Two months ago, fans rejoiced when U.S. television network TBS teased something special slated for the month of September in line with the 25th anniversary of the hit '90s sitcom Friends. The show, which ran from 1994 to 2004, has always been considered a global favourite. It is also responsible for catapult the careers of its main cast: Matt LeBlanc (Joey Tribianni), Matthew Perry (Chandler Bing), David Schwimmer (Ross Geller), Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe Buffay), Courtney Cox (Monica Geller), and of course, Jennifer Aniston (Rachel Green).
Many critics and TV junkies also claim that Friends also served as an inspiration — and was partially responsible for opening the doors towards this TV format — for other sitcoms-turned-pop-culture-phenomenons like How I Met Your Mother and The Big Bang Theory. It's also safe to say that the continuous viewership of Friends after concluding more than two decades ago is enough testament for its strong entertainment value and cultural impact.
As for more references on scaling the show's popularity, Iranian businessman Mojtaba Asadian bought the rights to register Central Perk, the famed and then-fictional coffeehouse that served as the gang's hangout, in 32 countries in 2006, and has since opened permanent café branches in the U.S., Dubai, Egypt, and even China and Singapore — all of which mimick the actual set used in the television show. Even the orange couch in the show's opening sequence has gone on tour in several U.S. locations. And of course, even Pottery Barn is contributing to the silver anniversary extravaganza by launching a Friends furniture collection, referencing the episode The One With The Apothecary Table, where they were attributed as Rachel Green's go-to homeware shop.
But while its legacy is truly fascinating, entertaining, and dare we say timeless, many were still quick to note that some of its jokes and arcs did not age well. That said, let's break down the hits and misses of Friends 25 years later, shall we?
Hit: The women of the gang owned their identities
Well... almost always.