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After watching the Friends reunion last week, I got a craving to rewatch the series. I used to love this show; I watched it all the time in syndication back in the day, but the finale happened to be the spring before I moved away to school for the first time and as a result I haven't watched it in 17 years. I am a Friends cicada. This is also the first time I've been older than any of the friends ever were through the entire run of the show, whereas before I was always younger than them except in flashbacks.

I'm watching it again now on HBO max and am experiencing all kinds of thoughts and feels. I'll talk about each season as I get through them. Anyone else who wants to join in, feel free.

Season One – 8.5/10,  Friends in its purest form

-Super Nostalgic


-So many establishing character moments (Monica's OCD, Chandler's snarkiness and hatred for Thanksgiving, Rachel trying to get a job, Ross losing poker on purpose, Joey's terrible play, anything Phoebe does)

-Iconic stories and jokes (Joey's VD, The W.E.N.U.S., the butt double, trying to see each other's boobies/pee-pees, Nana dies twice)

-Some of the most memorable guest characters (Paul the Wine Guy, Mr. Heckles, Steve the stoned guy, Jill Goodacre, Paolo, Fun Bobby, Nora Bing, Young Ethan)

-Establishment of some of the best recurring characters (Jack and Judy Geller, Janice, Carol and Susan)

-Rachel adjusting to independence

-Ross adjusting to singlehood

-Truest “young adults in the city” vibe

-The monkey



Top 3 episodes (ascending):

3. The One With The Birth

2.The One Where Underdog Gets Away

1. The One With All The Poker


Bottom 3 episodes (descending):

3. The One With The East German Laundry Detergent

2. The One With The Evil Orthodontist

1. The One With Two Parts: Part One


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If I hadn't grown up watching it, I probably wouldn't have much interest in it now outside of curiosity toward a piece of TV history.

That said, there are definitely still parts of it that make me literally laugh out loud.

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7 hours ago, mlooney said:

I don't think I ever watched an episode of Friends.  Not on purpose that's for sure.

A sentiment I am likewise compelled to express

Actually, I don't think I have kept an appointment to watch a sitcom on network television since the end of Cheers and Night Court.  It's not so bad, but I do occasionally wonder what happened to Ubu.  Did he ever not sit?  Was he always a good boy?

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Boo to all of you. It's great and I'm going to keep talking about it.

Season Two - 9.8/10, Peak Friends

-Still nostalgic

-All six main character backstories fleshed out (through flashbacks and conversations w/ characters from their pasts)

-Ross and Rachel (with not one but two pay-offs!) These two are both regularly cited as among the best episodes of the entire series

-Smelly Cat

-Strong emotional moments like the death of Mr. Heckles and the prom video

-More memorable supporting characters like Richard and Gunther (and Janice again)

-Big time guest actors like Tom Selleck, Julia Roberts, Brooke Shields, Charlie Sheen

-Monica loses her job, establishing that the status quo can be shaken

-Dr. Drake Ramoray




Top 3 episodes (ascending):

3.The One Where Ross Finds Out

2.The One Where Heckles Dies

1.The One With The Prom Video


Bottom 3 episodes (descending):

3. The One With Five Steaks And An Eggplant

2.The One Where Eddie Moves In

1.The One With Russ

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I miss everyone. If we had more people here, I'm sure someone else could reminisce with me. :(


Season Three – 7.8/10, The edge of the great Friends plateau

-Last precious drops of nostalgia

-Early stages of cringe humor as a staple

-End of Ross and Rachel (bittersweet but well done)

-First major flashback episode

-Rachel quits her job and starts a career

-First major bottle episode

-The chick and the duck

-Joey’s first serious relationship

-Great guest characters (Pete, Frank Jr., Kate, Janice again)

-Lackluster guest characters (Tommy, Chloe, Bonnie, Joanna)

-Consistent quality (only a couple stand-out great episodes, but no really bad ones)


Top 3 episodes (ascending):

3. The One With The Giant Poking Device

2. The One With The Morning After

1. The One Where No One's Ready


Bottom 3 episodes (descending):

3. The One With Phoebe's Ex-Partner

2. The One WIth The Screamer

1. The One With The Football

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