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  1. We Know You Know We Know – Our Top 20 Episodes of Friends, Part Two

    September 22, 2014 by HeadOverFeels

    Posted by Kim and Sage

    “Remember how crazy you used to be about Friends?” People ask me this, and I wonder who told them that anything’s changed.

    Vulture recently did a series on the 1994 TV season – possibly the last great one for network TV. And I devoured every word of it, because that was the year that signed, sealed, and delivered my soul to the television gods. I was 11 years old the first time I saw Friends, and I was long gone before the episode even ended.

    Today, we celebrate the 20th anniversary of the little show that became a behemoth. The odds were against it from the start. Courteney Cox was barely a name – the other five actors, nobodies. And you thought Seinfeld was about nothing? Meet six people who hang out. And do stuff. Yet something about the show hooked itself to our insides and didn’t let go. Blame it on the unforseeable chemistry among the ensemble or the sharp, yet totally accessible writing. Friends was a juggernaut and a world we wanted to live inside of. Watching the show once a week wasn’t enough. We bought soundtracks and mugs and that awesome Windows 95 instructional CD-Rom. My Smelly Cat shirt was the crown jewel of my wardrobe.

    I drove my entire family crazy with my wild-eyed commitment to never miss an episode. I still have VHS tapes filled with episodes that I can’t bear to throw away, even though I haven’t owned a VCR for five years. My grade school classmates printed in the school newspaper that in 15 years, I’d be playing Phoebe in the Friends movie. Well, the movie didn’t happen and I’d hope Lisa Kudrow would be back anyway, but I appreciate the thought. Two decades later and Friends still wrote the language that I use to relate to life and people around me. (“It’s like in that episode where Chandler…” has started many a conversation with someone I barely know.) The life I saw in the show and wanted for myself isn’t the only reason I stay in New York City, but it is one of the reasons I came. Friends wasn’t perfect, and few things worth loving with everything you’ve got are. We can analyze the places where it fell short without minimizing its impact, cause that’s how progress works. I don’t want to return to a world where network sitcoms are my only comedy options. But even if our options had been as varied then as they are now, Friends would have still risen to the top.

    But you already know all this. That’s why you’re here. Today, on its platinum anNevadaversary (its anniVegasry), we give you our Top 10 episodes of Friends.

    –Sage

    10) “The One with the Prom Video” (2 x 14)

    I know, I know.  “The One with the Prom Video” is one of the most iconic episodes of the series.  Ross and Rachel finally get together for good.  We meet the joy that is Fat Monica for the first time.  Chandler and Joey become bracelet buddies.  Rachel’s hair is at its Rachel-iest peak.  So why is this episode, which is near the top of many other lists, ranked at number 10 for us?  Because for most of the episode, Ross is a pretty big jerk.

    And that’s not the Rachel/Joey shipper talking.

    Don’t get me wrong.  I pined for Ross and Rachel back in the day.  I was devastated by the events in “The List” (More on that later) and I longed for those two crazy kids to get their shit together.  But for someone who was supposed to be his Lobster, Ross didn’t always treat Rachel right or give her enough credit for being able to make her own choices.  I do think Ross was driven by the fact that Rachel HAD fallen for him and he was so desperate to fix things between them that he often made them worse.

    ROSS: I was saving you.
    RACHEL: Saving, saving, saving me from the pleasant conversation with the interesting man, saving me?
    ROSS: Oh, see from where I was sitting I uh. . .
    RACHEL: OK, Ross, listen to me, I am not yours to save.
    ROSS: But, you are.
    RACHEL: What?
    ROSS: Uh, uh, well you’re, umm, you’re my lobster.
    RACHEL: OK, you know what, are, are you being like, the blind date guy again?
    ROSS: No no, you’re uh, you’re my lobster. See um, lobsters, uhh, in the tank when, when they’re old, uhh, they get with, uhh, they walk around holding the claws. In the tank, ya know, with, with the holding and. . . Uhh, Phoebs you wanna help me out with the, the whole lobster thing?
    PHOEBE: Do the claws again.
    ROSS: Rach. OK, forget, forget the lobsters OK. We’re, let’s talk, what about us?
    RACHEL: Ross, there is no us, OK.
    ROSS: No, but. . .
    RACHEL: No, listen to me. I fell for you and I get clobbered. You then fall for me and I again, somehow, get clobbered. I’m tired of being clobbered, ya know, it’s, it’s just not worth it.
    ROSS: Well, but, but. . .
    RACHEL: NO but Ross. We are never gonna happen, OK. Accept that.
    ROSS: E-except, except that what?
    RACHEL: No, no, ACC-cept that.

    I do think the ending is justified and wonderful.  Ross had loved Rachel his entire life and the prom video made her realize that.  Whose heart didn’t break for him when he turned the corner of the stairs, in his dad’s tux, clutching flowers, ready to take Rachel to the prom, only to see her running off happily with Chip (who we learn later was most definitely not worth Rachel Green’s love)?  I love how you see everything click on Rachel’s face in that moment.  Suddenly, none of the bad things Ross has done in the past when it comes to their relationship matters to her anymore.  All she sees is a guy that was always willing to stand-up for her and love her even when she didn’t see it herself. So there is nothing left to do BUT kiss him.  The kiss is both a “Thank you for loving me” kiss and it’s also an affirmation that she SEES him.  She sees that she hurt him too in the past (even if she didn’t realize it) and she sees that maybe they should just stop hurting each other and just BE together already.  I love the delighted screams of the audience as Rachel grabs his face and plants one on him.  I am sure those screams echoed in every home that watched the episode that night.

    I think Rachel’s reaction to the video is compounded by knowing that Ross couldn’t bear to watch the video with the gang, instead standing by the door wallowing in his impending humiliation.  Because that’s what he expected.  He expected all of them to laugh at Sad Sack Ross, rejected once again.  He’s got it all wrong, of course, because he never gives his friends and his sister enough credit.  Honestly, my favorite reaction after Rachel’s was Monica’s “I can’t believe you did that!”.  Courteney delivers that line with such pride and you truly see that for all the ways he makes her crazy, Monica truly loves her big brother.

    (It still doesn’t make the List okay, but that’s neither here or there when you’re a character on a sitcom)

    On to the other less complicated aspects of this episode…I wrote at length in my Monica Appreciation post about how much I loved Fat Monica.  I have to say again that it could have been very easy to make Monica a sad sack without a date to the prom.  Instead, she’s joyous in her red taffeta polka dot gown (“Some girl ate Monica!”), clutching a sandwich and excited to go to the Prom with the guy who was in the paper for seeing Star Wars 317 times.  Monica is the kind of friend who will also give up going to Prom, even after Roy touched her boob while pinning on her corsage, because her best friend’s date stood her up (“Oh, I’m gonna kick Chip’s ass!”).  Everyone needs a Monica Geller in their lives.

    One of the things I love so much about the early seasons of Friends is that such a great effort was made to give every plot thread great moments.  The episode opens with Monica having to dirty talk her way through a job interview (“I think that fifth shower actually got the interview off me.”) which forces her to go to her parents for money (which is how the prom video gets to the apartment in the first place) and it also has the Joey/Chandler “Bracelet Buddies” (“THAT’S WHAT THEY’LL CALL US”) story.  It’s a jam-packed episode.

    To show the lasting impact of this episode, let me share with you what my sister gave her husband on their wedding day.  She gave him a painting of a lobster, with the inscription “To MY lobster” painted on the back.  You know…cause they mate for life.

    Do the claws again.

    — Kim

    Best Line:

    Joey: How come you have two?

    Chandler: Well this one’s for you.

    Joey: Get out.

    Chandler: No, I can’t. No no, listen, I, I know how much this means to you and I also know that this is about more than just jewelry, [puts bracelet on Joey] it’s about you and me and the fact that we’re best buds.

    Joey: Wow, is this friendship? I think so. Check it out, we’re bracelet buddies.

    Chandler: (to Rachel) That’s what they’ll call us!

    9) “The One where They All Turn 30″ (7 x 14)

    30 seemed so distant when I first saw this episode. Now I can appreciate it in a new light. “TOW They All Turn 30″ is a rare non-linear episode of Friends, bringing us snapshots of all our favorite characters hitting the milestone. Some take it on the chin; some get scha-wasted; and some had already been 30 for a full year. It was fitting for a show who counted “twenty-somethings” as being one of its few defining characteristics to mark the passing of each Friend into that next decade. I thought about it a lot on my 30th, particularly between the third and fourth shot. Kim can probably clarify this for me, but I might have yelled a Joey up to the heavens. “WHY, GOD?” (Note from Kim: Yes, she did.  While singing “Walking in Memphis” at karaoke.)

    Birthdays are a son of a bitch. They inspire you to impose ultimatums on yourself, even if your life is pretty damn good to begin with. Phoebe is distraught when she learns from her cold sister Ursula that she’s actually turning 31. She lost a year – a year in which she could have met some Portuguese people (unlikely, on Friends lily-white set. #yourfavesareproblematic), went to sniper school, or had the perfect kiss. Would that we all had a hot, sweet friend like Joey to assist us in checking the one box that he can. (“Plus, uh, I’m 1/16th Portuguese.”) I won’t argue with Mike being The One for Phoebe (he’s Paul RUDD), but honestly, wouldn’t Joey have done in a pinch? (Let’s talk about that hand on the back of her head, pulling her in even closer. Guh.)

