On September 22, 2019, the most famous sitcom in the world celebrated its 25th anniversary. During this time, some of Friends’ fans managed not only to grow up, graduate from high school and university, but also get a job as a robot, while still continuing to watch their favorite series. Sadly, famous sitcom creator Martha Kauffman stated in a recent interview with Variety that Friends won’t get a reboot, sequel, or spin-off. Although the latter is already there. The sitcom “Joey” about Joey Tribbiani’s journey to Los Angeles lasted only two seasons, after which it was closed due to too low ratings.
Nonetheless, 25 years later, Friends is still incredibly popular and is considered by most critics and audiences as the best representative of the genre. Below are three main reasons why you should watch / revise this sitcom. Go.
“Friends” as a series about ordinary people living in the world of their intellectual hobbies
Six famous friends are famous only “on our” side of the screen. In the series itself, they are completely ordinary New Yorkers who need to go to the robot, build relationships with each other and solve simple everyday problems. The fact that in the course of the plot they will not do anything supernatural causes a certain dissonance in the modern viewer.
Friends don’t save the world, they don’t track down dangerous criminals, they don’t win Nobel prizes, and they don’t travel in time. What are they doing? They live in the world of their intellectual hobbies and cultural values. Joey, for example, is a big fan of Stephen King’s The Shining and Kujo. In one of the episodes, on the basis of this “love”, he has an argument with Rachel, who invites him to read Louis May Alcott’s novel “Little Women” so that he stops rereading “The Shining” over and over again. In turn, Monica loves the Rolling Stones, and Phoebe performs songs of her own composition.
“Friends” changed the sitcom beyond recognition
Almost all the sitcoms before Friends, first, were filmed in front of the audience. By the way, the tendency for such shooting still exists. An example is “The Big Bang Theory”. Secondly, they focused on the family theme. The titles are appropriate: “The Brady Family” (1969-1974), “All About the Family” (1971-1979) or “Family Ties” (1982-1989). Thirdly, they invited a famous comedian to the main role and, finally, fourthly, they adhered to the classic narrative scheme with one presenter and a couple of secondary storylines.
And if on the first item “Friends” were only 50% (key episodes were filmed without spectators). They flew completely over the second, third and fourth. Firstly, the series about young guys and girls, a kind of generation X, who are looking for their place in life and regularly meet in their favorite cafe is far from the classic concept of “family”. Secondly, the concept of “Friends” in the understanding of Crane and Kauffman is a kind of “comedy ensemble” where there were three storylines (a line for two characters) equal not only in meaning, but also in semantic load.
Friends as an encyclopedia of mid-90s and early 2000s American style
Over the 10 years of its existence, Friends have become a kind of encyclopedia of everything that took place in America in the mid-90s and early 2000s. They successfully led the fashion for the consumption of coffee. Some attentive viewers have calculated that over all 10 seasons, friends have drunk more than a thousand cups of this drink. The famous Central Perk coffee shop, although it became the prototype of Starbucks, now operates in more than 30 countries around the world.
And the hairstyle that Rachel Green wore during the first seasons has become one of the most popular in the world, having received a completely logical name – “Rachel”.
The outfits of the main characters also became cult. Costume designer Debra McGuire pursued two main goals: to reveal the character of the hero with the help of his clothes and to combine the wardrobes of the characters with each other. For this reason, throughout the series, with the growth of the personality of friends, their appearance also changes. The most striking example is Rachel Green. Appearing in the first episode in the form of “runaway bride”, the creators focused on the “naivety” and “excessive recklessness” of Rachel. Nevertheless, all of her outfits, due to her interest in fashion, were thoughtful and effective. Rachel wore everything that fashionistas love the mid-90s era for: from velvet, jeans and cropped sweaters, to a black little dress, pantsuits and a black leather jacket.
The reasons described above, although they are key, are not the only reasons why it is worth watching the sitcom Friends. The project boasts a memorable soundtrack, great jokes and scenes with completely life situations that happen to literally everyone. Series creators David Crane and Martha Kauffman commented on this feature by saying that “it wasn’t a one-generation show – it was for everyone.”