Friends creators Marta Kauffman and David Crane reveal which storylines they regret

Clémence Michallon
Netflix / Warner Bros Television

Two of Friends’ co-creators have revealed which storylines they wish hadn’t made it into the show.

Marta Kauffman and David Crane spoke at a recent screening marking the sitcom’s 25th anniversary at the Tribeca Film Festival, in New York City.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, when asked which storylines they regret, Kauffman singled out two examples.

One is the story arc that sees Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) begin to date a man named Malcom (David Arquette) who was stalking her sister Ursula. This happens in the third episode of the third season, titled “The One With The Jam”.

“We did a lot of rewriting on that to make it work,” Kauffman said.

Her second example also involves to Phoebe, who in this instance is reunited with her love interest Ryan (Charlie Sheen), a Lieutenant Commander in the US Navy whom she rarely gets to see.

In the 23rd episode of the second season, “The One With The Chicken Pox”, Phoebe and Ryan are overjoyed to be reunited for what they expect to be a romantic weekend, but their plans are derailed when they both catch chicken pox.

As for Crane, he acknowledged that he’s sometimes left asking himself: “Wow, really? We went with that?” when he happens to catch a rerun of a Friends episode.

“We couldn’t stay 10 more minutes and just find a better joke?” he added. “But that’s just us beating ourselves up.”

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Kauffman has previously said that she would change the way the show portrayed transgender characters if it were made today – a reference to Chandler’s “dad”, played by Kathleen Turner.

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