Female writers apparently tried to axe this "sexist" Friends storyline

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After ten years of being there for us, Friends left our screens in 2004 – leaving a Central Perk shaped hole in our hearts – and we’re still not over it.

Yes it may have been 15 years since Chandler, Rachel, Ross, Monica, Phoebe and Joey made their last appearances but it still feels like it was just yesterday.

We’re still deeply invested in Rachel and Ross’ tumultuous relationship, we’ve never given up hope on Parker (Alec Baldwin) coming back into our lives, and we can’t believe how quickly the Friends children have grown up. Are we the only ones confused by our feelings for Ben now that he’s grown up and starring in Riverdale?

But it’s not Cole Sprouse who became a conversation topic this week. Instead it was one of the writers, as it emerged that Alexa Junge, female writer on the show, wasn’t happy with a ‘sexist’ storyline.

The storyline was featured in the season two episode, "The One After the Superbowl", in which Monica and Rachel get into a physical fight over who should get to go on a date with Jean-Claude Van Damme.

According to Saul Austerlitz’s book Generation Friends: An Inside Look at the Show That Defined a Television Era, Alexa Junge was reportedly so offended by the proposed plot that she called for the storyline’s removal, telling her fellow writers, "if [Monica and Rachel are] friends they’re not going to do that. That’s bad for the sisterhood."

Alexa was "disturbed by the girl-fight vibe of the episode, complete with the wardrobe choices," the book wrote of the writer’s thoughts. "Why were Monica and Rachel wearing flimsy T-shirts on a cold set on what was supposed to be a winter day, their nipples instantly visible beneath their clothing?"

Despite Alexa raising her concerns, both the storyline and wardrobe choices remained in the episode.

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.