What's the worst friends season

Why is "Friends" so problematic from today's perspective?

This article is from our colleagues in the UK editorial team.

After wondering a few weeks ago if we Sex and the City in our modern world, we asked people this time to do the same with Friends to do. To spoil up front: The series feels pretty unrealistic in 2018.

Homosexuality is used all the time as a punchline. Chandler's trans mom is ridiculed several times. And we want to remind you once again how many People of Color played in the series, in case you forgot: almost none.


Also on i-D: The stylist icon tells you how you can do it in the creative industry


Many of us love Friends still. Would we think differently about the series if it ran on Netflix for the first time? In other words: dignity Friends would still be considered a cult in 2018, if we weren't looking back on it so nostalgically? We searched for Friends newbies on Twitter who would share their experiences with us.

Hello Annie, how are you doing?
Stop it.

How much did you know about Friendsbefore you watched the series?
Only a little. But somehow all of my friends saw the show. I was always a little frustrated when they talked about it because I never knew what they meant.

And what is your impression now?
It's fun, easy to look at, and the women are wearing great shoes.

What is your favorite / least favorite character?
I really don't like Ross. What a terrible character. I was told I'd like him from season two, but I've seen nine seasons and my mind hasn't changed. He's controlling, disrespectful, and when he feels insecure, he spoils the mood of others. It's hard not to like Phoebe. She is great! Even if I can't understand why the others are never really nice to her. They would never all be friends in real life.

What's the most problematic thing about Friends in 2018?
There is so much that is problematic from today's perspective. Monica is constantly being spanked for being overweight and the women are constantly being sexualized by the men.

Is there a scene or quote that is particularly problematic?
There is an episode in which Ross and Rachel hire a male nanny. Ross is very irritated and projects his insecurities onto his surroundings.

Is there still something good about the series?
It's not all bad about it! To be completely honest, many of the episodes are very reflective because they at least try to address the issues raised.

Did you laugh
There are lots of weird one-liners and funny jokes out there. So yeah, the show made me laugh.

Finally, were Ross and Rachel on a break or not?
Technically, they were! But that doesn't excuse what Ross did.

--

Hello Dan, how are you doing?

I'm fine thank you.

How much did you know about Friendsbefore you watched the series?
I happened to see an episode before another series started. I know [Warning: spoilers] that she is leaving the plane.

And what is your impression now?
I'm just beginning the second season right now, but I like it so far.

What is your favorite / least favorite character?
My favorite character is Phoebe. She's just interesting and a weird person. But I also like Chandler. He's just the guy who always has a joke up his sleeve. I least like Ross because he made me look at Ted How I Met Your Mother remind. His story? "Help me, I'm in the friend zone."

What's the most problematic thing about Friends in 2018?
Definitely homophobia. While Carol and Susan are portrayed as a pretty normal couple and most of the lesbian jokes are at Ross's expense, it's a different story when it comes to gay men. One episode in the English original is even called "Chandler might be gay". It gives the impression that lesbian women are OK while gay men are not.

Is there a scene or quote that is particularly problematic?
I know that at some point Ross doesn't want his son to play with a Barbie doll because it's for girls. This also alludes to homophobia.

Is there still something good about the series?
Definitely. Overall she is very funny. I've seen some get upset about the people who get upset about the show (commonly called snowflakes). I don't understand why these people react so negatively instead of simply accepting that parts of this series are just problematic.

Did you laugh
Yes, I love Ross' monkey Marcel and most of the Chandler jokes. And I think I'll laugh even more.

And finally, were Ross and Rachel on a break or not?
As I understand it, they were on a hiatus, but they hadn't ended the relationship yet.

--

Hello Alisha, how are you doing?
How are you doing yourself?

How much did you know about Friendsbefore you watched the series?
When nothing else was on TV, I would watch reruns at random. But never in that order.

And what is your impression now?
This is my feel-good program when I have time for a second series.

What is your favorite / least favorite character?
Phoebe is from another planet and doesn't care too much about things. Somehow I don't like Rachel, she seems very selfish so far.

What's the most problematic thing about Friends in 2018?
That things like comedy series will be remembered in 2018.

Did you laugh
I shrug the corner of my mouth, but don't laugh with all my heart right now.

Finally, were Ross and Rachel on a break or not?
I haven't seen that yet.

--

Hello Bee, how are you doing?
Fine, and you?

How much did you know about Friendsbefore you watched the series?
Not much. I knew it was about a clique.

And what is your impression now?
I love her. She is so good.

What is your favorite / least favorite character?
Chandler is my favorite. I liked him the least at first, but I like the way his character develops over the course of the series. My least favorite is Ross. He's manipulative and possessive - downright gross.

Is there a scene or quote that is particularly problematic?
When Ross dates the 18-year-old student. The other characters make this an issue, but he is never held responsible for it.

Is there still something good about the series?
I'm not through yet, but it seems to me that most of the characters will mature and develop as the series progresses.

Did you laugh
Yes.

Finally, were Ross and Rachel on a break or not?
Yes, definitely.

Tagged:
FRIENDS
Monica
Phoebe
Chandler
Rachel
Horse
Joey