Wednesday, October 19, 2016

F.R.I.E.N.D.S. Lives On!

When Graham Norton  exclaimed on his show that "Friends Lives on" I wondered what is all the hullabaloo about Friends which I keep hearing. I never gave Friends a chance and when I finally gave it , I regretted just after two episodes thinking how come I missed it all these decades. In school days I may not have understood it much and in our small town we did not have many cable channels as well. However I felt uber glad that I gave in to the temptation of Friends!

From the first episode of season one, I realized this  is just not any other show and is going to be etched in my mind till I want to forcibly push it out of it ! Thanks to Comedy Central for introducing me to this series. I was on job break for 3-4 months and I got friended in the best possible way :) My day started with it and ended with it. I just couldn't shut up about Friends with my husband, friends or  any one and every one I come across. What I felt deserves a place on my dear blog and hence this post. The strongest element of this show is the way, day to day mundane things, emotional and even heartbreaking happenings are shown in a lighter tone which gives the feeling that nothing's gonna stop the ongoing life and the way every one's demons, personal and professional problems are shown is so realistic!

You feel good by just seeing how Chandler gets bored in his office or how Phoebe sings whatever may be her lyrics, how Joey just enjoys all his food or how Monica makes her passion her profession and can go to any extent to please others, how sensitive Ross is or how beautifully Rachael progresses in life. However for a normal person like me in India or to that matter any person in any corner of the  world, it is very tough to live for a decade with the bestest friends and to not give a damn about the  rest of the world. However fictitious this  set up may be, it is uplifting. It helps you sail across your sea of emotions. It is not an exaggeration if I say F.R.I.E.N.D.S. changed my life for good. I want to discuss all the leading characters, one by one in this post.

Monica Geller: Monica's (Courteney Cox) apartment is the hub of happenings , the center stage for everything, the best host and a best friend one can have is Monica Geller. They all do jobs for a living whether or not  they like it, and like my favorite Monica Geller says it  is true that, "We all have jobs! Thats how we buy things." To most of us job is majorly a necessity which pays us enough to do things which we actually want to, and this fact is highlighted by Monica who always steals my heart with timely dialogues. After Rachael runs away from her first marriage, the way Monica consoles her like in the below image just soothes me every time I think about it. Almost a virtual Monica hugs me saying this whenever I am in soup! Monica is a magician. She can conjure food in no time and she is so big-hearted that  I always feel bad whenever I watch her as I never had such a great girl friend. I could have really used the company to stay rooted and balanced. I have some great  girl friends but I never had an exact replica of Monica. If I get such sensitive yet practical, such logical yet silly, such warm yet curt friend I would never let her go!

source : here
Rachael Green
Rachael's (Jennifer Anistonstory starts with a marriage from which she successfully exits but is confused as to where to go and what to do. Monica accepts though initially she has her doubts. Rachael becomes a better person and a great friend and seamlessly blends with the group. Rachael gets a job and becomes independent only after getting inspired by her friends. The best quality of Rachael is that irrespective of whatever shit she says or happens to her, she would stay the same emotional person she is. There are few qualities in her which don't suit my taste but just like all fingers of our hand are different, all our friends cant be same too! I love Rachael for the way she is passionate about her fashion career she chooses and the confidence with which she decides to be an unmarried mother to Emma. Tells me a lot on how a woman can mould herself and take up bigger challenges. Infact I appreciate both Ross and Rachael for being ready to raise the kid.The natural flirt that she is brings a smile on my face. She has a quirky sense of humour. I love her for being straight forward and transparent about her feelings and her natural reactions and frustrations which she expresses with out holding anything in heart. Well, in real life it may not always help but it does relieve you. All is well that ends well and Rachael's story and twists accelerate the audiences' enthusiasm in watching the Friends sitcom.
Image source : here
Ross Geller
Ross's name automatically comes when you write about Rachael. Because they are Lobsters right ;-)? I simply love this man. Sensitive men around you is a rarity and finding one who can be loyal , caring and can wait for you for years to make it work is something any girl can fall for! Ross has failed marriages but he still accepts things as his fate and tries moving on, ofcourse with the help of his friends. Ross's expressions steal the show. The way he says "hi" in a dull, dragged tone always makes me laugh loud but I feel a tinge of sadness and want to hug him at the same time. Ross and Rachael's on and off love story and his epic dialogue "We were on a break," can never be forgotten. Ross's mind blowing words like, "Unagi," "Pivot," his passion for dinosaurs, the way he fights for his sandwich in office and anything and everything is hilarious. David Schwimmer a.k.a. Ross Geller actually directed some episodes too. Ross is uber cute in the young college videos shown in some of the episodes and his restless pursuit for achieving Rachael just steals one's heart. They never really moved on but still stay friends always which is extremely refreshing and some thing to learn for all the viewers. Ross's expressions and innocence are in sync. Ross and Monica make the perfect brother sister duo. The common fights they have which all brothers and sisters have in life is adorable to watch  and I can never think of any other person playing Ross Geller!
We were on a break :) source: here
Joey Tribbiani
Joey (Matt Le Blanc) is a pillar to the series. Be it being funny due to his dimwit or just being the magnet to all kinds of girls, he aces it. Joey's food intake is unmatchable and I often use his famous line- Joey doesn't share food. Joey's iconic "How ya doin?"  seems like a cool opening line for any guy and just makes me smile broad whenever my husband uses it :-). He stands next in line to Phoebe when the crazy-quotient is measured. The conversations Joey and Phoebe have are extremely fun to watch ! Joey Tribbiani is the hottie of the series and he still is hottie. Just because of Friends, I started watching his new series - Episodes , which did not grab my attention but Joey didn't fail to impress me. Even at the age of 49 he is super fit and mesmerizes me! Joey even if dates multiple women and cannot even recollect their names has a sensitive side to him which makes him do anything for his friends and also makes  him develop a sudden soft corner for Rachael! Read 21 Joey's best lines on buzzfeed. Joey makes me smile no matter what. His struggle to be an actor looks so real and it is a fact that he had his last dollar in pocket when he was selected in Friends audition. The struggle did pay back :) Just the tone of Joey leaves me smiling broad sometimes. He is like the stress buster of FRIENDS and Chandler-Joey combination is a magical treat for viewers!
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One of the many howlarious lines by Joey - here

