Running ten strong seasons after its debut in the fall of 1994, Friends was indisputably one of the great sitcoms of the 1990s. The six main cast members will be forever linked with their television alter-egos, regardless of what they have done in the seven years since the series ended (with the possible exception of Jennifer Aniston and the intense tabloid focus on her love life).
Friends holds a high place in the pantheon of pop culture, introducing catchphrases and hairstyles, and the idea of an effortless Manhattan lifestyle well before Carrie Bradshaw came along. Millions of women copied “The Rachel” from Aniston, and then millions of men tried to pick them up with Joey’s signature line: “How YOU doin’?”
Though sitcoms have attempted to make this point for years, Friends was one of the first to show your friends truly can be your family. For all those since the show debuted who have had to leave home and move to a new city, Friends helped them see that it doesn’t have to be a terrifying experience. As the theme song (which hit 1 on the US charts) goes, “I’ll be there for you, ’cause you’re there for me too.”