Why It’s Still Okay To Like Friends, According To Lisa Kudrow

Photo: Getty Images.
It's hard to believe it's been 16 years since the final episode of Friends aired. The show is so beloved by millennials (and easy to stream on Netflix) that its integral place in pop culture has never really diminished.
Come on, admit it, you were pretty disappointed to hear that the cast's long-promised reunion special had to be postponed because of coronavirus.
Still, that's not to say we should watch the exploits of Ross, Rachel, Phoebe, Joey, Monica and Chandler quite as uncritically as we might have done back in the day.
The recurring "Fat Monica" storyline just doesn't feel right in 2020 – and co-creator Marta Kauffman has admitted she regrets the show's depiction of a trans character.
And while Friends won an award from LGBTQ rights organisation GLAAD in 1995, it's since been accused of homophobia as well.
Earlier this year, David Schwimmer, who played Ross, said he was "well aware" of the show's lack of diversity and "campaigned for years" for his character to date a woman of colour.
Now Lisa Kudrow, who played lovably daffy Phoebe Buffay, has shared her thoughts on how the sitcom holds up in 2020, saying we shouldn't judge its mistakes by today's standards.
After saying Friends would be "completely different" if it were being made in 2020, Kudrow told The Sunday Times: "Well, it would not be an all-white cast, for sure. I’m not sure what else, but, to me, it should be looked at as a time capsule, not for what they did wrong.
"Also, this show thought it was very progressive," Kudrow continued. "There was a guy whose wife discovered she was gay and pregnant, and they raised the child together? We had surrogacy too. It was, at the time, progressive.”
Kudrow also reiterated the fact that the reunion special – whenever it now happens – won't be a new scripted episode of the sitcom.
"We will reminisce, talk about what was going on behind the scenes. It’s not us playing our characters," she explained.
"It’s six of us coming together for the first time in I don’t know how long. I am really looking forward to it, because I think that I remember things, but then I talk to Matt [LeBlanc] or Jennifer [Aniston], and they remember everything. It’s really fun.”

More from TV

R29 Original Series