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Sunday July 21, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Thursday July 25, 2013 MYT 12:31:24 PM
by kenneth chaw
It pays to talk to your neighbours. The ladies of 'Desperate Housewives' remind us that some of the best friendships can blossom between next-door neighbours.
From dramatic love-hate relationships to endearing bromances, we salute some of the best-loved friendships on TV for International Day Of Friendship.
IMAGINE Mulder without Scully, Joey without Chandler and SpongeBob without Patrick – iconic TV shows like The X-Files, Friends and SpongeBob SquarePants would never be the same without the friendships shared by these characters.
Friendship adds layers to a character, gives purpose to a cause and raises the stakes in an already sticky situation. Besides, saying two names rather than one just has a nicer ring to it.
From bromances and unlikely duos, to platonic guy-girl relationships, frenemies and situational friendships, TV land is brimming with a variety of friendships and all the sweet, gooey goodness that go with it.
In conjunction with the United Nation’s International Day Of Friendship on July 30, Star2 pays tribute to the many heartwarming pairings on TV, both past and present. We thank them for showing us the meaning of friendship and for, ultimately, reminding us that we are never alone.
There is no greater friendship in all of Bikini Bottom than the one shared between SpongeBob (Tom Kenny) and Patrick (Bill Fagerbakke). Guys are generally not tactile-driven when it comes to same-sex friendships but these two make no attempt to hide their affections. In an episode of the animated series, SpongeBob SquarePants, SpongeBob asks, “What do you normally do when I’m gone?” and teary-eyed Patrick replies, “Wait for you to get back!”
But their friendship isn’t merely rooted in adorable banter like this. In fact, they would do almost anything for each other. SpongeBob has helped the lazy Patrick get a job, win an award and once, even pretended to be dumb so Patrick would look smart in front of his demeaning parents. Patrick does his best to help SpongeBob, too, but being dim-witted (to put it mildly), he usually gets SpongeBob into bigger trouble in the end. Well, it’s the thought that counts, right?
Unlike those underwater creatures, Harvey (Gabriel Macht) and Mike (Patrick J. Adams) of Suits aren’t as keen in displaying their bromance. Being the manly man that Harvey is, his responses usually come across as cold and detached, even though he cares deeply for Mike. The best thing about Suits, besides the legal drama, is watching Harvey’s lips tremble when he is about to say something nice to Mike.
Bromances sometimes get tested, too, and one of the toughest tests is forgiving your best buddy for sleeping with your girlfriend. To be fair, Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) only slept with Robin (Cobie Smulders) after his best friend Ted (Josh Radnor) broke up with her in How I Met Your Mother. Nevertheless, Ted vowed to never be “bros” with Barney anymore. Thankfully, the two reconciled after experiencing life-threatening situations.
Before there was Ted and Barney, there was Joey and Chandler from Friends. The inseparable duo remain a classic example of bromance on TV to this day. One image encapsulates their entire friendship: Joey and Chandler sitting on their respective recliners in front of the TV, and as if on cue, their leg rests pop up at the same time.
Oddballs roll together
It’s always fun to see two people who have absolutely nothing in common or worse, are polar opposites of each other, come together.
Take, for example, the protagonists of 2 Broke Girls, Max (Kat Dennings) and Caroline (Beth Behrs). Max barely makes ends meet working as a waitress in a diner, while Caroline grew up in an affluent family. But the family lost all their wealth unexpectedly, forcing Caroline to take up a job at the same diner. Max’s ghetto disposition and Caroline’s bimbo ways don’t mix well at all, but they provide plenty of fuel for snarky, hilarious banter. Still, the girls are able to put their differences aside when it comes to working towards their dream of opening a cupcake shop together.
Another unusual pairing is Penny (Kaley Cuoco), the friendly blonde beauty, and Sheldon (Jim Parsons), ofThe Big Bang Theory. Compared to the rest of the geeks in the programme, Sheldon is without doubt the most unsociable – he prefers not to have intimate relations with his girlfriend and in one episode, even devises an algorithm on how to make friends. That’s why it’s endearing when Sheldon, who doesn’t understand the idea of human interaction, asks Penny on numerous occasions to lull him to sleep with Soft Kitty (a lullaby his mother used to sing).
But my favourite unlikely duo has to be Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and Lady Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) of Game Of Thrones. Jaime is everything you envision a knight to be – tall, dangerously handsome and loved by all. In contrast, Lady Brienne (she hates the title “Lady”) is scorned by many for her androgynous features, masculinity and most of all, for being a female knight.
In the third season, Brienne’s master, Catelyn Stark, tasks her with escorting Jaime to King’s Landing. They don’t see eye to eye at first, but along the way, Jaime begins to feel for Brienne (especially when the lads make fun of her appearance) and care for her, even saving her on a couple of occasions. The friendship sparks so organically, it feels genuine and unforced.
Will they or won’t they?
