Friends is the grilled cheese and tomato soup of TV shows. It’s easy to digest, great in mass quantities when you’re sick or having a crappy day and it takes you back to happier times of the Clinton administration and Fruitopia. The series finale, nearly a decade ago, left a hole in many viewers’ hearts that they have been trying to fill by gorging on reruns. And oh, how there are reruns. And if you live in a country that isn’t America, you have even more Friends reruns! For eons, British television would air Friends for what felt like at least 22 hours a day.
Now, perhaps as the final strike of #rememberthe90s, new reports are surfacing (none that look super reliable yet though, so take them with a grain of salt) that Friends will return for a new one-off season in 2014, reportedly with NBC at the helm but the original cast’s commitment level still undetermined. And it’s unclear as to whether they would commit to this, here and now. Matthew Perry’s got top billing on another NBC sitcom, albeit one that may not be long for this world, Jennifer Aniston’s getting steady work and remember the last time Friends tried to limp along with only one cast member in spinoff form? Not good.
And what would the episodes even be about? Would its attempts at sliding into modernity and relevance feel as smooth as Modern Seinfeld or as forced as most of the writing on 2 Broke Girls? Would they have aged with the show? And they have kids now! Emma would be 10 and Ben would be, like, in college or something. What would that be like? Maybe this future is so frightening that we’d be better off with just reruns.
You know what, though? In a way, as a TV-viewing public, we sort of deserve a sad mutant version of our beloved ’90s mainstay. If the American network sitcom-loving audience really wanted new episodes of a funny, comforting sitcom about urban thirtysomethings just hanging out and trying to make it in this crazy world of ours, y’all would be trying harder to save Happy Endings.
● Brody Jenner and Avril Lavigne have called it quits after nearly two years together, meaning Avril will now need better excuses to hang out with Kim and Paris. [Us]
● Justin Bieber debuted a new, darker ‘do over the weekend. [Us]
● Producers are said to be looking towards the less coastal Jersey City, Las Vegas, or Los Angeles for the upcoming sixth season of Jersey Shore. [Page Six]
● Matt LeBlanc "wishes" there could be a Friends reunion show because, as he joked, "I could use the money." [TMZ]
● "He will change diapers, of course he will," says Beyoncé of Jay’s new daddy duties in her first post-birth interview. "He’s going to be a very hands-on father and he is going to be so good at it." [Huff Post]
● Included on Barack Obama’s celebrity endorsement wishlist? Everyone from Vampire Weekend to Blake Lively; Gloria Steinem to the Jonas Brothers; Counting Crows the The Roots; and Jay-Z, but not Beyoncé, who has already got her hands full with Michelle. [Nerve]
January 3—Lindsay Lohan is released from rehab, no joke. (Because aren’t Lindsay jokes played out by now?) 5—Cirque Du Soleil hopes to un-stiffen those upper lips when its limber show, Totem, premieres at London’s Royal Albert Hall. 10—Although we wouldn’t really call Matt LeBlanc an actor, he plays one on TV! Showtime’s Episodes premieres tonight, in which Joey portrays a version of himself.
11—The Salvador Dali Museum gets a $35-million new home in St. Petersburg, Florida, where the sun is so hot it could melt a clock. 12—Baltimore MC Rye Rye, apparently the queen of redundancies, celebrates her debut album, Go! Pop! Bang!, released yesterday. 14— Michel Gondry and Seth Rogen release The Green Hornet, a movie about a superhero who erases the memories of chicks in an effort to bang them. 16—At the 68th annual Golden Globe Awards, Robert De Niro receives the Cecil B. DeMille lifetime achievement award for his distinguished work in The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle, that film with Eddie Murphy, and the other one about the cabbie. 19—The Los Angeles Art Show and London Art Fair both kick off today. They’re essentially the same thing, except Ed Hardy only sponsors one of them. 20—The Sundance Film Festival begins. It’s the only film festival with more snow on the streets than in the bathrooms. 21—Baltimore Restaurant Week begins. It’s like NYC Restaurant Week—without all the great restaurants! 28—Gus Van Sant releases Restless, a documentary about how audiences felt watching Gerry. 29—Sorry, supper fans: Dinner by Heston Blumenthal opens at London’s Mandarin Oriental.
● Kate Gosselin will be back on reality TV, with a show that explores her doing “different jobs and tasks, showing how she performs in different environments.” Except the different environments will all be media fishbowls and circuses. [Perez] ● New Domino’s ad cops to how bad Domino’s pizza is. Company hopes honesty is endearing enough for customers to continue ignoring bad pizza. [Gawker, Slate] ● Man desperate to be a nerd all of his life has glasses tattooed onto his face. [Ypsilon2]
● Watch scenes from the new meta-Matt Leblanc comedy, Episodes, about being Matt Leblanc. You didn’t know you missed him saying “How you doin’?” did you? [Vulture] ● The next sci-fi literary mashup will be Android Karenina. Still waiting for Room With a View of Monsters. [AgentM] ● From the amazing brain of ?uestlove, what if Wu Tang’s RZA auditioned to be Leslie Knopes on Parks & Recreation? Only good things. [Buzzfeed]