    I was given a surprise party once and I spent the whole night stressing about how I wasn’t dressed for pictures. So I can identify with Monica, who is woefully unprepared for the fancy 30th Chandler’s thrown for her. Much like drunk Rachel Green, drunk Monica Geller is a total gem. The bus boys know it, Chandler knows it, and now the whole party knows it, cause she’s not exactly hiding it well (“I’m telling you, it’s like watching Bambi learn how to walk.”)


    Rachel’s 30th spells the end of her and her cutie assistant Tag, whose thumbs up during his scooter ride is my favorite part of the entire episode. The candles and a poorly chosen card by an oblivious Chandler send her on a spiral about her biological clock. (“All you had to do was buy the card!”) Little did she know that a surprise pregnancy was coming her way soon enough. Who needs a timeline as long as condoms only work 97% of the time?

    –Sage

    Best Line:Tag: Ms. Green would like to establish some ground rules before she comes out. She would appreciate it if you don’t use the words “old” or “downhill” or “they still look pretty damn good.”
    Joey: They do!

    8) “The One with Chandler in a Box” (4 x 08)

    We very easily could have had nine Thanksgiving episodes on this list (Trivia Alert, the only season without a dedicated Thanksgiving episode is Season Two).  The Thanksgiving episodes of Friends became one of the cornerstones of the series and an event episode every year.  They are a big part of the reason that Thanksgiving has become my favorite Holiday because, like Monica, I cook every year for my friends.

    So why “Chandler in a Box”? Let me count the ways….

    1) Matthew Perry ACTUALLY spent the whole episode in the box.  I’m sure he did some real good thinking in there.

    2) Cutie-cute baby Micheal Vartan as Timothy Burke.  He’s so cute, I would have wanted to shove the pen in my eye too.  I have to side with the gang though…as cute as Timothy is, it’s super creepy that Monica attempted to go out with Richard’s son.  Thank GOD it only went as far as a really gooooooooood kiss.  However, Monica’s rant to all her friends about judging her is golden.  And she DOES have a point…after all the wacky things her friends have pulled in the name of love, it IS a bit of a “throwing stones in glass houses” moment for the rest of them.

    3) I love how the gang draws for Secret Santas and then immediately can’t keep things secret as they try to trade-off for who they really wanted to get gifts for.

    4) The Secret Santa story also wrought a great Ross and Rachel conflict as Ross discovered that Rachel had exchanged most of the gifts he had given her over the course of the relationship.  Ross and Rachel are always better when they are bickering and this argument was one of the rare times I came down on Ross’ side.  I take gift-giving VERY seriously and I would be devastated to find out if the person I loved and picked the gifts out for returned them.  (Of course, this would never happen because I have a gift when it comes to picking out presents.) Ross’ anger leads to some deliciously awkward moments around the dinner table…

    Rachel: Ross, can you pass me the yams?

    Ross: Sure! Oh, and Joey’s got the mashed potatoes if you want to exchange them.

    Rachel: Would you stop?! What is the matter with you?!

    Monica: Oh-ho-ho, we’ve got company.

    Ross: There’s nothing the matter with me. See, I’m not completely devoid of sentiment, see I have feelings.

    Rachel: Okay, fine. (She gets up and walks into her bedroom)

    Rachel being Rachel though proves once again that Ross never gives her enough credit for being the wonderful person that she is when she storms BACK into the living room toting her memory box (She and Mindy Lahiri would get along SO WELL) filled with the sentimental mementos of their relationship.

    Rachel: Don’t say that I have no sentiment! (Starts to show Ross what’s in the box.) This is a movie stub from our first date! This is an eggshell from the first time you made me breakfast in bed! (Holds up a bone) This is from the museum from the first time we… were together. Okay, maybe I exchange gifts sometimes, but I keep the things that matter!

    Queen Rachel Green wins again.

    5) The main reason we chose this episode is the Joey and Chandler conflict.  The Ultimate OTP of the show, Joey and Chandler had squabbled over mundane things like armchairs but had never faced a true threat to their friendship until they both fell for Kathy.  It was a pretty monumental moment for Chandler to kiss Joey’s girlfriend and even though he did the right thing by fessing up quickly (well…after trying to bribe Joey by refurbishing their recently robbed apartment, that is), Joey had still decided to punish Chandler for 5 years (“Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time”).  It’s incredibly upsetting to see these two best buds at odds and the audience feels a genuine sense of peril that they may not be able to get through this after Joey runs into Chandler and Kathy at Central Perk.  That is until Chandler gets in the box to prove to Joey how much he means to him.

    Rachel: So now, what exactly is the point of the box?

    Joey: Chandler?

    Chandler: The meaning of the box is three-fold. One (holds a finger up through the air hole), it gives me the time to think about what I did. Two (holds up another finger), it proves how much I care about my friendship with Joey. And three (holds up a third finger), it hurts!

    Of course, the box seems silly at first as Chandler doesn’t take his punishment seriously, cracking jokes by attempting to moon the gang and knocking on the box to make it seem like someone is at the door.  However he shuts up when he realizes just how seriously Joey is taking this punishment, which is used to devastating effect when Kathy comes to take herself out of the picture.  Chandler’s sad little finger waving goodbye to her is so heartbreaking and Joey, big-hearted lug that he is, finally realizes just what he is asking Chandler to give up.  His tormented “OPEN THE BOX” makes my heart soar every time.  And because he tries to maintain his cool guy facade, he plays off his reaction as his Secret Santa gift to Chandler.  But we all really know why Joey lets Chandler out of the box.  Because he wants HIS lobster to be happy.

    — Kim

    Best Line:

    Ross: He’s coming here for Thanksgiving!?

    Rachel: I know, it’s sick.

    Monica: Why is it sick?

    Rachel: Because it’s Richard’s son! It’s like inviting Greek tragedy over for dinner!

    Monica: Okay, if it were Greek, I’d be blind in both eyes. Come on! I like him because he’s handsome and he’s nice and he’s smart and…handsome. Come on, Phoebe, you understand don’t you?

    Phoebe: Yeah, I can see where I’d be your best shot but, no. I’m sorry, but I think it’s twisted.

    7) “The One Hundreth” (aka “The One where Phoebe Give Birth”) (5 x 03)

    This is the episode that locked down the Emmy for Lisa Kudrow. See? There used to be some justice at that ceremony.

    The show celebrated its hundredth episode (in season five, because network schedules are insaaaaane) with Phoebe giving birth to Frank and Alice’s triplets. We got a lot of mileage out of Phoebe being pregnant with her brother’s kids. (“I am so going to miss watching you freak people out like that.”) But her choice to do this for the family she worked so hard to find embodies everything that’s wonderful about Phoebe Buffay. She’s capable of great selflessness, and she doesn’t give a damn about what anybody thinks.

    Before our hearts are ripped – still beating – out of our chests, there’s some really funny stuff in this episode. Phoebe’s actual doctor fell in the shower (“Oh my god, she’s so stupid!”) and her replacement has an interesting obsession. (“I’ll be back in a minute to do your internal, in the meantime, just relax because everything here looks great. And also, I love Fonzie.”) Joey ends up upstairs, holding Ross’s hand, and giving birth to kidney stones. (“They’re so small!”) Frank Jr. is nervous and endearing, as usual. And Chandler and Monica are forced to define whatever it is that they’re doing when Rachel procures her and Mon a date with some cute nurses. It takes Chandler a while to realize that he can’t screw up with Monica like he has with other girls. She knows him too well, and his awkward mis-steps are insignificant to her compared to his good intentions. It kills me to watch him realize it. You can actually pinpoint the moment he stops holding his breath.

    Chandler: So, are you really gonna go out with that nurse man?

    Monica: Well uh, you and I are just goofing around, I thought, why not goof around with him.

    Chandler: Y’know, I don’t know if you’ve ever looked up the term goofing around in the dictionary… Well, I have, and the technical definition is, two friends who care a lot about each other and have amazing sex and just wanna spend more time together. But if you have this new fangled dictionary that gets you mad at me, then we have to, y’know, get you my original dictionary. I am so bad at this.

    Monica: I think you’re better than you think you are.

    Chandler: Really? Okay, so-

    Monica: Know when to stop.

    Phoebe is a friggin’ titanic spirit – she’s so, so strong. But still, her resolve wavers when the end of this grand experiment is in sight. She really is going to have to hand over these babies…unless she has some success with her crackpot, last-minute plan. (“I want to keep one.” “Ohhhh, I’m gonna be on the news…”) Of course the babies go home with Frank and Alice, who are elated (and making out in the waiting room, natch), and Phoebe deals with her heartbreak like she always does…by looking on the bright side. Frank and Alice have their children, she’s an aunt to three beautiful babies, and everything’s gonna be cool. The Fonz would be proud.
    –Sage

    Best Line:

    Phoebe: So, here you are. It seems like yesterday I was talking to you in that little petri dish. Everyone said labor was the hardest thing I’d ever have to do, but they were wrong, this is. Oh, I had the most fun with you guys! I wish I could take you home and see you everyday. Okay, I’ll settle for being your favorite aunt. I know Alice’s sister has a pool, but you lived in me. Okay, so we’re cool. Yeah, we’re gonna be great. Little high fives! (Imitates the high fives.) Ahh! Ahh! Ahh! (One of the babies begins to cry.) Well, if you’re gonna cry…

    (more…)


  2. We Know You Know We Know – Our Top 20 Episodes of Friends, Part One

    September 19, 2014 by HeadOverFeels

    Posted by Kim and Sage

    On September 22, 1994, Ross Geller, while sitting in a coffee shop with his friends said, “I just want to be married again!” and then Rachel Green burst through the front doors in her wedding dress.  TWENTY YEARS AGO.

