Book Thoughts: *I’ll Be There For You*

If you’re new here, a quick note – I am a huge pop culture nerd. When I was in college, I became a Communications major because I realized that meant I could spend most of my time writing research papers about movies and TV shows. Then I got a Master’s Degree in Communications because I could emphasize my studies on mass media. Then, when I got my second Master’s Degree – this time in Literature – I still picked one of the biggest pop culture phenomenons of the time to write about. Later, I went on to teach pop culture classes at the college level.

It shouldn’t be a surprise that I also absolutely love books about pop culture. So, imagine my absolute surprise and delight when I opened an Amazon box to discover a Christmas gift from one of my best friends:

I wasn’t familiar with the book prior to receiving it, but the second I got it, I opened it up and began reading. Author Kelsey Miller is close to my age, and begins her work with a similar story to how I discovered Friends – not when it first premiered in 1994, but later in re-runs and on DVDs. Now, like me, Miller calls herself a full-fledged Friends fan, and her love of the series shines through her research and analysis on every page.

I think I also enjoyed the book because the central question she was asking/answering was similar to my own question when I wrote my Master’s Thesis about Twilight – why do people like this thing? Her answer about Friends seems to be one of those answers that makes perfect sense and should’ve been obvious, but it needs someone – in this case, Miller – to point it out for it to become apparent.

I won’t go too much into her analysis except to say that I agreed with her and liked the way she analyzed/supported her assertions. The other part of the book, though, is the pop culture history of how the show was created, how it ebbed and flowed throughout its ten years on the air, and who the people were who made it all happen. This, too, was enjoyable, well-researched, and great fun for a pop culture nerd like me.

So, whether you’re a fan of the ins-and-outs of Hollywood, a fan of Friends, or just curious about specific aspects of pop culture mania, then this is a book for you!