ReRuns: The ‘Friends’ You Wish You Had

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“I’ll be there for you, when the rain starts to pour / I’ll be there for you, like I’ve been there before / I’ll be there for you, cause you’re there for me too.”

Even if you haven’t seen it, you’ve definitely heard the “Friends” theme song. 

The sitcom made its debut on NBC more than two and a half decades ago in 1994 and has arguably only grown in popularity since. 

I first watched the show back in high school and became instantly mesmerized with its witty banter and easy-going plotline that made me nostalgic for things I hadn’t even experienced. Throughout 10 seasons, “Friends” manages to take viewers on a journey that’s both heartwarming and hilarious.

The show is an easy watch, something you can see time and time again and still laugh at. The dry humor and carefree relationships let viewers escape to a simpler time, making it an all-out comfort show. 

“Friends” follows the comical relationships between six incredibly close friends as they navigate life in New York City. The show centers around a coffee shop near Central Park called “Central Perk,” where the characters continually hang out.

The genius of the show is found in the main characters. Six friends, all leading different lives and donning different personalities, come together to complement and support each other as they go through the ups and downs of life. 

The show opens with five of the friends sipping coffee in Central Perk as Ross Geller (David Schwimmer) laments about his failed marriage to his ex-wife, who turned out to be a lesbian. Phoebe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow), the quirkiest and arguably best character of the show, attempts to cleanse his aura while Joey Tribbiani (Matt LeBlanc) cracks dumb jokes about the situation. 

Just as Ross says “I just want to be married again,” the lovable and somewhat self-involved Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston) bursts through the coffee shop door wearing a soaking wet wedding dress. 

Seconds later, the sarcastic Chandler Bing (Matthew Perry) blurts out, “I just want a million dollars.”

Rachel, after having run out of her wedding, decides to move in with Monica Geller (Courteney Cox), her high school best friend, and start a new life. From then on, the group is inseparable. 

Phoebe is the standout of the show. She is everything you could want in a friend: warmhearted, a bit odd and always fun to be around. Despite having a difficult childhood, she constantly steps in as the mediator of the group and is there when they need her. Perhaps one of her most well-known bits in the show is the oddball songs she plays on guitar at Central Perk. Does “Smelly Cat” ring any bells?

Equally lovable is Joey. An Italian-American, Joey works as an actor and lives in an apartment with Chandler across from Rachel and Monica. He’s the overly flirtatious and somewhat dumb one of the group who can always bring a smile to your face. 

Ross spends many of the episodes vying for Rachel’s love and affection, something he’s wanted since high school. The show spends many episodes exploring their and other characters’ romantic relationships leaving the viewer curious as to who each character will end up with. 

At this point, I’ve watched the show all the way through at least four times. In fact, I’m watching it again right now. It’s the kind of show that you don’t have to pay attention to, but you want to pay attention to because it’s just that dang good.

Whenever you decide to watch or rewatch “Friends,” I suggest you grab a cup of coffee and get comfortable — you won’t be able to watch just one episode. 

All 10 seasons of “Friends” are available to stream on HBO Max. Trust me, it’s worth the money.

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