Friends last episode voted best TV show finale of the past 20 years

It’s been 15 years since the finale of Friends – fittingly titled The Last One – aired, and it seems it still has a special place in all our hearts.

The last episode of Friends has been crowned the best TV show finale of the past 20 years, and we can’t say we’re that surprised – even if Rachel probably shouldn’t have got off the plane.

In a poll of 5,000 TV fans organised by Digital Spy, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, Friends beat out series like Game Of Thrones, The Sopranos and Breaking Bad to claim the most loved finale title.

The Last One aired on 6 May 2004 and saw Ross (David Schwimmer) racing to the airport to tell Rachel (Jennifer Aniston), who is moving to Paris, that he loves her after they slept together.

Rachel initially gets on the plane anyway – but after realising Ross is indeed her lobster, she ditches her flight and the pair finally get together for good.

Elsewhere, Monica (Courteney Cox) and Chandler (Matthew Perry) move to the suburbs after their surrogate Erica (Anna Faris) welcomes twin babies, Jack and Erica; Joey (Matt Le Blanc) takes custody of a new chick and duck, and Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) decides to start a family with husband Mike (Paul Rudd).

All in all, pretty heartwarming.

But there’s a chance we never would have seen the finale as it happened, as co-creator David Crane has admitted that the series writers initially believed Friends would end after series eight.

Crane told Radio Times: ‘When we were doing the eighth season, we were told, “This is the end.” And then they negotiated another season, so we’re in for nine.

‘We were told at a certain point on nine that “This is absolutely the last season”. And then a week later, they came back and went, ‘Well…’ And so we got to the 10th season and said, “Let’s be really clear: we can’t keep not knowing where we’re going.” So we knew, definitively, it was the last one.’

The success of the finale hasn’t stopped Friends fans pleading for a movie or a one-off special with the gang – and it turns out we may get our wish, kinda sorta, as the cast are planning something special with HBO Max.

All 10 seasons of Friends are streaming on Netflix.

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