“Dress has always been my Strongest Suit.” – Maggie’s Red Carpet 2016 Wrap-Up

Posted by Maggie

Another red carpet season with Maggie has come to an end. She’s spent the past month sorting through countless photos of every awards show in existence in order to determine her favorite (and most hated) looks of the season. What did she choose? Read on to find out! (Also, your moms are so proud of you, Marshmallow.) –Kim


Saoirse Ronan, Oscars

Looking back, Saoirse’s gown picks were a little uneven for me, but there’s no question: This is the best look from anyone all season. Everything about this works: the sparkling emerald-green (and whose heart doesn’t melt at the fact that she chose it to represent Ireland?), the classy and sexy silhouette, the perfectly tousled hair and low-key yet dramatic makeup, even the mismatched earrings. It wasn’t Saoirse’s year to win, but I think we know she’s a contender and she’ll be back.

Kate Bosworth, Golden Globes

I know, I’m like a raccoon, I can’t resist shiny things. But this dress! How does this pink beading with silver accents manage to look understated? I think Kate looks so lovely here and I know people use “old Hollywood glamour” to death, but this look is the epitome of that feeling to me.

Jennifer Garner, Oscars

Well, well, look who came to play. Jen only had one appearance this season and she certainly made it count. There are always so many black gowns on the red carpet, so they’re not always memorable and they don’t always stand out from the crowd, but this one. This one is flawless. You can see the interesting details in photos, it’s not flat, it’s sophisticated and flattering. She looks beautiful and completely at ease. Well done.

Krysten Ritter, Critics Choice Awards

THIS. IS. A. MOMENT. We didn’t cover the Critics Choice Awards (although maybe we should have, you’ll see several looks made it into this post), but Kim was watching and she texted me a picture of this dress “for future reference.” And looking over the season, it was an immediate lock for the Best list. I’ve loved Krysten Ritter for years (Veronica Mars, Apt. 23, anyone?) but I’ve never seen her look like a star before. She commands your attention in this (burgundy? Brown? Who cares what the color is, it’s gorgeous) gown that’s perfectly suited to her statuesque figure, raven hair and pale skin, and I think she styled it perfectly (the rare occasion I approve of no bold lip!). With Jessica Jones, she’s found the role she was always meant to play and I feel confident she has a long career, and many red carpets, ahead of her, which I couldn’t be happier about.

Alicia Vikander, Golden Globes

I know this look is divisive but I loved it on the night and I love it now. I think it’s just out of the box enough without going too far. It’s deceptively simple. The ruffles, the belt, the subtle stripes and the way the skirt moves. It all works for me. Easily my favorite white of the season (and there were A LOT of white gowns, seriously).


Brie Larson, SAG Awards

This remains one of the most significant bummers of my lifetime. I can’t find anything about this that I like, not even the glacier shade of blue. There’s just so much going on from the twists of fabric to the slash over the bust to the sparkle ties on the side to the slit and can we not even mention the orange luggage strap on the back? No, you’re right, we have to mention it because why. Just why. That’s all I want to know. WHY.

Kate Winslet, Oscars

During one of our many heated discussions about Kate’s style at HOF headquarters this season, Kim insisted that at this point in the game Kate would be choosing fit over flare. And I understood that about her early picks, bored though I was. But look at this, you guys. It makes her gorgeous figure just look… wide? I hate even typing that but this liquid metallic trash bag isn’t flattering, it does nothing for her. It’s just sad.

And you guys know I’m pro-eyeglasses at awards shows (so that, you know, people can see), but you have to straighten them before you walk out on stage. Kate, just like keep an eye on Reese, a real friend would have fixed them for you.

Jennifer Lawrence, Golden Globes

No, absolutely not. Okay, I mean, I like this shade of red. But that’s it. It’s kind of matronly, no? And believe me, it feels weird saying that about a dress with cutouts, but here we are, Dior, are you happy now?? I wish I could see it with her hair down (and maybe not quite that shade of blonde). And whoever tacked on that necklace needs a firm talking to.

