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The One With The 20 Best Friends Episodes // 20 - 11

22 September 2014
Today (Monday 22nd) is the 20 year anniversary of one of my all-time favourite shows, Friends. Altogether now! So no-one told you life was gonna be this waaaay *frantic clapping* - if you didn't join along, I'm judging you just a little bit. It's probably the only show that the majority of people claim to have seen every episode tens of times, with it actually being probably true (thank you E4,) and so I thought I'd put together my 20 favourite episodes. With 238-ish episodes in total, it was a tough feat - I even had to do an X-Factor style bootcamp just to wittle some of them down, but I did it... just. Before I start though, I'd like to take a moment to think of the episodes that didn't make it... you're still appreciated, I promise. Even the unnecessary throwaway flashback episodes...

I'll be posting the top 10 on Friday, but here's 20 - 11.

Kicking things off with the last episode, a bumper 44-minute rollercoaster ride of emotions as we see the gang prepare for the next step of their lives. Monica and Chandler are about to move out of their apartment, not before getting themselves a couple of babies on the way. We find out that lovably dim Erica was actually pregnant with twins, she just didn't know, even after the doctors had told her that they can hear two heartbeats... bless her. Gunther beats Ross to confessing his love for Rachel, and Phoebe is ecstatic to find that all of these exciting things are going on, and tries to turn it all into a musical - unfortunately, she never gets to finish any of her songs. At the end, her and Mike suggest starting a family. Joey gets a chick and a duck for Mondler, but they get stuck in the foosball table, which they have to break open. There's a lovely little moment between Joey and Chandler, which makes you feel, just, all of the feels.

Rachel's leaving for Paris, but Phoebe and Ross drive frantically to the airport to stop her. They get to the wrong airport, but Phoebe manages to delay her by claiming something's wrong with the left 'phalange.' They finally make it in time, and Ross tells Rachel he loves her, but she gets on the plane anyway. Ross gets home to find a message from Rachel, who evaluates what's just happened and realises she needs to get off of the plane. This might be a spoiler but I think everyone knows by now... she got off the plane. Cue more feels.

It's Thanksgiving, and the gang randomly decide to have a friendly game of football, whilst the dinner's cooking - as you do. This reignites the competitiveness between Ross and Monica, who used to play when they were younger, to win the Geller Cup - a troll doll nailed to a piece of wood - lovely. They become team captains, and poor Rachel is picked last, spending most of the game 'going long' and not really doing much - when she does, she is chased by the guys and throws the ball in Monica's face in a panic. Luckily she shines at the end with a pretty great catch.

Joey and Chandler fight over an elusive Deutsch girl, and things get a little ugly. She eventually chooses Chandler, who ruins it by celebrating just a bit too much. Monica and Ross' feud grows more and more, and it soon turns into a boys vs girls match. Phoebe is... well just being Phoebe, and I love it. It's not the most memorable episodes, but I love the episodes where they're all together for the majority of the episode.

What do you do when the guest star is married to one of the main 6? Make their character hate them obviously. Will, played by Brad Pitt, is randomly invited to Thanksgiving dinner after bumping into Monica, and we soon find out that Rachel used to be a bit of a dick to him. So much of a dick, that it caused him and Ross to create the 'I Hate Rachel Green Club,' where they would get together and, you guessed it, talk about how much they hated her. They also started a rumour that Rachel had both sets of genitalia, and Ross finds out that Rachel told the school that he made out with the librarian - what an eventful school career they had, jeeze.

Phoebe is just a little smitten with Will, but spends most of the day pretending to watch the football with Chandler, to get out of doing any work - genius. Joey also promises to finish off the Thanksgiving turkey, sporting Phoebe's old maternity pants for a bit of. y'know, give.

Another Thanksgiving dinner episode, this time with Rachel's sister Amy joining the fun, after her plans with her boyfriend fall through when his wife comes back into town. After questioning Emma's gender, and just generally being a bit of a knob, she soon gets excited at the thought of Ross and Rachel dying - as she would, obviously, get Emma. Monica and Chandler are humbled to find that they would be asked instead, but for Monica's disciplinarian attitude and Chandler's fun side - this leads to a bit of awkwardness. Phoebe is trying to teach Joey how to lie, after he failed to turn up to his show's float in the parade, and Monica is just a tad overprotective over the wedding china they decide to use for the meal.

Back to Rachel and Amy, the pair start arguing, and things get physical when Amy claims that Emma 'isn't even that cute.' They start fighting, which leads to a catastrophic fatality... one of Monica's plates smashes. Chandler tells them off, and Ross is all like well done, you'd be a great dad, you can definitely look after Emma etc. then Chandler goes and knocks over the box of wedding china and they smash to pieces... oops.

Phoebe arranges a birthday dinner for herself, but is annoyed when everyone bar Joey turns up very late. Rachel is in two minds about going, as she doesn't want to leave Emma, but Ross encourages her and literally pushes her out of the door, closing it behind them. Obviously, they haven't got their keys on them, and are locked outside, leading Rachel to come up with ridiculous scenarios, until Judy (Ross' mum) finally arrives. Chandler returns from work, now a smoker, and Monica gets all annoyed, postponing the baby-making sex they had planned to do quickly before going for dinner. They argue, then they make up, then they have sex, then Monica reveals she lied just to have sex... scandal!

