F.R.I.E.N.D.S are Getting Back Together: Could we BE more Excited
Any individual who belongs to the pre-internet era must have watched a sitcom or something to that affect. There could be a possibility of being unaware of the term, but impossible to not being introduced to Friends. Moreover, the most awaiting moment is here, the beloved characters are together, in Friends Reunion. Sitcoms have been quite possibly the most famous and influential TV genres for quite a long time. It is a situation comedy, which is centred around similar setting and similar characters show up in every episode. The episode would have an occasion that will influence the characters in the show, and afterward those characters will respond in a hilarious manner. Throughout the times of sitcoms airing on TV, certain sitcoms began to follow some sort of method. For instance, take Friends (1994-2004) and The Big Bang Theory (2007-2019), both are famous American television sitcoms, first time aired on NBC. Both of them share general topics and situations like social intertwining among characters, the usual scenarios in their houses, the surrealistic circumstances that have happened to all of us some times and an infinite number of sensations that the best sitcoms give us.
"Humor can alter any situation and help us cope at the very instant we are laughing." –Allen Klein
Until 1950s, “sitcom” or “situational comedy” were not well-known terms. There were earlier models on radio, however the principal TV sitcom is supposed to be Pinwright's Progress, ten episodes being aired on the BBC in the United Kingdom somewhere in the range of 1946 and 1947. In the United States, director and producer William Asher has been credited with being the "one who developed the sitcom", having coordinated more than two dozen of the main sitcoms, including I Love Lucy, from the 1950s through the 1970s. The American Sitcoms has started with the possibility of the ideal family and gradually began to show the truth of life and managed social issues, similar to divorce and unemployment. Sitcoms have become exceptionally well-known genre that individuals could relate with the program and it shows issues, which occur in regular lifestyle in a light-hearted way. Some of the well acknowledged American sitcoms, like Friends, The Big Bang Theory, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, How I Met Your Mother, All in the Family, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Modern Family, Office, and many more, have projected the daily life and made the audience to accept real-life situation in a cheerful way.
However, the classic situation comedy, Friends, has created an exceptionally cultural impact on the viewers. The show has ten seasons with an average of twenty-two or twenty-four episodes each. It made the people fall in love with its hilarious yet relatable characters. By way of illustration, Joey is depicted as irresponsible and dim-witted however genial, caring and defensive for his friends. He is a foody and womanizer who has had better luck with dates than any of his other friends. His iconic one-liner, "How you doin’?" defines him a lot. Chandler, whose great sense of humour, love for Monica and special bond with Joey make the viewers to have a friend like him. One of his catchphrases, "I can handle this. "Handle" is my middle name. Actually, "handle" is the middle of my first name.", proves his satirical nature. Ross has become a popular figure in pop culture, in particular of his relationship with Rachel, his neurotic nature and his love for dinosaurs. "We were on a break!" by Ross justifies him as pop figure. Rachel has her oddities and flaws, above all being herself makes the crowds love her even more. "How do you expect me to grow if you won't let me blow?" by Rachel makes her to be love herself. Monica is a chef and famous for her cleanliness, competitiveness and obsessive-compulsive nature. "They don't know that we know that they know!" by Monica shows her competitive behaviour. Phoebe is by far the most unusual character of the series. She is admired for her carefree lifestyle, silly wit, and guitar playing in Central Perk. "Oh, I wish I could, but I don't want to." by Phoebe expresses her firmness. And they are always together with a promise of not letting any one of them as well as their fans get sad.
Even though in the era of web-series, the show has a boundless fan following of its kind as it works as a source of stress buster for people. There is a long list of Friends fan clubs on different social media platforms. It keeps on sharing throwback videos of the show and its bloopers every day. No doubt those clips and memes on them have played a great role in abolishing the hardship and loneliness in our life during this pandemic. The sitcom is so young among the audience of every generation. In a recent American chat show, Matt LeBlanc, who played the character of Joey Tribbiani, shares his experience where a teenage kid asks him whether he is the father of Joey.
Indeed, Friends is much more than just a TV series for its audience. It was announced on sept. 22,1994 as a new NBC sitcom that would forever change the concept of television comedy series. The audience of mid-1990s had admired and witnessed with awe that how instantly it became a red-hot comedy commodity. The great affection for this iconic show has made it an evergreen sitcom and still considered comfort food for audiences across the world, even after 27 years. It was re-aired on Comedy Central and became the most-watched English TV show in India, between January and June 2016. Even Netflix has added the show to its database just because of its undying popularity. On May 6, 2004, millions of hearts broke as Monica, Chandler, Ross, Rachel, Joey and Phoebe said one final goodbye to the apartment, left their keys on the counter and walked out to get one last coffee at Central Perk in the emotional Friends series finale. From that year to every year, Friends’ fans never missed to console and remember the scene. This year too, on May 6, the followers were reassuring themselves through various social media posts.
But after months of rumours and anticipation, the Friends Reunion of our dreams is going to be a reality. In the honour of 25th anniversary of the classic sitcom, HBO streaming service, HBO Max will be streaming Friends reunion, “The. One. Where. They. Get. Back. Together”, on May 27. The very first teaser for the special event is out now, where the cast walking arm in arm with its theme music in the back. As per a statement, the reunion special is not a new Friends episode. HBO Max elucidated in a statement, "Lastly, in order to avoid any misunderstanding about what this special is, we want to make it very clear that this is not a new, original episode of the series. The cast will be appearing as themselves, not as their beloved characters." So, it would be to some extent like this, the protagonist would reunite, revisit the set, have surprises, and share behind-the-scenes footage, but they won't be depicting their original characters. They'll essentially be showing up as themselves.
“Look around, you guys. This was your first home. And it was a happy place, filled with love and laughter... but more importantly, because of rent-control, it was a friggin' steal.” – Chandler (Friends, Episode-10)