Why is “Friends” TRULY the Most Villainous Sitcom in Human History?

 

Just read this article about Seinfeld, if you’ve ever watched the show it’s worth a read.

I think it makes an important point, but one that should especially be taken into account regarding the show that owes it everything — Friends.

The difference between Seinfeld and Friends? If this article is to be taken as correct, the villainy and frankly anti-Christian behaviour in Seinfeld is to be read as satire. But by the time we get to Friends, all the characters have these same heathen attributes — they are all mean, all selfish, all promiscuous, all rich, all prejudiced — but it isn’t satire, we are made to empathise with them.

I remember my Dad saying that he thought the thing people like about Friends was that it had serious bits in it, but I think that’s the thing we should dislike about Friends. By inserting drama it becomes a show which can no longer be read as satire, I can’t watch Friends and think ‘is this what we’ve become?’ — which in theory I can with Seinfeld — I watch Friends and I think, ‘this is what we’re like and I love it’, which is awful and potentially dangerous.

I think my school-friend Zach summed it up well when one day he said, ‘I wouldn’t want to be friends with any character from Friends‘. He’s right. Rachel is a stuck-up, vein, mean-girl; Phoebe can often be homicidal; Ross is psychopathic; as is Monica; Chandler is emotionless and sarcastic to the point of death; and Joey is a greedy womaniser. All these are interesting characteristics in our society worth satirising, but the issue in Friends is that they are celebrated and encouraged.

 

2 thoughts on “Why is “Friends” TRULY the Most Villainous Sitcom in Human History?

  1. I agree that the flaws of the characters in Friends, or F-R-I-E-N-D-S, have become normalised – and the more that has gone on, the more bland and irritating the show becomes. So now, the most normal, empty, generic comment or ‘quip’ becomes hilarious(!) and is followed up by something like “OMG! You’re so Monica!” etc.

    However, in Seinfeld, the storylines were ridiculous then and they remain ridiculous today. There’s echoes of everyday life (the guy you know who talks about himself in the third person; the loyalty to your barber; the fear of commitment) but these echoes are amplified by Seinfeld and David. We can then sit back as an audience and enjoy being taken to places that we would never think to go ourselves – led by the four greatest comedy characters of all time.

    Friends seems to be a show that is always looking over it’s shoulder, worrying about conflict and buckling (hence the ‘dramatic’ parts). Seinfeld sees censorship and intrusion as a game to be won, making it a refreshing escape from the everyday.

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