Friends has been a staple of Netflix's streaming catalogue, and it is beloved among re-watchers, binge-watchers and sleep-watchers. The show holds a special place in many hearts, and as fans face the reality that it will not be streaming forever, the DVD box set is looking more and more enticing.
All 10 seasons of friends are available in a DVD box set with far more to offer than the streaming counterpart. Even if it did not, however, the purchase could be a necessity for some fans at this point. Friends has become an integral part of life for some, as a form of background noise while cooking, hanging out or sleeping.
That became abundantly clear as fan outrage mounted over the weekend. On Saturday, Netflix's site showed that Friends was expiring on Jan. 1. It was not long before angry tweets filled social media, and petitions emerged begging Netflix to change its mind.
"Many people love the show Friends, no matter how old it gets. It’s helped so many people get through life, and Netflix is most likely their only source of watching it. So even though this might seem stupid, please help and sign the petition," wrote Savannah Acker, in a petition that garnered over 9,000 signatures in two days.
Whether it was these petitions or some other form of public pressure, Netflix acquiesced. On Monday, the company's chief content officer, Ted Sarandos, confirmed that the show would stay.
Still, this brush with danger should serve as a wake up call to some true fans, who ought to take a closer look at the Friends DVD box set. Whether it is for watching security, extended scenes, special features or any other reason, the box set has a lot to offer.
Here are some of the biggest reasons to buy Friends on DVD.
The DVD version of Friends offers hours and hours of more footage that is simply cut from the Netflix version. Each episode on the DVD includes about an extra three minutes, adding up to around 12 hours of Friends by the end of the series.
These extended scenes were cut for time, but included in the DVD releases. Be warned, not every box set or edition includes these bumpers, so check the descriptions and reviews before you buy.
The special features on the Friends DVDs are a must-see for true fans. They include things like trivia games, cast profiles and an interactive map of Central park, to name a few.
Naturally, the DVD release comes with gag reels from all ten seasons.
These are not available on Netflix, and while they can be watched on YouTube or somewhere else, there is something more appropriate about watching them at the end of the season as you sit under a blanket, reluctant to get up and switch to the next disc.
Another essential bonus feature on some of the DVDs is "Friends of Friends," a segment where guest stars and secondary characters give interviews about working on Friends.
The DVD versions of Friends also come equipped with commentary tracks for many episodes of the seminal series. They include notes from series creators David Crane and Marta Kauffman, and they are often joined by cast, crew and other special guests.
For fans who have watched the show over and over again, these serve as an invaluable source of insight. At the very least, they can shake-up a re-watch to make it feel like you are not doing the same thing again and again.
The extended scenes often include call-backs and punchlines that were not allowed on network TV. One of the most infamous of these is a scene from Monica and Chandler's wedding — Season 7, Episode 23. In it, Chandler is trying his best to dance on slippery shoes, when he falls and accidentally grabs his new mother-in-law's dress.
The scene is the grand finale of Chandler's awkward attempts to dance in the episode, though the syndicated version is left with no resolution. In addition, it explains why Chandler and the Gellers are always so awkward.
Another beloved scene that remains DVD-exclusive is from Season 7, Episode 17 — "The One With the Cheap Wedding Dress." In it, Joey and Ross are vying for the same girl, and they end up scaring her away from the restaurant. Left with a reservation and no date, Ross asks Joey if he is hungry.
"Does a bear s— in the woods?" he responds.
This improvised moment was obviously not allowed by FCC censors, but it is beloved by fans. Unfortunately, it is not available on the streaming version.
Finally, the most pressing reason to invest in a Friends DVD box set may be because of where the show could be heading. When Netflix first announced that the show was leaving, many speculated that it was because of the new proprietary streaming service Warner Media is working on.
According to a report by CNN, the company plans to launch its new platform by the end of 2019. This would make a lot of sense for Netflix's Friends licensing deal — if Warner wanted the show for its own catalogue, it could have raised the price to try and scare Netflix off.
Clearly, Netflix was more scared of its subscribers than this bill, but who knows how long that will last. If you do not want to subscribe to yet another streaming service, consider picking up Friends on DVD sometime soon.