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The one they shouldn’t have made: Friends’ pointless, self-aggrandizing reunion delivers neither nostalgia nor laughs

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The often-delayed and much-hyped ‘Friends: The Reunion’ finally premiered on HBO Max on Thursday. The end result of this rather slick, self-aggrandizing, hour and 43-minute long commercial for itself was a bevy of ambivalent shrugs and a collective “who cares?”.

‘Friends’ burst on the scene on September 22, 1994 and with its beautiful and talented cast of Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, David Schwimmer, Matt LeBlanc and Matthew Perry, it quickly became a cultural phenomenon.

Like some sort of sitcom Beatlemania, ‘Friends’ became part of the cultural zeitgeist, with its catchphrases (how YOU doin’?), storylines (Ross and Rachel) and style (the ever-present Rachel hairdo) dominating mainstream entertainment discourse for a decade until its finale on May 6, 2004.

The show was enormously successful as the top-rated television comedy for six of its 10 years, averaging a whopping 25 million viewers an episode in America.

Even after it rode off into the sunset and was relegated to reruns, the show still garnered much attention, as it was consistently among the most streamed programs on Netflix, and has been watched over 100 billion times over all platforms during its lifetime.

The staying power of ‘Friends’ is why WarnerMedia were so keen to get their hands on the show in order for it to be the cornerstone of their new streaming service HBO Max, and shelled out........

© RT.com

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