Out of the 7 billion people on this planet, a group of six people were able to steal our hearts. They made us fall in love with some good coffee, Thanksgiving, and the legendary Mama’s Little Bakery’s Cheesecakes. Well, could it be any more obvious? The most loved American Sitcom, Friends, is set to release its reunion 17 years after its last episode aired on 6th May 2004. It’s true when they say that friends stay through the thick and thin. And that’s precisely what the show has been delivering to its audience and the fandom for years now. The show proved to be delicate, like a vintage wine that only grows sweeter over time.
Let’s have some Unagi about the show. The show revolves around the lives of 6 people: Monica Geller (Courteney Cox), Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston), Ross Geller (David Schwimmer), Phoebe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow), Chandler Bing (Matthew Perry), and Joey Tribbiani (Matt Le Blanc). Living in New York in their 20’s, they try to find their way through life, relationships, jobs, and friendships that predominantly prove to be family. The series had ten seasons with 236 episodes in total. Within these ten seasons, the entire cast was showered with love from all over the world.
The emotional connection that was formed between the fandom was unbelievable to the creators and the cast themselves. The show maintains its progressive fan base, even years after being aired. It still stands tall in pride by being in the top 10 Netflix watches. Due to the increasing fan base, the talk and demand for a reunion spurged in the media, but mainly in the fandom. The last episode ended with Mondler adopting the twins while Ross and Rachel finally got together. Phoebe got married, and Joey remained the ultimate bachelor of the group. The fans rooted for a reunion of the characters to see how their friends managed to stick together after moving on with their lives.
Instagram broke down when Jennifer Aniston, aka Rachel Green, joined the social media platform. She even created a Guinness World Record of reaching a million flowers in 16 minutes. The Friends actress posted about meeting with the rest of the sitcom cast in Los Angeles, which spouted the sitcom’s reunion rumours. Ironically, all the cast members disregarded any such ambitions of a reunion happening anytime soon on different talk shows.
Courteney Cox expressed that she would love to get in a room with all of these people to act together and have a great time again, but she doesn’t see it happening. Other cast members shared similar opinions; David Schwimmer said that he doesn’t “want to see all of us in crutches” on the set. Lisa Kudrow and Matt Le Blanc shared the same opinion. They believed that the show was based on people going through life in their 20’s and 30’s. If they have the same problems now as back then, the reunion will be sad. Matthew Perry expresses his concern for a reunion, as it gives him night terrors about the show coming back and nobody caring about it. He says, “We ended on a high note and neither one of us expects us to beat that level of emotion by a reunion or comeback.”
But as we say, times change, and so do people. This inspired the creators to brew up a little something for the fandom after being constantly loved for a decade now. David Schwimmer confirmed the reunion talks on The Graham Norton Show. He expressed his enthusiasm for meeting the cast after so many years in Los Angeles. Undoubtedly, this experience is going to be unique. He confirmed no reprise of the character or any continuation of the storyline from the sitcom’s last episode. He stated that it is just the cast being themselves and reminiscing the good old days of the show.
As the trailer for the reunion was released on 20th May 2021, opinions started to rain in on social media pages. The fandom expected to get a sneak peek into the future lives of their loved characters through this reunion. A reprise of characters of the sitcom would have been better to see, as they continue their reel roles than to real roles. Watching them candidly on television is quite similar to the interviews, and talk shows that the cast members have done over the years. It would have been much more interesting to see them play out new storylines and conversations. Instead, simply watching the actors contemplate how they could’ve done it in the show before feels like a bit of a kick in the teeth.
The trailer unleashed other details about the reunion. Supporting actors, who appeared throughout the show, like Richard Burke, played by Tom Selleck, and the infamous Janice, played by Maggie Wheeler, were featured in the trailer. Further updates about star-studded cameos only disappointed the fans hoping for the only original six to be the central part of this much-anticipated reunion. It’s come to a point where the fandom believes that it would have been better if a reunion didn’t exist, rather than this diabolical mess.
But a character reprise would have been a bit problematic. The show indulged in body shaming, homophobia, and transphobic portrayals. Building stringent gender norms and the portrayal of mental illness and underage smoking were a few more problems that were handled poorly by the creators. The audience couldn’t possibly imagine enjoying such a kind of humour in today’s world. So the creators sticking to candid conversations is probably for the better.
Still, the trailer managed to attract and gain millions of views within 12 hours of its release. That proves that the fandom is still slightly hopeful for the final reunion and the outcome. The trending hashtag “The One Where They Get Back Together” has seemed to catch the eye of the world. Fans have been binge-watching the series with friends until the reunion joins the beloved series. The reunion has become quite controversial within the media and the fandom. But it can’t be denied that whenever these six people come together on our screens, they entertain us to their fullest and make us fall in love with them all over again. After all, we love them too much to go on a break.