London, Baby

Written on:May 7, 2018
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Friends S4:E23 & Friends S4:E24 – Hey there, Mercedes-Friends! Welcome, welcome, welcome to Last Week of Friends 20/20, Season Four Tonight. I’m your host, Ken Adams. Let’s begin tonight with a quick recap of the week. Donald Trump did crazy things. Moving right along, can you believe that as soon as you finish reading today’s Chan Man Quip of the Week we will be 💯 officially certified as 40 percent of the way through this ridiculous challenge aka Mission Impossible – Friends 20/20 Nation aka The Bane of My Existence? It kinda feels like we’re future academics graduating from college. It feels great to be wrapping up the last four years but it’s bitter sweet because we’re also staring down the barrel of spending the next six years still in graduate school. Nevertheless, four freaking seasons of this madness will be in the books after we adjourn in a little bit and I’ve gotta say, sometimes I think it’s a minor miracle that we’ve made it this far. [Now don’t go getting nostalgic on us, Mr. Adams.] Pipe down, Johnny. I’ll get nostalgic if I damn well please. And what do you care? It gives you more time to prepare your homework assignment. The entire class, rather the entire school, rather the entire Friends 20/20 nation is bouncing off of the walls in anticipation of hearing you give your thoughts on the intersection of The Handmaid’s Tale and FRIENDS, John John. Unless you’re ready to do that now? I didn’t think so. Now, keep your sarcastic comments to yourself please. Anyway, as I was saying, it’s a minor miracle that we’ve made it this far. When you look back at all of the MAIL-IN SPECIALS, my numerous near-suspensions from theLeftAhead, and the existential threat to continuing this project that was the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States of America, we have had a lot of close calls and many, many opportunities to shrug our arms, pack up our computers, say, “awe shucks, we gave it the ‘ole college try,” and call it a day. And had we done that, everyone else on the outside looking in would’ve said, “Yeah, that makes sense.” We could’ve easily given up and no one would’ve thought the lesser of us for it. But something deep inside us kept pushing us, telling us to keep trudging forward no matter how tedious and how trivial this endeavor can sometimes seem. And we listened. WE ARE STILL STANDING. I’m proud of us.

Okay, enough with the sentimental back slapping. After all, we’ve got a season finale to dissect. Man, what an episode (err…I mean, what episodes)! Who remembers first watching when Ross delivered The Wrong Name Heard Round the World twenty years ago today? This was unquestionably one of the most surprising moments in series history. I remember it evoking a couple of strong feels in me when I first witnessed the jaw-dropping mistake. First, I remember cringing at how unbelievably uncomfortable it must’ve been to be Emily in that situation. This is supposed to be the happiest moment of her life and just like that – it becomes the most embarrassing moment of her life. On top of dealing with that, she is simultaneously dealing with the realization that the man she loves is not who the man she thought he was and the future she’d been preparing for is not the future she will be living. Simply brutal. Secondly, I remember feeling something akin to the following: “Aw, screw Emily…Ross love Rachel…ROSS LOVES RACHEL…hurray…HURRAY…the universe has been put back into balance. THIS IS HOW IT’S SUPPOSED TO BE!” That’s right (and don’t front like you didn’t have the exact same reaction) I had those feels, those oh so happy feels that Ross and Rachel would be getting back together and those feels carried me all summer long. Oh, and just in case one jaw-dropping moment wasn’t enough to make this season finale stand out, I see your Ross saying Rachel’s name and raise you Monica popping out from under the covers in Chandler’s bed. Ladies and gentlemen, I’LL BE THERE FOR YOU has just taken on new meaning. Man oh man, could I be any more excited that we’ve reached the point in the series where Monica and Chandler are a thing? Um, their relationship for the remaining six years is one of my favorite parts of the show so could I be any more excited? (The answer is no, by the way.) In fact, I’m so excited to start writing about Mondler that I wish summer just zips by because I can’t wait to get back and start writing about Season Five. Wait, wait…I didn’t say that. Please strike that from the permanent record. Jury, you will disregard the previous statement. I’ve got roughly 140 straight nights on a beach ahead of me and I plan on enjoying every, single last one of them.

