Yes, the man who is the butt of countless jokes due to his cross-dressing father, lack of game with women, and unique sentence delivery is the best overall member of the group… and it’s not even close. Chandler has a great job, is a loyal friend, caring, compassionate, funny, and intelligent. Does he have commitment issues? Yes. Does he use humor as a defense mechanism? Sure. Can he be immature at times? Absolutely. But when things get real, Chandler steps up. When his best friend was on the come up with his acting career, Chandler let him live rent-free for years and never asked for a penny when Joey made it big. He’s a level-headed individual who adds positive value to the people around him. Anyone would be happy (and lucky) to have a Chandler in their group. Could I be any more convincing?
Before you all start shouting, “He’s been married three times!” or, “He has children with two different women!” it’s important to note that his marital history really has no affect on how he is as a friend. As far as having two kids by two different women go, one was his wife of several years, and the other was the woman he was in love with before he met his aforementioned ex-wife. Ross, like Chandler, has humor and wit that are appealing to most women, he is undoubtedly the smartest of the bunch (even if he can be a bit pretentious at times), he is a terrific father, and he is often the voice of reason among the group. Yes, he can be winy, needy, and depressing at times, but his admirable traits far outweighs his flaws. Take all the cheap shots you want, but Ross is a pretty neat guy.
I’m honestly not a fan of Monica’s needy, self-centered attitude, but she does open her home to everyone all the time and she never asks them for anything (outside of cleaning up “crummies” they leave behind). If they have a problem with obeying the rules of her house, they are more than welcome to hang out elsewhere. Monica is a girl you would love to take home to meet the parents, and the glue that holds a group of friends together. So she cleans obsessively and is insanely competitive? There are worse things in the world. Without Monica, this group falls apart and the show wouldn’t have last nearly as long as it did. Monica can be a lot to handle at times, but she’s worth it.
The most admirable trait about Phoebe is that she is the most selfless of the group. Her upbringing and attitude towards life has led her to put others before herself and want the best for everyone. When her brother and his wife couldn’t conceive a child, she agreed to be their surrogate, which is one of the most selfless things anyone could do. Of course Phoebe is also that hippie chick who can be entertaining at times, but can get annoying as all with their stubborn views and beliefs. There are countless times when the group complains about something they cannot eat, buy, or do because Phoebe is vehemently against it. It’s fine if you want to live your life a certain way, but don’t punish others for wanting to live theirs. While Phoebe does have some great zingers in her, there are also more than enough times when she is just downright bitchy. She’s a horrible singer and guitar player, which is fine, but she thinks she’s better than she is and is also somewhat smug about it. I love karaoke more than most normal human beings, but I’ve never claimed to be a good singer, much less be a pompous ass to someone who says I can’t sing. Phoebe has her perks, and some people would probably love someone like her in their group; but most people could do without someone like Phoebe.
As a fellow full-blooded Italian, it’s hard to go against my paesan, but there aren’t a ton of redeeming qualities Joey has. And I’ll be completely honest: Joey was at the bottom of this list from the time the idea for this piece was conceived until a last- minute change. He’s a lovable idiot who is constantly eating and making crude jokes. He pretty much mooches off Chandler most of the show, and he doesn’t even pay him back things are going well in his career. He’s great in very small doses, but unbearable in everyday exposure. His biggest perks are that he is an excellent brother and a supportive partner when he’s in love. He’s very protective of his sisters and family, and, while he goes through a string of one-night stands in his younger years, he turns a corner when he falls for Rachel. His behavior throughout her pregnancy would even lead many to believe he’d actually be a pretty good father. However, pregnancy is just the very beginning of raising a child. In the long run, would you want to raise a child with someone like Joey? Fuhgedaboudit. If you really stop and think about all of Joey’s behavior throughout the entire show, you know that you wouldn’t want to put up with that regularly.
The more I thought about it, the clearer it became that Rachel is the worst friend on the show. She was a bitch in high school, a trophy wife-to- be that left her husband at the altar, and utterly clueless about how the real world is when daddy isn’t paying for everything. She is obscenely selfish, and doesn’t seem to mind. She sabotages the relationships of people she’s interested in because if she can’t have them, no one can, and what’s worse is that she doesn’t really care. While this trait would only really apply if you’re the Ross of the group, it speaks volumes to her character as a person. Rachel is someone who is deceivingly awful. She’s beautiful, relatively carefree, and pretty fun for the most part; but she has an ugly underbelly to her. She’s selfish, conceited, and hardheaded, which are all traits people would rather avoid. There’s no doubt Rachel can be a really cool chick at times, but her flaws are so unappealing that she wouldn’t be worth keeping in your close circle of friends.