Unagi. PIVOT! The meat trifle. Ross’ fake tan. The jellyfish incident. Smelly Cat. Some of the jokes from juggernaut sitcom Friends will never get old.
But then there are the others… The handful of plot lines and punchlines that might have landed well back in the 90’s, but are coming more and more unstuck as time passes. You know, the kind about assault, fat- and slut-shaming, sexism, homophobia, transphobia.
Below are a few of the most screwed up.
The one where they make light of the fact that Phoebe is sexually assaulted at work.
In light of recent events in Washington D.C. and Hollywood, this plotline is one of the more unsettling when viewed in 2017.
While massaging Rachael’s boyfriend, Paolo, in season one, the ‘charming’ Italian native exposed himself to her, stroked her thigh and grabbed her arse with both hands. All this, along with his towel-cloaked erection was met with roaring laughter from the studio audience.
In fact, sexual misconduct seems to be fruitful material for the show’s writers: Joey’s childhood tailor “cupping” his genitals also became a punchline, as did the fact that Chandler witnessed several “orgies” in his home before the age of seven.
The one where teenage Monica was fat-shamed. Over and over and over...
It's a backstory that pops up several times over the show's 236 episodes. In case you missed it, Monica was fat.