Image credit: Warner Media/HBO Max
Friends fans who were hoping for a true reunion, with new episodes, as they did with Will & Grace a few years ago, will be coming home from a rude awakening to Friends: The Reunion. The one-off reunion could instead be described as a talk show, with the annoying James Corden (presenter of The Late Late Show) at the wheel. But that shouldn’t spoil the fun, because they’re all here: Matt LeBlanc, Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, David Schwimmer, and Matthew Perry.
Emotional music is played at the beginning of the episode as the cast members then move one by one to the shed where the well-known ensemble has been reconstructed. Tissue boxes are ready, because the actresses can’t keep them dry. But there’s also immediately, in the middle of the living room, a joke about how LeBlanc Cox was unable at the time by erasing her dialogue — written on a table — right before the first shot. After this introduction, the six sit on a bench next to the famous fountain from the prequel to the sitcom, where Corden asks them.
The influence of friends appears as a cultural phenomenon in nearly every conversation. Thanks to this encounter, it appears HBO Max has another column of US subscribers in one fell swoop. Friends are still a hot item, and that’s pretty obvious. Decision makers also emphasize this, New Yorkers who at the time came up with a cartoon of their life in the city with friends; The facts of their narrow circle. Which you can also call the “white circle”. The crucial point, of course, is that Friends, which aired from 1994 to 2004, gives the impression that the Big Apple was home to whites only at the time.
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Ironically, then, color lovers, from India and Ghana, share their love for the TV series with the cast members in the submitted videos. Despite the justified criticism at that time and later, friends are also a global phenomenon. Perhaps it is a good example of an escape from reality. Trips back to New York in the ’90s, watching Ross and Rachel non-stop. This nostalgia is strongly present in the episode. It also has many surveys, games are played and scenarios are read aloud. There’s a lot to mention, as well as several supporting actors present, including of course Gunther (James Michael Tyler) and parents Monica and Ross, played by Christina Pickles (86) and Elliot Gould (82).
In between, celebrities like David Beckham and Kit Harington explain how they enjoyed being friends back then and what exactly was so good about that. Smelly Cat, Phoebe’s popular song, also comes and is recited, with Lady Gaga. Although Kudrow doesn’t seem to enjoy it much – it does seem like a chore. However, the makers of the reunion are doing their best to close a major chapter in television history once and for all. The chapter may be overkill – Friends aren’t the best sitcom ever – but that’s likely to be a problem for fans, for whom this episode was primarily created.
Friends: The Reunion, Friday, May 28, 2021 at 8.30pm on SBS6