Apple TV+’s ‘Best Foot Forward’ is based on the life of Paralympic ski racer Josh Sundquist. Instead of creating a cinematic journey of his success against all odds, the show focuses on the time when he was still young. It has a 12-year-old Josh as its protagonist, who leaves homeschooling in favor of the public school, only to discover that it is nothing as he’d expected.
While most of the story revolves around Josh’s experience in middle school, trying not to be the kid that no one knows about, it also focuses on how Josh is perceived by others, owing to his disability. The show maintains the mystery around Josh’s prosthetic leg till the end. If you are wondering what happened to him, here’s what you should know. SPOILERS AHEAD
How Did Josh Lose His Leg?
When Josh Dubin joined the public school, the one thing he didn’t want people to associate him with was his prosthetic leg. He wanted to be known for a lot of things; being known for his leg was certainly not on the list. As anticipated, once the kids discovered that he has a prosthetic leg, they started cooking up their own theories about what had happened to him. There was something about a shark attack, a freak accident, and the questions regarding his toes.
Josh was so desperate to get this curiosity out of their system that he said yes to any theory that came his way. Not only that, but he also cooked up new stories that would serve his purpose at different times. The reason he didn’t want to let people know what really happened was that it wasn’t something in the past yet. In the final episode of season 1, Josh reveals to Gabriella that he’d been diagnosed with cancer a couple of years ago. It was because of the disease that his leg had to be amputated.
While Josh doesn’t get into the details of it, from the life of Josh Sundquist, on whom ‘Best Foot Forward’ is based, we know that it is a rare type of bone cancer known as Ewing sarcoma. While his leg was operated on and he appeared fit and fine at present, Josh is fully aware of the fact that his cancer can come back anytime. There is a time window in which if cancer doesn’t return, he’ll be declared free of it. However, there is still a little time left for that, and till then, Josh is dedicated to living his life to the fullest, lest cancer comes back suddenly and puts a timer on his days.
It is also the reason the young boy is so adamant about experiencing public school life, joining all the clubs, and making a lot of friends. He doesn’t want anything to be left out on his bucket list. This situation also creates a need for Josh to control everything. He doesn’t know which of his experiences is going to be his last, so he is hell-bent on making all of them perfect. But, of course, things rarely turn out to be perfect, which often foils his mood.
For example, when attending his first school dance, Josh had a ton of expectations from it, but eventually, it turned out to be a normal thing, very well below what he’d thought it to be. Similarly, when he enters school, he thinks of it as something that happens “just like in the movies”. But with each day, Josh Dublin discovers that he can’t really control anything and he’ll just have to learn to go with the flow.
Read More: Where is Paralympian Josh Sundquist Now?