I'll Be There for You
This definitive retrospective of Friends incorporates interviews, history and behind-the-scenes anecdotes to offer a critical analysis of how a sitcom about six twenty-somethings changed television forever. When Friends debuted in 1994, no one expected it to become a mainstay of NBC's "Must See TV" lineup, let alone a global phenomenon. In the years since, Friends has gone through many phases of cultural relevancy, from prime-time hit to 90s novelty item to certified classic. Ross, Rachel, Monica, Chandler, Joey and Phoebe have entered the pantheon of great television characters, and millions of people around the globe continue to tune in or stream their stories every day.I'll Be There for You is the definitive retrospective of Friends, exploring all aspects of the show from its unlikely origins to the elusive reasons why we still watch it. Journalist and pop culture expert Kelsey Miller relives the show's most iconic moments, analyzes the ways in which Friends is occasionally problematic and examines the many trends it inspired, from the rise of coffee-shop culture to "Friendsgivings" to the ultimate 90s haircut, The Rachel.Weaving incisive commentary, revelatory interviews and behind-the-scenes anecdotes involving high-profile guest stars, I'll Be There for You is the most comprehensive take on Friends, and the ultimate book for fans everywhere.

I'll Be There for You Details

TitleI'll Be There for You
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseOct 23rd, 2018
PublisherHanover Square Press
ISBN-139781335928283
Rating
GenreNonfiction, Adult, Culture, Pop Culture

I'll Be There for You Review

  • Lindsey Hresko
    January 1, 1970
    You Should Read This Book If:-You love nostalgia and want to prance down memory lane with people who can drop Friends inside jokes as frequently as you can.-You want a well-researched look at the writing, casting, and those highly-publicized salary negotiations. -You’re into pop culture phenomenons. Because Friends definitely is one.Kelsey Miller loves Friends in the way that I do. Soothed by those TBS reruns and able to easily ramble off some of the all-time best quotes (“They don’t know we kno You Should Read This Book If:-You love nostalgia and want to prance down memory lane with people who can drop Friends inside jokes as frequently as you can.-You want a well-researched look at the writing, casting, and those highly-publicized salary negotiations. -You’re into pop culture phenomenons. Because Friends definitely is one.Kelsey Miller loves Friends in the way that I do. Soothed by those TBS reruns and able to easily ramble off some of the all-time best quotes (“They don’t know we know they know!” “15 Yemen Road, Yemen.”), Miller takes the reader on a well-researched and well-written journey into the history of Friends. There’s a lot of layers of culture influence and Miller digs into them all: from The Rachel haircut to the highly publicized team-effort salary negotiations. She takes in-depth looks at 9/11 and the impact it had on Friends, along with the writers decisions on how to acknowledge (or,errrrm, not acknowledge) the national tragedy via a show that was set in lower Manhattan. Miller also looks at some of the serious social justice issues of Friends. If you rewatch Friends in 2018 (which is a thing I’ve been doing), it’s easy to see how deeply, deeply problematic the series is. Homophobia runs rampant. LGBT characters are scarce, and people of color are virtually non-existent. Sure, we get a lesbian wedding, but it’s going to be as heteronormative as possible and no way in hell are we going to see the couple kiss. Friends doesn’t have a black character that appears in more than one episode until season 9, which is more than a little ridiculous. The one trans character the show features is designed to be the butt of a series-long joke. Additionally, instead of casting a trans actor, they cast a cis woman to play a trans woman. Why. The author acknowledges all of these things, but is perhaps a bit too easy on the show. She seems to excuse them based on her own anecdotal (and sometimes seemingly tokenizing) interviews; she’ll interview a black or trans friend who attests to be relatively unbothered by the lack of representation, so *shurg*. Miller’s sentiment is generally well, yes, there’s transphobia, but at least they HAD a trans character! At least they HAD a gay wedding! She argues quite a bit for the fact that Friends was simply a relic of it’s time. Perhaps Miller is just more forgiving than me.In a powerful chapter, Miller does bring to light a story about a black, female assistant in the Friends writers room who was subject to racial and sexual harassment. In 2004, Amaani Lyle lost a harassment and wrongful termination lawsuit against Warner Brothers on the grounds of “creative necessity.” Miller is highly critical of the court's ruling, noting that it lead to a precedent of creating a culture that marginalizes a population that’s already historically underrepresented in the entertainment industry. Miller points out that Lyle was truly at the forefront of #metoo and bravely speaking up to end misogyny in the entertainment field.Friends IS a cultural phenomenon, and I’ll Be There For You ties the history together pretty nicely. I don’t think there’s any insider information that’s too groundbreaking here, but it’s written with the same heart and humor that Bright, Hoffman, and Crane put into their beloved show, plus lot of insight that’s relevant to 2018.Rating: 8/10, because I would have loved to see the author be just a bit more critical, but hell, this book is good.I received an Advanced Reader Copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Inge
    January 1, 1970
    I must have this.
