Article / New Year Old Friends / RepoComedy

Happy New Year and A Million Dollars — Friends Episode 1-1

The One Where Monica Gets a Roommate

Looming fiscal cliffs! Global-Warming-Caused natural disasters! Django, being unchained!

Maybe the Mayans were just a year off?


“With all the dangers hanging over our heads in 2013, it’s comforting to embrace the familiar and unchanging”

I made that look like a fancy quote from someone important, but really it’s just what I was thinking as I heard the first notes of the Friends theme song, just before the pilot episode

BUT before we get to the pilot, let’s ask ourselves:

Why should we give a Flying Kardashian-hole about Friends?

1 . Well, you’re at a site called RepoComedy — so I hope that, like me, you enjoy looking at things that make you laugh

2 . Friends was a cultural phenomenon in the US for a whole decade:

– It inspired the ‘Rachel’ haircut — still popular with women who live in the 90s

– It coined the only phrase that unfailingly makes all women randy-in-the-panty: ‘How you doin’?

– It’s 2004 finale was the most watched TV episode of the decade (that one’s a real reason)

3 . Like all good sitcoms, Friends deals with broad social issues that EVERYONE can relate to!

That being said, let’s dive in!

When It Hasn’t Been Your Day, Your Week, Your Month — Or Even Your Year

– The Rembrandts

The theme song promises exactly what the show embodies: Good friends are the ones who are there for each other, no matter what. And — sure enough — Chandler, Ross, Rachel and the rest of the gang were there for us, every Thursday night at 8:30 PM on NBC — just as they were there for each other.

Perhaps it’s just that time of year, but the Friends theme song before the pilot strikes me as a perfect metaphor for the New Year in two ways:

It’s the beginning of a journey (either through the new year, or chronologically through the Friends episodes)

And it’s a journey that’s strangely familiar (this may come as a shock, but I’ve seen the Friends episodes before — just like we’ve all previously found ourselves standing before the blank slate of a new year)

And I Just Want a Million Dollars!

– Chandler Bing

Friends is really a very optimistic show. The pilot especially is perfect inspirational fodder for New Years Resolutions.

Let’s take a look at each character’s life circumstances at the start of the show:

  •  Rachel – a clueless daddy’s girl who has run away from her future husband and her father’s money
  • Monica – a hopeless romantic who’s only identity seems to come from this random dude who lied to her in the pilot
  • Phoebe – a former homeless woman and (let’s face it) terrible musician
  • Chandler – a sardonic complainer in an unfulfilling, dead-end job
  •  Joey – a struggling actor living off the generosity of his roommate and best friend
  • Ross – a heart-broken schlub wondering if he drove his wife to lesbianism #beenthere

All that aside, they sit around in that coffee shop making jokes and supporting each other.

You can chalk that up to Sitcom-World nonsense pretty easily, but I choose to view it as a good lesson in the importance of resiliency and friendships.

I think Chandler nails the ideal New Years mind frame when, after Rachel makes her very first dramatic entrance in full wedding garb, he points to the door and shouts that he wants a million dollars.

Of course, Chandler was being sarcastic. But I’d like to ask, at the start of 2013, what do you want for the New Year? Take a lesson from Chandler. Shout out what you want!



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