At the restaurant, Phoebe and Joey are left waiting, with various members of staff asking them if they'd like to move, as other large parties are waiting for tables. When Joey goes to the bathroom, Phoebe caves in and moves to a much smaller table, and when the others finally arrive, Ross' mum in tow with Emma, they are all preoccupied with their own dramas. When Rachel apologises and starts giving a toast, she starts focusing on Emma, who's dropped her sock. Ross tries to get Judy's attention, but Phoebe loses her cool and screams across the restaurant. Luckily her anger is interrupted by a call from her boyfriend, Mike, who got off work early, and she decides to go out with him instead. Ross and Rachel decide to go home too, and Monica and Chandler return home to continue the baby making, leaving Joey with 6 meals... and a birthday cake.

A bit of a cop-out having a double episode, but seeing a slightly different dynamic in Friends was refreshing and a nice break from the storylines from Series 6. The gang all imagine what their lives would be like if certain things hadn't happened. Monica is still fat, living by herself, struggling to find love, or sex, whilst Chandler's a comic strip writer, who isn't doing too well, and gets a job as Joey's PA. Joey is still starring in Days Of Our Lives, and Rachel, who is still married to Barry, becomes starstruck as she sees Joey in Central Perk. Ross and Carol are still married, but haven't had sex in months, and Phoebe is working for Merrill Lynch. One of her employees loses her a lot of money, and the stress causes her to have a heart attack. Ross decides to not tell her she's been fired, but she sneaks out of the hospital and returns to work. When told she doesn't work there any more, she has another heart attack... it's all okay though, she turns it into a song at the end - classic Phoebs.

Joey asks Rachel to spend the night with him, but she gets very drunk and throws up. She returns home to find Barry cheating with someone, and decides to go for Round 2 with Joey, hopefully with less vomit and that. Ross and Carol decide that a threesome could spice things up, but Ross becomes a third wheel with Carol and Susan, and doesn't really end up getting any kind of action at all. Chandler decides to help Monica, and sleeps with her to boost her confidence, but when she plans to seduce her boring doctor boyfriend, he steps in and effectively cockblocks the whole thing, it's all very romantic.

Phoebe finds someone who used to know her mother, and as luck would have it, one of her clients has a beach house in the same area, so the gang decide to take a trip together. The beach house has some flood damage, and it's raining, so there isn't much to do, and the group decide to play Strip Happy Days game, Joey's idea, which he effectively loses. Phoebe speaks to the family friend, also called Phoebe, and is adamant that she is hiding something, and decides to break into the house. She later finds out that Phoebe is her real mother... I know, right?

Chandler tries to convince Monica that he'd be a great boyfriend. and Rachel tries to hide her jealousy of Ross and Bonnie, encouraging Bonnie to shave her head, like she used to. Ross and Rachel have a big argument about it, and we see that they still have feelings for each other, and Ross is left to choose between the two.

Monica decides to throw a fancy dress Halloween costume, in which she dresses as Batwoman, Phoebe as Supergirl and Joey as... Chandler. Rachel uses the party as an excuse to wear an expensive dress she won't be able to fit into when she's further into the pregnancy, whilst Chandler is forced to wear a pink bunny costume, picked by Monica because of his love of The Velveteen Rabbit, Ross comes up with Spudnik, a potato and Russian Satellite combo, but is instantly demoted to 'doody.'

Joey and Monica discuss who out of the boys and girls would win in a fight, which leads to Ross and Chandler having a, rather extensive, arm wrestle. Phoebe meets Ursula's new husband to be, who seems worryingly smitten by her. We find that Ursula has told him a whole bunch of lies, and Phoebe intervenes and tells him the truth. Rachel takes charge of the trick or treaters' candy, and after giving it all to a ballerina girl who hugs her, starts giving out money. When Gunther comes back with more candy, one child wants money instead, and they have a bit of a tizzy, and Rachel tells the kid to shut up. Several times. Chandler lets Ross win the arm wrestle, as he sees Mona chatting to Joey, but Ross soon denies it after...

I love this episode simply for the fact that it's all of them in the same room for the whole thing (well, bar the bit at the end.) Ross has a big event, which they have very little time to get ready for. Joey and Chandler fight over a chair, leading Chandler to steal Joey's underwear, and Joey to wear every piece of Chandler's clothing... commando. Phoebe's ready, until Joey and Chandler's antics leave her with a hummus stain, but she manages to cover it up with a very festive bow.

Monica still isn't over Richard, and after trying to delete a 'breezy' message she left, she runs into a few complications with his daughter, after hacking their answering machine. Rachel has trouble deciding what to wear, and Ross, teetering on the edge of sanity, has a little go at her. She gets back into comfy clothes and decides she isn't going, after being 'humiliated.' Ross says he'll do anything to get her to go, and Joey suggests that he drinks the fat from Monica's fridge. Rachel stops him just as he's about to down the, frankly, vile liquid - it's all very disgusting and romantic.

Ross and Rachel bring Emma home from the hospital, and the girls spend an awful lot of time gushing over her. Rachel decides to wake her up, even after being advised not to, but Emma starts crying, and continues to cry for pretty much the rest of the episode, until Monica takes over and manages to calm her down with some melodic bouncing. Chandler falls asleep during an important meeting, and finds himself agreeing to move to Tulsa to head one of the company's divisions. He tries to get out of it, but only makes things more awkward between him and his boss, guessing her daughter was a boy, and being, well, Chandler.

Ross and Joey end up having a little heart-to-heart and make up at the emergency room. Joey feels bad after accidentally proposed to Rachel, and tries making it up to Ross, who doesn't want to talk about it. Joey tries to unleash Ross' anger about it, and wants him to hit him, but as Ross swings, Joey ducks and Ross punches a pole... ouch.

Come back on Friday for the top 10! Let me know what your favourite episodes are below...
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