|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||24|
|Original release||September 27, 2001 –|
May 16, 2002
The eighth season of Friends, an American sitcom created by David Crane and Marta Kauffman, premiered on NBC on September 27, 2001. Friends was produced by Bright/Kauffman/Crane Productions, in association with Warner Bros. Television. The season contains 24 episodes and concluded airing on May 16, 2002. This season had an average of 24.5 million viewers, and was the most watched TV show of the 2001–02 television season.
Collider wrote that it was the show's best season, and called its highlight "The One with the Rumor".
See also: List of Friends characters
See also: List of Friends episodes
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||Prod.|
|171||1||"The One After 'I Do'"||Kevin S. Bright||David Crane & Marta Kauffman||September 27, 2001||227401||31.70||15.8/43|
Everybody thinks Monica is pregnant, but her denial quickly shifts the focus to Phoebe, who claims she is pregnant to cover for Rachel, the one who is expecting. When Monica realizes it is Rachel, she and Phoebe have her take an additional test to confirm it. Phoebe initially says the new test is "negative" causing Rachel to be sad and disappointed by the different result. Phoebe then says it is positive and that Rachel now knows how she truly feels about having a baby. Chandler surprises Monica by having taken dance lessons for their wedding reception, but his slippery shoes leave him with two left feet. Joey tries to impress Mrs. Bing's date, a Broadway director. Ross meets a beautiful woman named Mona at the reception. He switches his seating number to her table, but mixing up the number, he ends up at the children's, then has to dance with the little girls, which impresses Mona.
Special appearance: Elliott Gould as Jack GellerNote: This episode is dedicated to "The people of New York City" in remembrance of the September 11 attacks which happened just 16 days before.
|172||2||"The One with the Red Sweater"||David Schwimmer||Dana Klein Borkow||October 4, 2001||227402||30.04||14.7/41|
|Rachel refuses to reveal who the baby's father is until after she tells him. Joey tells Monica and Phoebe about an unknown guy who slept with Rachel a few weeks earlier and who left a red sweater behind. Phoebe thinks it is Tag Jones' sweater and arranges a meeting between him and Rachel. Ross and Chandler attempt to recreate the wedding reception pictures, after Chandler loses the disposable cameras. Monica opens all the wedding presents without waiting for Chandler. Monica, Joey, and Phoebe learn that Tag is not the father of Rachel's baby. As they are still pondering the mystery, Ross arrives and retrieves his "lost" red sweater, unaware of its significance.|
|173||3||"The One Where Rachel Tells..."||Sheldon Epps||Sherry Bilsing & Ellen Plummer||October 11, 2001||227403||29.20||15.4/34|
Chandler and Monica are about to leave for their honeymoon as Rachel prepares to tell Ross they are having a baby. Phoebe and Joey try to get into Monica and Chandler's apartment by telling Mr. Treeger there is a gas leak. However, Treeger, who could not find the spare key, instead calls firefighters who break down the door.Note: There was a subplot of Chandler and Monica's honeymoon that was filmed but ultimately never aired. It involved Chandler joking about bombs while about to board the plane, leading Airport security to take it as a real threat and interrogating him and Monica. They are eventually determined not to be a threat, but shortly after being release, Joey calls Monica and pretends there is a gas leak in their apartment to cover for the already broken door. When Joey asked about being charged for the damaged door, she sarcastically replied, "No, I want you to stand there and wait for the entire place to blow up!", causing the authorities to re-interrogate the couple. Following the September 11 attacks, the writers felt the humor of this subplot was off color and quickly replaced it with another story about Chandler and Monica becoming jealous over another newlywed couple who got free perks by arriving just before they did. The cut scenes from this episode were later shown as a special feature on the 2004 UK version of the DVDs.
