Friends star Maggie Wheeler reflects on sitcom’s lack of diversity (Picture: NBC)
Friends star Maggie Wheeler has reflected on the sitcoms lack of diversity, 15 years since it left our screens.
The 58-year-old is known for playing Chandler Bing’s (Matthew Perry) annoying girlfriend Janice – whose catchphrase ‘Oh. My. God’ grated on both our favourite six and viewers at home.
And now the star has spoken out on what could potentially be seen as problematic with the show when looking back almost two decades on.
‘They say hindsight is 20/20,’ the actress told the Independent. ‘You can’t create a show with the consciousness of the future. The future hasn’t happened yet.
‘It’s true that whenever you look back at a sitcom or at any television of that moment.’
She pressed: ‘You might see things that you might cringe at, or you might think “That is just so politically incorrect” or “Where is all the diversity?” Although that was a discussion that was taking place during the time that show was being made.
She said ‘hindsight is 20/20’ (Picture: GC Images)
‘So I’m not sure if it could have been done a different way then, but clearly we know a lot more now, or the discussions are a lot more open now about inclusion, about diversity, about the spectrum of sexuality, about all of humanity.’
The star wrapped up: ‘There’s so much more of an open conversation about those things now.’
Since the show dropped onto Netflix last year, it has grown a whole new audience who might not have tuned in when it first aired in 1994.
Matt LeBlanc has also had his say on the controversy (Picture: Getty)
However, newcomers have been left slightly on edge with a handful of plots – especially the one where Chandler gets paranoid about being perceived as gay.
Matt LeBlanc who plays Joey, addressed the recent controversy when talking to the BBC.
He said: ‘I’ve heard those rumours too about people taking pot shots at Friends, but I don’t want to get into that. I disagree with all that.
‘On Friends we steered clear of that kind of thing, too. Friends was about themes that stand the test of time – trust, love, relationships, betrayal, family and things like that.’
The 52-year-old continued: ‘I’m not in the business of making political jokes, politically incorrect jokes.’
Friends is available to stream on Netflix now.
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