    *Obligatory OH MY GOD I AM SO OLD moment*

    I can’t remember a time where I didn’t love Friends.  It’s become a part of my DNA in the twenty years since its premiere.  I quote it in some capacity, be it a line, or saying something in Chandler-speak, on almost a daily basis.  I know I’m in a REALLY bad place if a repeat on Nick at Nite can’t make me laugh.  The mutual love Sage and I shared for this show became the very foundation of our friendship when our friend Angel looked at us and said, “You guys should team up for Friends trivia because you’re equally insane about it.”  It’s my ultimate comfort show and it seems to be the same thing for so many of our readers, as all of our character appreciation posts rank among the most viewed on this site.

    What is so special about Friends is that it is both a very specific slice of its decade (it is SO 90’s I can’t get over it) yet it also remains timeless in its stories and its themes and its characters. There’s a reason why Friends trivia is packed every time we go (and have our asses handed to us because there are people out there more fanatical that us, if you can believe it): everyone sees a bit of themselves in this show, be it in the characters or the situations they get themselves into.  People will still be saying “Gum would be perfection” and “WE WERE ON A BREAK!!” when the fortieth anniversary rolls around.  It’s that timeless.

    When I first broached the idea for this anniversary post to Sage, we both thought it would be an impossible task to narrow down our list to twenty (you all witness the bloodbath when it came to picking our X-Files episodes after all).  Turns out, it wasn’t that hard.  While there were several episodes that we were sad to leave out (“All The Thanksgivings”, “The Kips”, and “The Cheesecakes” were on that list), we were very much of the same mind when it came to the best episodes of Friends.  The best episodes ARE about the monumental and iconic moments of the series, but they are also the ones that fully utilized one of the best ensembles in TV history.  We felt very strongly that each of our twenty had to showcase the entire cast well because as Joey proved, these six characters are best when they are together.  So I’m not going to SAY that this list is the definitive one, but I’m going to strongly suggest it.

    Screw it.  These are the best twenty episodes, end of story.  Deal with it.

    — Kim

    20) “The One with the Holiday Armadillo” (7 x10)

    You’ve got plenty of Thanksgiving episodes ahead of you on this list, but “Holiday Armadillo” is the only Christmas-themed episode to sneak into our Top 20.

    If you follow me on Twitter, then you’re probably familiar with my opinion on early-series Ross. I’ll leave that version be for now. This list is a celebration, not a lecture. Instead, I’ll talk about how much I adore him at this level. At this level and in this armadillo suit.

    Ross’s determination both to teach his son a few things about Hanukkah and to make sure he has a fun Christmas sets Monica’s apartment as the stage of “the Easter Bunny’s funeral.” The wardrobe department outdid itself with Ross’s “weird, turtle-man” suit, the armadillo get-up he re-classifies as “Santa’s representative to the Southern states aaaaannnnd Mexico!” He’s at his best when he’s at his goofiest, and the show takes this opportunity to mix in a little farce. The Holiday Armadillo is joined by Chandler’s constipated-looking Santa Claus, who does his part to get Ben to pay attention to the story of “theeee Maccabees!” and then eventually by Superman, who is less helpful.

    “The Armadillo was actually not so thrilled about that part!”

    The B-plot is less cartoonish than the A, but a solid usage of all the apartment-switching that goes on these later seasons. Phoebe’s apartment is ready for Rachel to move into, but Phoebe feels insecure about their plans when she sees what a blast her future roomie is having at Joey’s. This very plotline is why I don’t understand the anti-Rachel/Joey camp when they contest that the show laid no groundwork for the pairing. It may not be romantic at this point, but Rachel and Joey are clearly bonding in a new way. Matt and Jen are a fun pair to watch and always were. (See: sailing on the Mr. Beaumont.) Their responses to Phoebe’s “gifts” are a delight, from Rachel’s cool-girl reaction to the tarantula to Joey’s panicked fall off the drum set to their A-for-effort duet of the one song they know.

    Rachel Joey Tequila

    Phoebe was panicking for nothing; of course Rachel wanted to go live with her girlfriend. But plans change when they arrive at a fully renovated one-bedroom. Even the contractors ship it, people.

    –Sage

    Best Line:

    Phoebe: Monica and Chandler said that you were having so much fun here. And apparently no amount of drums or tarantulas is gonna change that.

    Rachel: Phoebe?

    Phoebe: Hm?

    Rachel: Did you get all this stuff for Joey to try and drive me out of the apartment? Honey, if you wanted to do that, you might as well just gotten him a fish. You know how fish freak me out!

    19) “The One with Phoebe’s Wedding” (10 x 12)

    Weddings gone awry is a classic trope that just about every sitcom has done and one that Friends visited three times over the course of its ten-year run (more on one of them later).  The final season of Friends spent a good chunk of its time tying up all the loose ends of the series, making sure all of our beloved gang (except for Joey because of that stupid spin-off. #neverforget) got to the places in their lives where we would be happy leaving them, knowing that they are okay.  What makes “Phoebe’s Wedding” so special is the way that the gang rallies around Phoebe (who more than any one of them, had relied on her friends as her family of choice) as she marries her perfect man in a ceremony that was traditional, yet so unique that it could ONLY be Phoebe’s wedding.  There are wonderful callbacks to previous moments in the series, from Monica being Phoebe’s Maid of Honor, just as the girls planned out when Rachel got to be Monica’s (“Yeah okay, you laugh now, but she’s gonna be yours.”) to Joey still being ordained so that he can step in when the blizzard prevents the minister from getting there (stepping up from his position of Phoebe’s dad, which don’t get me started on that scene, cause I will short-circuit my computer from all my tears).  I love how eventually the entire gang gets involved in the wedding, from Chandler walking Phoebe down the aisle (“Aren’t you cold?” “I don’t care, I’ll be my something blue!” “You look beautiful.” #cryingforever) to Ross escorting Rachel and Chappy in the procession.  Because even if it wasn’t how Phoebe and Mike intended, it wouldn’t have been right if all five of Phoebe’s best friends, who had been there with her through so much, hadn’t all be involved in the wedding.

    Let’s discuss that perfect man, shall we?  While I always carried a secret torch for Joey and Phoebe (please, you did to), I recognized that it would be horribly clichéd if they ended up together.  Friends was better than that.  While Phoebe had some great suitors over the years (David, The Cop [till he shot a bird]), no man balanced out Phoebe Buffay like Mike Hannigan did.  On paper, you would have never thought that these two would work.  Mike was blue-blooded and a bit privileged (but with the soul of an artist) while Phoebe was daffy and free-spirited and had lived on the streets.  Yet they lit each other up.  Mike accepted everything about Phoebe at face value and embraced (and defended) her weirdness.  He became her anchor and she helped him embrace his own quirks.  He viewed every day with her as an adventure.  There could have been no man more worthy of her wonderfulness.

    But the best part about the episode is how the wedding ended up taking place in front of Central Perk, this magical coffeehouse where Phoebe Buffay found her true family and became the person that Mike fell in love with.  Looking back, it couldn’t have taken place anywhere else.

    — Kim

    Best Line:

    Phoebe: So there’s no one to walk me down the aisle and… well, I would just really love it if you would do it.

    Joey: Seriously?

    Phoebe: Yeah, you’ve… you know, sort of been like a dad to me. I mean, you’ve always, you know, looked out for me and shared your wisdom…

    Joey: I am pretty wisdomous.

    Phoebe: So… what do you say?

    Joey: Are you kidding? Phoebe, I would be honored.

    Phoebe: Oh, thank you. I hope… I hope you know how much you mean to me.

    Joey: Listen, I hope…that you know…I don’t want you to see your father cry, GO TO YOUR ROOM!

    18) “The One where Mr. Heckles Dies” (2 x 03)

    I should no longer be surprised that Kim and I share a brain, but I was pleased to see that she also put this unassuming little season two episode on her shortlist. So much went down that year, particularly with Ross/Rachel and Monica/Richard; and there a lot of “event” episodes, some of which we’ll run into later. But “TOW Heckles Dies” stands out as a character study on Chandler Bing: insecure, dissatisfied, emotionally stunted.

    I could have done with years more of Mr. Heckles weirding out the entire building. He made a big impact in a small amount of screentime, and it’s obligatory Friends fan behavior to yell “HECKLES!” when one sees Larry Hankin in anything else. But Friends killed him off to give Chandler his A-ha moment. Oprah would be proud.

    Heckles goes to the lord with a broom in his hand, presumably in the process of sending a message to “Noisy Girl 1″ and “Noisy Girl 2.” Then he sends them another, more inscrutable message. He leaves the contents of his entire apartment to Monica and Rachel. And while they sort out the remnants of his life, Chandler notices some striking parallels. Kooky hermits aren’t born that way. Heckles wasn’t always alone. He used to be the funniest guy in the room too. Chandler projects, assuming that Heckles alienated himself. And then Chandler decides that if he doesn’t stop rejecting the women he dates out of pickiness, he’ll eventually have to trade women in for snakes.

