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Friends seasons ranked

All 10 seasons of Friends, definitively ranked from worst to best

But let’s face it, there was never a bad season

I know many people say there are crap seasons of Friends, but I honestly think it is one of those shows that despite running for a decade never truly goes bad. If someone told me I had to watch a season of Friends, no matter what they gave me I’d have a good time with it. Unlike other shows I love, like True Blood or Game of Thrones, where things well and truly go to shit and taint what comes before. I do think however that some Friends seasons are better than others, so here are all 10 ranked from worst to best.

10. Season one

Urgh, the one where it all began! Season one of Friends is a great time, but takes last place here just because it’s more of an establishing season. We have to meet all six of them before the show hits as hard as it does in the future – such is the beauty of Friends. Some great episodes here, like The One with the Blackout – an easy season one classic. I just prefer the show when the characters, cast, writing and relationships are a bit more lived in.

9. Season nine

Coming in ninth, funnily enough, is season nine. I think this is most people’s least favourite, definitely the one that gets the most flack. This is mostly due to all the relationship stuff going down between partnership that nobody really loves – like Ross and fellow palaeontologist Charlie and the Rachel and Joey saga which of course never works out. There are still great episodes here, I love the Phoebe and Mike relationship and I absolutely ADORE The One with the Lottery. Phoebe doing the pigeon voice is classic.

8. Season 10

Friends seasons ranked

Next up is season 10, the last of all the seasons ranked in at eighth. Season 10 is a wrapping everything up kind of season, and that’s both its strength and its weakness. A lot of things get tied up here, like Monica and Chandler moving out of the city with their children via their surrogate mother Erica. Phoebe and Mike get married, and Rachel is about to leave for Paris before Ross declares his love and she of COURSE gets off the plane.

The show handles a mammoth task, a final episode, in its stride – The Last One is genuinely great. Most of the funniest moments here belong to Ross – with his iconic tan and the episode where he’s “fine”. He’s making FA HEAT TAHS.

7. Season 7

The show handles a mammoth task, a final episode, in its stride – The Last One is genuinely great. Most of the funniest moments here belong to Ross – with his iconic tan and the episode where he’s “fine”. He’s making FA HEAT TAHS.

7. Season 7

Season seven is really, really fun. It is all centred on the lead up to Monica and Chandler’s wedding after they get engaged at the end of season six. Some standout episodes here are The One with Phoebe’s Cookies and the episode where Monica makes all the candy for the people in her building.

I also love the episode just before the wedding where Monica and Chandler travel to repair the relationship between Chandler and his dad. It’s heartwarming. I hate the Rachel and Tag relationship, but all is well thanks to the best episode of the series – The One with the Holiday Armadillo. David Schwimmer is comedy gold.

6. Season two

Just missing out on a place in the top five Friends seasons ranked is the second season, where everything just hits its stride. I always associate this season with the introduction of Smelly Cat – Phoebe Buffay’s biggest bop. I love the Super Bowl two parter and love The One with the Prom Video, obviously where Rachel and Ross finally end up together and one of the greatest episodes of TV, like, ever.

Improves on everything in season one and makes everyone feel like family. This season has the Monica and Richard relationship too, her other big love aside from Chandler and one that Tom Selleck sells the hell out of. It’s also got Eddie moving in with Chandler, and the chaos that brings. Love.

5. Season eight

Perfect way to kick off the top five Friends seasons ranked is season eight, a season centred on Rachel’s pregnancy. The season is home to the perfect Thanksgiving episode The One with the Rumour, where Brad Pitt (who was with Jennifer Aniston) at the time plays Will – an old friend of Ross and Monica’s from school who hates Rachel. I also love the aftermath episode of Chandler and Monica’s wedding where Chandler and Ross go and recreate all the disposable camera pictures.

Huge fan also of the Halloween episode. Ross as Spudnik is classic.

4. Season three

Friends seasons ranked

What a great season this is. The season starts off with Ross and Rachel riding high in their relationship, but also has their breakup and birthed the iconic and timeless “we were on a break”. We find out about the ugly Geller Cup during the football episode, which is a hoot. We have Monica dating Pete who wants to be the Ultimate Fighting Champion.

The One Where No One’s Ready is a huge classic here for me – I love the saga with Joey putting on all of Chandler’s clothes. Wow. This season also has a giant poking device, the chick and the duck and Ben Stiller. Can’t go wrong.

3. Season four

Taking the bronze medal with Friends seasons ranked is its fourth – a season most beloved for the iconic trivia quiz game in The One with the Embryos, which results in Monica and Rachel losing their apartment to Joey and Chandler after a bet that goes wrong. It also has the Ross and Emily relationship which ends with arguably one of Friends’ best finales, with the whole cast sans Rachel and Phoebe going to London for the wedding and Rachel trying to stop it, resulting in the wrong name at the altar.

The cast and writers are in their prime here. Everything just feels so natural and there’s a laugh out loud moment in every scene for these three seasons at the top.

2. Season six

Friends seasons ranked

I ADORE season six. It has some of the best episode runs of any season, such as the one with Rachel’s trifle where Ross tries to keep from his parents that he got high in college. That episode is followed by The One with the Routine – Ross and Monica’s unforgettable time on Dick Van Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve. We then go straight into the apothecary table saga, a Pottery Barn centred episode where Rachel only knows the Colonial time period.

Phoebe’s iconic run, too. Wow. And it all builds up to the beautiful episode where Monica and Chandler get engaged. Amazing stuff. Also: UNAGI.

1. Season five

Friends seasons ranked

The perfect season. The first half is dominated by the secret relationship of Monica and Chandler, and how each of the friends handle keeping it a secret until the best episode of all time: The One Where Everybody Finds Out. Honestly, a comedy masterclass. Lisa Kudrow and the late great Matthew Perry nail it out of the park. I love the furious Ross this season, whether he’s shouting about his sandwich or “GET OFF MY SISTER”.

We then peak in Vegas, which is comedy gold from start to finish. Friends runs as a well oiled machine for season five, and it’s the best writing, acting and chaos in the show’s history.

RIP Matthew Perry – 1969-2023.

Friends is streaming now on Netflix. For all the latest Netflix news, drops, quizzes and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook. 

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Quiz: Ok let’s settle it once and for all, which of the Friends are you?