Julianne Moore, SAG Awards

When she misses, she really misses. I fully hate this. I could have been convinced to get on board with the color but that fabric just looks so itchy to me and I hate the strap/bandeau/cutouts/weird trim of it all. Hard pass.

Rachel McAdams, Oscars

I don’t think this shade of green is doing her any favors, this (wrinkled!) fabric was a terrible choice, and it just looks cheap. Period.

You thought you could get me with a train, Rachel? Nice try, but I remain unmoved.

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“Lighten up, it’s just Fashion.” – Maggie’s Award Season Wrap-Up

Posted by Maggie

We couldn’t let awards season come to a close without Maggie offering her final thoughts and dress rankings.  Who won Awards Season 2015?  What were the best and worst looks? Take it away, Maggie! –Kim



This was an interesting awards season with strong contenders but just about everyone whiffed it somewhere except for LUPITA, queen of the red carpet and my heart. Lupita brought it hard every time, just to present — no nomination, no one particular project to promote. I couldn’t have blamed her for phoning it in this go round, but that’s not our girl’s style. No one works color like Lupita does, from the burst of purple at the Golden Globes to the insane technicolor dream gown at the SAG Awards. But she doesn’t need color for a wow moment, as proven with her sleek, rich pearled white gown at the Oscars. She has an innate sense of what works well on her, yet her looks never feel safe. Truly, Lupita is in a class of her own. She’s my clear winner for Overall Best Makeup of the season and how does any one person look as good as she does on stage in eyeglasses? It hardly seems fair, except that she comes across as such a genuinely nice person who’s worked hard, and is grateful, for her success. Congrats, Lupita. We can’t wait to see you again next year.



1) Rosamund Pike, Oscars


It was a rocky debut season for this Hitchcockian blonde, but she brought it when it counted. Unlike some of the other looks we’ve seen from her, this gown (finally) did her justice. Stunning shade of red. Perfectly fitted corset. Gorgeous neckline. She has class for days, yet that slit serves as a subtle reminder that mothers gets to be sexy too. There was no one better suited to shatter the cool girl ideal, and no one better suited to this dress. As Sage put it, she finally looked like a contender.

2) Julianne Moore, SAG Awards

I think we can all agree with Kim that Julianne should have saved this gown for Oscar. It is perfection on her. I die for this shade of green with her complexion and ginger hair. And the beading. Seriously, the BEADING. She’s a red carpet mermaid here, and honestly that is the highest compliment from me. I think her hair looks lovely, although a simple updo would have worked just as well, and I just love the purple earrings, they were such an interesting complement.

3) Reese Witherspoon, SAG Awards


I think Reese went into this season knowing she wasn’t going to be the big winner, but determined to do right by Wild. She somehow managed to bring her A game while sticking to mainly subtle whites and silvers (don’t worry, we’ll get to that amazing purple BAFTA gown further down) so as not to pull too much focus. This is another classy, yet decidedly sexy look. It’s fitted like a dream. I love a one shoulder, and the cap sleeve pulled the whole look together for me. And I mean, she wore a sassy ponytail. I can’t resist a sassy pony.

4) Tatiana Maslany, SAG Awards

I’m not much of a pusher, but I will Ms. Norbury the crap out of you if you haven’t watched Orphan Black yet. Tatiana slays every episode and some recognition is overdue. Sadly, Tatiana only had one outing this awards season but she made it fucking count. I am insane for this look, head to toe. I repeat, I can’t resist a sassy pony. Earrings? Amazing. Red lip? Perfection. And this black and white striped gown seriously renders me speechless. It is just. It’s everything.

5) Jessica Chastain, Golden Globes

You cannot deny the sheer impact of this look. I think everyone watching the Golden Globes red carpet sat up a little straighter upon first seeing Jessica in this gown. This is a moment. The bronze color. The old Hollywood glam. The fit. Everything about this just works, including her ginger locks over one shoulder. It’s definitely one of the more memorable looks of the season and the more I look at her, the more I love her.


