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Here’s True Story Behind Winona Ryder’s Cameo In Friends TV Show

Winona Rider appeared as Rachel’s friend in Friends season 7, but the truth is it happened when she was at an odd time in her career.

As we all Friends fans know, Winona Ryder played the role of Rachel’s sorority sister in the show. However, it occurred during a notable time in Ryder’s career. Ryder is widely known for the role in Little Women, Stranger Things and for many other cult classic roles in the 1980s.

Friends became a huge hit just after the first season. This, obviously meant that they would have the chance to bring on some of the most popular faces of the time. Within a few seasons, the TV show featured cameos from celebrities like Julia Roberts, George Clooney, Brooke Shields, and Jean-Claude Van Damme. In fact, with the release of more seasons, the TV show was also able to bring on some other known faces: Bruce Willis, Reese Whitherspoon, Brad Pitt, Danny DeVito and Winona Ryder.

Winona Ryder starred in a Season 7 episode of friends, namely, “The One With Rachel’s Big Kiss.” Her name in the show was Melissa Warburton, who was Rachel’s sorority sister from college. Rachel and Melissa shared a drunken kiss while they were in college. In the episode, Rachel was desperate to prove to Phoebe that the kiss actually happened but Melissa was denying the whole incident. However, Melissa finally admitted that the kiss did happen and goes on to kiss Rachel again.

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The kiss was indeed a huge stunt for the fans of the TV show. But in reality, Winona Ryder’s role in Friends led to some backlash for Friends. Some outlets like Entertainment Weekly cited that the kiss was a way for Friends to gain some viewers after it faced severe competition from Survivor. Some even criticized that the episode where Melissa and Rachel kissed was insensitive and insulting towards the LGBTQ+ communities for using a rare lesbian character as to increase ratings.

In fact, Ryder’s appearance on the show was after she had been notably absent from Hollywood for a long time. Some speculate that she was starred in Friends, mainly to help her gain her way back to stardom. Ryder took a break from acting from 2001 to 2005, with her cameos on Friends and Zoolander became her only two roles in 2001.

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