This May marks the 14th anniversary of when the final episode of our favorite Friends aired on television. To commemorate we decided to make a list of 9 of our absolutely timeless and favored moments from the television show.
The show centers around 6 friends in their twenties living in New York City. Whether it is Ross’ lesbian wife, Monica’s inability to find a boyfriend, Phoebe’s twisted life story, Joey not sharing food or Chandler’s sarcasm – it didn’t take long for these characters to become a household name.
This has to be one of our most cherished moments from the show. After moving in with Phoebe, Rachel and Phoebe join a self-defense class. This spurs an interesting conversation between them and Ross as he brings in his post “kara-tay” days and tests them on their “complete mental awareness” or what he calls “unagi.” The girls mock Ross’s sinister approach and give the audience something to laugh about through their repeated prey and predator attempts at one another. This ends with Ross on the floor as the girls pin him down screaming “Say we are unagi!” Priceless!!
2) “WE WERE ON A BREAK!”
This is perhaps the most recurrent dialogue of the season, almost like a guest star that keeps reappearing. Driven from the most heartbreaking breakup in television history – this becomes Ross’ catchphrase. It is used almost as frequently as he gets divorced. This is Ross’ justification for sleeping with someone else merely hours after breaking up with Rachel. Ross’s mistake leads to their separation that lasts all the way up to season 10 until Rachel decides to leave for Paris. Even then Ross manages to joke giving the audience something to laugh about even as the show approached an emotional end.
3) Monica’s Proposal
Monica’s proposal to Chandler and all the confusion that leads up to it has to be one of our favorite moments from the show. The episode is a series of confusing events starting from Chandler trying to throw Monica off so his proposal could be a surprise and ending with Richard’s return. The surprise giver becomes the surprised as Monica welcomes Bing to a house lit with candles. Everyone was in tears as the couple chokes on tears trying to propose to one another in the most timeless television proposals ever. This moment is when everyone realizes that Chandler is likely to take a wife.
If you want a good laugh then you just need to watch this episode on repeat and then watch the bloopers. We see Ross, Rachel, and Chandler being physically challenged as they struggle to maneuver Ross’ new couch up a narrow flight of stairs. You just have to watch it to know what we’re talking about.
5) When Ross says Rachel on the altar.
This was perhaps the most unexpected plot twist. Ross along with everyone else flies to London to marry the very difficult and snobbish Emily. This is exactly when Rachel realizes she still loves him. Flustered to see Rachel, Ross claims to “take thee Rachel” instead of Emily at the altar. It is this slip of the tongue that leads to his second divorce and a wave of laughter in the audience like no other. This infamous error is one that is not just quoted by friends fans but also by other television shows, to date.
6) When Phoebe has her brother’s Triplets
Despite being a comedy show, Friends still managed to tug at our heartstring every now and then. This was especially true when Phoebe discovers her long-lost brother and decides to be surrogate to his child with his much older wife. Her brother screaming “my sister’s going to have my baby!”, is perhaps the most hilariously unintended, incestuous dialogue of all times. Phoebe ends up having triplets. In an episode that is both heartbreaking to watch as Phoebe gives up the kids and overwhelming to see her brother finally complete his family, it has to be one of our favorites.
7) Janice’s Hyena laughter
This isn’t just one moment but recurs several times throughout the season. It is impossible to watch friends and not develop an ambivalent relationship with Janice and her “Oh My Gawwwd!” Where you do feel bad for her for being dumped by Chandler not once but twice on New Year’s and Valentine’s Day, Janice has to be one our most beloved cameos. This iconic laugh is everything!
8) When Phoebe finally finds her “normal” happy beginning
Throughout the series, we root for Phoebe to settle down and get her happy ending like everyone else. After being the only character with a tragic and dark past, Phoebe’s wedding is a sight for sore eyes. She meets her match in Mike Hannigan as they wed in a beautiful ceremony on the street during a snowstorm. Joey is seen as a minister once more and Chandler walks the bride down the aisle proving that friends are indeed family.
9) The final one with the keys
The season finale of Friends is the most watched episode in television history. The infamous apartment is emptied. Chandler and Monica are finally parents. Ross and Rachel are able to surpass everything that kept them apart and reconcile with the couple we all love and Phoebe is a married woman planning a family. Filled with these emotions the audience catches their breath one last time as the entire cast leaves behind a copy of their keys on the table defining “the end of an era.”
The entire show is iconic and there are several very memorable scenes missing from this list which is what makes it impossible to say that these 9 moments are all this season has to offer. Other moments may not be such single defining moments but are lasting phases that contribute a great deal to making FRIENDS the most notable and iconic TV sitcom to date.