‘Friends’ Writer Says Cast ‘Seemed Unhappy,’ Would ‘Deliberately Tank’ Content They Didn’t Like

A writer who worked on Friends is opening up about her time with the show, and her memories paint a surprising picture of the beloved sitcom.

Patty Lin worked with series stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, David Schwimmer and Matthew Perry during the show’s seventh season.

She opened up about her experience as the only person of color on the writing staff in her forthcoming memoir End Credits: How I Broke Up With Hollywood. Patty revealed how the cast acted and the impact that working on the set had on her confidence.

Read more about Patty Lin’s recollection of Friends…

Patty described the experience with the show’s writing staff as “cliquey.”

“They reminded me of the preppy rich kids in my high school who shopped at Abercrombie & Fitch and drove brand-new convertibles,” she wrote, via Time.

Despite getting along with the team, Patty recalled that she “still felt like an outsider.” She also struggled with imposter syndrome: “For a long time, I justified my imposter syndrome because I was a drama writer working in comedy. And yes, that was part of it. But imposter syndrome, I later learned, is a common experience for racial minorities who work in fields where they lack representation.”

She also recalled table reads, which would involve the “Big Stars.”

“The actors seemed unhappy to be chained to a tired old show when they could be branching out, and I felt like they were constantly wondering how every given script would specifically serve them,” she wrote. “They all knew how to get a laugh, but if they didn’t like a joke, they seemed to deliberately tank it, knowing we’d rewrite it. Dozens of good jokes would get thrown out just because one of them had mumbled the line through a mouthful of bacon.”

The writing team continued to work with the cast, with Patty recalling meetings taking place on the set of Monica and Chandler’s apartment.

“They rarely had anything positive to say, and when they brought up problems, they didn’t suggest feasible solutions,” she recollected. “Seeing themselves as guardians of their characters, they often argued that they would never do or say such-and-such. That was occasionally helpful, but overall, these sessions had a dire, aggressive quality that lacked all the levity you’d expect from the making of a sitcom.”

Speaking of Friends, several members of the core cast have weighed in on the possibility of a reboot.

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