‘Friends’: Jennifer Aniston, Courtney Cox, and Lead Cast Hated the Theme Song

Jennifer Aniston has the immensely popular sitcom Friends to thank for a lot of things in her life. In addition to providing her with one of the biggest paychecks per episode — especially during its final two seasons — that the entertainment world had seen up to that point, the series’ lasting popularity has meant reliable royalty checks that just keep coming.

On top of that, Aniston’s own career got a substantial boost from the reception of the show as a whole and the fan response to her character in particular. She is the highest-paid and arguably most successful of the cast members post-Friends. 

While Aniston is surely grateful for the opportunity to be in such an iconic role and the friendships and connections she made there, she really hates one thing about the show: the theme song.

‘Friends’ saw unprecedented success

Under close scrutiny, many people admit that there are better 90s sitcoms than Friends. Some even question whether Friends was a good show at all.

Many of its jokes, in particular, have not aged well, especially those rooted in homophobia, transphobia, and fat-shaming. In addition, the series has some glaring continuity errors, and many fans just cannot get over the fact that the plot itself is kind of ludicrous. There’s no way that 20-somethings struggling through their early career bumps could afford those New York City apartments, and they existed in a version of the Big Apple that was completely void of its signature diversity

While all of those criticisms may be valid, there is a difference between theory and practice. Even when all the reasons that Friends might be ill-received are brought to light, fans still flock to the sitcom in droves.

It had one of the most-watched finales of all time, and even decades after its premiere, the series is a favorite on streaming services and syndication. It is undeniable that the show has an immense following with lasting dedication. 

Jennifer Aniston was a fan favorite as Rachel 

'Friends:' Pictured: (l-r) Matt Le Blanc, Matthew Perry, Jennifer Aniston, and Courteney Cox
‘Friends:’ Pictured: (l-r) Matt Le Blanc, Matthew Perry, Jennifer Aniston, and Courteney Cox | NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Aniston portrayed Rachel Green throughout the ten-season run of Friends. Throughout the series, fans get to see Rachel mature, learn, fail, and pick herself back up.

While all the characters on the show have their fan bases, Rachel is definitely among the absolute fan favorites. Fans were drawn to her intense loyalty, biting sense of humor, and determination to go after the things she wanted.

She was also definitely the style icon of the ensemble cast, and her character’s connection to the fashion world translated to a real-life influence of trends. In fact, her signature haircut — dubbed “The Rachel” by stylists — was among the most popular haircuts of the decade. 

Jennifer Aniston did not like all the aspects of the show


‘Friends’: Why Jennifer Aniston Couldn’t Stand Her Iconic ‘Rachel’ Hairdo

Things aren’t always as they seem, and just like Aniston did not actually like her iconic haircut — she found it too high maintenance — she dislikes other aspects of the show that fans love.

Take the theme song, for instance. To this day, virtually no one can hear “I’ll Be There for You” by the Rembrandts without immediately imagining the opening sequence of Friends. In the sequence, the cast members dance around a giant fountain, and it has inspired plenty of fan-created replications. 

It turns out that Aniston was not a fan of the song or the opening credits, and she wasn’t alone.  “No one was really a big fan of that theme song. We felt it was a little—I don’t know. Dancing in a pond? A fountain felt sort of odd,” Aniston explained.

Odd it may have been, but fans definitely still respond positively to both the fountain dancing and the series as a whole.