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The Star Online: Entertainment: TV & Radio

A decade without 'Friends': Bringing back memories

Posted: 05 May 2014 08:40 PM PDT

Feel like your job's a joke, you're broke and your love life's D.O.A? Well, let these Friends (Central) Perk you up!

It may be a little hard to believe, but it has been 10 years since we last said goodbye to our six favourite Friends, Ross and Monica Geller, Rachel Green, Chandler Bing, Joey Tribbiani and Phoebe Buffay.

The highly popular sitcom broadcast its final episode, aptly titled The Last One, on May 6, 2004, after 10 successful seasons. Since then, the show's six stars – Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer – have gone on to do many other things.

Recently, Cox appeared on The Late Show With David Letterman to promote her big screen directorial debut, Just Before I Go. On the talk show, the actress nixed any idea of a Friends reunion, saying how it was impossible to get even everyone together for dinner, let alone a project.

Last year, Perry had also commented that a reunion was out of the question, which the show's co-creator Marta Kauffman (the other creator is David Crane) confirmed weeks later. Meanwhile, Aniston said she once had a nightmare about a Friends reunion – she wasn't invited to it!

Fortunately, in the world of television (and movies), anything can happen, so even if a reunion doesn't happen soon, there's always hope for something to happen some time in the future... right?

To commemorate today's 10-year Friends finale "anniversary", let's look back at some of many things that we enjoyed about the sitcom. Ten Star2 writers also shared their favourite episodes of Friends in today's paper. Grab a copy to find out what they are.

1. Catchphrases

From Joey's "How you doin'?" to Chandler's "Could it BE ..." to Ross' "We were on a break!" to regular character Janice's (Maggie Wheeler) "Oh. My. God.", Friends was full of catchphrases that we sometimes find ourselves saying in our daily conversations. So, do you, like Ross, have unagi?

Could this BE any funnier?

2. Love life

Ross is, according to Phoebe, Rachel's lobster. The duo's love life ranged from dramatic and problematic to romantic and beautiful ... to crazy and passionate. Fun!

Chandler and Monica's courtship was sweet and reliable, while Phoebe and Mike's (Paul Rudd) relationship offered us ... a less weird Phoebe (she gave up Glynnis and Gladys for him!)

As for Joey, his many love interests – which includes Rachel – and failed romances were what kept some of us interested over the years.

Rachel and Gladys.

3. Dysfunctional family

Chandler had two mums when his dad, played by Kathleen Turner, became a woman. His"real" mother, played Morgan Fairchild, once made out with Ross.

Rachel's divorced parents seemed normal compared to her bratty, ignorant and spoiled sisters Amy (Christina Applegate) and Jill (Reese Witherspoon) but the episodes they were featured in were some of the most memorable ones.

Joey grew up surrounded by women (he had seven sisters) and Italian food while Phoebe's childhood remained a mystery till the end. We knew she had a twin sister Ursula who didn't really like her, that she grew up poor and was homeless for a large part of her early life and that her real parents "abandoned" her.

The Geller siblings probably had the most normal childhood, really, even if they did once unknowingly make out with one another. Ewwwww...

4. Supporting characters

Gunther from Central Perk was the unofficial "seventh" friend. He wasn't "in" the group but he did appear in almost every episode, right up to the finale. Played by James Michael Tyler, Gunther became more than just the guy in the background although he never really had much to say.

James Michael Tyler as Gunther.

Apart from him, other memorable characters included Ugly Naked Guy, Mr Heckles, Joey's agent Estelle, the parents, Phoebe's grandmother, Janice Littman Goralnik nee Hosenstein, and of course, the chick and the duck.

5. Thanksgiving dinners

As a chef and former chubby girl, Monica always made sure her friends and family had the best Thanksgiving dinners. Of course, the one that many fans would remember well featured Aniston's (then) real-life husband Brad Pitt, but there are a few others that were real gems. The show had nine Thanksgiving episodes altogether – they skipped it in Season 2.

6. Special guest stars

Even from Season 1, Friends had always featured special guest stars to pump up a storyline ; Chandler got stuck in an ATM vestibule with Jill Goodacre, a Victoria's Secret model and Harry Connick Jr's wife.

Jean Claude Van Damme also starred as himself, while Brooke Shields was a fanatical stalker who was in love with Drake Ramoray, Joey's character he played in Days Of Our Lives. Others A-list guests include Julia Roberts, Susan Sarandon, Elle Macpherson, Robin Williams, Billy Crystal, Anna Faris, Sean Penn, George Clooney, Alec Baldwin, Gary Oldman, Jennifer Saunders and Bruce Willis, who appeared in several episodes as Rachel's boyfriend and Ross' girlfriend's dad. Willis even won an Emmy for his portrayal as the uptight man.

7. Fashion

Rachel had some questionable outfit choices (she wore the mullet skirt first, ladies) in the first few seasons but her haircut was what put her on the style map – in the mid-1990s, "the Rachel" haircut became such a worldwide phenomenon that even men were asking for it in salons.

Joey's "man-bag" was actually not a bad idea, but we all LOL-ed at his blue lipstick for men.

Also, Monica's wedding dress was beautiful, as were the bridesmaids' (Rachel and Phoebe) dresses, but it was Phoebe's gorgeous white gown that made us swoon.

8. Music

You don't have to be a fan to know the show's theme song I'll Be There For You by The Rembrandts. But perhaps you might have to watch a few episodes to realise that Friends had featured a number of famous tracks in the 10 years it was on air.

Some of these tracks include U2's With Or Without You, Eric Clapton's Wonderful Tonight, Chris Isaak's Wicked Game, Joni Mitchell's Big Yellow Taxi and The Pretenders' Angel In The Morning. Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders played Stephanie on the show, a musician hired by the Central Perk boss to entertain customers.

But of course, the best song to ever be played on Friends was sung by one of its stars – Smelly Cat. Everybody now, "Smelly cat, smelly cat, it's not your fault!"

Kredit: www.thestar.com.my

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