F.R.I.E.N.D.S- A Show that makes you Love your Imperfect Life.

I am sure most of you might be aware of the famous American television sitcom named- “Friends” and for some of you( I think many of you), it might be your favorite. I, myself am a very big fan of this sitcom. I guess some of you might have this question in your mind- “Why write about a sitcom that is already well-known and loved by most?” Well, my answer would be because this show made me feel that your ordinary life is beautiful. And even if it makes me one of those cliched fans, I am fine with it.

About F.R.I.E.N.D.S

The sitcom Friends was created by David Crane and Martha Kauffman which aired on NBC for ten years from 1994 to 2004. It is a story of 6 friends starring Jennifer Aniston as ‘Rachel Green’, Courteney Cox as ‘Monica Gellar’, Lisa Kudrow as ‘Phoebe Buffay’, Matt LeBlanc as ‘Joey Tribbiani’, Matthew Perry as ‘ Chandler Bing’ and David Schwimmer as ‘Ross Gellar’ residing in the New York city. The story revolves around the lives of these 6 friends showing how they deal with their daily lives, relationship problems and career issues.

Friends was a critically acclaimed television series that went on to become one of the most successful shows of all time. The series received 62 Primetime Emmy nominations, with its eighth season winning Outstanding Comedy Series in 2002. The show was voted no. 7 on Empire magazine’s The 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time and no. 21 on TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time.

F.R.I.E.N.D.S teaches its audience to get through the difficult times

  • Rachel
    Rachel Green, a woman who belonged from a rich family, who never thought of taking a job flees on her wedding day because she was not in love with her fiancée and restarts her life on her own without taking any financial support from her father. She struggles initially, working as a waitress in a coffee shop for 2 years after which she finally quits to pursue her career in Fashion. Gradually, she ends up working for good fashion companies and establishes identity of her own.

    Another striking incident in Rachel’s life was when she got pregnant with a child on a one-night-stand with her ex-boyfriend Ross. She was obviously scared and unprepared but she learns and manages to be a good single mother.
  • Monica
    Monica with her dream of opening her own restaurant or becoming head chef of one, struggles in New York City for many years until finally she becomes one.

    She also wanted to be in a committed relationship and get married one day. In the journey of finding “the guy” for her, she gets into very unusual and unstable relationships which sometimes breaks her heart until finally she falls in love with her best-friend, Chandler with whom she gets married.

    Monica also always wanted to have children and broke-up with her ex-boyfriend, Richard, whom she loved very much because he didn’t want them. After she got married to Chandler, they tried to have kids but there were some complications so they decided to adopt.
  • Phoebe
    Phoebe, the weird but kindest one in the group had a rough life since childhood as her father abandons her family and her mother commits suicide after few years. She faces all kinds of troubles- not having a shelter, food and any guardians.

    As a grown-up she works as a masseuse, always wanting a family of her own. Finally, she marries Mike and starts her new life with him.
  • Joey
    Joey, a handsome young man who pursues a career in acting struggles to make his ends meet because of his unstable career choice and not getting a good role in a movie or a show. Nevertheless, he never gives up and finally gets a show in the end.
  • Chandler
    Chandler, the sarcastic guy of the show, had commitment issues because of his parents’ divorce when we was a child. He panics during the times when he realizes that things are getting serious with his girlfriend, Monica. But because of his true love and Monica’s support he overcomes his commitment issues and lives a happily married life with her.
  • Ross
    Ross, a paleontologist marries a woman who after seven years of marriage realizes that she is a lesbian which leads to their divorce. He marries another woman, named Emily after few years and that marriage also ends because he takes the name of his ex girlfriend, Rachel during his wedding vows. The series of divorce doesn’t end here because he gets divorced again as he gets married to Rachel in Vegas while drunk and not in his senses.

