Wednesday, 20 August 2014

TV Shows that I want back episode 4 - Friends

As if this needs any introduction!

I still remember watching the first ever episode vividly. Now, remember, Friends began in 1994, so there wasn't as much information about new shows floating around. We couldn't go online and find out the ins and outs of`every film and TV programme like we can now. We just had the weekly TV Times for information! So, it was with no idea how good it would be I sat down to watch the pilot.....and fell in love, and I still love it as much today! A few minutes after the pilot episode finished we had a power cut, and I clearly remember thinking 'phew, at least I got to see Friends first!'. I was totally addicted after that! I still watch it now and it never bores me, nor does it feel dated. Its just extremely good comedy and I will no doubt love it when I'm in my 90's!

So, just in case you've lived under a rock for the last 20 years, here's what you need to know about Friends....

Set in New York, about a group of 20 something friends, the show starts with the character of Rachel Green, played by Jennifer Aniston, leaving her groom Barry at the altar. She runs to the city to find her high school best friend (who wasn't invited to the wedding!) Monica Geller, played by Courteney Cox (pre plastic surgery, when she didn't look as scary). Monica hangs out in her local coffee shop, which is comically named Central Perk, with her brother Ross Geller, played by David Schwimmer, and their group of friends, Phoebe Buffay, played by Lisa Kudrow, Chandler Bing, played by Matthew Perry and Joey Tribbiani. played by Matt LeBlanc. The shows 10 season run saw the friends falling in love, changing careers, becoming parents, blurring the lines between friendship and love, coping with divorce and many other 20 something issues which people could relate to. Of course, all that took place against a backdrop of comedy, witticisms, iconic hairstyles and catchphrases which you can still here people quoting today. There isn't one episode I don't love, and only wish that they could have kept the show running forever! At a push I could cope with a film, some specials or even a new season!

Rachel Green - Jennifer Aniston

Rachel Green

Rachel is first seen soaking wet, in her wedding dress, frantically searching for her former best friend Monica in a coffee shop called Central Perk. She ends up moving into Monica's flat and decides to turn her back on her former life, meaning she eschews her father's money and chooses not to marry a man she doesn't love for financial security. Encouraged by her new friends, Rachel cuts up her credit cards and starts to look for a job. By the end of the pilot episode she has a job in Central Perk, much to the dismay of the gang and other customers as she can neither make coffee, nor get orders correct. Eventually, Rachel quits in order to pursue her dream of working in the fashion industry. For the duration of the show Rachel is predominantly involved with Monica's brother Ross, who has been in love with her most of his life. They get together in season 2, but their relationship eventually breaks down. She drunkenly marries Ross while they are in Las Vegas, becoming his third wife. They end up having a drunken night together, after their original relationship had ended, which resulted in the conception of their daughter Emma. Ross and Rachel finally admit to being in love with each other in the final episode, prompting Rachel to reject the offer of her dream job in Paris.

Monica Geller
Monica is living alone in her grandmother's apartment when the show begins, but by the end of the pilot episode Rachel has moved in with Monica. She has a close relationship with her older brother Ross and is a dedicated and loving aunt to his children. Monica shows signs of suffering from severe OCD, which manifests in extreme cleanliness and the need to organise everything and everyone around her. As a formerly overweight teenager, Monica sometimes has self esteem issues and really just wants to be in love, married and settled with children. She breaks up with Richard Burke, played by Tom Selleck, due to the fact that he doesn't want to have any more children, leaving her heartbroken. During the build up to Ross' second wedding, Monica and Chandler sleep together and end up in a romantic relationship, eventually marrying and trying for a baby. Sadly they are unable to conceive naturally, so they pursue an adoption. In the final ever episode they finally become parents when Erica, played by Anna Faris , gives birth. They unexpectedly come home with 2 children, Jack and Erica Bing, after it turns out that Erica (who is not greatly endowed with brains) misunderstood her doctor when he told her there were 2 heartbeats (she thought he meant hers and the baby's bless!). They also leave their flat behind in order to move to the suburbs with their children.

