The Creator Of Friends Is Just As Horrified By That Dark Phoebe Fan Theory As You Are

Photo: Everett Collection
Friends aired its season finale in 2004, but that hasn't stopped fans from speculating about whether the ending we saw was as straightforward as it seemed. Fortunately, the show's creator, Marta Kauffman, has declared one popular (and incredibly depressing) fan theory about Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) as totally, completely false.
Had this crazy Friends theory (really more of an alternate ending) been what the writers of the NBC sitcom had intended all along, it would have made everything we watched on the show's 10 seasons nothing more than the delusions of one very sad lady.
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The theory, which was posted on Twitter by Gareth Stranks, essentially states that Phoebe is nothing more than a homeless woman who stared into the window of Central Perk at the perfect group of pals. While she never met any of them, the theory suggests that she had envisioned their lives, because — and here's the part that's so sob-worthy — all she ever wanted was friends.
In Stranks' idea for an alternate ending, Phoebe walked to the park and put up six brightly-colored umbrellas to shield herself from the rain — a la the umbrellas the cast holds during the show's opening credits.
Thankfully, Friends ended on a far happier note, with Phoebe being very much an integral part of the crew and not a delusional woman who semi-stalks a group of friends in a coffee shop.
However, the one person more horrified by this idea than the legions of Friends fans is likely the show's creator, Kauffman. In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, the TV writer — who also created Grace & Frankie — revealed how she really feels about this ending for Pheebs. She didn't mince words.
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"[T]hat's a terrible theory. That's insane!" she told ET. "That's, like, that's like crazy alt-television theory. Wow!"
She added: "I just think that someone needs a life. Someone needs a life, that's all I'm saying."
Well, someone may need a life, but at least Phoebe always had one.
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