  • Susie Meister
    January 1, 1970
    Contextualizes, unpacks, and analyzes a pop culture phenomenon. It’s insightful, thoughtful, well-written, wonderfully footnoted, and fun.
  • Justin Brendel
    January 1, 1970
    First of all, thanks to Netgalley for this advanced copy. A solid outline of each of the main character's beginning. Great writing about topics like the haircut, the holiday armadillo, the weird Joey and Rachael relationship, and even the #metoo movement. This is a great read for someone who loves Friends
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  • Taasia (libraepaintspages)
    January 1, 1970
    This is my favourite TV show every ahhhh ahhhh.S/o to BooksandLala for bringing this to my attention.
  • Sarah - All The Book Blog Names Are Taken
    January 1, 1970
    Friends is tied for first with Buffy as my all-time fave show. The book was, overall, enough to tug at my heartstrings and long for the simplicity of it - despite the fact that I've spent the better part of the last decade+ falling asleep to it, thanks to The One With All Ten Seasons. It's not as though I haven't seen a single episode since the finale. I have. Easily hundreds of times. A few close friends and I can have entire conversations consisting only of quotes from the show.I must also say Friends is tied for first with Buffy as my all-time fave show. The book was, overall, enough to tug at my heartstrings and long for the simplicity of it - despite the fact that I've spent the better part of the last decade+ falling asleep to it, thanks to The One With All Ten Seasons. It's not as though I haven't seen a single episode since the finale. I have. Easily hundreds of times. A few close friends and I can have entire conversations consisting only of quotes from the show.I must also say that now, perhaps the author should write a book about Seinfeld, and mention Friends A BUNCH OF TIMES. So annoying.Full review to come. I received a digital ARC free from the publisher via NetGalley.
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  • Claudia
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a copy of this book to read and review!A few years ago having Friends on in the background was a daily occurrence. I watched my DVDs so much that I ended up killing an Xbox (red ring of death!) and once I got a new one you know what I did? Yup, back to daily Friends watching.This is a book that will probably appeal to those who grew up watching the show and even those who may have found it after it had already ended. I found the process of h Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a copy of this book to read and review!A few years ago having Friends on in the background was a daily occurrence. I watched my DVDs so much that I ended up killing an Xbox (red ring of death!) and once I got a new one you know what I did? Yup, back to daily Friends watching.This is a book that will probably appeal to those who grew up watching the show and even those who may have found it after it had already ended. I found the process of how it all got started very interesting, and particularly liked reading about how the actors got cast. Being a sporadic watcher while the show was still on air, I wasn't aware of all of the uncertainty about whether the show would even continue and everything else going on behind the scenes. Salary negotiations? No idea! The possibility of there not being a tenth season? Had no clue! I loved reading about the Friends being so united and supportive of one another, both while the show was on the air and after. There were quotes from the show that made me so nostalgic that during the middle of reading I decided that I'd do a rewatch, for old times' sake. Overall this was an interesting and quick read that'll make any Friends,/I> fan nostalgic for a show in the best possible way. :-)
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  • Lissa
    January 1, 1970
    This book is just pure fun enjoyment. Do not go into it expecting deep thoughts about the show, or even really anything new. It is an enjoyable read with fun insights and interesting tidbits that relaxed and entertained me before bed each night. If you are someone who spent their teenage/early adult years watching this show, then you will like this book too. I received a digital copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Ang
    January 1, 1970
    Solidly enjoyable, but mostly only for Friends Superfans. You really gotta care about the show to care about this book. (I do, so I did.)Thanks to the publisher and to NetGalley for the ARC.
