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Friends Episode and Values

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After previewing an episode of Friends, one can see how the characters multifaceted personalities and gender coalesce to promote values and certain role models in society. In sit-coms like these, the reader watches how the eccentric group of characters reflect the stereotypical men and women. From the feminine and superficial Rachel to the sensitive and zany Joey, the audience is able to relate to a wide range of characters yet able to distinguish the different values that are being presented.

The appeal to “Friends” is first found in the depiction of six attractive, imperfect characters with everyday problems. These characters find a way to embrace each other with their flaws and promise unconditional friendship. Yet, underneath this embrace of characters and personality lies over used sexual banter and themes of anti-feminism. Upon watching an episode there was an immediate response to sex and downgrading of women. In this certain episode, when Ross states that he will bring a hot girl, Mona, from Monica's wedding to a Halloween party, Monica states that Joey was hitting on the same girl at the wedding. Joey replies that he has great ideas for a Halloween costume for Mona such as: a sexy cheerleader, bikini model, or a slutty nurse. Consequently, Ross exclaims how he "won" Mona and that in the end the better man won. As the episode progressed there was more and more female relegating such as Joey referring to Mona constantly as her costume character, the slutty nurse. The values that were implemented was not that of the harmonic embrace between males and females but the deliberate demoting of women, such as referring to women as a winning and presented as a sexual token to a man. Therefore, it can be said that audiences around the world tune in every week to a facade of gender equality harmony and witty humor masked by values of male supremacy and sexual connotations not suitable for certain ages.

In addition to gender inequality and constant sexual implications, the audience can also assume that the females in the show are more sympathetic towards kids. For example, since it was Halloween night in the episode, Monica threw a Halloween party at her apartment. When kids came to trick-or-treat at their apartment, the girls were the only ones who cared to give candy to the kids. Rachel, especially, was sympathetic to the kids that came to the door and admired every costume she saw. However, the boys of the show, Joey, Chandler and Ross, did not bother in contributing to passing out candy nor help Monica and Rachel in doing so. Rather than turning their attention to kids, these boys focused more on things like arm wrestling and finding out which guy out of the group was the strongest. When the kids rang the doorbell, the audience witnessed the girls quickly scurry to the door while the guys did not move an inch. The audience can then assume that the males of the show are not as sympathetic as the women appear to be.

While there are gender differences seen throughout “Friends”, there is also a similarity between the females and males. Based on this episode, one can argue that both genders on the show feel the need to compete against another of the

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