|174||4||"The One with the Videotape"||Kevin S. Bright||Scott Silveri||October 18, 2001||227406||25.58||12.2/32|
|Ross and Rachel argue over who initiated their sexual encounter that led to Rachel's pregnancy. Everyone is positive Ross was the instigator, but Ross claims it was Rachel. To prove it, he reveals how he accidentally videotaped their encounter; while he was videotaping himself practicing giving a speech, Rachel arrived. Everyone watches the tape that shows Rachel used Joey's contrived "Backpacking in western Europe that leads to having sex" story as a come-on to Ross. Monica and Chandler look forward to socializing with another newlywed couple they met on their honeymoon, only to discover the couple has blown them off with a fake phone number.|
|175||5||"The One with Rachel's Date"||Gary Halvorson||Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones||October 25, 2001||227404||25.64||12.5/33|
Phoebe dates a guy who works for Monica, causing a problem when Phoebe wants to dump him on the same day Monica plans to fire him. Chandler's co-worker thinks his name is Toby. Rachel goes on a date with Joey's costar, Kash (Johnny Messner) despite being pregnant, and much to Ross' annoyance. Ross met Mona again while at the coffee shop.Note: This episode is dedicated to the memory of Richard Cox, Sr., father of Courteney Cox.
|176||6||"The One with the Halloween Party"||Gary Halvorson||Mark Kunerth||November 1, 2001||227405||26.96||13.5/33|
At Monica and Chandler's Halloween party, Phoebe runs into her sister's fiance, Eric (Sean Penn). Phoebe becomes attracted to him as they bond over Ursula's lies and bad behavior. Ross and Chandler arm wrestle ineffectually. Ross laments that his goofy "Spudnik" outfit makes him look like feces. Rachel, feeling maternal, asks to hand out the candy to trick-or-treaters, only to realize she is less maternal as she thought.Special Guest: Sean Penn as Eric
|177||7||"The One with the Stain"||Kevin S. Bright||R. Lee Fleming Jr.||November 8, 2001||227407||24.24||12.1/30|
Chandler hires a maid to help Monica, but she soon suspects the maid is stealing her clothes. After getting Chandler to inspect a pair of jeans she is wearing that she thinks are hers, Rachel returns Monica's borrowed clothes. The maid quits, believing Chandler is a pervert. Eric wants to date Phoebe, but he is too reminded of Ursula. Ross attempts to secure the apartment of a dying Dutch woman for Rachel, while Joey wants Rachel to continue living with him.
Special Guest: Sean Penn as EricNote: This episode is dedicated to the memory of Pearl Harmon.
|178||8||"The One with the Stripper"||David Schwimmer||Andrew Reich & Ted Cohen||November 15, 2001||227408||26.54||12.6/33|
|Rachel has dinner with her dad to tell him she is pregnant, but intimidated by him, she lies and says Ross is un-supportive. Dr. Green then threatens Ross which nearly ruins his budding romance with Mona. Meanwhile, Monica hires a stripper for Chandler who never got to have a bachelor party, unaware the woman is actually a hooker.|
|179||9||"The One with the Rumor"||Gary Halvorson||Shana Goldberg-Meehan||November 22, 2001||227410||24.24||11.1/31|
Monica invites a high school friend, Will (Brad Pitt) to her Thanksgiving dinner. Rachel finds out that Ross and Will (who was fat and is now slim and gorgeous) started a rumor during their senior year about Rachel having both male and female "reproductive parts". Joey tries protecting the Tribbiani "family legacy" by eating an entire turkey. Chandler and Phoebe sit on the couch, watching a game to avoid helping Monica with the dinner clean up.Special Guest: Brad Pitt as Will
|180||10||"The One with Monica's Boots"||Kevin S. Bright||Story by : Robert Carlock|
Teleplay by : Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones
|December 6, 2001||227409||22.44||N/A|