  • Morgan
    January 1, 1970
    This is a pretty standard book about the phenomena that was and is Friends. That said, to those who watched it as teenagers or young adults during the original run, there probably isn't going to be anything new covered on the page, though it's a nice nostalgic reminder of the climate of the 90s. The audience for this book is the millennial primarily watching the reruns or on Netflix--and that's not a bad thing at all! Much like The Golden Girls, Friends has somehow crossed over generations and p This is a pretty standard book about the phenomena that was and is Friends. That said, to those who watched it as teenagers or young adults during the original run, there probably isn't going to be anything new covered on the page, though it's a nice nostalgic reminder of the climate of the 90s. The audience for this book is the millennial primarily watching the reruns or on Netflix--and that's not a bad thing at all! Much like The Golden Girls, Friends has somehow crossed over generations and provides just as much fun escape now as it did twenty plus years ago. There is a wonderful background on the evolution of the creators, how their partnership formed, and how they eventually came to create Friends. There are also some cute--albeit short--blurbs on the casting of these mostly fresh-faced "new" actors. However, for all of the quotes and background, noticeably missing is any actual interview by the author with the creators or even any cast member. It quickly becomes a glaring omission when instead of asking the actor point blank about what he was thinking, the author instead describes facial expressions in detail from a late-night talk show interview he gave fifteen, twenty years prior. Much of what made the show work through even the corniest of storylines was the cast chemistry and performance and it would have been great to have read a new interview with them (or at least one of two of them) in light of all of the problems Friends (and the 90s) had politically and socially. At the very least, it would have been wonderful to hear more about the behind the scenes of writing/filming/acting through more of the classic episodes themselves. There are precious few of these anecdotes.So, again, great for the newer fanbase who wants an idea as to how the show came to be or what was going on in the 90s to shape the show's success. However, original fans will find very little, if anything, new here.ARC provided by NetGalley
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  • Ashley Hite
    January 1, 1970
    I received an advanced copy of I'll Be There for You from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.3.5 StarsCould I BE any more excited to get a copy of this book? I have been a fan of the tv sitcom Friends since it premiered in the mid 90's. My friends would gather around for Must See TV Thursday nights, wore Monica's spaghetti strap dresses, had The Rachel and dreamed of moving into their huge apartment in the heart of Manhattan. Kelsey Miller's new book takes us right back to those days whe I received an advanced copy of I'll Be There for You from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.3.5 StarsCould I BE any more excited to get a copy of this book? I have been a fan of the tv sitcom Friends since it premiered in the mid 90's. My friends would gather around for Must See TV Thursday nights, wore Monica's spaghetti strap dresses, had The Rachel and dreamed of moving into their huge apartment in the heart of Manhattan. Kelsey Miller's new book takes us right back to those days when a simple group of Friends changed our world. She dives into the history of the show from the writers and creators to casting and filming. For 10 seasons the cast bonded together and stayed together through their astronomical rise to fame to negotiate staggering contracts with the studio and eventually said their tearful goodbyes. Miller captures that feel and nostalgia and provides a great history into the making of the show.There are parts in the book that I struggled with mostly it was the current social commentary on a show from 20 years ago. Things like their interactions/jokes/characterizations of race, trans people, homosexuals and including them in the MeToo campaign. If you try to hold an older show, book or time in history to today's standards it will always fall short. It was an sitcom trying to lighten the mood not institute social changes.A fun read to remember the good old days at Central Perk.
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  • Sayo
    January 1, 1970
    I loved this book.I loved friends, yes watching them today, I do notice some sexism, but "Friends" was simply a product of the time.This TV show did not set out to be trailblazers, lighting the way for equality. It was a show from the 90's, it was written in a language we all understood.This book not only gives you a behind the scene look at the creation of the series, character development, and auditions. But it also talks about the cast dynamic, the way they stood together as a team during con I loved this book.I loved friends, yes watching them today, I do notice some sexism, but "Friends" was simply a product of the time.This TV show did not set out to be trailblazers, lighting the way for equality. It was a show from the 90's, it was written in a language we all understood.This book not only gives you a behind the scene look at the creation of the series, character development, and auditions. But it also talks about the cast dynamic, the way they stood together as a team during contract negotiations, as well as the way the show was and is perceived in regards to homophobia, sexism and lack of diversity.I have been talking about this book non-stop since I started reading it.Highly recommend for any friends fan
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  • Faith
    January 1, 1970
    I received an ARC on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. (Thanks!)I watched Friends for the first time in my first year of university. (I mean like completely; I did watch some of the reruns as a kid but I don't really remember the specifics) It got me through a lot of the loneliness and stress so Friends is close to my heart. I was super excited when I got approved for the ARC and had a fun time learning about the pop culture history of the Friends phenomena. I don't normally pick up no I received an ARC on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. (Thanks!)I watched Friends for the first time in my first year of university. (I mean like completely; I did watch some of the reruns as a kid but I don't really remember the specifics) It got me through a lot of the loneliness and stress so Friends is close to my heart. I was super excited when I got approved for the ARC and had a fun time learning about the pop culture history of the Friends phenomena. I don't normally pick up non-fiction books but for Friends, I made an exception. This book contains basically everything I wanted to be discussed about Friends. The lack of diversity, the LGBTQ representation, and the effect of 9/11 on Friends are just a few things that this book discusses. It even went into things that I didn't know that I wanted to know about, like the wage discussions. The only thing that I wanted more discussion on was Ross and his toxic masculinity. Besides that, I feel like the book is a perfect compilation of what influences society had on Friends and its history.I'd highly recommend this book to any fans of Friends.
