Right, right. I might be a decade and 4 years late, but this holiday I finally finish binge-watching the notorious sitcom of all time: F.R.I.E.N.D.S! After previously binge-watching How I Met Your Mother (HIMYM) back in 2014 till 2015, now it’s official, I have finally watched two best sitcoms of all time!
Two best sitcoms? It’s irrelevant! There should only be one best! You must pick sides; choose one!
Riiight. The never-ending debate of which one is better has been going on since 2014 (the year HIMYM’s finale aired) and I don’t think that it will come to an end in the near future. Just take a peek at this very long thread: https://www.quora.com/In-a-battle-between-How-I-Met-Your-Mother-and-Friends-which-show-do-you-think-would-win-and-why! HIMYM and F.R.I.E.N.D.S have similarities and differences and that is normal to stories. Don’t they say that ‘great artists steal’ and that nothing is really original since art is a product of inspiration?
I won’t do the same thing, comparing two sitcoms that portrays different eras, since the comparison is abundant out there. Instead, I’ll elaborate my reasons on why HIMYM and F.R.I.E.N.D.S is worth watching for those who seeks the meaning of friendship, relationship, and life.
This show offers a bittersweet beautiful story in the making. The main plot of this sitcom is about How I Met Your Mother, about how Ted Mosby (probably the main character of the show, idk, he seems like one) is in quest of his love of his life. Throughout the journey, Ted encounters many ups and downs, all witnessed and accompanied with his best friends: Marshall Eriksen (college roommate), Barney Stinson (a stranger Ted once met on a pub’s toilet), Lily Aldrin (Marshall’s partner since college), and Robin Scherbatsky (Ted’s love interest).
The gang, what they have been through, and how they deal with it may make people believe that it is okay to not have a perfect life. It emphasizes that life is not a wish-granting factory (that’s for you, Augustus Walters!) and that life is full of struggle.
Life will make us regret things and realize things. Life makes us deal with the grief that comes afloat when we lost our loved ones. Life will beat us hard till we get that near-death experience. All that hardships are necessarily given by life so that we’re prepared to greet what they call as good times or happiness. All are given so that we remember that the days worth being thankful for aren’t allowed to be taken for granted.
HIMYM offers other wisdom too. One of my favorite is S08E20 “Time Travelers”. Here’s an excerpt of the episode:
Simply, that episode teaches us to not dwell in the past, a lesson Tracy (Ted’s wife) points out later too on S09E19 “Vesuvius”. This lesson is a gem because, yeah, life moves forward. We must live in the now since now and future are what actually matters.
HIMYM also teaches us to be brave, to take risks in order to seize the day, and to make things right. Mistakes are inevitable, thus we must face it, work it, and make it right. Marshall and Lily have that “PAUSE” every once in a while whenever they’re fighting; all to stop them from making stupid decisions two emotionally unstable adults could probably make. Ted has been taking so many girls on a date in order to find the love of his life (though I don’t encourage this). Barney stops being a womanizer to finally pursue Robin, what he thought as the love of his life. Robin has to land a friggin’ helicopter all by herself before her career blasts!
I could’ve written a damn long essay about the life lessons I get from HIMYM if only I finished binge-watching HIMYM yesterday. However, since the last time I watched HIMYM is around three years ago and since I have forgotten which episodes have the best wisdoms, I’ll just repost something from the internet:
This 10 season long sitcom tells the story of six New Yorkers living their twenties on 1994 until 2004. The show doesn’t possess a main plot; instead it offers us the opportunity to peek into the life of six extraordinary people: a paleontologist (Ross Geller), a struggling actor (Joey Tribbiani), a statistical analysis and data reconfiguration specialist (Chandler Bing), a chef (Monica Geller), a fashion enthusiast (Rachel Green), and a masseuse (Phoebe Buffay).
Each of the characters deals with many rough circumstances over the courses of their lives. Ross Geller, a prodigy of the Geller family, has to deal the fact that his wife is in fact a lesbian. Joey Tribbiani has to deal with the harsh reality of being an infamous actor who struggles for a living. Chandler Bing, the funniest and the most sarcastic guy in the group, has to deal with the fact that his father becomes a woman (who works at a night club) at some point of his life. Monica Geller has to deal with the fact that her parents doesn’t really account her as a part of the family since she was once a fat loser compared to her brother Ross. Racher Green runs away from her wedding, gets disowned by her own family, and has to start from zero (like, really really zero). Phoebe Buffay has to grow up on the street with the fact that her mother killed herself. Practically, F.R.I.E.N.D.S tries to tell us that everyone has their own history that shapes him or her so we remember not to judge someone only from their attitude at the moment.
F.R.I.E.N.D.S also reaffirms that old proverb “Friends are the family you choose“. Those six people were once complete strangers, but they keep cherishing their friendship over the time. They have each other backs. Whenever Joey needs financial support (or food), Chandler and Monica are always there. Whenever the group needs frank opinions, Phoebe will give it without them even asking. Whenever anyone needs advice on something, the others will be there. Perhaps the main soundtrack of F.R.I.E.N.D.S has spoken it all:
Oh, of course the group has many quarrels over the course of the time! Sometimes they avoid the talk, or even the person they’re having problems with. But, hey, they always find a way to resolve their problem! They apologize, they forgive.. because that is what friends do.
Both offers laugh, jokes, and puns you can use someday in real life. Both offers dramas and silly twists. Both offers heart-warming moments that will touch your heart—or even your soul! Both offers the end of an era, because, let’s face it, they’re not going to produce the sitcoms for the rest of their lives, aren’t they?
But the most important thing I get from those sitcoms is the lesson to not take someone’s company for granted. To not take a friend for granted. Even for once.
for my favorite 14
for bearing with me
from the beginning
until the very end.
p.s. HIMYM is undoubtedly the best.