Friends was a part of growing up for many, and just a couple of seconds of the opening credits below can bring about a content feeling of nostalgia.
With the immediacy of the series now available on Netflix, and the internet ever available for fans' imaginations to go wild, theories on the true nature of the show get more and more crazy as time goes by.
We bring you some of the most bizarre theories, along with our super official 'believability' factor.
1. In Episodes, Matt Le Blanc portrays himself as Joey acting as... Matt Le Blanc?!
Perhaps one of the most surreal and far fetched theories, this suggests that in the Friends universe, the character of Joey would be aware of an actor called Matt Le Blanc.
In Episodes, Matt Le Blanc stars as himself. What we see is the character of Joey playing the role of Matt Le Blanc, the actor.
If the above paragraph doesn't make any sense to you, then you're definitely not alone. It's more likely Matt Le Blanc, in playing an exaggerated version of himself, added elements of the character of Joey to please fans.
Believability factor - 0
2. All the characters are actually in a mental asylum
For most Friends fans, this theory is quite morbid and so far removed from those warm, fuzzy feelings the series evokes within us. However, this theory isn't actually too far fetched, and the idea behind it gives it some credit.
Essentially, this theory states that the lives each of the characters are all pure fantasy. All the characters have mental health issues that manifest as different traits and symptoms.
For example, Ross has abandonment issues, Chandler struggles with his parents' dysfunctional relationship, and Monica's has OCD and weight issues.
The fact that all of these issues were cleared up by the end adds weight to this theory. For example, Chandler ends up in the perfect relationship, Monica overcomes her fat phobia, Joey becomes famous, etc.
And then there’s the fact that we’re supposed to believe that they have the time to sit around drinking coffee during normal working hours (almost always in the same prime seats), they all have their dream jobs (eventually) and they live in dirt-cheap apartments in prime real estate locations.
Believability factor: 5
3. What happened to Ross' son?
During Season 1 of Friends, Ross's ex-wife Carol gave birth to his son, Ben.
Ben features in numerous episodes throughout the first eight seasons, but then mysteriously vanishes, and not much else is mentioned. Could this be a simple oversight, or is there more going on than meets the eye?
Well, according to one fan, due to Ross being a lousy father, he lost custody of his son and that explains why he doesn't feature in later episodes.
Believability factor - 9
4. The characters are in high school, and events are actually their imagination
This is another theory that suggests the events are fictional (within the universe of Friends) and that each character is imagining a romanticized version of their future while at high school.
It's actually quite a solid theory. For example Ross, although he is a geek, dreams of himself working in a geeky role but with cool, charismatic friends, as well as ending up with his high school crush.
Monica, as an overweight child, projects images of her being slim and channel's her love of eating into a career in cooking.
When the show ends in Season 10, all the characters are where they want to be in life. This theory suggests at this point, the characters are just finishing high school, ready to enter the adult world...
Believability factor - 7
5. Monica wasn't Jack's daughter
Was Monica actually a love child of Judy Geller and another man? This Reddit user certainly thinks so:
"Monica was the result of her mother cheating and her father does not know. Her mother treats her like crap because every time she looks at her it's a reminder of her own failures and deals with the issue by acting about against Monica. This is also why she was not brought up to respect her Jewish heritage as much as Ross; her father was a gentile. In turn Monica's eating disorder was a way of her coping with her unloving mother."
Believability factor: 8
6. And one alternative ending that'll freak you out...
Believability factor: 3