If you didn't get caught up in the Laurel/Yanny debate yesterday, perhaps it was because you were still busy fighting about something more important over Twitter: a new Friends theory that is threatening to tear apart the pop culture world forever. (Or, you know, you were working or something.) This one sentence comedian Emily Heller wrote on Saturday has some people ready to take up arms against their fellow fans in defence of their favourite characters.
"Just realized they HAD to make Monica & Ross brother and sister otherwise all the F•R•I•E•N•D•S would have stuck with Carol in the divorce," Heller tweeted, setting off a battle that has earned her post more than 7,300 retweets, 41,000 likes, 918 comments and counting.
As if you could forget every plot and relationship on Friends, Ross and Carol divorced just before the show began, after she cheated on him with her best friend Susan. If Monica and Ross weren't brother and sister, Heller's theory goes, his friends would have used this split as an excuse to gradually distance themselves from the whiny, insecure palaeontologist, as people often do eventually let their friendships fade from one half of a split couple. Without Monica, he wouldn't have become friends with her roommate Phoebe. If his friendship with college buddy Chandler fell apart, he wouldn't have grown close to Chandler's roommate Joey. Come to think of it, Ross has so little in common with Phoebe and Joey, their friendship seems hard to pin down anyway. Of course, this would probably also mean Rachel wouldn't even have met Ross on the day of her own failed wedding.
Many on Twitter were thrilled with this idea, and used it to voice their grievances with Ross as a character.
"Ross is an emotionally abusive, self obsessed, classist, intellectually superior PoS," Jamie Sykes replied. "Worst character by far (I guess unless he's supposed to be a satirical take on that type of man)."
"Every time I rewatch friends I have to pause every season or so for a band of brothers break so I can see Ross get his comeuppance," Thermidorian Reaction said.
Then, naturally, there were many there to tear apart Heller's theory. You couldn't break up college BFFs like Chandler and Ross, for one. Phoebe apparently bonded with Ross for good when she mugged him. Carol wasn't all that great, she was the cheater, and no one was really friends with her. And so on, only with a lot more Chandler quotes thrown in for good measure.
Heller returned to her thread to clarify that she never wanted to hurt any of her old friends. "Truly meant this not as a Ross burn but a Carol compliment," she wrote. Oh, and also, I think she might want you to read this one in a Chandler voice too:
Shout out to all the folks taking this as a face value conspiracy theory. That is definitely exactly how I meant it, I am very serious about this, please fill my mentions with arguments it is the only way I can cum— Emily Heller (@MrEmilyHeller) May 14, 2018