Conclusion

No matter how difficult life got for these 6 friends, they always fought, learned and moved forward. They always kept hope of better things and worked towards their flaws. They all lived ordinary lives like we all do, faced struggles like we all do but smiled through the pain. I think that is all what we should do. Whatever is the pain or struggle in our lives, with the right set of people, we can always overcome it, some people are always going to believe in you. I would like to quote some lines from the theme song of F.R.I.E.N.D.S-

“So no one told you life was gonna be this way
Your job’s a joke, you’re broke
Your love life’s DOA
It’s like you’re always stuck in second gear
When it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month
Or even your year, but
I’ll be there for you”

Laugh Your Stress Away With These TV Shows

The current pandemic has been very stressful for many people around the world. Uncertainties in employment, increased job stress, academic stress and worry about the spread of the coronavirus and contracting the disease have been a few worries plaguing the minds of many people across the globe. Too much of stress and worrying is bad for both the physical well-being of the body and mental health of the psyche.

It is important to occasionally take a step back from the various problems and worries in life and destress. What better way to do it than with some laughter? The saying ‘Laughter is the Best Medicine’ is actually more than just that. Some of the benefits of laughter are:

  • It is a mood booster– Laughing releases endorphins. Endorphins are hormones which are responsible for the feeling of happiness and pleasure. The more a person laughs, the more endorphins get produced, which consequently lead to more happiness
  • It protects the body from effects of stress– When you laugh, your body’s stress response gets activated and then gets reduced. This causes a increase and subsequent decrease in the blood pressure and the heart rate
  • It gives a boost to the immune system– Prolonged stress and tension can compromise the immune system. Laughter decreases its effects thus strengthening your immune system
  • It protects the heart– Laughing lowers blood pressure, increases blood flow and improves the functioning of blood vessels.

Laugh your way to good health with these five American sitcoms:

Friends

Promotional visual for Friends

No list of the best American sitcoms would be complete without this iconic series. ‘Friends’ narrates the story of a group of six friends – Monica Geller, Rachel Green, Phoebe Buffay, Joey Tribbiani, Chandler Bing and Ross Geller. The series follows their daily ups and downs. The series ran for a decade- from 1994 to 2004. Although some of the jokes and situations may be lost to a lack of relevancy in current times, the humorous situations the characters go through will make you laugh out loud.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Promotional visual for Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Ever thought that a comedy cop series couldn’t exist? Brooklyn Nine-Nine is here to prove you wrong! As the name suggests, it’s based in the fictional 99th precinct of Brooklyn, as follows the daily lives of a group of New York Police Department personnel. The shenanigans they get into will have you in stitches the whole time! Season 8, which will also be the final season, comes out on the 12th of August, you might want to catch up on the story till then!

Modern Family

Promotional visual for Modern Family

Tired of seeing dramatic family soap operas? Itching for a family-based show with laughter, heartfelt moments and light-heartedness? Give Modern Family a chance. The show follows the life of the families of Jay Pritchett, his daughter Claire Dunphy and his son Mitchell Pritchett. The show is filmed in a mockumentary style, which further enhances its comedic value.

The Big Bang Theory

Promotional visual for The Big Bang Theory

Love science? Love comedy too? Don’t worry, the Big Bang Theory’s got you covered! This sitcom is centered around five friends- physicists Sheldon Cooper and Leonard Hofstadter, their neighbor Penny who is an aspiring actress and their co-workers, astrophysicist Raj Koothrappali and aerospace engineer Howard Wolowitz and the various humorous situations they experience with each other, their co-workers and other friends.

Young Sheldon

Promotional visual for Young Sheldon

Couldn’t get enough of the Big Bang Theory? Loved Sheldon? Did you want to know more about him and want to see more of him? Watch Young Sheldon! The series is a spin-off acting as a prequel to The Big Bang Theory. The show is a narration of Sheldon about his life as a kid. Follow the hilarious interactions of the child genius and socially inept Sheldon Cooper as he tries to navigate the world!

Disability In the Media: TV Shows Featuring Disabled People

Representation matters. Disability in the media matters. 

According to PBS, “Portrayals of [marginalized people] in the media not only affect how others see them, but it affects how they see themselves.”

