mentors such as Abraham Lincoln and Copernicus among others.
- Given that the only other explicitly numbered soul is 108,210,121,415, this may very well be the case.
- Confirmed. It's getting a Disney+ release on December 25th worldwide.
Jossed, though he does learn that lesson
That's really, really unlikely. Really, how likely do you think 22 is to randomly happen upon Joe at some point, let alone for Joe to realize what he's actually seeing? The scenario becomes even more absurd when you pay attention to the globe and look at where 22 was headed for. 22 appears to be headed towards somewhere in China. The fact that they're in different hemispheres makes things even more absurd.
- perhaps, 22 moved to New York when 22 was a child, teen or young adult.
- In the French dub, the Jerries are all called Michel.
With the exception of Terry, that is. But even she doesn't claim that her whole Balancing Death's Books schtick is actually her job; she just says it's what she does, making it sound more like a hobby. Notably, Jerries respond to her claim that the soul count is off with essentially a shrug, implying that her otherwise-regulatory role is ultimately unnecessary.
- Just like how Joe Gardner thinks music is his "purpose" and Terry thinks the same about counting while everyone else just "lives every minute of it".
All of the mentors seem to be famous people who would have been just as upset as Joe to find out they've died. So every one of them would have jumped from the conveyor belt and ended up in The Great Before. The Great Before put in place the Mentor system to help those souls exist long enough to willingly accept moving on to The Great Beyond. Joe just took an unexpected route to achieve the same outcome.
- Well, not all of them. Quite a few like Mother Teresa and Gandhi probably accepted that they were dead quickly. The Jerries likely hand pick specific people to be Mentors.
This includes the Kerries who guard the borders between the worlds (they dont seem to mind Joe being in the Great Before, but draw the line at him going back to earth), the Berries who handle the souls of animals and plants, the Gerries who actually dwell on earth and report the lives of souls to the Jerries, the Merries who help the Lost Souls (they need all the help they get and happily hire souls like Moonwind to assist them, giving them boats to help them travel), and the leader of all the erries: Larry, the ruler of the Great Beyond who is known to humans as God.
- Even after being in the Great Before for countless years, 22 still hasn't found her spark, or the thing that gives her a reason to live. She's tried so many things, but none of them work.
- All the other little souls are happy and cheery, while she's cynical and world-weary. When you're depressed, it can seem as if everyone else is having a great time and/or has their shit together, while your life is the only one that sucks.
- Because she doesn't have a spark, she can't leave the Great Before. Having clinical depression tends to feel like you're trapped in a place you can't get out of, or feeling like things will never get better or never change.
- 22's life is implied to be pretty repetitive, which is also what depression can feel like. She stays in her room (like a depressed person who never leaves their house), does whatever she feels like, and once a week, the Jerries show up to force her into the You Seminar (the equivalent of well-meaning people who try to get you to leave your room and interact with the outside world).
- She crosses the Despair Event Horizon when she argues with Joe and he tells her that she only found her spark because she was in his body, and she interprets it as him saying she will never have a purpose in life. Depression is (or can be) generally more like emotional numbness than constant despair, but sadness is often the easiest emotion for a depressed person to feel. (In Inside Out, this is also why only Sadness was able to help Riley when she was depressed.)
- Her becoming a Lost Soul may represent self-destructive behavior or a suicide attempt.
- 22 being untransformed from her Lost Soul state and going to Earth represents coming to terms with herself and moving forward in life, finally having found a purpose.