Friends S1:E14 – “Guess who’s back? Back again.” Kenny’s back. Tell your Friends. What’s cracking, boys and girls? (Egg. Cracking. Get it? Ha.) Fresh off of a short hiatus, yes (indeed) we’re back at it again with a hot take on another twenty year old episode of your favorite sitcom. Thanks for choosing to give us a few minutes of your time. Glad to be with you again. Today’s assignment is to explore one of our six main character’s story arc for Season One. In order to do that, I’m pleased to announce that we will also be solving one of the biggest riddles in the history of nursery rhymes in the process. Let me explain. In conducting my research over the weekend for today’s post, I was sucked back down the internet rabbit hole into a deep dive on the nursery rhyme character, Humpty Dumpty. Apparently, since the origin of the character comes out of obscure oral tradition in England, the nursery rhyme’s meaning and the person upon which the character is based are subject to debate. The prevailing theory is that Humpty Dumpty is based on King Richard III of England (who was depicted in Tudor histories as humpbacked). While a strong theory, we here at theLeftAhead are confident in proclaiming once and for all that (as it turns out) this is not actually correct. So, you ask, “Who is Humpty Dumpty, then?” Will the real Humpty Dumpty please stand up? (That is if you haven’t yet had your “big fall.”) Drum roll, please. The real Humpty Dumpty is Ross Geller.
Rossy Geller sat on a wall
Rossy Geller had a great fall.
All of Rossy’s fossils and all of Rossy’s friends
Couldn’t put Rossy Geller together again.
Yep. It’s as clear as day that this brilliant poet who authored the Humpty Dumpty nursery rhyme was not only a masterful wordsmith, but was also such a brilliant prophet and seer of the future that he or she makes Nostradamus look like a dime store psychic. As our clairvoyant savant foretold in nursery rhyme a couple hundred years ago, the Season One story arc for Ross Geller is precisely about a man who falls down when his wife leaves him for another woman, is broken from the heartbreak, attempts (with the help of his friends) to put himself back together by falling in love with Rachel, but is unable to do so when he realizes that his love is unrequited. I mean (channeling my inner-Chandler), could Humpty Dumpty be any more about Ross? This particular episode is brilliant because it sums up the entire Ross Geller story arc for Season One in one scene. When Ross, unable to get anything going with Rachel, builds up the courage to successfully ask out Kristen (a woman from his building) by using the corny hook of returning the egg he had once borrowed from her, the egg eventually breaks when Chandler gives him a congratulatory hug. This broken egg (besides proving beyond a reasonable doubt that Humpty Dumpty is, indeed, Ross Geller) is a metaphor foreshadowing the doom of not only Ross’ relationship with Kristen, but also the doom of his love life for the entirety of Season One (until it’s final scene). Boom. Another case closed. That’s right, kids. The Walrus was Paul and Humpty Dumpty is Ross Geller. See you next week. Same eggstraordinary time. Same eggstraordinary channel.
Recap in the Key of Phoebe – This is the one where Ross asks out a woman from his building, Chandler does Joey a favor by going with him on a double date that turns out to be Janice forcing him to break up with her (yet again) on Valentine’s Day, Phoebe arranges an ex-boyfriend bonfire with Monica and Rachel that causes a fire and gives them a chance to flirt with firemen, and Ross’ date with Kristin ends in disaster (partly because Carol and Susan show up at the restaurant but also because “the man’s got an egg”).
Gandalf Gaffes – None. Flawless episode!
Chan Man Quip of the Week – [The Setup] Chandler is at Central Perk with Joey on Valentine’s Day trying to psych himself up to be ready to break up with Janice again the day after accidentally being setup with her blind as part of Joey’s double date with Lorraine. Visibly nervous, Chandler asks, “How can I dump this woman on Valentine’s day?” Joey quickly fires back, “I don’t know. You dumped her on New Year’s.” [The Knockout] Chandler, acknowledging the shameful irony, predicts “Oh, man. In my next life, I’m coming back as a toilet brush.”
Featured Image Source: Fact Fixx
Headline Image Source: Bill Warren on PBase