People with disabilities have yet to reach proportional representation on screen. More often than not, show producers seem to miss the mark on writing and casting disabled characters. Perhaps the storyline adheres to incorrect stereotypes and offensive tropes, or the show casts non-disabled people to portray disabled characters. In either case, it’s a form of ableism, “the discrimination of and social prejudice against people with disabilities based on the belief that typical abilities are superior.” Show makers must veer away from upholding ableism in media, as it’s not an adequate or appropriate representation for disabled individuals.

In this post, we’re highlighting shows that recognised the importance of disability in the media and cast actors with disabilities to play characters with disabilities.

Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution

Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution is an American documentary film that won the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival premiere.

Crip Camp Official Release Poster

The film follows Larry Allison, Judith Heumann, James LeBrecht, Denise Sherer Jacobson, and Stephen Hofmann, a group of Camp Jened campers. Camp Janed was based in upstate New York and described as a “loose, free-spirited camp designed for teens with disabilities.”

The viewer is given a glimpse into the teen group’s journey to becoming activists for the 1970s disability rights movement and fight for accessibility legislation.

Watch a story of activism and advocacy unfold in Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution, available to stream on Netflix.

Deaf U

Deaf U is a Netflix reality docu-series that follows a group of deaf and hard of hearing students at Gallaudet University in Washington, DC. One of the series executive producers is Nyle DiMarco, a deaf activist, model, and actor, advocates for disability in the media and wanted to show various deaf experiences. His goal was “to show deaf people as humans, from all walks of life.” 

Deaf U Netflix Poster

The show introduces cast members Cheyenna Clearbrook, Rodney Burford, Tessa Lewis, Alexa Paulay-Simmons, Renate Rose, Daequan Taylor, and Dalton Taylor – each with different backgrounds, experiences, and stories to tell. 

Overall, Deaf U offers much to both hearing and deaf individuals and provides a unique viewing experience. One must rely heavily on the captions and subtitles if they don’t know ASL (a usual experience for deaf and hard of hearing people).

Meet the Gallaudet University students in Deaf U, available to stream on Netflix.

The Politician

Ryan Haddad in Netflix's The Politician

The Politician is a comedy series on Netflix that follows upper-class Santa Barbaran, Payton Hobart, in several of his political races, including a run for high school class president and New York State Senator. Payton’s ultimate goal is to become the President of the United States one day, and his group of closest friends and political advisors will do anything to help him.

One of the series recurring characters, Andrew Cashman, is a former classmate of Payton’s with cerebral palsy who helps him run in the New York State Senate race. Andrew Cashman, played by Ryan Haddad, who has cerebral palsy, is a cunning and charismatic character with the primary goal of impressing his high school crush, Infinity Jackson.

Catch Ryan Haddad’s performance in The Politician, available to stream on Netflix.

Sex Education

Sex Education is a British comedy-drama series about a socially awkward teenage boy and friends who set up an underground sex therapy clinic at their high school. The series is authentic, hilarious, and relatable, doing its best to depict the unchartered territory many high school students struggle to navigate, including relationships, identity, home-life, and mental health.

George Robinson in Netflix's Sex Education

In season two, the audience meets Isaac, a disabled teenage boy. Isaac, who uses a wheelchair, is a troublemaker with a massive crush on one of the series main characters, Maeve. Isaac’s character is played by George Robinson, who developed tetraplegia a few years ago after a rugby accident. With just a few appearances in Season 2 of the series, we’ll hopefully get to see more of Isaac’s storyline in Season 3, set to release in late 2021.

Binge the first two seasons and get to know Isaac in Sex Education, streaming now on Netflix.


When one sees a person on screen who looks like them or has had similar life experiences, it can make a lasting impact.

These movies and television series took steps to accurately represent disability in the media by hiring actors with disabilities and avoiding harmful tropes and stereotypes. Many of the shows recognized their lack of knowledge in the space and consulted with the disabled actors when writing for their characters. This created a space for a realistic and authentic portrayal of a person with a disability, rather than one fabricated by non-disabled people. 

As the saying goes, “Nothing about us without us.” The phrase, used by disability activists and advocates, rings true in the media and our society as a whole.