How Friends should have ended
Upfront - I was an indifferent watcher of Friends. It was decent, light-hearted show that never had much competition. If I was around I'd watch it, though I could also go months without seeing an episode. I enjoyed Chandler and Monica and thought the best season was when they were hiding their relationship and only Joey knew. Matt LeBlanc was brilliant that season. Otherwise, any time they switched it to the Ross and Rachel show I'd unplug the TV just to ensure I would not see that sacchrine crap.
That being said, when it was announced that the next season would be the finale, I remembered there was an episode where Phoebe predicted how they would all end up. Brilliant! They should follow that outline. In a fit of madness I checked out a Friends newsgroup thinking I couldn't be the only one with this idea. I was, so I proposed it. The jackasses universally scoffed at it.
I hate when shows completely screw up their continuity or miss an obvious opportunity for a sly callback to an earlier episode. I tell you what, St. Elsewhere would not have missed this. So, I present to you, resurrected from the deep bowels of a altdot newsgroup, how Friends should have wrapped up. note: slight editing has occurred:
This occurs in the season 6 episode, The One Where Ross Hugs Rachel. Over the end credits is this conversation:[Scene: Central Perk, Joey and Phoebe are talking.]
Joey: So, Ross and Rachel got married, Monica and Chandler almost got married, do you think you and I should hook up?
Phoebe: Oh we do, but not just yet.
Joey: Really?! Well, when?
Phoebe: Okay umm, well, first Chandler and Monica will get married and be filthy rich by the way. Yeah. But it won’t work out.
Phoebe: I know. Then, I’m gonna marry Chandler for the money and you’ll marry Rachel and have the beautiful kids.
Phoebe: But then we ditch those two and that’s when we get married. We’ll have Chandler’s money and Rachel’s kids and getting custody will be easy because of Rachel’s drinking problem.
Joey: Oh-oh, what about Ross?
Phoebe: I don’t want to go into the whole thing, but umm, we have words and I kill him.
That is brilliant! And since Phoebe's first prediction did happen, how much work would it have taken for 2-5? To recap, she said:
- Chandler and Monica get married - happened - and become filthy rich. Doesn't work out.
- Phoebe marries Chandler
- Joey marries Rachel
- Everybody breaks up and Joey and Phoebe get married.
- At some point Phoebe kills Ross.
Working out the above points is the ONLY way the show can stay honest. Here are my suggestions:
End of this season: Joey marries Rachel just before she gives birth, and Phoebe kills Ross in a freak massage accident. Also, earlier in the Spring, since no one knows what Chandler does, he closes some business deal for a huge bonus and becomes preisdent of the company--thereby becoming rich.
The next, and final, season: Starts with Phoebe in jail. Monica soon divorces Chandler for supporting the woman who murdered her brother. Chandler realizes he loves Phoebe and they get married when she gets off on a technicality (the one hour Fall sweeps special). Monica moves into Ross' old apartment and takes over the coffee shop (with her
divorce settlement money). Rachel/Joey and Phoebe/Chandler live across the hall from each other.
Last show: Rachel and Chandler show up to enter their apartments at the same time. When they open their doors, both apartments have been cleaned out, and Joey, Phoebe, and the baby are missing. Also discover bank accounts are empty. Next learn that Phoebe and Joey are in some Latin American or Caribbean country under different names. Turns out they're not quite the brainless people we assumed they were...nope, they are highly accomplished con artists and
have spent the last 7 years scamming the "Friends." THE END
That would've been much better than however the show actually ended. The bonus is that Matt LeBlanc would have a much better vehicle for a spinoff than being a lame actor in Hollywood. Instead, we could have had Joey, international con artist. Think of it as an episodic version of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. Hollywood, seriously, give me a call, I can help.