Friends: The Wildest Fan Theories
Even though the Friends series ended back in 2004, fans still can’t get enough of it! That’s why they keep on coming up with new theories about the sitcom. We’ve gathered the best fan theories about Friends TV show in this article so dig in.
WHAT IF ROSS LOST CUSTODY OF BEN?
We suddenly stopped seeing Ben in the final seasons of Friends, and fans have always wondered why. Did Ross start ignoring his first-born child after he had a baby with Rachel? We never even saw Ben and Emma interacting, which was very weird.
After all, they were brother and sister, and it would have been so fun to see them play together! This is especially weird considering how much time Ross wanted to spend with his son in the beginning. But what if Ben didn’t just disappear and his dad didn’t forget about him?
What if Ross couldn’t see his son anymore because Carol and Susan forbade him to? I mean, think about it: right before Ben stopped appearing, Ross’s behavior was growing more and more extreme. He had a relationship with his student and tried to make a pass at his cousin.
He even attempted to attack Phoebe and Rachel a few times to prove that they didn't have what he called “unagi.” And the sandwich incident… Gee! It was a hard period for Ross - he was getting through a second and then a third divorce, plus he had to find another apartment - that's a lot, isn't it?
So, maybe Carol couldn't accept his erratic behavior and decided it was best to stop him from seeing Ben. But how come we never saw Ross fighting to remain in Ben's life? Or, maybe the showrunners decided that it was too-dark a move and decided not to include it in the show?
THE WHOLE PLOT WAS RACHEL'S DREAM
Everyone knows that the whole series starts when Rachel runs away from her wedding and joins the gang. But one fan thinks this never happened! They came up with an utterly crazy theory just because they saw this DVD cover for one of the seasons. In the dream, everyone, except Rachel, is asleep.
Rachel is wearing a sheet that somewhat resembles a wedding dress. So this fan believes that there must be a special meaning behind it. They suggest that Rachel was so anxious on the eve of her wedding to Barry that when she went to bed, she had a long dream that included all ten seasons of the show.
She saw herself running away, starting a whole new life, finding a job, growing up and becoming an independent woman, having a child, and finding her true love. And then, the fan continues, Rachel woke up on the morning of her wedding day (and that was why she was the only one with her eyes open on the cover).
She understood that it was all just an anxiety dream, and it probably made her realize that she didn't want to marry her fiancé because she didn't really love him. Maybe that was the real reason why she decided to run away from her wedding!
IS IT PART OF PHOEBE'S IMAGINATION?
This theory makes the show much darker. We all know that Phoebe had a troubled past. Her father left the family, her mother committed suicide, she had to live on the street for some time, and she even mobbed others (including Ross) to survive.
Sometimes, it even seems surprising that she became part of the gang in the first place because she’s so different from everyone else. What if, as one fan suggested, Phoebe was never actually part of the gang and all the events of the show were nothing but figments of her imagination?
In this theory, Phoebe is still homeless and creates this entire fantasy while looking in the window of Central Perk. She wanted to have friends so badly that she projects herself into the lives of the other five.
And meanwhile, everyone else would only see her as a weird lady who couldn’t stop staring at the gang. Ugh, heartbreaking! Most fans didn't like this idea, and even Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman hated it. She said:
“That’s a terrible theory. That’s insane! That’s, like, that’s like crazy alt-television theory. […] I just think that someone needs a life.”
IS PHOEBE A WHO TRICKS HER FRIENDS?
Everyone loves Phoebe, so you’ll probably like this theory much more than the previous one! Phoebs has always been the most unpredictable character on the show, and, when you think about it, she’s way smarter than she seems, despite her time on the street and not having much formal education.
So what if Phoebe isn't the weirdo everyone thinks she is, but a cunning fox who just loves to prank her friends and see how they'll react? Or, as a fan said on Reddit, she could be “a laidback genius with zero ambition.”Let's look at the facts!
She frequently makes her friends do certain things - just for fun. For instance, she was the one who convinced Ross - the SCIENTIST Ross! - that the evolution theory could be flawed - and then befuddled him by saying that he had abandoned his whole belief system.
That was SUCH a checkmate! In another episode, Phoebe persuaded Joey to arrange awful blind dates for Ross and Rachel, to help them realize that they should be together. And what’s more, she once openly said that she liked to think of herself as the “puppet master of the group!”
MONICA DEVELOPED OCD AFTER LOSING WEIGHT
From the very beginning of the show, we see Monica as a neat freak, who can’t even sleep if something in her apartment isn’t in the right place. She’s also very controlling and loves following rules. “Guys, rules are good! Rules help control the fun!” she once said.
