What Would Change If 'Friends' Was Set In LA

by James Tison

From Sex and the City to the cinematic classic New York Minute (starring Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, of course), audiences just love to watch beautiful people working, dating, and living fast-paced lives in the Big Apple. However, I'm pretty sure it's safe to say that there are few shows that define pop culture's image of New York City better than the '90s classic, Friends. Think about the show's premise: Six 20-somethings living in the same building in Greenwich Village, spending all of their time together. Then think about how little sense that set-up would have made in any other setting. New York was a huge part of what kept the group together, and was definitely a character in its own way (even if the show was actually filmed in Los Angeles). And though the show was practically a walking I <3 NY T-shirt, as a Friends superfan, I have to admit I sometimes wonder how the show would have been if it had been set elsewhere... What if Friends had been set in Los Angeles?

Sure, the Friends spinoff Joey gave audiences a taste of what it might be like if one of the Friends were in LA, but what if it were all of them living in LA, and during the '90s? How would the Friends characters survive outside of the five boroughs?

Things could be a lot different in a Friends: LA Edition. Would Joey find more acting work? Would Monica chill out a little? Would Ross buy a beach house and hang out in Malibu with Marcel? I feel it's my duty to break this impossibility down — so here are six things that would be massively different if Friends had been set in Los Angeles. (And one little thing that would definitely be the same.)

The Ones That Would Be Different

There'd Be A Lot More Blonde Hair & Spray-Tanning

Joey would definitely have frosted tips, and a lot more mousse in his hair. It was the '90s, after all. (Ross would still have that spray-tanning fiasco, though, because he's Ross.)

They'd All Have Backyards

At least some of them would — and the ones who lived in apartments would probably have a gorgeous, sunny courtyards or balconies to hang out on.

They Probably Wouldn't Hang Out Together As Often

Have you ever visited LA and tried to make plans with your friends who live there? It's hard. People often live far from one another because the city is extremely spread out, and the traffic's always too unpredictable for anybody to commit to anything between the hours of All Day and ALL DAY.

They'd All Know How To Drive Cars

There'd be none of that whole "not understanding the basics of automobile operation" thing.

There Would Be No Ugly Naked Guy

Having an ugly naked guy who lives in the building across from you flaunt his junk in his window all day is the sort of problem that's pretty unique to New York's housing situation. Because New Yorkers literally live on top of each other, you end up seeing a lot of things you wish would hadn't. In LA, however, there's more privacy; the worst you'd probably get is a hot neighbor who likes to sunbathe too much.

Phoebe Wouldn't Be The Weird One

I'm not saying everyone in LA is into the whole free-spirited lifestyle, but Phoebe's vegetarianism, belief in the afterlife, and interest in spirituality would have been extremely accepted in a zen city like LA — or, at least, in Venice Beach.

The One (Just One) That Would Be The Same

The Amount Of Coffee They Drink

If the show were set in LA, the gang's obsession with caffeine culture would probably be even more intense. I could even see Joey and Chandler opening their own coffee cart on the beach — who knows if there are jobs for transponsters in LA, anyway.

Images: Warner Bros. Television; Giphy (7)