Chandler Bing

Chandler is my heart favorite character  ! Who wouldn't love a frivolous personality around them? His famous dialogue that  he uses humor to come out of embarrassing situations really works for me many times! When you cannot solve some problem, finding some humor in it, always lessens the burden and Chandler has reaffirmed my belief in that. It is shown that to cover up his awkward childhood episodes (of his mom and dad) he relies on humor.The way he wants to stick around Monica and fears commitment but ultimately realizes its LOVE is the best moment for me in all the episodes! Chandler is not as bad as he thinks with women and romance. In reality if there is a person like Chandler around me I would give no second thoughts before having a crush on him :). The bromance word would have started after Friends, after the unconditional bond the two friends , Chandler and Joey share! Chandler is a friend on whom you may not depend for solutions but he can interest you in some humour! The way he handles the situation when he knows that he and Monica cannot have kids, just gives courage to anyone. Nothing is tragic enough to spoil your life is Chandler's funda which everyone badly needs to follow. The climax scene is so moving , where the couple are blessed with 2 adopted twins. I was actually in tears looking at the vacant apartment. Some of the iconic Chandler Bing dialogues can be read here. Chandler (Matthew Perry) is so iconic that the makers have included his original lines many times in the series!

Source: here
Phoebe Buffay
Last but not the least meet Phoebe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow), the star singer of Friends series. I cannot pick an actual favorite in this group of 6 friends but Phoebe's unconventional sense of humor and weird imaginations are just so unique that they place her in a  special category where she competes  with none and just raises the crazy-bar every time you watch her. I love Phoebe for her selfless acts (bearing the 3 children of his  brother and the way her brother says it to others is extremely funny),  her empathy , easy going  nature but getting  all emotional when situation demands or when she just feels like, are some of her impressive traits. On the first night she meets Rachael, when asked if she could spend time with Rachael, the way she frankly replies as in the snap shot below just made me her fan instantly. Frankness is needed to an extent when you dont  want to do something :)
source: here
Her style of singing to her heart's content and feeling  extremely good about her talent fills immense confidence in any person! The iconic smelly cat smelly cat will always be remembered by viewers. Phoebe's lyrics are so fun to listen to and the way she sings make the lines  more hilarious. Phoebe Buffay as Regina  Phalange and her very usage of Phalange in the climax scene made me ROFL. Phoebe's identical Ursula though enters the series occasionally doubles the crazy quotient. I so hoped for Phoebe and Joey to get hitched but it would have been a routine end and of course we wouldn't have got a chance to see the ageless Mike:). Janice with her "Oh My God!" is another memorable character. The celebrities who used to come on and off in various seasons made the series more special!

A glimpse of the song

The unconventional ways of giving birth and raising kids (phoebe to brother's triplets, Rachael to Emma with out marriage, Monica and Chandler adopting twins) gives hope to viewers that life can be moulded to make  your self happy. If you really want to do something there are  multiple ways. FRIENDS influenced me in a way I never could have imagined before watching the show.

Three cheers to all of them and thanks to the makers David Crane and  Marta Kauffman who created this amazing show from which there is no escape. Truly, FRIENDS lives on!!

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