They say there is no such thing as a platonic relationship between a man and a woman. Revenge’s Nolan (Gabriel Mann) and Emily (Emily VanCamp) disprove the theory from the off. Nolan is Emily’s wealthy and geeky sidekick, who helps her exact revenge on the Graysons. Nolan and Emily just aren’t each other’s type and have romantic entanglements of their own. Put it this way, they have about as much chemistry going on as two granite pebbles.
But for the most part, platonic relationships on TV always look like they’re headed for Romanceville, although the following have managed to remain friends (so far). For instance, Mindy (Mindy Kaling) and Danny (Chris Messina) of The Mindy Project. For most of the season, Danny seems to loathe everything about Mindy – her opinions, optimism and spontaneity. Mindy, on the other hand, gets all wrapped up with her handsome, kind-hearted clergyman boyfriend. But in a scene from the finale, Danny is alone with her and suddenly starts speaking in hushed tones. He leans closer to Mindy, looking like he is about to kiss her … only to point out the smudge on her spectacles. Somebody tell me what’s going on!
And then there’s aspiring fashion designer Jane (Erica Dasher) and her childhood best friend Billy (Nick Roux), in Jane By Design, who fall for each other, but at the wrong time. When Billy tries to confess his love for her, he gets interrupted by one of Jane’s crushes, Jeremy. And in the finale, Jane realises that she truly loves him after watching how he treats his new girlfriend. Too late!
Friend and foe
Did you know that frenemy is now an actual word in the dictionary? Collins Dictionary, which defines frenemy as “a person who is both considered a friend and a rival”, approved the word just last year.
For a better idea of the word’s definition, look no further than the glamourous ladies of Gossip Girl, Serena (Blake Lively) and Blair (Leighton Meester). For them, being frenemies means that despite being best friends since childhood, episodes of cheating (remember when Blair dated Serena’s on-off boyfriend Dan? Or when Serena slept with Blair’s boyfriend, Nate?) and back stabbing (remember when Serena leaked the contents of Blair’s diary?) are all part of the deal. Through it all, these frenemies are never torn apart.
Who says guys can’t be frenemies, too? Estranged besties Miles (Billy Burke) and Sebastian (David Lyons) from Revolution have been trying to kill each other all season, but when the opportunity finally arises, neither can actually pull the trigger. In one episode, Sebastian explains their love-hate relationship. He tells Miles: “Ask me why I couldn’t (pull the trigger). We’re still brothers. And as much as I hate that, let me tell you, I do, that’s never going to change.”
In the world of vampires, it seems one of the main reasons guys turn on each other is the presence of a beautiful love interest. Through all six seasons of True Blood, Bill (Stephen Moyer) and Eric (Alexander Skarsgård) cannot fully get along, as they both love Sookie (Anna Paquin). Meanwhile, on Vampires Diaries, besties Stefan (Paul Wesley) and Klaus (Joseph Morgan) also flashed their fangs at each other when Klaus tried to draw blood from Stefan’s one true love, Elena (Nina Dobrev), to hatch his evil plan.
Bound by a common thread
Fate puts us in situations where we have no choice but to befriend the people around us. Situational friendships can blossom within a group of people who go to the same workplace, school, gym, or just about any common locality. This is arguably the best kind of friendship to watch on TV as there is usually a mixed bag of characters who provide scriptwriters plenty of room to play with.
Nothing shouts “a mixed bag of characters” like Community. The show focuses on the friendship between seven students who are in the same study group at Greendale Community College. There’s popular ladies man Jeff (Joel McHale), kind-hearted blonde Britta (Gillian Jacobs), nerdy, straight-laced Annie (Allison Brie), childish 60-something Pierce (Chevy Chase), religious mother of two Shirley (Yvette Nicole Brown), fallen quarterback star Troy (Donald Glover) and Abed (Danny Pudi), who is simply from another planet. Personality clashes occur all the time here, but if there’s anything we can take away from the show, it’s this simple mantra – if we can’t accept our differences, we can laugh at them.
The members of McKinley High’s Glee Club in Glee is another noteworthy bunch. They don’t only enchant us with their gift of song and dance, but their deep, meaningful friendships as well. As most of its members are deemed “outcasts” and “losers”, they often share their painful struggles with each other, strengthening their friendships in the process. Glee preaches a message of hope and acceptance. Though rejected by the rest of the school, in Glee Club, they will always have their music and more importantly, each other.
Desperate Housewives is famous for its tales of scandal, betrayal and murder, but let’s not forget the many acts of sacrifice, forgiveness and kindness shared by the ladies who live on Wisteria Lane.
“Some people never get to know the folks next door, they share a fence and nothing else. We share everything,” Susan Delfino (Teri Hatcher) movingly put it. Unfortunately, like most situational friendships, when the common locality is gone, so does the friendship. When the neighbours move out of the lane in the finale, they promise to keep in touch and play poker again. They never do.
The message is clear: cherish those around us while they’re still around, as did these housewives.
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Entertainment, Entertainment, Lifestyle, entertainment, International Day Of Friendship, TV, Suits, SpongeBob SquarePants, How I Met Your Mother, Glee, Desperate Housewives
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