1) Rosamund Pike, Golden Globes

When we first thought of doing a red carpet wrap-up post, I had no idea that my number one best look and number one worst look would be from the same person, but here we are. Now, I love Rosamund Pike, she is so talented — and beautiful. I thought she could pull off just about anything, although I was worried she would go too edgy on the red carpet. And, well. I just still can’t believe Vera Wang did this to her. This was the first major look of the first red carpet of the awards season and it remains one of the most significant bummers of my life. Nothing works here. Nothing.

2) Amanda Peet, SAG Awards

I look at this and all I can think is that I hate so much about the things that you choose to be. Why, Amanda? You seem like the loveliest person, why do you insist on doing this to yourself?

3) Julianna Margulies, SAG Awards

I don’t understand how Julianna left the house like this without a get-a-grip friend stopping her. The hair is… unfortunate. (She’s the clear winner for Overall Worst Hair of the season, especially when you take into account her hair at the Golden Globes was equally as… unfortunate.) The color is beautiful! But the gown is horrible. The shoes don’t even work. This look is a mess, start to finish.

4) Marion Cotillard, Oscars

I don’t really understand this look. Is this just too high fashion for an awards show red carpet? I mean, I love a polka dot as much as the next girl, but this texture-y pattern is not working for me. From the front, it’s kind of okay if you squint, but you look at her waist, you can tell something’s not right. And then this just… swath of fabric for no discernible reason. I just don’t get it.

5) Kerry Washington, Golden Globes

I’ve said it before and I will say it again: Star Trek Prom.


I’m sorry it hasn’t exactly been raining men in these posts, you guys, but let’s be honest. Even when men on the red carpet are exciting, they’re still pretty boring.


Some of my favorites from this year are Jared Leto and Common, who managed to mix it up a little and have personality without going too far off the deep end. I mean, admit it: even Jared’s Oscar look pretty much worked on him, right?


I think the absolute worst of the season was probably John Travolta at the Oscars. Actually, I don’t know how I managed to forget this creepy vampire in the Oscars post, but maybe it’s better if we block it out entirely.


Ladies Supporting Ladies


As Nathaniel Rogers of the Film Experience says: Posh, Sporty, Ginger, Scary, and Baby

As Nathaniel Rogers of the Film Experience says: Posh, Sporty, Ginger, Scary, and Baby

The support and mutual admiration among this group of Best Actress nominees really made this awards season special. If you haven’t watched Julianne’s acceptance speech at the Critics Choice Awards, you need to. Immediately. And just as a bonus, that picture from the nominees luncheon makes my life.

Boss Bitch

ScarJo won the season in one fell swoop at the Oscars, that’s all there is to it. I repeat, when are we getting our Black Widow movie??

Best Brit


Eddie Redmayne. The season wouldn’t have been the same without this saucy little minx mixing it up with velvets and blues.

“Like any great love, she keeps you guessing…”

Emma Stone. She went unexpected every time. I was dead wrong about what kind of look she would go for at each and every red carpet. From pants to a blazer/sheer skirt combo to a 30s inspired Chartreuse (did we decide on Chartreuse?) long-sleeved gown, she kept it interesting and kept me guessing.


God bless every A-lister who rebelled against the dreaded mani cam at the SAG Awards, because it was thankfully absent from the Oscar red carpet. Maybe check out the #askhermore campaign instead of forcing stars to “walk” a tiny red carpet for their manicures, E!.

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“You are tacky and I hate you.” – Oscar Fashion Post

Posted By Maggie with commentary from Kim and Sage

The show went until after midnight and we are exhausted.  Let’s get right to the fashion, shall we?

The Best Dressed

1) Rosamund Pike

Maggie: FINALLY. This is the flawless queen I knew she could be. I have been praying for her to wear a red Oscar gown for weeks, but I had no idea that she would come through so beautifully for me. This look is not without its nitpicks (I could have done with a less matchy shoe, it’s a lot of slit), but look at that gorgeous neckline. The details around her waist. The subtle styling, she’s letting the rich red and texture of the gown do the work. I’m in love.

