There’s no better way to spend a day than with our “Friends.”
The much-hyped, long-awaited reunion between the six original cast members of the sitcom “F.R.I.E.N.D.S.” hits HBO Max Thursday, and the die-hard fans of the N.B.C. sitcom will be pleased to see it. Lisa Kudrow, David Schwimmer, Matthew Perry, Courtney Cox and Matt Le Blanc finally gathered together for an emotional, sweet reunion on the Warner Bros. lot this summer. And while many fans were hoping to see them in character again as Phoebe, Ross, Chandler, Monica and Joey, this unscripted, loose format for the reunion is far better than any scripted episode would have been.
“Friends: The Reunion” had all six actors on the set of the famous 1994-2004 sitcom reliving and chatting emotional moments. The reminiscing is mixed with a conversation on the famous orange couch between the cast and James Corden; interviews with creators Marta Kauffman, Kevin Bright and David Crane; celebrity guests dishing about their favourite episodes; cameos from famous guest stars; bloopers; clips from old episodes; fans from around the world talking about how the show changed their lives; and the actors re-reading some of the old scenes together.
Directed and produced by Ben Winston, who also is Corden’s “Late Late Show” producer, the reunion felt crisp and effortless. Editing kept the 107-minute reunion going, but some segments could have been cut to make it neater, like random celebrities like Malala Yousafazi and B.T.S. talking about the series. However, it’s lovely to hear Mindy Kaling describe how much she enjoyed watching Chandler and Monica hide their relationship in Season 5. It was very interesting when the cast cracked up, enacting the scene where Phoebe sees them having sex.
The episode was able to recreate the brilliance of “Friends” without pretending that 17 years haven’t passed since the sitcom left N.B.C.