It has been 13 years since the last episode of "Friends" aired on live TV.
Thirteen years since we laughed, for the first time, at all of the silly antics a group of six friends went through. Thirteen years since we were lucky enough to watch the dynamics of a decade-long series filled with people we may have thought we actually knew in real life. Thirteen years later and it’s still as relevant as the moment the last scene faded out.
Since the invention of Netflix, thousands of viewers still watch this series as though it were a brand new series that just came out. Everyone and their mother has seen at least one episode and is able to quote at least two lines from the series.
One of two of the popular questions that are asked when the show is brought up, is “what’s your favorite episode?” and, more importantly, “who’s your favorite character?”
If you’re a true fan, you’ll hesitate for a moment because there’s no way you can pick just one. It’s so hard! They’re all so unique in their own ways. If even one of them were missing from this series, there would just be something off and missing that we, unfortunately, wouldn’t even realize.
Here’s why each character has their own pizazz.
We all have a Monica in our life. The perfectionist who has to always be in control and gets a little scatterbrained if things don’t go as planned. She may be similar to our older sister, or even our mom, but there’s something about Monica that you don’t entirely get annoyed with when she scolds you for not putting (insert object) back.
Monica knows that she’s a little whacky, and that might just be why we love her. Or the fact that she can poke fun at her insecurities and how she used to be overweight, or how she once had the guts to date one of her dad’s closest friends. Either way, you have to love Monica for her random shouting, her type-A personality, and her love for cooking.
So I guess if there was one character in the series that everyone agreed on WASN’T their favorite…it’d be Ross. He whines more than any of the other characters, and he’s always complaining about something. But, I guess when you’ve been through as many marriages and divorces as he’s been through, you’d be a little whiny too.
Perhaps the reason we can love Ross is that he’s always the one to single-handedly get himself into the most awkward of situations. Over-tanning when he got a spray tan, whitening his teeth for too long, and being stuck in his date’s bathroom because he can’t get his leather pants up. What kind of person gets into these situations?!
We also have to love his on again off again relationship with Rachel, and to this day did we ever decide if they were on a break or not? We also might admire his relationship with Monica. He’s not only a friend to her but a big brother. He proves that boys will be boys and they are just as immature and as much of a pest as they are when they’re toddlers.
Lastly, we love Ross because he’s the smartest one on the show. As a paleontologist, we can’t help but admire his love for dinosaurs, discovering bones, and teaching another student the knowledge that he has.
Every girl's dream and every boy’s fantasy. She’s perfect. She brought the right amount of sex appeal to the show, and she’s proof that she does not age. She looks the exact same now as she did in the second season the show was aired. Of course, everyone loves Rachel because of her beautiful good looks, and her one of a kind fashion she brought to the show.
But, if you’re anything like me, you love Rachel for her character development. When we’re first introduced to Rachel, she’s a bratty, spoiled daddy’s girl who comes from a lot of money and hasn’t had to work a day in her life. She’s used to always having gotten whatever she wanted, and no one compared to her.
By the end of the series, Rachel turns into a selfless mom who has the job of a lifetime, and she creates her own version of success and is financially independent. She’s on her own and doesn’t need anyone’s help because she has gotten exactly where she needs to be.
Joey Tribbiani may not be the smartest tool in the shed, but my goodness he’s so lovable. Whether you refer to him as Joey or Dr. Drake Ramoray, his lovable personality, passion for acting, and dedication to food made him one of the show's funniest characters.
Perhaps another reason we love Joey is that he was always happy to do anything spontaneous. On more than one occasion we have seen him and Chandler do some of the most abnormal things. Like getting a duck as their pet, playing a random round of foosball, or putting on all of the clothes in his closet to prove a point. Joey takes pride in his Italian heritage, and he’s the only boy in a long line of women.
But perhaps the reason we love Joey so much, is that he’s not afraid to be himself. Even if he’s aware that he is not the smartest of all his friends, he doesn’t feel intimidated or that he needs to impress them. He is who he is and you can take it or leave it.
Oh, Phoebe. The 90’s version of a love child who just wants happiness and peace in the world. She’s one of our favorite characters because she is so blunt and honest, like a child.
She was raised much differently than any other character on the show, and to a degree, she was a little sheltered, which leads us to believe she has a youthful soul. We also love her because she is the most selfless and caring person on the show. We know this because who else would be a surrogate mother for their own brother, and not complain while carrying triplets?! TRIPLETS!!
She also hardly ever got upset, and when she did she never held a grudge. Such as the episode where her twin sister was using Phoebe’s name as her porn star stage name…?! Any of us would freak out but by the end of it, Phoebe just lets it roll off her shoulders. And of course what we love most about her is her unconventional songwriting skills. To this day I will randomly have “Smelly Cat” stuck in my head.
And last but not least of the core friend group we have Chandler. Where do I even start with this character?
He is the sassiest, most sarcastic character that has a million one-liners that will shut someone down in an instant. He will put people in their place and remind them of who’s in charge. But don’t bring up his father because he might have some issues with you there.
We also love Chandler because, similar to a lot of the characters we have, Chandler is not afraid to make fun of himself. When Monica calls him out for just about anything, Chandler hardly ever argues because he knows he’s a weird individual that is a bit special compared to others.
Lastly, we love Chandler because he loves Monica for who she is, not what she was. He may have never had any interest when he first met Ross, but he fell in love with Monica and treats her the way any girl would dream to be treated.
AND JUST BECAUSE…
There’s absolutely no doubt that Gunther is a very odd individual. He’s in just about every episode but does necessarily always talk. He’s always had a creepy crush on Rachel and is always creeping around in the background of Central Perk. But we love him because secretly deep down we were always rooting for him to admit his feelings to Rachel and really tell her how he feels. We wanted him to stand tall and get out there.
Sadly, the moment he finally did so, he was shut down. But we love him most because of the rare occasions that he did talk or make an appearance, it was a funny one-liner that left the audience in tears.
Just reading that name had you imagining her high pitched voice saying “OHHHHH MYYYY GAWWDDDD!” I take back what I said earlier. A lot of people may not say that Ross is their favorite, but everyone can agree that they love Ross more than they love Janice.
She means well and she loved Chandler with every ounce of her heart. But my goodness was she annoying!! She even chased poor Chandler out of the country when he had to pretend to move out of the country in order to break up with her. But she’s a character we love to hate, so that’s why the producers kept bringing her back throughout the entire series. Long live Janice.
So there you have it, folks. A rundown of every character that people can contemplate as their “favorite.” But like I said, if you’re a true fan, there’s no way you can choose just one. They all complete each other and bring us the joy and entertainment we’ve been able to reminisce on for the past 13 years.