Friends: Season 7
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This sophisticated, smash-hit comedy from Bright/Kauffman/Crane Productions offers a hilarious look at the anxieties and absurdities of friendship, careers and dating for six close friends living in New York City.
Audio Commentary:Producer's audio commentary of 3 episodes
Interviews:Friends of Friends Part II video guest book
Other:Monica's Wedding Book Challenge game. Gunther Spill the Beans about the next season
Lots happened behind the scenes between seasons and early on in the seventh year of Friends, leaving audiences speculating this might be the last. Matthew Perry became seriously ill again, and returned looking more emaciated than ever. Courtney Cox regained weight, but despite finishing Scream 3 happily, things were already rocky with David Arquette. Much was made in the press about Aniston marrying Brad Pitt, of course, but the real news (allaying fans' fears) was NBC's expensive renewal of the cast for two years at $750,000 per episode each (more than six times their previous increase). On-screen, at least there was Chandler and Monica's engagement lasting the whole year, despite predictable ups and downs (e.g., "The One with the Truth About London" revealing that Monica fancied Joey). By the time we finally get to "The One with Chandler's Dad" (Kathleen Turner!), it seems inevitable that the two-part finale will be an insane mess--but with a happy-ish ending. Sure enough, "The One with Monica and Chandler's Wedding" features Gary Oldman joining in the chaos as Chandler repeatedly goes missing.
Other star turns in the year were Seinfeld's Jason Alexander as a suicidal office manager, Susan Sarandon as soap queen bitch Jessica Lockhart, Denise Richards as one of Ross and Monica's endless number of cousins, and Winona Ryder as a surprise old friend, prompting "The One with Rachel's Big Kiss." But perhaps the most telling installment of this weirdly atmospheric year was "The One Where They All Turn Thirty." It suggested that maybe the Friends were all getting too old to carry on living their frivolous lives the same way after all. --Paul Tonks
- All 23 episodes on four discs all with never-before-seen moments and remastered soundtrack
- Producers commentary on 3 episodes
- Friends of Friends video guest book
- Gag reel
- Monica's Wedding Book Challenge Trivia Quiz
- "Gunther Spills the Beans About Next Season"
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Other reviews have listed the entire set of shows, so there is no need for me to repeat that. Some others have mentioned that the season is somewhat bland. Perhaps this is most true for those viewers invested primarily in the Rachel-Ross Axis, especially in the light of the upcoming Season 8 that re-introduces that entire storyline (through Rachel's pregnancy). I, for one, do not miss it. There are plenty of "soap-opera moments" in this season, but I prefer such moments to be centred on the soundstage where Joey is filming "Days of Our Lives".
All in all, it is a solid and very funny season. There are lots of guest stars - a personal favourite is Susan Sarandon as a soap opera queen. The box set is exactly what you'd expect if you've bought previous seasons of the show - there are a few commentaries (which often have a few neat tidbits but which also tend to cheerleading at times), there is a little quiz, and so on. However, the best part of having the show on DVD is to be able to watch it uncut and without advertisements. Friends is also one of those shows that improves when you see the episodes together - the underlying comraderie and warmth of the cast is emphasized, and it makes the inside runnning jokes funnier.
UPDATE: The used Friends Season 7 DVD Set I received has the correct episodes on Disc 4.