Kim: On behalf of Rosamund’s breasts, which have been tormented all season, I thank this dress for doing right by them. I loooooooooooove the corsetry detail.  You can tell by the way she carried herself that she felt like a million bucks.  I think a bracelet would have taken this to the next level but after the train wreck she’s been, I have nothing else to complain about regarding this look.  Nailed it.

Sage: The matchy shoe is a little pageant-like, but the style is actually what this gown needed. After the Hollywood wet-head epidemic at the SAGs, I also appreciate an updo with a little softness and volume. If Juli hadn’t been in the race, I think Rosamund would have been a serious contender this year. And she finally looks like one.

2) Anna Kendrick

Maggie: Now this is the type of pink gown Anna can work. I love this shade of pink on her, the jewels complement it perfectly, and it fits her like a dream. That keyhole. I wasn’t a big fan of the princessy gown she wore to the Golden Globes and I think it’s because this shape suits her so well, while still being feminine and soft.

Kim:I love the salmon color.  I think the dress overall is a little safe, but the fit is impeccable and this is how you do tasteful underboob.

Sage: It feels weird to agree with a Kardashian of any stripe, but I have to echo Khloe’s views on this dress: the color just isn’t Oscar. If Anna had worn this to a premiere or Critics Choice or another less formal affair, it would have been much more impactful. The fit is bangin’, though.

3) Dakota Johnson

Maggie: Every time Dakota was on-screen, I couldn’t take my eyes off of her. This is another beautiful red, another dress fitted to perfection, but look at the one shoulder detail. I love it and it set her apart so well. I don’t think her lipstick worked perfectly, but I did like her simple ponytail. I just wish for her more roles like Kate Fox in the dearly departed Ben and Kate, as opposed to 50 Shades (of creepy interviews for the rest of your career).

Kim: The dress is FYNE but I really just want to talk about how Christian Grey spanked any form of personality out of her.  SHE IS SO BORING IN INTERVIEWS NOW. Rosamund should steal her bracelet.

Sage: The chocolate brown dye-job suits her just fine, especially paired with this fire engine red. Now if she could only siphon off a little color for her bored and boring attitude.

4) Margot Robbie

Maggie: This look isn’t what I was expecting from Margot, so it threw me for a minute. But the more I look at it, the more I like it. She looks so comfortable and so at ease. How do you wear a black gown with long sleeves and still look so youthful? Love the hair, LOVE the red lip, and the necklace was such a unique and savvy choice.

Kim: Her lips are FLAWLESS.  I’m getting a young Michelle Pfeiffer vibe from her here.  Also her after-party dress is spectacular.

Sage: Remember that show Swingtown? That was a good show. I’m all for re-purposed ’70s chic. And since Margot Robbi looks 24/7 like she stepped out of a Spiegel catalog circa 1979, she does it best.

5) America Ferrera

Maggie: This Jenny Packham dress is stunning and I love her in it. THIS COLOR. (And it’s a little ombre, no?) And that belt! Now, I wasn’t a fan of the earrings and I think she could have stepped up her hair game, but overall I think she looks lovely.

Kim: I love the ombre and the flowyness of the dress.  The lining and the seam around her boobs bug me.  I wish her boobs were a little more supported.  But you done good, Betty Suarez.

Sage: It’s a little prom-y. I feel like America usually goes more structured, which lends a sophistication to her soft curls and baby face. I would totally vote for her for the court though.

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“Fashion show! Fashion Show! Fashion Show at Lunch!” – SAG Fashion Post

Posted by Maggie, with commentary from Sage and Kim.

Let’s get right to the fashion, shall we?  Who do we think we are?  The E! Red Carpet team vamping until the famous people show up?

Best Dressed

1) Julianne Moore

Maggie: Look at this beautiful emerald-green goddess. Full disclosure, I am a sparkle enthusiast (YAY SPARKLES) so I was immediately drawn to this. I can’t get over how perfect this beading is and this shade of green. It is to die for. Can we all agree Julianne should stick to sparkly Givenchy for always and ever? I also thought the purple earrings were an inspired choice and again, I liked her hair down and loose (I do think it kept its shape better than at the A/C-less Globes).