    Chandler: “If I’m gonna be an old, lonely man, I’m gonna need a thing, you know, a hook, like that guy on the subway who eats his own face. So I figure I’ll be Crazy Man with a Snake, y’know. Crazy Snake Man. And I’ll get more snakes, call them my babies, kids will walk past my place, they will run. ‘Run away from Crazy Snake Man,’ they’ll shout!”

    Though Crazy Man With A Snake would have been a better Friends spin-off than Joey, this was not to be. As his girls counsel him, Chandler isn’t in any danger of ending up alone. He wants too badly NOT to be.

    The rest of “Heckles Dies” consists of conflict between other Friends. Rachel and Monica clash over ownership of their apartment when Rachel wants to bring some of their dead neighbor’s kitschy aesthetic into Apartment 20. (“Is this tacky or what? We have to have this.”) And Phoebe delights in infuriating Ross by proclaiming her disbelief in evolution (“It’s a nice story, I just think it’s a little too easy.”) and later, gravity. (“I don’t know, lately I get the feeling that I’m not so much being pulled down as I am being pushed.”) She knows exactly what she’s doing and Ross is just begging to be knocked off his high horse. He thinks of himself as someone practical and grounded, but Ross is definitely not as in control of his emotions as she is. (“Is there blood coming out of my ears?”) And Bravo, Lisa Kudrow, because you can practically see the evil gleam in Phoebe’s eyes when she knowingly exploits that.

    –Sage

    Best Line:

    Rachel: Hey, Chandler. Monica broke my seashell lamp.

    Chandler: NEAT. I’m gonna die alone.

    Rachel: …Okay, you win.

    17) “The One with All the Resolutions” (5 x 11)

    When we first started putting this post together, much like we did with The X-Files and The Office, Sage and I independently made lists of episodes we would consider, exchanged them, and then pulled out all the ones we had listed in common (FORTY EPISODES #mindmeld) and then submitted episodes that we would fight for.  “The One With The Resolutions” was on my list, and I was SO HAPPY when I got a text message from Sage during her rewatch saying “Yeah, I am with you one ‘Resolutions'”.

    The premise of the episode is simple: the gang makes their New Year’s Resolutions (“JUST THE ONE DIVORCE IN ’99!!!”…which is hilarious considering the events of the season finale in Vegas).  These resolutions vary in degrees of difficulty.  Chandler vows not to make fun of his friends for a week.  Rachel promises not to gossip.  Ross vows to try something new every day.  Joey decides to learn guitar.  Phoebe decides to become a pilot.  And once and for all proving that I am Monica and she is me, Monica promises to start taking more pictures of the gang.  Where “TOW All the Resolutions” succeeds is in the execution of just how hard it is for the gang to keep their resolutions (“Hornswaggle? Oh, this must be killing you!”).  Phoebe, much to Chandler’s chagrin and torment, is a terrible guitar teacher, from her “no strings policy” to her names for guitar chords (“Now, I don’t know the actual names of the chords but umm, I-I-I made up names for the way my hand looks while I’m doing them. So then, this is Bear Claw. Okay, umm, Turkey Leg and Old Lady.”).  Rachel finds out about Monica and Chandler and then can’t tell anyone without breaking her no gossip rule (“All right, how about I go over there and I will walk into Chandler’s bedroom and I will see that thing that I think that I know is actually the thing that I think that I know!”).  However, the shining moment of the episode comes from Ross and his Leather Pants.

    I said it in my Ross Appreciation Post and I’ll say it again here: David Schwimmer never got enough credit for his brilliance as a physical comedian AND for the way he would use his voice to convey sheer and utter horror (I often wonder if they ACTUALLY put him in pants that were too small for him in this scene or if he was just ACTING like they wouldn’t come up.  Thoughts?).    Our favorite Ross is an unhinged Ross, and the way David builds Ross’ panic in this scene is fantastic.  If you don’t have tears rolling down your face by the time Ross dejectedly comes out of the bathroom, clutching his balled up leather pants over his junk, you may want to reexamine your sense of comedy.  Ross gets himself in ridiculous situations as the series progresses…the teeth bleaching, the spray tan…but the leather pants take the cake.  Bonus points to Joey for being the voice of reason on the other end of Ross’ phone call.

    Joey: Ross? You okay?

    Ross: They’re still, they’re still not coming on man and the lotion and the powder have made a paste!

    Joey: Really?! Uhh, what color is it?

    Ross: What difference does that make?!

    Joey: Well, I’m just—if the paste matches the pants, you can make yourself a pair of paste pants and she won’t know the difference!

    He’s putting out fires everywhere, people.

    — Kim

    Best Line:

    Chandler: I can’t take it any more! So you win, okay? Pheebs? Flying a jet? Better make it a spaceship so that you can get back to your home planet! And Ross, phone call for you today – Tom Jones, he wants his pants back! And Hornswoggle? What? Are you dating a character from “Fraggle Rock”? Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

    (more…)


  3. Fan Vid Friday – “Not A Bad Thing”

    July 25, 2014 by HeadOverFeels

    Brooklyn Nine Nine Jake and Amy

    Posted by Sage

    Fan Vid Friday returns from a Feelies-related hiatus! We’re back with some visual goodies to guide you through those few excruciating hours that stand between you and two days of freedom. Well, relative freedom. Do your laundry. Wash a dish.

    This week’s selection is Justin Timberlake’s “Not A Bad Thing,” the second single off the second volume of The 20/20 Experience. It’s a departure from the style we’ve come to expect from JT’s solo career – a mid-tempo, guitar-driven love song. The Timbaland beat is still there (yes, still in our lives), but I’m partial to the song because I can almost close my eyes and pretend I’m listening to a long lost *N Sync track. It’s rare for J. Timb. to break out of his falsetto, but I think he can wring more emotion out of his voice when he stays in his lower register.

    Seeing as it’s a love letter to just being there for someone, “Not A Bad Thing” is a fan video artist’s go-to choice for “just friends” types, particularly of the sitcom-y persuasion. (I have no greater fan vid pet peeve than when someone assigns a comedy couple a way-too-schmaltzy ballad.) Maybe someone in our ship needs a little convincing. Maybe she’s looking everywhere else but where she should be. But Justin (and our hero) could be “that guy”! He’s got a guitar and he’s telling you “you’re worth it”! See what’s right in front of you, you fool!

    Even the official video to “Not A Bad Thing” is a fan vid of sorts. Justin and his team made it their business to track down a couple who got engaged on the LIRR thanks to the song and met a bunch of adorable couples on the way. We’re so close to mainstreaming this concept, you guys.

    Aw.

    Okay, without further ado, here are our picks for the best in “Not A Bad Thing” fan videos!

    Emma and Hook – Once Upon A Time

    I confess that I don’t watch Once Upon A Time, but these people are really pretty and look like they like each other a whole lot. That’s really all I’m looking for in a fan vid.

    Danny and Mindy – The Mindy Project

    There’s no question that this is a Danny/Mindy song all the way, though I do wish this artist could have held out till the end of the season to set their budding ship to the sweet, sweet sounds of our reigning Prince of Pop. It starts off all hopeful with the “I kissed Danny” and the I’m-carrying-soccer-balls-and-looking-at-the-girl-I-love crooked grin and then ends with sadness and solitary cigarettes and “Why did you even start this?” Can we get a Version 2.0 over here?

    Ross and Rachel – Friends

    Kim sent this link over to me prefaced with “I KNOW you are anti-Ross/Rachel…” I mean, fair. But I wasn’t always! And I can admit that this song suits their ship better than it would have Joey/Rachel. Cause nobody pined like Ross Gellar pined. But I ask you, Friends video artists: where’s the Mondler version of this video? And if one of you decides to make it, can you please omit the weird, scroll-y watermarks we have here?

    Oliver and Felicity – Arrow

    Baahhh, I don’t watch Arrow either. But I do have a casual, from-afar crush on Amell and this cute girl with the thick-glasses and dark eyebrows. They have a pleasing height difference.

    Emma and Knightley – Emma Approved

    This vid on the much-awaited sequel to The Lizzie Bennet Diaries wins for best interpretation of the song’s very first line. (And what a first line – I always get the flutters.) It may also take the prize for style-envy – who does the wardrobe for Emma Approved and can he/she take me and every guy I have to look at shopping?

    Rory and Amy – Doctor Who

    It took Amy two and a half seasons to prove to Rory that being with him was in no way settling. They were each other’s hero; the Doctor was just a friend they loved very much. I’m making myself cry. Bye.

    Jake and Amy – Brooklyn Nine Nine

    The best of the bunch, in my opinion. I love what Brooklyn did with Jake and Amy in its first season. There was playground teasing, harmless flirtation, and some nicely sincere moments from Andy Samberg. I like that Amy is looking for professional respect, not for every boy to like her. And I like double-like that Jake doesn’t punish Amy for her obliviousness. Once he becomes aware of his motives for giving her a hard time, he changes course. This song fits their vibe perfectly; whenever I hear it from now on, I shall think of Detective Right All The Time and Detective Terrible Detective.