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  • Karissa
    January 1, 1970
    I was fortunate enough to win the two-chapter sampler for this book. I have always felt a strong connection to the TV show and was looking forward to connecting with the characters on a deeper level with this book. I am happy to say that it has absolutely delivered so far. After reading the first two chapters, I immediately went and watched the first few episodes. Knowing the backstory and how each of the characters felt when they were filming the first season offered a whole new perspective. I I was fortunate enough to win the two-chapter sampler for this book. I have always felt a strong connection to the TV show and was looking forward to connecting with the characters on a deeper level with this book. I am happy to say that it has absolutely delivered so far. After reading the first two chapters, I immediately went and watched the first few episodes. Knowing the backstory and how each of the characters felt when they were filming the first season offered a whole new perspective. I look forward to purchasing the full book!
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  • Lisa
    January 1, 1970
    Fun look behind the scenes at everyone's favorite show (including mine.) Once you get past the chapters about the writers it flies by.
  • Anita
    January 1, 1970
    One of my all-time favorite shows. In only two chapters, I learned a lot about the actors/actresses and early behind-the-scenes. Can't wait to read the full book!
  • Mike He
    January 1, 1970
    Can’t wait to read the finished book!
  • Anne
    January 1, 1970
    OMG! I was thrilled to stumble on this book and loved reading every word of it. If you are a die-hard Friends fan who watched from the beginning, or someone who's just discovering this iconic TV show now, you'll love reading all the behind-the-scenes stories about cast members as well as the creators of the show and those who worked behind the scenes to make it the outstanding series that it was (still is!).With gratitude to NetGalley, the author and publisher for an advance reading coy in excha OMG! I was thrilled to stumble on this book and loved reading every word of it. If you are a die-hard Friends fan who watched from the beginning, or someone who's just discovering this iconic TV show now, you'll love reading all the behind-the-scenes stories about cast members as well as the creators of the show and those who worked behind the scenes to make it the outstanding series that it was (still is!).With gratitude to NetGalley, the author and publisher for an advance reading coy in exchange for my honest review.
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  • J.D. Dehart
    January 1, 1970
    The book to read for back story and details on a show that has been a perennial favorite in many households. Confession: My family is rewatching/bingeing the show for the second time now.This well-written commentary promises to act as a companion piece to the show. And I enjoyed the clever subtitle, no less!
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  • Andrea Blankenship
    January 1, 1970
    Such a fun look into one of my all time favorite shows! Loved the behind the scenes stories and the interesting facts it was so fun and would be perfect for any Friends fan!
  • Cristi Marashi
    January 1, 1970
    I was a teenager in the 90's so of course Friends is one of my favorite shows. It is like comfort food to me, especially the Thanksgiving episodes, I have this show playing in the background quite often and I know other people from my generation do too. I will devour any book related to Friends even two decades after the show ended. I'll Be There For You: The One About Friends had some interesting behind the scenes facts. I absolutely loved the section that gave the background on each of the mai I was a teenager in the 90's so of course Friends is one of my favorite shows. It is like comfort food to me, especially the Thanksgiving episodes, I have this show playing in the background quite often and I know other people from my generation do too. I will devour any book related to Friends even two decades after the show ended. I'll Be There For You: The One About Friends had some interesting behind the scenes facts. I absolutely loved the section that gave the background on each of the main six cast members and how they came to join the show. They were six incredibly unique experiences and they all came together to make one of the best ensemble casts of all time. Some of the rest of the book gets a little political, and that isn't what I want in a story about one of my favorite TV shows. I wanted more about the actors and less political stuff. I did appreciate the backstory on the writers and others involved in the behind the scenes work! Still, I would recommend this book to any fan of Friends.
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