Kim: Red hair + Green = WIN.  I think the FugGirls put it best…Julianne knows she’s running the table here, and she definitely upped her game.  I would still like some more volume in the hair, but it DOES look better than the Globes.  Also I hope she did some serious twirling in this dress cause the beading is like a Dancing with the Stars costume in the best way possible.

Sage: Julianne looked so at-ease. Like she was hostessing a garden party in the Hamptons. You could tell she loved that dress.

2) Tatiana Maslany

Maggie: Tatiana hit almost every button I have: BLACK AND WHITE. STRIPES. (#healthybodyimage) EARRINGS. BIT OF A SASSY PONYTAIL. RED LIP. It is a travesty that she doesn’t attend more awards shows and get all the recognition she deserves for Orphan Black in part because she is straight up killing this red carpet. And how cute was her genuine moment of panic at the thought of doing the mani cam with dry skin? (Girl, same.) I need more Tatiana in my life.

Kim: STRIPES.  I’m obsessed.

Sage: This is dead-on for the SAG Awards. Not glitzy enough for the Globes, a little too whimsical for the Emmys. It’s glam and youthful, without trying too hard.

3) Viola Davis

Maggie: Viola is so strikingly beautiful always but especially in this white gown. I love the neckline and peephole, and she styled it perfectly with natural hair, strong makeup game, and did you see that bracelet? Also, I can’t discuss her acceptance speech without just a lot of emotions. Can Viola give me lessons on how to live rather than how to get away with murder?

Kim: I think Viola has such an exquisite skin tone and this white showcases it BEAUTIFULLY. I love the little pop of color in the earrings that coordinates with her eye make-up.  And agreed re: her speech.  I never want her to stop throwing shade at that New York Times article.  You are a GODDESS, Viola.

Sage: I bow to everyone’s earring game at this ceremony. Viola’s dangles paired flawlessly with this regal column gown. And like my girls here, I think life-long classy rage towards that NYT piece is absolutely warranted.

4) Natalie Dormer

Maggie: The cut of this gown is perfect and I can’t get over the splash of color. I will never be over the splash of color. I’ve seen other people attempt this kind of look but no one has ever gotten it quite right like this. I thought opting for a fresh face without heavy makeup was exactly the right choice, and while I wasn’t crazy about the hair, I do think it worked overall.  She was like the perfect canvas for that work of art gown.

Kim: I DO wish her hair had been up, mainly because I want to see more of this gorgeous watercolor gown.

Sage: Natalie usually plays the bad-ass or the temptress (it’s the eyes), so I definitely see the appeal for her in going totally flowy and pretty every once in a while.

5) Reese Witherspoon


Maggie: This look was pure understated glam and I couldn’t forget it once I saw it. I love the one shoulder with sparkly beading and the cute little sleeve set off the look perfectly. Add in a sassy pony and I’m sold. I think it’s Julianne’s year thanks to Givenchy and her performance in Still Alice, but Reese isn’t going down without a fight. (Although not an actual fight, there’s a lot of love and #ladiessupportingladies in their category this year. Bless.)

Kim: I’m so obsessed with everything about this look.  I love the more conservative front and then the daring back (HER ASS THOUGH).  The ponytail is everything and her face is flawless.  Elle Woods for President.

Sage: Reese has been through this gauntlet already and came through the other side with an Academy Award. This time, it feels like she’s just livin’ it, you know? Maybe it’s because Julianne is such a lock or maybe it’s because Wild was an exercise in learning to let go, but Reese gives no fucks. She is here to party, and so is dat ass.

6) Felicity Jones

Maggie: I didn’t quite get this look at first, I wasn’t sure it was the right look for Felicity. But I kept coming back to it, and I’ve completely reversed my position. Talk about Old Hollywood glam. She’s a pure Audrey Hepburn dream in this delicate pink. I love the earrings, but remain unconvinced about her hair. It’s thisclose to gym hair, or am I crazy?