In real life, we call it Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Of course, it's no reason to love our Harmonica less, but let's see how these tendencies could have developed! Have you ever noticed that in flashbacks, when Monica was overweight and in the alternate timeline, where she never went on a diet, she seemed to be much less of a clean freak and wasn’t as uptight in general?
When Ross recalled their childhood, he'd often mention his sister's competitiveness, but... he never told stories about Mon cleaning the entire house! This proves that a Friends fan from Reddit could be right, and she DID become the Monica we knew throughout all ten seasons only after losing weight.
THE DARK SECRET OF MOCKOLATE
It was heartbreaking when we learned that, no matter how hard they tried, Chandler and Monica couldn’t have kids on their own. But… what if the real reason why Monica couldn't get pregnant was the tragic result of her eating large amounts of a certain chemical?
Remember in season 2 when Monica was looking for a job and was hired to prepare desserts using a new chocolate substitute called Mockolate. She'd been creating recipes for a while when her employer said that she had to stop using it because it wasn’t FDA-approved and they couldn't sell it.
As he vaguely explained, there was “something about laboratory rats.” And he quickly asked Monica whether she had eaten a lot of it while cooking. She said that she only ate some, but wait… Since she was experimenting with making so many desserts, she must’ve eaten quite a lot!
At the same time, Phoebe and Rachel only tasted it once and hated it immediately. And, if you think about it, both of them were able to have babies, while Monica wasn't able to. Is it possible that the Mockolate wreaked havoc in her uterus and made it inhospitable?
WHAT IF CHANDLER DIDN'T SLIP OUT ABOUT THE CRYSTAL DUCK?
You certainly remember how the whole Ross and Rachel thing started. When Ross was ready to move on and forget about his feelings for Rachel, she suddenly learned that he had been in love with her this whole time, which made her realize that she was also attracted to him.
But do you recall what happened exactly? She got a gorgeous pin as a gift from Ross and marveled at how he remembered that she liked it, and Chandler said, “Remember back in college when he fell in love with Carol and bought her that ridiculously expensive crystal duck?”
Now think about what would’ve happened if he hadn’t spilled the beans… Rachel wouldn’t have realized that she had feelings for Ross. Ross would probably have stayed with Julie because they got along so well, and he’d eventually forget about his crush as Rachel and he would have no relationship history.
He wouldn’t meet Emily, wouldn’t have a wedding in England, and, Monica and Chandler probably would never sleep together and just remain friends! And moreover, Monica would most likely reunite with Richard because he’d come back to her after a while and say that he still loved her, and she'd probably end up with him.
Meanwhile, Rachel would probably get together with Mark from Bloomingdale’s because they had a lot in common, and he once confessed that he liked her. And even for Phoebe and Joey, life would be totally different… if only Chandler hadn't told the crystal duck story. Would they eventually get together?
JOEY AND PHOEBE ARE FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS
Ross and Rachel… Chandler and Monica… But what about Joey and Phoebe? They had incredible chemistry, they understood each other, and we could often see that they were best friends! Remember how they once revealed that they’d meet once in a while just to discuss everyone else?
Now… what if they didn’t only meet to have a chat without their other friends? What if they… you know… did it?? Joey and Phoebe as a couple is something most Friends fans always wanted to see. And, interestingly, even Matt LeBlanc and Lisa Kudrow wanted it to happen!
LeBlanc once shared that they even pitched a plotline where Joey and Phoebe were secretly doing it the whole time.
“We’d go back and shoot all the historical scenes and just before a moment that everyone recognizes, there’s Joey and Phoebe coming out of a broom closet together,” Matt elaborated on their idea.
But the writers weren’t too interested in making them a couple. As David Crane explained, in this case, "It all would have been too tidy and too complete." Still… there’s no reason fans should stop believing that they were doing it the whole time, maybe it just wasn’t revealed.
ROSS AND RACHEL'S RELATIONSHIP WAS CURSED
You might believe this theory if you’re very superstitious. It suggests that all the troubles in Ross and Rachel’s relationship happened only because he accidentally opened an umbrella indoors in the very first episode. And some people believe that if you do it, bad luck will rain down on you.
In the scene where Rachel runs inside the coffee house wearing her wedding dress, Monica introduces her to everyone and says, “You remember my brother Ross?” Hilariously, Rachel reaches out to shake his hand, but the darned umbrella stops her.
And right before it, Phoebe noticed that Ross’s aura wasn’t fine and wanted to cleanse it, but he didn’t let her.