A Recap of the Friends Reunion
We have all been waiting to see our favorite “Friends” talking about our favorite show and it finally, finally happened on May 27th. “The One Where They Get Back Together” was 1 hour and 40 minutes of tears, laughter, and nostalgia for the actors as well as those watching at home. While the six leading cast members - Courtney Cox, Matt LeBlanc, Mathew Perry, Lisa Kudrow, Jennifer Aniston, and David Schwimmer - have stayed in touch, they were all in one room together for the second time in the 17 years since the show’s end. The first few minutes were all tears as the actors reunited and reminisced while exploring a remake of the iconic set at the original “Friends” soundstage. The friends could not stop crying, mainly Courtney Cox and Jennifer Anniston, and I can’t blame them. I would be lying if I said I didn't shed some tears as well. What can I say, this show means so much to me and will always be a part of my life.
They walked around the places where the magic took place: Monica and Rachel’s apartment, the guys’ apartment, and of course, Central Perk. I was hanging onto their every word as they recounted the memories associated with filming around the different parts of the set, like Matt LeBlanc revealing that Courtney used to write her lines on Monica's kitchen table and that he once angered her by erasing all of them! It was so sweet to see them all just hanging out and talking about their experience filming the show we all love so much. Seriously, it made me so nostalgic that after finishing the episode, I went and binged the entirety of Season 1.
After the initial reunion sequence, the stars sat in front of the iconic (honestly everything from the show is just iconic) fountain - which apparently is very loud and was shut down for the interview - and talked to “The Late Late Show’s” James Corden. Present in the audience were the creators of the show Marta Kauffman and David Crane, who walked us through the creation and casting of the show. They explained how the idea of the show was to capture those years in a person's life when their friends are their family. Hence, the show came to a natural end when our beloved characters started families of their own. Apparently, the casting process for the show was quite difficult and took many months, but I think we can all confidently say that there were no other people who could have been better at bringing Joey, Chandler, Ross, Rachel, Monica, and Pheobe to life.
My favorite part of the reunion was by far when they recreated the quiz game from the episode “The One With the Embryos,” in which Rachel and Monica tragically lost their apartment to Chandler and Joey after no one knew what Chandler’s job was. David conducted the game - the girls vs. the guys - quizzing them on trivia about the show. During the game, Tom Selleck appeared to ask a bonus question, and it was revealed that the correct answer to the big question - what is Chandler’s job - is that truly, no one knows (I mean he worked in statistical analysis and data reconfiguration but I’d like to pretend that I don’t rewatch the show enough to know that).
There were some juicy revelations made during the show as well, the most shocking being that David and Jennifer had major crushes on each other during the first couple seasons and channeled all that adoration and love into Ross and Rachel (I swoon). Nothing ever happened between the pair, as one or the other was always in a relationship and the timing never quite worked out, but at least the natural chemistry between the two made Ross and Rachel what they were.
James Michael Tyler (Gunther), Maggie Wheeler (Janice - OH MY GOD), Larry Hankins (Mr.Heckles), Reese Witherspoon (Rachel’s sister Jill), Thomas Lennon (Joey’s identical hand twin), Elliot Gould, and Christina Pickles (the Geller parents) all made appearances. We got to hear from Mindy Kaling, Malala Yousafzi, David Beckham, BTS, and Kit Harrington about their favorite episodes. Lady Gaga appeared and sang Smelly Cat with Lisa Kudrow! It was unexpected and so spectacular to hear the two amazing voices singing a truly iconic song.
Viewers got to see behind-the-scenes footage and some hilarious bloopers with the cast telling the stories behind them. The waterworks made another appearance as we saw footage of the last moments of the show, a scene which makes me cry on its own, but watching the actors hug and cry in the hallway after the final take, well, no dry eyes there.
A fashion show took place with Cara Delevine modeling Rachel’s pink bridesmaid dress and the holiday armadillo costume, Justin Beiber in Ross’ Spudnik Halloween costume, Cindy Crawford in Ross’ leather pants, and closing with Matt Leblanc wearing all of Chandler’s clothes as Joey did in my favorite episode, “The One Where No One’s Ready.”
The special ended with the actors all sitting together in Monica and Rachel’s apartment, talking about how amazing the day was and, you guessed it, reminiscing while crying some more.
By the way, the cast seems to agree that Ross and Rachel indeed WERE on a break. What’s your take on it?