These people just watched ‘Friends’ for the first time – and they have some questions

Seriously though, why is their apartment so big?

Could we BE any more excited? Yes, beloved ’90s sitcom is now available to stream on Netflix, and a generation of ’90s kids is binging nostalgia until their eyes fall out. Joey, Monica, Rachel, Ross, Chandler and Phoebe – come thru. Yet another tribe is also tuning into the New York gang’s exploits, to marvel at their improbably enormous apartment and debate, at length, whether Rachel and Ross were on a break (they were, but that still doesn’t make it cool that Ross did what he did). Those who were too young to watch the show the first time around are now discovering it for the first time – and they have some… questions.

It’s weird when you’re so familiar with something that it seems perfectly normal, until someone points out an idiosyncrasy that makes you look at it totally differently. That’s exactly the situation us long-term Friends fans find ourselves in right now. Without further ado, here are some series queries raised by the newbies…

How come Monica wasn’t the fashion icon?

Maybe it’s because the ’90s revival seems to have lasted way longer than the actual ’90s, but the outfits on Friends just look totally, totally on point in 2018. Check out this collection of Monica looks. Oversized sweater – check! Ripped jeans – check! High-waisted mum jeans – check and double bloody check! And Rachel was the cool one?

How come they don’t have a binge drinking problem?

Was there less pain to drink away in the ’90s?

Were Ross and Rachel on a break, though?

@ClayIngold has opened an absolute bloody can of worms here. The man asked a simple question and now his @ messages look like the first 20 minutes of Saving Private Ryan. Even when a couple of fans pulled him up on his controversial viewpoint, he remained steadfast in his opinion, replying: “I’m not seeing Rachel’s case at all. #TeamRoss #ItWasABreak”. What an absolute bloody renegade! With contrary opinions like that, @ClayInGold, you should get a job at a broadsheet newspaper.

Annie has more of a statement than a question here. For the purposes of this blog: was Ross an absolute turnip?

Like, he was definitely moany, self-absored (well, weren’t they all), prone to rage (remember Red Ross?) and acted like a doofus over the whole “We were on a break!” thing – as we’ve discussed – but, reader, here is the real question: was he a turnip? And an absolute turnip at that? When you look at it in the cold, hard light of the noughteens, perhaps he was.

Were the Friends self-absorbed to the point being borderline sociopaths who actively damaged – or at least did nothing to improve – one another’s mental health?

Hoo-ey, that’ a biggie. Hoo, boy. Yes, it’s been widely noted that, in retrospect, Friends not massively woke. We’re not talking Sex and the City levels of insensitivity, but the show is certainly marked by cringeworthy moments – from ‘Fat Monica’ gags to the fact that Chander’s drag queen dad is a running joke – that now hold up very badly indeed. As a separate issue, @Bee_Wakefield has questioned the functionality of the friends’ interpersonal relationships, at which point you might feel inclined to point out that we’re not taking here about the kind of gritty, immersive drama we’ve come to expect from Netflix – but, in fact, a light sitcom delivered in 30-minute episodes.