With that snap back to reality, class, it’s time for your oral reflections on the intersection of The Handmaid’s Tale and FRIENDS. We will go in alphabetical order so… On second thought, dawg, screw it…who’s ready for summer? Yeah, my mind drifted to the water, me too. Okay, new plan. For your presence here today, you all get an A and do not need to give your oral report! That’s right. You get an A and you get an A and you get an A! Except for you, Johnny. That wisecrack earlier is gonna cost you. If you want to pass the semester, go directly over there into Ted James‘s office and orate your HMT report to him. If he doesn’t like what you have to say, tell him he is authorized to remand you to summer school but also let him know he will have to be your teacher in summer school because I will be in an undisclosed tropical location on the aforementioned beach with an umbrella drink in my hand and my feet up in t-minus 24 hours. Peace, Johnny. Good luck and God’s speed. Okay class, for the rest of you, here’s your assignment for our time apart: just continue watching HMT during the summer break and keep looking for more pop culture nods to the GOAT 🐐 sitcom and be ready to report on them when we reconvene on Monday, September 24th. Most importantly, HAVE A GREAT SUMMER. See you on that next.

Recap in the Key of Phoebe – These are the ones where Ross and Emily are having their wedding in London, Joey gets homesick for New York City (where everybody knows his name), Rachel decides not to go to London at first but later changes her mind because she wants to tell Ross she loves him before he marries Emily, Phoebe is back home pregnant but pesters Emily’s housekeeper and stepmother over the phone trying to warn the gang that Rachel is on her way to ruin the wedding, Chandler and Monica…you know, and Ross is the one who ends up ruining his own wedding when he accidentally says Rachels name at the alter because he’s flustered from having just seen her unexpectedly or maybe because London, Baby.

Gandalf Gaffes – What would a Season Finale be without a Double G to dissect? Okay, okay, I know not every season finale has had a gaffe but doesn’t it just feel right that this one does? Today’s voyage into the world of inconsistent writing takes us on a journey from Joey’s toast at Ross’s Rehearsal Dinner in today’s episode back to The One With the Flashback (S3:R6) or as it’s better known around these parts, Don’t Say Anything. During his toast at Ross’s Rehearsal Dinner, Joey says, “I first met Ross in this coffee house back home.” While this is geographically somewhat true, according to the laws of the space-time continuum as well as the precedent set in FRIENDS S3:E6, it is absolutely, unequivocally false. S3:E6, clearly established that the place that Joey first met Ross was in fact a bar that would later be renovated and turned into Central Perk or the coffee shop Joey is referencing during his toast. You might say, “Yes, Mr. Adams, but the very same storyline in S3:E6 has Gandalf Gaffes of its own so doesn’t that invalidate the episode from setting precedent for where we currently are in Season Four?” Astute observation and question, class but the answer is, “No, it does not.” Remember the rules of the game as we clearly established them in Grab a Spoon. The rules clearly state that, “Our game…will play out chronologically from episode to episode with each new development adding to the established truths of our world unless it violates a previously established truth.” So, even though other aspects of the S3:E6 are Gandalf Gaffes, the fact that Joey met Ross for the first time in a bar is not a GG and therefore is a detail that adds to the established truth. Therefore, for Joey to claim in his Rehearsal Dinner speech in today’s episode that he first met Ross in a coffee house is a season-ending Gandalf Gaffe. Since the bar in question later became the world-famous Central Perk coffee house, I am ruling this as a level one infraction.

Gandalf Gaffe #20: During his Rehearsal Dinner speech at Ross’s wedding, Joey claims to have first met Ross at a coffee shop. False. S3:E6 establishes that Joey and Ross first met at a bar.

Chan Man Quip of the Week – [The Setup] Joey and Chandler are leaving the London Marriott to go sightseeing and Joey is really embarrassing Chandler by acting like a tourist with his video camera. Pointing the camera at Chandler, Joey commands, “Come on! Do something!” Visibly perturbed, Chandler responds, “I am, I’m ignoring you.” Undeterred by the negativity, Joey says, “okay, here” while handing Chandler the camera. He continues, “I wanna be the on camera guy. All right, first stop, Westminster Abbey.” Joey proceeds to pull out and unfold a map with pop ups of all of the major London landmarks. As he’s holding it out to figure out directions, perplexed, Chandler asks, “Oh, what the hell is that?” Joey responds, “It’s London, baby! All right, the hotel’s here.” Joey points to the map and continues, “Wait. No, we wanna go… No. I know…” He proceeds to set the map on the ground while saying, “I’m gonna have to go into the map.” [The Knockout] As Joey steps on top of his map, a horrified Chandler commands, “Okay, if you see a little version of me in there…kill it!”


Featured Image Source: International Traveller

Headline GIF Source: E! News

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