The popular pop-culture show Friends has completed over 25 years. And even today, the discussions and debates around the show having no cultural diversity and being homophobic seem never-ending. Just for the record, the show was set against the backdrop of the 90s and focused on how people lived back then in America.
Lisa Kudrow, who played the role of Pheobe Buffay-Hannigan, recently commented on this backlash in an interview. She said, “I feel like it was a show created by two people who went to Brandeis and wrote about their lives after college. And for shows especially, when it’s going to be a comedy that’s character-driven, you write what you know.”
She further added, “They have no business writing stories about the experiences of being a person of colour. I think at that time, the big problem that I was seeing was, ‘Where’s the apprenticeship?’”
After she said this, netizens couldn’t stop themselves to react to these statements. Here is what a few people think:
However, the actress has now taken the responsibility of colour representation on her shoulders. In another interview, she said, “I want to make sure from now on in every production I do, that I am conscious in hiring people of color and actively pursue young writers of color. I want to know if I will act differently from now on. And then I will feel unburdened.”
One more person who tried to unburden herself was the co-creator of the show Marta Kauffman . Listening to the debates and hatred being spewed around, she felt embarrassed and ashamed. Kauffman wanted to set things right and do something to salvage the situation. Hence, she decided to donate $4 million to Brandeis University which is also her alma matter. Kauffman gave it to a fund which supported the education of scholars who study Africa and its diaspora.
After doing Friends, Kudrow kept landing meaty acting gigs. Her roles in projects like Romy Michele’s High School Reunion and The Opposite of Sex helped her win accolades.
Lead Image: Warner Bros. Television Distribution