    While we’ve got this playlist of “Not A Bad Thing” fan videos, I’ve also found some egregious oversights. How can there possibly not be odes to these couples set to this song? Get on these, respective fandoms:

    Harry/Sally (“You say things like that and you make it impossible for me to hate you.”)

    Chandler/Monica (“How about we move in together and you understand what I’m saying?”)

    April/Andy (“That’s what makes the sauce so awesome.”)

    Early Days Beslie (“Aw, Mean Ben has a soft spot.”)

    Jim/Pam (“Um, I don’t know, Mom. He’s my best friend.”)

    Bridget/Mark (“But the thing is, um, what I’m trying to say – very inarticulately – is that, um, in fact, perhaps despite appearances, I like you. Very much. Just as you are.”)

    That’s all we’ve got for this week, readers. Take to the comments to tell us about your favorite or to suggest songs for coming weeks. Now go enjoy that weekend.


  4. Fan Video Friday – “It’s Time”

    June 6, 2014 by HeadOverFeels

    Posted by Kim

    It’s Friday and you know what that means…time for Fan Videos that will help you with ALL your end of the week procrastination.  This week we spotlight “It’s Time” by Imagine Dragons.  This song is perfect for shows with large ensembles and it allows the vidder to showcase all the possible friendships and romances within one cast.  Bonus points if said ensembles enjoy the occasional dance party…they work perfectly with the soaring chorus of the song.

    I would also like to PUBLICLY shame the fandom of Parks and Recreation (where ARE you guys btw) for not having a video to this song.  Come ON people!  This song SCREAMS Leslie Knope and the Pawnee gang.  Get it together.

    Community

    This is probably one of the most definitive Community fan videos and it is ALSO probably one of the best fan vids I have ever seen.  Period.  Everything is amazing from the way the sound effects are timed to the music to moments from the show matching perfectly with lyrics.  Now excuse me whilst I go cry in a corner from being overwhelmed with Study Group OTP feels.

    The Mindy Project

    Does this video perfectly showcase the arc of The Mindy Project or what?  Mindy went from “kiiiiiiiiiiinda disappointing” to “oh hey this isn’t bad!” to “OMG WHEN IS THE NEXT EPISODE?!” in the span of a season and a half and we’re just so proud of it.  And forever thankful to Mindy Kaling for bringing Danny Castellano into our lives.

    This video expertly uses the one-liners that have made Mindy a true delight and we are definitely looking forward to more and more videos that use Season Two footage.

    The Office

    Guys.  I can’t with this one.  From the PERFECTLY used opening and closing dialogue to all the montages of our dearly departed gang at Dunder -Mifflin, this makes me want to do a series rewatch RIGHT NOW.

    I thought this song would be one to NOT give me feels, but thus far all three make me want to cry happy tears.

    How I Met Your Mother

    After seeing Neil Patrick Harris KILL IT this week in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, I am trying REALLY HARD to forgive How I Met Your Mother.  It’s not going to be easy.  It’s going to take some time.  But videos like this one make me remember the good times.

    Though I did have another video bookmarked for this show, but it heavily featured Tracy and I WAS TOO MAD TO USE IT.  So clearly, I am still in the early stages of the healing process.

    (more…)


  5. Fan Video Friday – “Ships In The Night”

    May 23, 2014 by HeadOverFeels

    Posted by Kim

    Welcome to another edition of Fan Video Friday, where we aim to bring you all the procrastination tools you need for your work day.  This week we’re spotlighting Mat Kearney’s “Ships in the Night”, the anthem for all the ships that very often just can’t quite get themselves together.  “Ships” tends to be much more friendly to our favorite Sitcom Couples with its upbeat track and driving beat.  Don’t get me wrong though…some of these will still kill you with feels.  Sorry not sorry.

    Jeff and Annie – Community

    Aside from “Gravity”, I declare this to be their theme song.  I will NEVER understand why Dan Harmon and the writing staff had SUCH resistance to them.  Talk about ignoring what’s right in front of your face.

    Ben and Leslie – Parks and Recreation

    “But Kim,” you say.  “Ben and Leslie are happily married and perfect together!  No angst or passing each other by for this ship!”  Sure…NOW they are happy and nothing will break them apart.  But they weren’t always this way, so.

    Nick and Jess – New Girl

    All of their UST in Seasons One and Two was DELICIOUS.  I like Nick and Jess BETTER when they are yelling at each other because there is just something about Jake and Zooey’s chemistry when that happens that makes me scream “MAKE OUT” at my television.  I’m sure these crazy kids will find their way back to each other, but in the meantime…more fighting please!

    Ross and Rachel – Friends

    Sage may be pro Joey/Rachel (and I promise to find a good video to showcase them one week), but even she can’t argue with the accuracy of this one.

    (more…)


  6. In Appreciation of Chandler Bing

    January 4, 2014 by HeadOverFeels

    Chandler swallow our feelings

    Posted by Sage

    We’ve arrived at the conclusion of our Friends appreciation posts, and who better to take us home than Chandler Muriel Bing?

    In the original character descriptions of our six favorite New Yorkers and obviously influenced by classic British comedy, Chandler is said to be “droll,” “dry,” and “a wry observer of everyone’s life.” (“You know what’s weird? Donald Duck never wore pants. But whenever he’s getting out of the shower, he always puts a towel around his waist. I mean, what is that about?”) But those few words barely scratch the surface of where Matthew Perry took this character.

    I’m struggling to put my lifelong affection for Chandler Bing into words. How can I possibly do justice to the caretaker of the WENUS? The late-bloomer who first touched a girl’s boobs when he was 19? (“Thanks, man.”) The blabbermouth who was the first to spill the beans about Ross’s love for Rachel? He was the type of half grown-up who I now know actually litters the NYC landscape. Stuck for most of the series in a dead-end, boring desk job, all the romance and fun in Chandler’s life was outside the 9- 5. He was together enough to take care of Joey, but forever unable to resist a Baywatch marathon or making their apartment into a cozy home for a couple of farm animals. (“Do you guys know how to get a chick out of a VCR?”) He rocked many an old-school bowling shirt and got overly excited a lot. (“Chandler, you’re panicking.” “Yes! Join me, won’t you?”) People sometimes assume that he’s gay because he has a “quality.” (“Good, cause I was worried you guys were going to be vague about this.”) He had a partying college friend nicknamed “Gandalf.” He was a bro to Ross and Joey, but thoroughly capable of and happy to spend many a girls’ night with his ladies.  Chandler didn’t have much of a childhood, so the family of friends that he’s created for himself means everything to him. He’s legitimately torn up in the arc where Joey gets rich and moves out of their apartment for a period. It still hurts to think on it. Hey, at least we got to meet Eddie. (“Well, see ya, pals.”)

    By all accounts, Matthew Perry’s addition to pain medication stayed hidden and untreated for so long because he maintained his professionalism and work ethic on set. So, though his fluctuating weight had us fans concerned about Matthew’s health, Chandler Bing remained completely unaffected. The impact endures. SEVERAL comic characters on TV right now owe a characteristic or two or ten to Miss Chanandeler Bong. But no one will ever fully take his place. Here’s why:

    1. His Sardonic Wit

    Chandler Bing sarcastic comment

    Like so many of us, Chandler’s immediate response to any tense situation (or any situation, really) is to crack a joke. And why not? People in general take themselves and their problems too seriously. When things got deep on Friends, Chandler was always there to help us navigate those choppy, emotional waters. Whether he was eating Monica’s organic hair wax to stay alive through Ross and Rachel’s marathon breakup (“Not the USED wax.” “Because THAT would be crazy.”) or smoothly trying to transition his relationship with Monica from casual hook-ups to decidedly less casual hook-ups (“Y’know, I don’t know if you’ve ever looked up the term goofing around in the dictionary. Well, I have, and the technical definition is, two friends who care a lot about each other and have amazing sex and just wanna spend more time together. But if you have this new fangled dictionary that gets you made at me, then we have to, y’know, get you my original dictionary.”), the Chan-Chan man set the tone for the humor of the whole show.

    Chandler Bing I make jokes

    Not that it didn’t get him into trouble, of course. Chandler’s mouth has been known to end relationships, botch job interviews (“And then it was really hard to sidestep that ‘duty’ thing.”), and earn him plenty of enemies in the tri-state area. But who cares? Because he’s got 5 people who understand him, and that’s all he needs. Being universally liked versus cracking your friends up daily? No contest.

    Janice what a small world friendsChandler I never run into Beyonce

    Chandler often got the glory of the straight-faced punchline. The other characters would set ‘em up, and he’d knock ‘em down. This one still makes me giggle, after roughly 20 years.

    Ross: “You uh, you don’t believe in gravity?”
    Phoebe: “Well, it’s not so much that you know, like I don’t believe in it, you know, it’s just… I don’t know, lately I get the feeling that I’m not so much being pulled down as I am being pushed.”
    [Knock at door]
    Chandler: “Uh-Oh. It’s Isaac Newton, and he’s pissed.”

    I could copy and paste Chandler lines from here until forever, but that’s not why you’re here. Or maybe it is. Just know that in researching this post, I was in laughter-tears only 1/4 of the way down his IMDB quotes page.