|Chandler disapproves when Monica buys expensive boots but she promises to wear them all the time. She is then afraid to tell him how much they hurt her feet. Joey's youngest sister, Deena (Marla Sokoloff) seeks Rachel's advice after becoming pregnant. When Phoebe learns that Sting's son is in Ben's class, she pretends to be Ben's mother to meet Sting's wife (real wife, Trudie Styler) and get tickets to Sting's concert.|
|181||11||"The One with Ross's Step Forward"|
"The One with The Creepy Holiday Card"
|Gary Halvorson||Robert Carlock||December 13, 2001||227411||23.85||11.4/32|
|Ross is uncomfortable when Mona wants to send out joint Christmas cards and wants to have "the talk". Chandler tries to get out of spending time with his boss. Rachel's pregnancy hormones leave her "erotically charged", or as Phoebe calls it, the "Evander Holyfield" phase.|
|182||12||"The One Where Joey Dates Rachel"||David Schwimmer||Sherry Bilsing-Graham & Ellen Plummer||January 10, 2002||227412||25.53||N/A|
|Rachel is sad she can no longer date due to her pregnancy. Joey takes her out to cheer her up, but he develops a crush on her, something that scares him. Monica and Chandler get a Ms. Pac-Man arcade game from Phoebe as a late wedding present. After Phoebe hogs the game, Chandler becomes a pro by repeatedly playing and putting swear words as his initials. Monica wants them removed as Ben will be coming over to play on it. After Ross gets to teach an advanced class, he struggles to get to get there on time.|
|183||13||"The One Where Chandler Takes a Bath"||Ben Weiss||Vanessa McCarthy||January 17, 2002||227413||29.24||N/A|
|Chandler's dislikes bubble baths but Monica sways him and he soon becomes addicted. Phoebe, who thinks Joey has a crush on her, is shocked that he actually likes Rachel; Ross and Rachel debate over potential baby names and learn the baby's sex.|
|184||14||"The One with the Secret Closet"||Kevin S. Bright||Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones||January 31, 2002||227414||28.64||14.2/37|
|Chandler becomes obsessed with finding out what is inside Monica's locked closet. Phoebe feels betrayed when she discovers Monica has been using a different massage therapist. Ross feels left out after missing their baby's first kick especially when Joey is mistaken for the father. Joey, feeling bad about the situation, suggests that Rachel should move in with Ross even though he wants Rachel to live with him.|
|185||15||"The One with the Birthing Video"||Kevin S. Bright||Dana Klein Borkow||February 7, 2002||227415||28.64||14.5/37|
|Phoebe gives a birthing video to Rachel. Chandler, mistaking the tape for porn, watches it and is horrified after watching it with Monica, which kills the mood for Valentine's Day. Ross struggles to tell Mona that Rachel is now living with him; she breaks up with him over his dishonesty. Joey is depressed so Phoebe lends him a dog to cheer him up. However, Joey ends up affecting the dog with his depression. In the end, he tells Ross about his feelings for Rachel.|
|186||16||"The One Where Joey Tells Rachel"||Ben Weiss||Andrew Reich & Ted Cohen||February 28, 2002||227416||27.52||13.2/33|
|Ross, shocked at Joey's declaration, avoids him, but eventually convinces him to tell Rachel. Joey confesses his love for Rachel, but Rachel politely and lovingly turns him down. Phoebe is convinced that a British man called Don is Monica's soulmate.|
|187||17||"The One with the Tea Leaves"||Gary Halvorson||Story by : R. Lee Fleming Jr.|
Teleplay by : Steven Rosenhaus
|March 7, 2002||227417||26.30||12.4/32|
Phoebe determines through tea leaves that she will soon meet the man of her dreams. This leads to a disastrous date with a disturbing man, then a pleasant meeting with a charming one at the dry cleaners. Rachel invents a crazy work problem to reduce the awkwardness of hanging out with Joey since his confession about his feelings for her. Ross tries to retrieve his 'faded salmon' shirt from Mona's apartment.
