Speed Reads

the one where they get canceled

Jennifer Aniston says Friends is now 'offensive' to a 'whole generation of people'

Are modern audiences still there for all the humor on Friends? Jennifer Aniston isn't so sure.  

The actress told AFP (via Variety) that there is now a "whole generation of people, kids," who are "going back to episodes of Friends" and finding them to be "offensive."

"There were things that were never intentional and others … well, we should have thought it through — but I don't think there was a sensitivity like there is now," she said.

Aniston also argued that "it's a little tricky because you have to be very careful" with comedy today, "which makes it really hard for comedians." She added that in the past, "you could joke about a bigot and have a laugh," which was "about educating people on how ridiculous people were," but "now we're not allowed to do that." 

Aniston didn't provide examples of what modern audiences find offensive in Friends, though co-creator Marta Kauffman previously expressed regret that the show repeatedly misgenders Chandler's trans mother. "Pronouns were not yet something that I understood," she told BBC World Service. "So we didn't refer to that character as 'she.' That was a mistake.'" Kauffman has also apologized for the lack of diversity in the show. But Aniston's comments drew some pushback online as critics pointed out that Friends is still hugely popular among younger viewers.

The comments, though, were similar to remarks made by Mindy Kaling, who suggested last year that The Office could not be made today despite going off the air less than a decade ago. She told Good Morning America that "most of the characters" on the sitcom "probably would be canceled" today, adding that the series is "so inappropriate now" and that "so much of that show we probably couldn't make" anymore because "what offends people has changed so much."