“I’ll be there for you…”
There are not many people who can stop themselves from singing along this title track. F.R.I.E.N.D.S was one of the most commercially successful television shows but that is not all. While the money matter was superb, the show created a special place in the hearts of its viewers. With a very simple concept of narrating the story of six friends through many seasons, this show gave viewers a lot to remember. We still find the catchy one-liners from F.R.I.E.N.D.S being repeated in conversations.
However, like all good things, it too has to come to an eventual end. The bright side is that the viewers are not alone in this. While F.R.I.E.N.D.S has ended many sitcoms that deserve the same recognition. With simple plotlines, unforgettable one-liners and amazing casts these shows will definitely help heal the pain of a true fan.
The directors Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld created for NBC a sit-com that stole the hearts of audiences. The lead character Jerry Seinfeld is a minor celebrity and a fictionalized version of the director himself. The show mostly focuses on his personal life surrounded by crazy friends as he lives in an apartment in Manhattan (sounds familiar). The characters of the show are outrageously funny and the cast did a fantastic job portraying them.
Elaine Benes, for example, played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus is Jerry’s ex-girlfriend. She often gets stuck with terrible men, strange employers, and peculiar individuals. She is often too-honest and arrogant but that does not make the viewer hate her. Many can sympathize with her and her misfortunes. That is the sheer magic of the show, the inability to hate any character.
4) Modern Family
To be fair Modern Family is not so much so about friendship as it is about family as the name suggests. It is also shot in a different format than F.R.I.E.N.D.S but that is not a good enough reason to doubt it. Modern Family is just as hilarious as F.R.I.E.N.D.S with only crazier characters. This show has one of the quirkiest characters that television has witnessed. The presentation is also very unconventional with confession cuts acting like characters’ inner voice, it gives the script a different approach. They have also nailed the representation aspect by showing not just a conventional white family but homosexual parents and inter-racial couples with substantial age gaps. From Cam’s hilarious dramatic antics to Phil’s desperation to become a cool dad, the show will leave one rolling on the floor.
3) Parks and Recreation
A political, satire comedy, talk about woke. If you like to explore shows with a commentary on the government, Parks and Recreation is perfect for you. The cast line-up alone can make one crack, Chris Pine, Aziz Ansari, and the SNL queen herself Amy Poehler. Each one of them brings to the table a very comical feature. The goofy Andy, the monotone and scary Audrey, the highly optimistic despite the odds Pawnee and the government office essential lazy, angry and yet strangely lovable Ron; the concept is only enhanced.
2) Will and Grace
It would not be a Sit-com list if Will and Grace were not mentioned. The story of four friends as they accomplish the simple life tasks exaggerated by the strangeness of their characters took the audience’s heart by a storm. The characters compliment each other with drastically opposite natures and traits. The real star of the show is definitely Jack. While he is not the namesake of the show his amazing entrances and gullible yet endearing behavior, steals the spotlight.
The script of the show is very sit-com-ish. There is nothing out of the box but what sets the show apart is the real representation of everyday struggles comically and exaggeratedly. Will and Grace also get an extra point for diversity and representation.
Even when the show got a reboot, its essence was preserved. Reboots have a reputation for being bad and not as good as the previous show. Will and Grace easily broke that curse with the reboot being just as good as the original. The cast does an excellent job, especially Megan Mullally as Karen and Sean Hayes as Jack. The show might just be the perfect F.R.I.E.N.D.S replacement.
1) Living Single
Focused on the lives of six friends who together experience the world living in Brooklyn (hmm I wonder who else had that plot). Yes, while the plot is very similar to the OG F.R.I.E.N.D.S living single is a female-centric show. It sees the world that Ross and friends would have seen if they were all women. Starring, All Hail the Queen, Queen Latifah does an excellent job portraying the lead Khadijah. Living single is F.R.I.E.N.D.S done better with more diversity of opinion.