Yesterday’s shows are still today’s hits


It’s always a writer’s goal to create something that sticks. To reach a wide audience, no matter the generation, and tell a story that people can latch onto and connect with. In short, to make something timeless. This is exactly what the writers of Friends and That 70’s Show accomplished.

Friends tells the “feel-good” story of six friends living in New York City as they navigate their twenties and deal with everyday challenges thrown their way, both individually and as a group. That 70’s Show explores similar themes, only with high-schoolers living in an imaginary town in Wisconsin during the 1970’s.

Though both of these shows may include outdated topics, audience members can still relate to the characters based on their interactions and conflicts.

Unlike today’s shows that rely on cliffhangers and suspense to reel the audience in, Friends and That 70’s Show hook their audience through their relatability. The shows do not have a main character, but a group of main characters, each flawed and imperfect, personifying traits we often see in others or ourselves.

Both of these shows are something you can watch as a family. They are timeless, lighthearted, and relatable to all age groups. In Friends, the characters are unique and layered. Each person will have a different solution, but despite their differences, there is always a character you can side with and understand. Joey, Phoebe, and Chandler would be considered the nerds, Rachel and Jackie would be considered the popular ones, Kelso would be your average jock, Fez and Ross would be unique, and Eric & Donna would be the outcasts. Haven’t we all had a combination of friends like at some point in our lives? 

Not only did these shows boast insane popularity for decades and still do, but I believe it is important to see why they were so loved.  They display what we long for as human beings, meaningful relationships and connections. There are no forced connections as the show immediately draws you in with its familiarity based on the characters, situations, and reactions. It is something that you can have on in the background and don’t have to “force yourself to watch.” Where you left off, isn’t always where you will pick up. Yet, the storyline still makes sense to the common audience. These shows have lasted decades because of their relatability and convenience. Though set in a specific decade, these shows can still be related to today.