    2. Forever Alone

    Chandler I love you oh crap

    Shame on the women of fictional New York for not realizing what they had in Chandler Bing. Then again, it was his romantic trials and tribulations that made Chandler build up his sarcastic deflection methods, so thanks. From his early days of not scoring, (“Didn’t you read The Lord of the Rings in high school?” “I had sex in high school.”) to his adult days of not scoring (“I wanted to wear my bathrobe and eat peanut clusters all day. I wanted to start drinking in the morning. Don’t say that I don’t have goals!”), Chandler gave the less romantically successful of us someone to identify with and root for. We even shipped him and Janice for real for a bit, didn’t we?

    Janice Oh My God

    But Chandler’s lack of game was all in his head. He set himself up to fail because he was convinced that he wasn’t good enough to be happy. Remember: broken home. It’s a real testament to his friendship with Joey that they stayed strong despite their uneven distribution of confidence with women. It probably helped even the scales that Joey thought Count Rushmore was the guy who painted the faces on the mountain. Anyway, turns out the universe had big love plans for Chandler and they didn’t involve him turning into Crazy Snake Man. We’ll get to that soon.

    Chandler Hopeless and Awkward

    3. His One-Man Sponsorship of Joey Tribbiani’s Acting Career

    Joey and Chandler thumbs up

    Maybe Chandler really believed that Joey would hit the big-time someday. Or maybe he just supported him because he was his bestie and acting was his dream. Either way, any butt-double gigs or off-off-Broadway Freudian musicals Joey booked, he owed entirely to his roommate.

    Joey Chandler Glass

    He’d joke about the bill Joey’d rung up with him, but Chandler never expected his goofy friend to pay his tab. Beyond the cash for stage-fighting workshops and headshots, Chandler’s support extended to attending every awful play he ever starred in (“So I’m gonna get on this spaceship and go to Blangon 7 in search of alternative energy fuels. And when I return, 200 years from now, you’ll be long gone. But I won’t have aged at all. So you tell your great, great great grandaughter to look me up. Cause Adrian, baby, I’m gonna wanna meet her.”), attempting to physically tackle him to the ground so as to not embarrass himself in Soap Opera Digest, and being a test contestant as Joey prepped for an audition to host the hottest new game show on the planet, Bamboozled.

    Chandler Bing Best game ever

    It was this brand of casually selfless encouragement that made Friends so much more than a generic sitcom about 20-something white people. And for that, Chandler deserves all the Wicked Wango cards.

    4. His Dancing

    Chandler Joey Dancing

    Let’s celebrate Chandler’s physicality in general, but ESPECIALLY his uber-white dance moves. And let this flaily abandon be an example to us all.

    Chandler Mini Wave

    Chandler never let his lack of skills stop him from embarking on a victory dance, and neither should you.

    Chandler Bing Dancing on Table

    5. His Nubbin

    Chandler Bing third nipple

    Chandler is so special that he is actually a mutant. In the second season, we find out that Chandler has a non-fuctional third nipple (Monica was the only one who knew about it – FORESHADOWING) when the gang was throwing out each other’s secrets. It’s overshadowed by the revelation that Joey shot a fully clothed part in a porno, but it returns in the third when Chandler has it removed. (“Two nipples, no waiting.” “Just like Rachel in high school.”) Yes, Chandler did away with his tiny nubbin, and when he missed the aforementioned easy Rachel joke, fears that with it, he nubbinectomied “the source of all” his power. Two-nippled Chandler is still hilarious, though we missed that weird little thing for the rest of the series. Let’s celebrate our differences! A little nubbin is nothing to be ashamed of.

    Continue Reading


  7. Happy First Birthday to Us!! Our Greatest Hits (So Far)

    September 24, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Lily Happy Birthday HIMYM

    Posted by Kim and Sage

    As Jonathan Larson asked in Rent, “How do you measure a year?”

    In 219 blog posts?

    In over 112,500 page views?

    In 313 Twitter Followers and 252 Facebook Likes?

    In the end, I think Larson gets it right.  You measure in love.  And we’ve had a LOT of love this past year.

    A year ago today we launched Head Over Feels.  I know I can speak for Sage when I say that it was one of the best decisions we’ve ever made.  This year has been challenging, intense, frustrating, exciting and above all rewarding.  And it’s been all the better that we have done it together.  I know I could have never kept this up for a year without Sage.  We’ve kept each other accountable.  We’ve talked each other through writer’s block and difficult posts.  We’ve flailed about over every form of social media.  We’ve tortured our friends with news of our adventures.  We bought our domain name and upgraded our photobucket accounts to premium ones to maintain all our gifs.  We’ve laughed and we’ve cried and we’ve memorialized all of our feels for all the internet to see.

    Most of all we’ve been OVERWHELMED by the response to our site.  I never in a million years dreamed that we would have posts linked on such sites as Awards Daily, TV Without Pity, and Buzzfeed or that cast members and writers of some of our favorite shows would read the posts and retweet them to their followers.  Obviously, I had hoped it would happen, but to see it become a reality is a dream come true.  So whether you are a friend of ours or a complete stranger who googled “Rose and The Doctor love each other”…THANK YOU for reading!!

    We’ve got some big plans for the year ahead.  New York Comic-Con.  CommuniCon 2.  The 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who.  Recapping as much television as possible.  Maybe finding a show that we love to hate watch as much as we loved to hate watch Smash.  An epic seven part series on Harry Potter.  Gallifrey One.  And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

    Even as we look forward, we thought we would take today to reflect on the past year.  We selected the 12 posts (or series of posts) we were most proud of this year.  Some we chose because they were the ones that went viral, others because we just think we did a damn good job writing them.  After all, if there is ever a day to celebrate yourself, it’s your birthday isn’t it?

    Thanks again for going on this journey with us!  We hope to provide you with many many many more feels in the years to come!

    And someone tell Buzzfeed to hire us already.

    –Kim

    -  Our Top 15 Episodes of The X-Files

    Our X-Files series was probably the most intense week of our blogging life.  We marathoned our top 25 or so episodes over the course of a weekend.  Sage and I yelled at each other over Twitter about the selections and then ranking of the episodes.  The battle over what should be number one (#SHOWDOWN) was one of the greatest tests our friendship has endured.  And all of that happened BEFORE we started writing.  We got these posts up in three consecutive days leading up to the 20th Anniversary Panel at San Diego Comic-Con.  I wept and screamed and derided my writing skills as I struggled over writing the section for our top episode as I raced to get it up before the panel started.  I did…5 minutes before.  I have loved the response these posts have gotten from friends and strangers alike.  Friends have been inspired to rewatch or watch for the first time.  One stranger even commented that this series was among the best and most comprehensive X-Files lists out there.  And since a stranger said it, you know it’s true.  –Kim

    -  Our Top 10 Episodes of The Office

    I was a former Office super-fan turned ambivalent viewer, so the solid final season and the exercise of coming up with our list of definitive episodes was like falling back in love. I remembered how much the show meant to me in its first few seasons (one of them PERFECT), and, though it’s long disappeared from our lists of favorite shows, Kim and I were able to send it off as passionate admirers once again. Also, we completed the posts just in time to watch the series finale and retrospective together. All those emotions the pieces brought back to the surface manifested themselves in many tears. And some screaming. That’s what she said. –Sage

    “I love you and I like you.” – Parks and Recreation Recap

    Leslie Ben Wedding Kiss

    One winter evening, I was walking out of my gym and casually checked my phone for any texts I might have gotten while I was suffering through my workout. I was greeted by a dozen flail-y tweets and several capslock texts from Kim. “RETTA.” “YOUR RECAP.” I cried on the street.

    I meant everything I said in my recap of the Beslie wedding about the power of this kind of comedy, so it was amazing to see Retta describe it as “a sweet review of the #WyattKnopeNups.” It was amazing that Queen Retta tweeted the link to all of her followers, resulting in our biggest traffic day EVER, but it was even more amazing that we hadn’t sent it to her. She found it herself through a Google Alert, read it, and thought enough of it to share it with everyone. I still dream a little bit that maybe Mike Schur or one of her castmates might have clicked that link too. –Sage

    - “One Nominator to Rule Them All” – SmashBash

    derek drinking

    We love all our #SmashBashes equally and will miss them dearly this upcoming season.  We chose this particular post, which was my recap of part one of the series finale, because it was picked up by the TV Without Pity forums.  We love when our posts go viral and it was especially rewarding when one of the comments on the forum said “What a treasure trove of Smash recaps there is on headoverfeels.com!”  That made enduring the madness that was Smash entirely worth it. –Kim

    - The Ballad of Josh and Donna

    josh donna hug

    The success of our West Wing posts has a little to do with my obsessive love for that show and everyone in the Bartlet White House and a lot to do with timing. I started marathoning right as the series was added to Netflix streaming and the fandom arose like a phoenix from the ashes. And, like me, most of that fandom was driven half-mad by the sa-looooooooow burn of certified idiots Joshua Lyman and Donnatella Moss. This post continues to be one of our big sellers, as almost every day, someone finds the blog by searching (probably holding a glass of hard liquor in a trembling hand), “WHEN do Josh and Donna get together?” Be patient, bbs. It’s worth it. –Sage

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  8. In Appreciation of Monica Geller

    September 18, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Posted by Kim

    I am Monica Geller.

    I know people say things like this all the time…”oh this TV character is TOTALLY me!” “She is my spirit animal!” etc etc etc…but really.  I AM Monica Geller.