Special Guest: Alec Baldwin as ParkerNote: In spite of the 9/11 attacks having occurred the prior September, a brief shot of the Twin Towers is visible approximately six minutes into the episode.
|188||18||"The One in Massapequa"|
"The One with the Zesty Guy"
|Gary Halvorson||Story by : Peter Tibbals|
Teleplay by : Mark Kunerth
|March 28, 2002||227418||22.05||10.5/30|
Monica botches an attempt at giving a heartfelt speech for her parents' 35th anniversary party. Phoebe dates Parker (Alec Baldwin), who is overly-enthusiastic about everything which ultimately annoys the entire group, including herself. Ross and Rachel have to pretend they are married while at the Geller's anniversary party; Ross' "wedding toast" stirs feelings in Rachel.Special Guest: Alec Baldwin as Parker
|189||19||"The One with Joey's Interview"||Gary Halvorson||Doty Abrams||April 4, 2002||227424||22.59||N/A|
|Joey prepares for an interview with Soap Opera Digest, although he's afraid of saying something stupid that may jeopardize his career. (In a previous episode, in an interview, he said he writes a lot of his own lines, which led to his firing from Days of Our Lives.) Joey enlists his friends to make sure things go well. This is the fourth of Friends' six clip shows.|
|190||20||"The One with the Baby Shower"||Kevin S. Bright||Sherry Bilsing-Graham & Ellen Plummer||April 25, 2002||227421||22.24||10.7/29|
Phoebe and Monica prepare for Rachel's baby shower and forget to invite Rachel's mother. During the shower, Monica tries desperately to seek forgiveness from Sandra, but to no avail. Rachel realizes she has no idea how to look after the baby after the birth, so her mother insists on staying with her for eight weeks, much to her and Ross' annoyance. Ross eventually gives Rachel the confidence to be a mom and Monica lets Sandra know she's furious at her spitefulness. Joey auditions for a job as a host for a new game show called Bamboozled that makes absolutely no sense, and Chandler and Ross help him practice.Special Guest: Marlo Thomas as Sandra Green
|191||21||"The One with the Cooking Class"||Gary Halvorson||Story by : Dana Klein Borkow|
Teleplay by : Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones
|May 2, 2002||227419||23.97||11.7/32|
|Monica's cooking skills get a bad review in The Post. After confronting the critic who wrote it, she decides to join a cooking class, with Joey in tow. Rachel gets jealous when Ross meets a girl who flirts with him at the baby department store. Phoebe helps Chandler prepare for an interview by stopping his natural instinct to make immature jokes.|
|192||22||"The One Where Rachel Is Late"||Gary Halvorson||Shana Goldberg-Meehan||May 9, 2002||227420||24.31||11.7/33|
|Joey invites Chandler to his movie's premiere but Chandler falls asleep during it. Rachel is very frustrated with the fact that she's eight days late, and will try anything to induce labor (including having sex with Ross), which leads to a bet between Monica and Phoebe. Rachel goes into labor at the end of the episode.|
|"The One Where Rachel Has a Baby"||Kevin S. Bright||Scott Silveri|
Marta Kauffman & David Crane
|May 16, 2002[a]||227422|
|Ross and Rachel arrive frantically at the hospital and are taken into a semi-private labor room. Ross's mother gives him a family heirloom ring and encourages him to propose to Rachel. Ross hesitates, and puts the ring in his jacket, which he later leaves in Rachel's room. After Monica jokes about having kids, she and Chandler decide to have a baby, starting while they are still at the hospital. They end up having sex in a closet and are seen making love by Monica's father, Jack, who is excited at the prospect of them trying. After a prolonged labor (of 21 hours), during which numerous other expectant mothers, including Janice, are taken to the delivery room, Rachel gives birth to baby Emma. She is left saddened and afraid after Janice later says that Ross may not always be there for her and the baby. When Joey comforts Rachel, the ring falls from Ross's jacket to the floor. Joey kneels to pick it up, and Rachel, believing he is proposing, impulsively says yes. Meanwhile, Ross intends to ask Rachel if she wants to resume their relationship.|
Season 8 averaged 24.5 million viewers and finished, for the first time, as the most watched show of the 2001–02 television season.