Friends lasted for ten years. From 1994 to 2004. Seems like a lifetime ago, doesn’t it?
I, like many others that I know, own the entire series on DVD, and routinely watch it on a daily and nightly basis. It’s hard not to when TBS airs it so frequently. Just on a given day it’s on from 3pm to 5pm, and again from 11pm to 1am. That’s just on a single station. Four hours, without even seeking it out, there it is.
I know tons of people who love and watch it as much as I do, too. Which begs the question, are there are other more re-watchable shows that started and ended in the lifetime of the thirty something generation? Can I say that Friends may be the greatest show in my lifetime? Yes. Would most people agree? Maybe. I’m sure there are others that may have preferred Cheers or Seinfeld, but Friends has (and still has) an intense following.
Sure, it’s not without fault. It’s not a perfect show, and there’s quite a few episodes that I want to skip when they come on. For me, it’s the episodes that focus too much on Phoebe. I never liked her character that much, and Lisa Kudrow is about as funny to me as Dave Coulier was on Full House.
Why was Friends so great? Was it the writing? The actors? Both? For me, I think it’s a great show because of how great the actors were with the dialog they were given. I don’t think that it had anything to with relating to what they were going through in a given episode, I think I was too young to relate to most of that. There’s definitely times when I re-watch an episode and am amazed at the delivery of some of the lines — the dialog between Rachel and Ross when they’re fighting over Ross sleeping with the copy shop girl? Amazing.
Friends is one of those shows that brings people together. Meet a new friend? Bring up your favorite episode of Friends and chances are, you have something to talk about for hours. People still get teary eyed when the last episode airs (myself included) as they walk out of Monica and Rachel’s apartment (I know Chandler lived there at the end, but it’s always Monica and Rachel’s apartment to me) and leave their keys on the counter. Is a great ending to a fantastic ten year run.
There’s a number of rumors as to whether or not there will ever be a reunion show or movie. Most of them say there won’t be, and it’s because of one or two of the cast members not wanting to do it. Jennifer Aniston has been on Courteney Cox’s Cougartown. Courteney Cox has been on Matthew Perry’s Go On. Clearly some of the cast still get along and would be up for the reunion, but then you read about Matt LeBlanc saying he doesn’t want to see the characters “old”. I’m not sure how I feel about it. On the one hand, it’d be great to see a follow up to see how everyone is, and what they’ve been up to for the last decade. On the other, is there anything else that they could do more, that we haven’t already seen from Friends? They broke ground for the way that a lot of sitcoms present stories, paved the way for sitcom writers, and educated networks that you have to pay your talented cast members to keep your best show(s) on the air.
I love Friends and think its the best show my generation has yet to see. What’s your take on it, dear reader?
Editor’s note: I wrote this last night on the iPad again while watching the hockey game. My apologies for any typos.