    Well…except for the obsessively clean part. Other than that, I’m totally her. My friends know it.  Last night while watching the premiere of New Girl, I tweeted “Is it sad that I am sitting here worrying whether or not Nick and Jess have their passports?”  Within moments two different friends replied “No, because you’re a Monica.”  I am the mother hen in my group of friends.  I’m competitive to a FAULT.  I’ve been accused of being loud and/or shrill more than once (I have a resonant voice, okay?).  I mourn the fact that I now live in a studio apartment (with walls that I painted purple) because it means I can no longer be the hostess.  I wage a war with my inner fat girl and whether or not to let her eat on a daily basis.  So I knew that when we decided to do these tributes to all six of our Friends, I had to do the Monica post.  Because I am her and she is me.

    I feel like Monica (and Courteney Cox’s portrayal of her) never gets enough credit.  Courteney was the one cast member over the ten-year run of Friends who never got an Emmy nomination and that’s just plain wrong (And clearly she has wronged the Television Academy as she has yet to score an Emmy nod for her wonderful work on Cougar Town).  As Rachel says to her as she prepares to leave for Paris, none of this would have happened without her.  Monica (and her apartment) was the glue that held this little tribe together.  So let’s pay tribute to our little Harmomica, shall we?

    1) Fat Monica

    How can you not love Fat Monica, defender of full fat mayonnaise?  What I always loved about Fat Monica is that she was never played as a sad sack.  Sure the visual gag of Courteney Cox in a fat suit was always hilarious, but you never felt like Monica was out right being made fun of or that her weight held her back.  She was still best friends with the most popular girl in school.  She still had a date to the prom (a legit date too!  Not just some guy who felt sorry for her).  As we see in “The One That Could Have Been”, she had boyfriends.  And because it is mother effing destiny, we learn that she and Chandler would have always fallen in love, no matter what size she was.

    Up until the fateful Thanksgiving that her future husband called her fat, you never got the sense that Monica was unhappy with how she was.  She still had the same joie de vivre…if not  more so, because she never denied herself a Kit Kat when she wanted one.

    Also let’s talk about the fact that she lost the weight principally to seek revenge on Chandler (“Yeah, I mean yeah, I look great. Yeah, I feel great and yeah, my heart is not in trouble anymore! Blah, blah, blah! Y’know I still don’t feel like I got him back, y’know? I just want to humiliate him. I wanna, I want him to be like naked and then I’m going to point at him and laugh!”).  THAT is why Monica is a QUEEN.

    Much credit for the likability of Fat Monica goes to Courteney Cox herself.  Like I said, this could have been an easy way to make fun of Monica or put her down.  But Courteney imbued her with such sweetness and innocence that you couldn’t help but love her and want to be her friend.   Plus, she had some super sweet dance moves.

    2) Her Career Perseverance

    Monica went through a lot in pursuing her dream of being head chef.  Catering a party for her mother where Judy had lasagna in the freezer as a back-up for when her daughter pulled a “Monica”.  Making recipes with Mocklate.  Enduring an interview where she was questioned about how firm the tomatoes were and how dirty the lettuce was.  Working at a cheesy 50’s themed restaurant where she had to wear flame retardant boobs.  Working in a kitchen where everyone hated her and tortured her on a daily basis and where she had to hire Joey as a ringer that she could fire so she could get respect (“DRAGON!!”).  But she never gave up.  She KNEW she was a good chef and was capable of reaching her goals, so she endured through the crap until she got there.

    HERO.

    3) Her competitive spirit

    Remember what I said about the fact that I am competitive to a fault?  Let me tell you a story.  One spring break we were playing the Planet Hollywood trivia game (yes, that was a thing) and my team was losing.  I was not handling it well and my friend Sam was enjoying taunting me over it.  “Sam,” I said.  “If you keep this up, I’m going to slap you.”  Well…he kept it up.  So I slapped him right across the face.  And he had the nerve to look shocked.

    I DID warn him.

    I have also been known to shout at my teammates when they get things wrong (I am SUPER fun at game nights, y’all).  So when Rachel gets the TV Guide question wrong in “TOW the Embryos”, I COMPLETELY related to Monica shouting “RACHEL!!! USE YOUR HEAD!!!”.  I related to her even more at her horrified “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!” when she realized she had lost the trivia game.

    Monica hates losing at anything from Pictionary (hide the plates!) to Poker to her beloved Geller cup to ping-pong to merely tossing a ball around for 24 hours.  Some people may call that obnoxious.  I call it refusing to be anything but the best.  She expects the best out of herself (“Take that last year me!”) and she expects the best out of the people around her.  That’s not a bad quality to have.  Go Team Monica!!

    4) She always hosts Thanksgiving

    Over the course of living in New York City for nearly 12 years now, Thanksgiving has become my favorite holiday, because I always spend it with my friends and I always cook the big meal for them, even if it is no longer at my own apartment.  I will never forget the feeling of sheer panic the first time I realized the whole meal fell to me (see also: Monica’s “It’s my first Thanksgiving!!!!” meltdown in “The One Where Underdog Gets Away”) and then the PRIDE I felt when it all turned out delicious (see also: every other Thanksgiving episode).

    I think I love being in charge of Thanksgiving for the same reasons Monica does.  Yes, it’s about being the hostess and being in charge (and getting your kicks from that) and using cooking skills and recipes that you don’t get use all the time.  But that is not the only reason Monica hosts Thanksgiving every year.  It’s also about love and expressing your love for your friends through the meal you cook for them.  It’s a gift Monica gives the gang every year and she takes pride in doing that for them.

    And she knows that when all else fails, you can always dance around with the turkey on your head.

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  9. In Appreciation of Rachel Green

    September 1, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Friends Rachel Make Decisions
    Posted by Sage

    Recently, my dad interrupted one of my The-Big-Bang-Theory-doesn’t-deserve-all-this-Emmy-attention rants by arguing that the Friends are just as emotionally staid as Sheldon and company. That statement is patently false; and in defense of my beloved show, Rachel is Exhibit A. From spoiled Long Island rich girl to fashion executive and single mom, it’s she who has the widest, series-long character arc.

    The inciting incident of the whole show just happens to be the disheveled bride’s arrival at Central Perk (“I just want to be married again…” “…And I just want a million dollars!”). It’s through Rachel that we’re introduced to the group of coffee-loving, hardly-working twenty-somethings who would become the West Village Six.

    And, like the rest of the six, the Rachel we grew to love over the course of nine seasons was hardly the archetype (here: recovering prom queen) we met in season one. While the rest of the Friends had a laser-focused want or two in those initial years, whether it was job or relationship related, Rachel’s goal was just to figure out what it was that she was even looking for. (“Ahh, the lesser known I Don’t Have a Dream Speech.”) Her openness and vulnerability is what softened her. Rachel was much more savvy and adaptable than she gave herself credit for, and Jennifer Aniston’s superb comic timing brought out her sarcastic wit (“Oh, there he is: the father of my child, the porn king of the West Village.”) Sure, she made some mistakes along the way. She wasn’t supposed to put beef in the trifle; 18 pages IS a lot to ask someone to read in the middle of the night (front AND back); and her decision to spend $1,000 on Mrs. Whiskerson was a little rash. (“Every time this cat hisses at me, I know it’s saying ‘Racheeel.'”) She was sexy, but, like everyone ever, occasionally became a bumbling mess in front of the object of her desire. Much of her screen time was spent will-they or won-they-ing with Ross, and theirs is one of the ships that’s practically defined that term for American audiences. But you also couldn’t go wrong by combining Rachel with any other Friend. See for evidence: Rachel teaching Joey how to sail on the Mr. Beaumont; Phoebe and Rachel running together in the park, each in their own style; Monica and Rachel switching places on their double date with two dreamy and slightly familiar-looking doctors (“I use my breasts to get other people’s attention!” “Hey, we BOTH do that.”), and Rachel attempting to get Chandler un-handcuffed from her boss’s desk.

    And so, our Friends character appreciation series continues with Rachel Karen Green. Isn’t that just kick-you-in-the-crotch, spit-on-your-neck fantastic?

    1) She’s gonna make it after all.

    Friends Rachel You're A Shoe

    For those of us who have done this in the real world, we know that striking out on one’s own in the big city actually looks more like renting out a hovel at the farthest reaches of the least-trendy borough and STILL calling one’s parents twice a month for money than an 800-sq-ft room in Monica’s purple apartment. But for Rachel Green of the Long Island Greens, cutting one credit card in half is twice as anxiety-inducing as all that. But surely, whether you’re a shoe or a hat, we can all agree that it’s really unfair how much money that “FICA guy” takes out of our paychecks.

    In the later seasons, it was easy to forget that the Bloomingdale’s buyer and Ralph Lauren merchandising manager was once the most forgetful (but cutest!) waitress at Central Park. But then sisters Amy (Christina Applegate) and Jill (Reese Witherspoon) would show up to remind us and Rachel of the life she probably would have ended up living if she had become Dr. Mrs. Barry Farber, D.D.S. (“You decorated dad’s office and now you’re a decorator? You know what? I went to the zoo yesterday and now I’m a koala bear.”)

