we've all been there -- haven't we!?!

TV As you might have gathered, I'm currently in the process of rewatching FRIENDS. I'm about four episodes shy of the end of the third season and it's going fairly well, though just as I remember the quality of the writing is varying wildly between utter genius and utter crap as are some of the performances. I'm going to write something much longer about this when I'm done, but for now here's a list of cameos the cast made in other sitcoms and such, when their collective network NBC became very interested in that kind of thing (The One with the Blackout from the first season was part of night were the lights went out on a range of different sitcoms):

Chandler in Caroline In The City:

Caroline was broadcast in a double with FRIENDS for a while and Channel 4 made a big thing about this cameo at the time; it's good though it feels more like a scene from FRIENDS than the other way around despite the painting. And music. You can certainly tell which of these shows was in ascendency. Perry has a tendency to overplay things how and then on his own show, but this works well for what it is.

Ross on The Single Guy

The Single Guy didn't make it to the UK (as far as I can tell) so this is a rare treat. It's embedded later in this video at 2.25, after the aforementioned Caroline In The City related scenes. Hilarious stuff even if it hangs on one of contemporary sitcom's more frequent stand-by plotlines (we've all been there -- haven't we!?!). Rather more than a cameo, this sees Ross essentially taking over, with (even allowing for some edits) the lead character disappearing for long stretches. There are some classic Schwimmer expressions in here, particular when he spots the photograph.

Phoebe in Hope & Gloria:

No clip that I can find, just this 'synopsis'. Hope & Gloria was a two season wonder which the BBC picked up and ran in daytime in the mid-nineties. Jessica Lundy & Cynthia Stevenson played friends worked on a local tv talk show. It was a good if slightly middle of the road show, mostly carried by Lundy and Stevenson's performances, and in one episode they decided to visit New York for no particular reason other than needing a holiday and happened upon Central Perk and Pheobe who assailed them with some random weirdness, related to counting. I have no idea. Saw it once, mostly through a fog of looking for blank video, but it was gone before I could do anything about it.

Chandler and Rachel discover Windows 95.:

Or Matthew Perry and Jennifer Aniston want us to hate them. Their names might be on this video but their essentially playing variants of their FRIENDS characters, and unfunny annoyingly shot didactic versions at that. "So this is where the magic happens, huh, ground zero of personal computing?" Yes, a data apocalypse just waiting to happen. And the Wenus and Anus are clearly out of control.

Finally, here's Kramer from Seinfeld appearing in Mad About You which has nothing to do with FRIENDS but is funny nonetheless.


  1. Jamie from Mad About You was on Friends. But was Phoebe ever on Mad About You? I know Ursula was invented there...

  2. Not according her IMDb page, so it wasn't a two way street. Shame.


  3. NBC actually used crossovers to boost Friends' ratings in the first season when it wasn't doing too well: the Mad About You cameo was one of them and there were the Noah Wyle/George Clooney cameos - although not as their ER characters, just as doctors - as well, maybe even in the same episode(s).

  4. Anonymous10:56 am

    I think that Lisa Kudrow got her start on Mad About You and they somehow worked that into Friends. Pretty cleverly, I thought.

    Alice Knight (Phoebe's sister in law) was just starting That 70's Show (I think) right around the time she was on Friends. From the 70's to the present? That's a helluva crossover!!

  5. Yes, they were in The One With Two Parts.

  6. Did you know Kudrow was originally cast as Ros in Frasier but didn't take it because of FRIENDS. Seems unimaginable.