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'Friends' co-creator talks titles, pants, and "PIVOT"

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A “Friends” fan PIVOTS at Friends25 popup in NYC/ABC Radio(NEW YORK) — With the upcoming 25th anniversary of Friends, Entertainment Weekly‘s new issue is looking back at the sitcom with co-creator David Crane.

“We always felt that the strength of the show was that it wasn’t just jokes,” Crane says. “It was really about caring about these six people in an emotional way, even when it was funny. If it were just really good jokes, I don’t think we would have been there as long as we were.”

Fans of Ross, Rachel, Chandler, Phoebe, and Joey know every show for 10 seasons had a pretty self-explanatory title, like “The One Where No One’s Ready,” which now comes in pretty handy when trying to find that special episode for streaming. 

Of course, streaming back then was for liquid, not TV shows. Crane had a simpler explanation: “Let’s cut to the chase.”

As with many shows, Friends‘ writers found their lives being adapted for the gang’s goings on. For example, writer Adam Chase made the mistake of buying a pair of leather pants.

“The rest of us took it from there after giving him a really hard time about his leather pants,” Crane recalls; that grief was transferred to David Schwimmer’s Ross. 

One moment the show’s fans loved was Ross’ yelling “PIVOT!” as he, Chandler, and Rachel struggled to lift a couch up a narrow staircase. While the apartments on Friends were impossibly spacious for 20-somethings in Manhattan, the staircase WAS Big Apple accurate.

“They all lived in those apartments, but try to get a couch up a flight of stairs!” Crane says. “That’s where we captured the New York we actually lived in.”

The scene was so memorable that the designers of the Friends25 pop-up experience recreated the staircase and couch, so fans can Instagram their own “PIVOT!” moments.

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