    Friends Rachel Assistant Buyer

    It was a blow to feminism when Rachel gave up an exciting job with Louis Vuitton in Paris to stay in New York and play house with Ross. (Yes, you read my Joey/Rachel shipper shade correctly.) My head canon is that turning down that gig made her an even more coveted get for fashion head hunters and she ended up running shit at a New York-based line. Not bad for the cheerleader who once went out with Wallas Pinser just so he’d take her SATs.

    2) Her life partnership with Monica.

    Friends Monica Rachel Emergency Call

    Rachel has no plan when she escapes to the city except to find and reconnect with her high school best friend, Monica Gellar. She’s having an identity crisis and the only person she can count on to get her through it is someone she hasn’t even spoken to in years. That’s how hard they BFF, you guys. None of Rachel’s richie-rich shopping buddies ever came close to taking Monica’s place. You know how you know which popular girl actually has a soul? Find the one with a fat best friend.

    Monica Rachel College Party

    Before Rachel arrived, Monica’s city family consisted of Phoebe, who’s often on a wavelength that’s impossible to access, and a bunch of boys, who ate all her food and made fun of her boyfriends. When Rachel came back into her life, Monica got a sister (she IS the daughter Judy never had) – someone to write messages for her on the mirror, cover her with a blanket when she falls asleep on the couch, and fight with over Jean Claude Van Damme. Rachel could also be counted on for some much needed real talk, whether in regards to questionable dating decisions (“It’s like inviting a Greek tragedy over for dinner!”) or kitchen fascism (“No, Mon. YOU want to put the marshmallows in concentric circles. I want to do this.”) According to Joey (sorry), Ross and Rachel’s marriage is canon, and Monica and Rachel are now sisters for realsies. So the show’s finale was the end of one era and the start of a new one.

    Friends Monica Rachel End of an Era

    3) Her powers of seduction.

    Friends Rachel Joshua CherryFriends Rachel Joshua Cherry 2

    Jen Aniston doesn’t get the credit she deserves for her aptitude for physical comedy. And it didn’t get much better than in Rachel’s ill-fated pursuit of client/crush Joshua (JOSH-UA) in Season 4. We all have that person who we just can’t help but make idiots of ourselves in front of, every single time we’re in their presence. Rachel’s first move on Joshua results in him taking his nephew to a Knicks game instead of her, and from there, the downward spiral is steep and fast. She unpacks every trick in her arsenal, even reaching back to her high school moves and pulling – most sadly and hilariously – her cheerleading uniform out of mothballs.

    Friends Rachel Joshua Knee kiss

    We’ve all been there, Rach. Well, maybe not all the way down there, but close.

    4) She’s a fangirl.

    Friends Rachel Joey Slap

    What could be better for a soap opera super fan than waking up to Jessica Lockwood in your apartment (“MONICA!!!”) or being a plus one to the Soapies? Gal Pal Rachel Green is the only Friend who expresses the correct amount of excitement over having access to a celebrity like Joey Tribbiani. Basically, if I had to pick one of the six to eat ice cream and marathon Scandal with me, it would be her.

    5) She’s her own Windkeeper.

    Friends Rachel Never Ever Hurt Me

    Rachel Green would NEVER let anyone wash his feet in her pool of inner power, even Ross.

    “The One With the Morning After”, the season 3 episode where Ross and Rachel have a long and painful breakup, is emotional and raw for a primetime sitcom. It had to be. After the lengths the showrunners went through to convince us that they were soulmates, whatever was going to break these two apart had to be bad. I’ve always been on Rachel’s side in the “we were on a break” debate (“Then you sure had a hell of a time at the wake!”), and, as much as these 22 minutes of television broke my teen heart, I was always proud of her for standing up for herself. She chooses Ross because she’s confident that he’s a good guy. A NICE guy. That illusion crumbles with the copy girl situation, and the cracks were already showing before that in his petty jealousy of Mark and, simultaneously, Rachel’s happiness with her new job. (Ross really was the worst sometimes.) It was at that line in the gif above – “I used to think of you as somebody who would never, ever hurt me.” – when I knew that the episode wasn’t going to end with them tearfully getting back together. “This can’t be it,” Ross says. And Rachel, who’s not letting anyone – not even someone she loves – steal her wind says, “Then how come it is?”

    Continue Reading


  10. In Appreciation of Joey Tribbiani

    August 13, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Posted by Kim

    Well after doing our Ross and Phoebe appreciation posts, one thing became clear.  We HAD to give all six of our favorite friends their moments in the sun.  Let’s give Joseph Francis Tribbiani some love today, shall we?

    To put things in Freudian terms (“All you want is a dinkle!!”), Joey represents the Id of the group.   Joey is driven by his basest desires (namely food and sex.  He just wants girls on bread!) and also tends to blurt our whatever is on his mind at the exact moment he is thinking it (“I WANT TO GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.”) but that is all part of his charm.  Joey could have easily been a caricature of a dumb ladies man, but in the hands of Matt LeBlanc…yes, he was a dumb ladies man.  But he was also goofy, sweet, strangely wise, and the best friend a person could ask for.  There is not a malicious bone in Joey Tribbiani’s body.  Despite being a ladies man, he actually respects women.  Think about it.  With as many women as Joey hooked up with, he never came off as mean or coniving…he was just Joey.  Even when he threw a girl’s wooden leg in the fire it wasn’t done in a cruel manner!  Joey is the first one to come to the defense of all his female friends whether it is when Mr. Traeger yells at Rachel or when he proposes to Phoebe when he thinks she is pregnant and alone.  He’s nothing short of a stand-up guy when it really comes down to it!  Joey is definitely someone I would want in my corner.

    There are millions of reasons you should love Joey Tribbiani…but for the sake of (moderate) brevity, let’s spotlight ten of them…

    1) “How You Doin’?”

    Ladies and Gentlemen, the world’s GREATEST pick-up line.  Simple and to the point.

    Also, your response to “How you doin’?” is a good way to measure how drunk you are…

    “Ross!! Don’t let her drink anymore!”

    2) His Relationship with Food.

    One time my sister and I went to my favorite Mexican place in Nashville, where the queso is basically liquid crack it’s so delicious and addictive.  As we were waiting to place our order, she turned to me and asked “Wanna share a queso?’  My response?  “KIMMIE DOESN’T SHARE QUESO!!”

    Thank you, Joey.

    Monica: Anyway, it just doesn’t seem worth it to make a whole turkey for just three people. Okay? It’s a lot of work.

    Joey: But you gotta have turkey on Thanksgiving! I mean, Thanksgiving with no turkey is like-like Fourth of July with no apple pie! Or Friday with no two pizzas!

    Monica: All right fine! If it means that much to you! But just—there’s gonna be a ton left over.

    Joey: No there won’t! I promise I will finish that turkey!

    Monica: All right, you’re telling me you can eat an entire turkey in just one sitting?

    Joey: That’s right! ‘Cause I’m a Tribbiani! (To Rachel) And this is what we do! I mean we may not be great thinkers or world leaders, we don’t read a lot or run very fast, but damnit! We can eat!

    Joey Tribbiani is the reason that every Thanksgiving morning as I put on my stretchy pants I say, “These are my Thanksgiving pants!!”

    Joey’s not a hard man to please.  Just give him sandwiches.  Or an English Trifle mixed with Shepherd’s Pie.  Or just plain old jam.  Or the true love of his life (aside from Chandler)…Pizza.

    Our Friends trivia team is called “The Joey Special” and every time they say our name, we shout “TWO PIZZAS!” at the host.

    3) His Love Affair with Chandler.

    Forget Ross and Rachel.  Forget Monica and Chandler.  The true OTP of Friends is Joey and Chandler.  J-Man and Channy (who CALLS them that??) are one of the ultimate friendships in all of television history.  From their shared love of Baywatch and Yasmin Bleeth (“Run, Yasmin! Run!”) to being Bracelet Buddies (“That’s what they’ll call us!”) to raising a chick and a duck together, Joey and Chandler are soul mates.  They have their own secret mumble language (“PUT JOEY ON THE PHONE”) and they also know exactly how to push each other’s buttons (“I’m Chandler! Could I BE wearing any more clothes?”), which is something that only the closest friends can do.

    And let’s face it…when Joey moved out in season two, it was sadder than Ross and Rachel splitting up because of the list.

    The wonderful thing about Joey and Chandler’s relationship is the sense of give and take.  Early in the series, when Joey is a struggling actor trying to make ends meet, Chandler supports him.  And then later on, when Chandler is out of work and Joey’s doing well on Days of Our Lives, Joey repays the favor.  The only time you see the money as a bone of contention is in “The One with Five Steaks and an Eggplant” and even then it is really an issue within the whole group.  You never see either of them holding the money issue over the other’s head in a resentful way, which is a sign of a true and deep friendship.

    In my head canon, Joey now comes out to Chandler and Monica’s place on the weekends.  He stays in his Joey room.  He plays with Jack and Erica. He cleans out Monica’s refrigerator and she pretends to get mad about it.  He and Chandler kick back with some beer in their matching recliners (that Monica lets them have in his study) and watch Baywatch repeats.  And they all lived happily ever after.

    Because we are ALL agreed that Joey never happened, RIGHT??

    4) Hugsy, His Bedtime Penguin Pal

    Only Joey can make a stuffed penguin seem manly. Sometimes we all just need a friend to cuddle.

    (Honorable mention goes out to Alicia May Emory, Joey’s Cabbage Patch Kid.)

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