Phoebe Buffay - Lisa Kudrow

Phoebe Buffay
Phoebe is the eccentric, odd one out of the friends. She had a tough childhood, with her father abandoning his wife, and their twin daughters Ursula and Phoebe, then the woman she believed to be her mother kills herself, leaving the girls alone and homeless. While Phoebe and her sister aren't close, and barely even speak, Ursula does appear a few times over the years, usually signalling trouble for Phoebe. She eventually finds her birth mother and the 2 of them attempt to have a relationship, but it appears to fizzle out. Phoebe generally had casual sexual relationships, with only 2 serious boyfriends during the show's run, David and Mike Hannigan, whom she goes on to marry.

Chandler Muriel Bing - Matthew Perry

Chandler Bing
Chandler is the sarcastic one of the group. His distinctive speaking manner when expressing incredulity became hugely popular. He is Ross' college roommate, and the 2 have stayed close since. He and Joey live across the hall from Monica and Rachel, and spend most of their time hanging out at the girls' apartment, where they let themselves in and help themselves to the fridge. Chandler is equally as close to Joey, but Joey sometimes feels insecure and seeks reassurance. He is unlucky in love, with a recurring romance with an extremely irritating woman Janice being his most successful and long lasting relationship, until he falls in love with Monica. His mother is an erotic novelist named Nora Bing, who embarrasses him frequently due to her open nature and overt sexuality. His father, Charles Bing, who divorced his mother due to the fact that he was gay, is shown to be a drag artist known as Helena Handbasket. He and Monica eventually fall in love, marry and become parents to Jack and Erica Bing, before leaving the city to raise their family in the suburbs.

Joey Tribbiani - Matt LeBlanc

Joey Tribbiani
Joey is a simple minded, promiscuous struggling actor who lives with Chandler across the hall from Monica and Rachel. He is extremely dimwitted, but very loyal and family oriented. He experiences some success early on in the show when he lands a recurring role in Days of our Lives, before he lost his job for telling an interviewer that he writes a lot of his own lines. Joey is shown to be a skilled pick up artist and commitmentphobe, who treats women terribly yet usually gets away with it. His pick up line is simply 'how you doin'?' which is shown to work on pretty much everyone. He develops feelings for Rachel during the show's run, which are unrequited at first. They do eventually attempt a relationship, but realise it isn't meant to be due to the awkwardness they feel when trying to consummate their new relationship, and return to being friends.

Ross Geller - David Schwimmer

Ross Geller
Ross is Monica's big brother, and a paleontologist. At the start of the show he has just split up with his first wife Carol, played by Anita Barone in the pilot and Jane Sibbett in the rest of the episodes, due to the fact that she is a lesbian and in love with Susan, played by Jessica Hecht. He discovers that Carol is pregnant with his child in the pilot episode, which he struggles to deal with throughout the first season, until the birth of their son Ben. He has secretly been in love with Rachel for most of his life and pines for her until partway through season 2 when they get together for the first time. They eventually split up due to Ross' jealousy and eventual infidelity, when he wrongly thought that he and Rachel were no longer together. Ross falls in love with a woman from England called Emily, played by Helen Baxendale, and the two quickly get engaged. During his vows he mistakenly says Rachel's name, which eventually causes his second marriage to end in divorce. He and Rachel drunkenly get married in Las Vegas, making her his 3rd wife. He assures Rachel he will get the marriage annulled, but in fact decides to secretly stay married to her to avoid a 3rd divorce. When she finds out, Rachel insists on the divorce. They have a drunken night of passion in the run up to Monica and Chandler's wedding, resulting in the conception of their daughter Emma. Ross realises he still loves Rachel as she is preparing to move to Paris for her dream job, and he begs her to stay. He believes that she has left and is heartbroken, but it turns out that she got off the plane and returned to him.

So, there you go....a quick synopsis of the show, which can never do it justice! I will always want the gang, and the clapping in the theme tune, back!

Thanks for popping by!


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