Kim: It’s definitely gym hair.  Emilia Clarke’s dress was also similar to this, with the crisscrossed top, but I prefer Felicity’s.  When you stop focusing on the hair, she looks like a Peach Princess.

Sage: I’m loathe to disagree with the panel, but I was underwhelmed. The color is sweet, but the criss-cross top actually made the dress look too big on her. Felicity is such a slip of a thing, she has to be careful of volume that swallows her up.

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“What’s that?” “A dress!” “Says who?” “Calvin Klein!” – Golden Globes Fashion

Posted by Maggie with commentary from Kim and Sage

After the 2014 Emmys, our dear friend Maggie (Queen of Snark and Horizontal Stripes) sent Sage and I a novel-length email detailing her thoughts on every single red carpet look.  You know.  Just for fun.  It was so delightful (and dead on) that we insisted that she be our official fashion correspondent for the upcoming awards season.  Let’s get right to her picks for the best and worst of the 2015 Golden Globes, shall we?

Best Dressed Women

1) Naomi Watts

Maggie: Flawless. Head to toe. Naomi makes looking this good seem effortless; why she wants me to think I can pull off yellow, I don’t know, BECAUSE I CAN’T. Also, can we discuss that necklace? I don’t know if this is her way of coming out as a Slytherin, but I loved it either way. And that red lip. Perfection.

Kim: Best use of yellow since Michelle Williams’ mustard dress at the Oscars.  You know which one I speak of.

Sage: I subjected Kim to a treatise on why a bold yellow always demands a red lip. This is Exhibit A.

2) Emma Stone

Maggie: Emma took a risk in what seemed like a very play-it-safe year and it paid off big time, in my opinion. I love the beaded bodice, especially because only the bodice being beaded set her apart from the hundred silver beaded gowns on the carpet this year. I love the big bow, and I LOVE that she wore pants. Add in a sassy hair do and gorgeous makeup and I’m sold.

Kim: I also love that she let the bodice speak for itself by not having any big accessories.  Also, Emma, please never go back to blonde again.  (And well done on this choice, Maggie, you really are right.)

Sage: This feels very inspired by Emma’s run on Broadway as Sally Bowles. Dig it.

3) Felicity Jones

Maggie: This COLOR. I can’t get over it. I love the unusual neckline, I love the silhouette. This is how Dior should look on the red carpet.

Kim: Speaking of Dior, where was their poster child, Jennifer Lawrence? I missed her presence. Also this dress feels like it’s from another era and brought a much-needed subtle elegance to the party.  She’s a tiny person and it elongates her yet doesn’t overwhelm.

Sage: If you want to do an unexpected color at awards season, you do it at the Globes. She looks impossibly classy, and I love that she went bracelet-less.

4) Lupita Nyong’o

Maggie: Lupita appeared in the red carpet coverage 90 minutes in and what a breath of fresh air. I thought she looked beautiful, from her natural hair and red lip (apparently I really love a red lip) to the flowery purple bodice and purple-to-white skirt. She was queen of my heart last awards season and this just makes me want to see more of her.

Kim: I love that she went the complete opposite direction from that SPECTACULAR cape dress she wore last year.  Obsessed with her make-up.

Sage: Lupita looks how springtime feels.

5) Gina Rodriguez

Maggie: I’m really surprised she went with black, I was expecting and hoping for color, but it’s classy and elegant without going too mature or boring. And if you didn’t tear up during her acceptance speech, you’re lying.

Kim: IMPECCABLE fit and she was so excited to be there and to do the stiletto cam that I can’t be mad at the bottom of the dress.  Her acceptance speech was one of the highlights of the night.  Also her hair and make-up are divine.

Sage: This is how you do basic black for your first award show circuit. With one unique detail.

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

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.


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.
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, 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?


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.

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…

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

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.


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.


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.

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In Appreciation of Chandler Bing

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.

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