If you are among the lucky (and speedy) Friends fans to have scooped a ticket to Comedy Central’s FriendsFest, first of all, well done. Tickets sold out in 11 minutes. That’s some good work. Second of all: get excited because it is fantastic. Like kick you in the crotch, spit on your neck fantastic.
The pop up in East London has everything from Monica and Rachel’s apartment to Joey and Chandler’s La-Z-Boy chairs via a copy of Rachel’s letter to Ross (18 pages, front and back) and Ross’s original Science Boy comic.
You can get your hair done in ‘the Rachel’ style and grab a drink from the Central Perk counter. Top tip: hit play on the answering machine in Rachel and Monica’s and you’ll hear Rachel’s ‘over you’ message to Ross.
There’s a fancy dress booth, which includes turkey hats and a cheerleader outfit. I’m not sure how much the staff will thank me for suggesting this, but during last night’s launch party girls donned the wedding dresses and posed on Monica and Rachel’s sofa to get the ‘One with all the Wedding Dresses’ look just right. If you can manage it, that’s a picture worth having.
Outside there’s a replica of the fountain, complete with New York skyline and coloured umbrellas (annoyingly tied up so you can’t pose with them, but they look good in the background of shots).
The Central Perk sofa is the prime spot for pictures as is Monica and Rachel’s apartment door, so I’d suggest heading there first if you want to avoid seriously long queues. Another thing plenty of party goers were doing was posing on the window ledge and perfecting the art of a lovestruck Rachel. You’ll have to provide your own heartbreak music of course. The fridge in the apartment opens too so take a peek inside.
The devil really is in the detail at the event. Even in the toilet the doors were adorned with pictures of the three ladies when they were in the restroom during Monica and Chandler’s wedding. You get a coffee and cookies as part of your ticket – Friends isn’t Friends without coffee after all – and even the pillows on Joey and Chandler’s chairs have a duck and chick on them.
Last night’s launch party saw plenty of famous faces join the fun from McBusted’s Tom Fletcher and Danny Jones to Michelle Keegan, Mark Wright, Stacey Solomon, Alesha Dixon, Ashley Roberts AND James Michael Tyler, aka Gunther.
Luckily, I don’t think anyone took the essence of the chair…
Comedy Central’s FriendsFest is a week-long fan experience taking place in London’s Brick Lane between 16-20 September. The channel is airing the episodes in chronological order weekdays from 5pm.