Friends Central

The eighth season of Friends aired from September 27, 2001 to May 16, 2002 in the US.

Season summary[]

Picking up from where the previous season left off, Season Eight begins with the girls sussing out which one of them is pregnant: Rachel. Then, as more of the gang find out, they discover that the child's father is Ross, following a one-night stand. As the two prepare for the arrival of their child, Phoebe tries to cover for Rachel by pretending she's pregnant. When Rachel bemoans that she's not able to date as often, Joey takes her for a night out but starts to feel attracted to her. However he knows that their dating isn't a good idea given her and Ross' history, and when Rachel finds out she lets him down gently. Joey also decides that Rachel should move in with Ross as he is missing important moments in her pregnancy and is desperate to have Rachel and the baby living with him. Joey remains greatly attracted to his roommate. Rachel's realization that she does not know how to care for a child leads to the prospect of her mother moving in with her and Ross.  Rachel becomes frustrated when the baby is late.

Phoebe and Joey cause havoc when Monica and Chandler are on their honeymoon, Phoebe finds out her sister has been lying to her fiancé, Monica's hiring of a stripper leads to disastrous consequences, Rachel finds out her baby's father once hated her, Phoebe is desperate to meet Sting via Ross, who is nervous about sending out a Christmas card with girlfriend Mona, Chandler mistakes a birthing video for an X-rated movie, it transpires that Phoebe reads tea leaves, Monica goes very far to make her parents cry, Joey is reluctant when it comes to being interviewed, Monica's restaurant is given a terrible review and Joey is annoyed at Chandler when he falls asleep during the premiere of the movie he is starring in.

In the season finale, Rachel goes into a painfully slow labor while her friends get up to all sorts elsewhere in the hospital. Eventually she gives birth to a baby girl, Emma, however Ross isn't willing to restart their relationship now there's a child in the middle of it who could get hurt. Later, Joey is visiting Rachel when he sports a ring on the floor and bends down to pick it up. Rachel, however, thinks he's proposing... and accepts.


Main Cast[]

Recurring Cast[]


  • Season 8 was originally scheduled to premiere on Thursday, September 20, but it was cancelled due to the September 11 attacks, which caused entertainment to be postponed. Consequently, this season was pushed back until Thursday, September 27, 2001 and the promotion campaign was toned down almost to the point of abandonment.
  • This was almost the last season as negotiations with the cast for season 9 were still ongoing until halfway through the season. Eventually the cast agreed to receive $1,000,000 per episode, an agreement which stretched into one final season.


Visual effects comparisons[]

See also[]

Episode List[]

# Total Image Title Writer Director Original Airdate
1 171 TOAIDo "The One After "I Do"" David Crane & Marta Kauffman Kevin S. Bright September 27, 2001
Monica and Chandler's wedding reception is almost upstaged by the news that someone may be pregnant. Phoebe suspects its Rachel and comes up with a plan to cover for her friend.
2 172 TOWTRedSweater "The One With The Red Sweater" Dana Klein Borkow David Schwimmer October 4, 2001
Monica and Phoebe speculate about who might be the father of Rachel's baby. Mistakenly thinking Phoebe is the one who's pregnant, Joey makes a gallant gesture.
3 173 TOWRachelTells.. "The One Where Rachel Tells..." Sherry Bilsing-Graham & Ellen Plummer Sheldon Epps October 11, 2001
Everybody seems to know who the father of Rachel's baby is, except the guy himself: Ross. Phoebe and Joey fib about a gas leak to gain entry to Monica and Chandler's apartment.
4 174 TOWTVideotape "The One With The Videotape" Scott Silveri Kevin S. Bright October 18, 2001
Ross and Rachel's attempt to explain how they wound up getting pregnant turns into an argument over who came on to whom - until Ross makes the shocking announcement that he has the encounter on videotape.
5 175 TOWRachel'sDate "The One With Rachel's Date" Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones Gary Halvorson October 25, 2001
Ross is horrified to learn that the pregnant Rachel is headed out on a date with a handsome actor, while Phoebe protests when Monica wants to fire a cute but clumsy sous-chef whom she fancies.
6 176 TOWTHalloweenParty "The One With The Halloween Party" Mark Kunerth Gary Halvorson November 1, 2001
At Monica's Halloween party, Phoebe meets her twin sister Ursula's fiance and finds herself attracted to him as well.
7 177 TOWTStain "The One With The Stain" R. Lee Fleming Jr. Kevin S. Bright November 8, 2001
Ross learns Rachel wants to move out and find her own place... and suggests a vacancy in his building. But Joey gives Ross tough competition when he puts a nursery in their apartment to make her stay.
8 178 TOWTStripper "The One With The Stripper" Andrew Reich & Ted Cohen David Schwimmer November 15, 2001
Feeling guilty for denying Chandler a reach bachelor party, Monica arranges for a stripper to perform for him, but Chandler's in for a big surprise.
9 179 TOWTRumor "The One With The Rumor" Shana Goldberg-Meehan Gary Halvorson November 22, 2001
Monica bumps into an old high school friend and invites him to Thanksgiving dinner with the gang - unaware that he isn't exactly fond of Rachel.
10 180 TOWMonica'sBoots "The One With Monica's Boots" Teleplay by Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones, Story by Robert Carlock Kevin S. Bright December 6, 2001
Chandler is peeved when Monica splurges on an expensive pair of boots. When Phoebe learns Ross's and Sting's children attend the same school, she angles to meet the celebrity and get concert tickets.
11 181 TOWRoss'StepForward "The One With Ross' Step Forward" Robert Carlock Gary Halvorson December 13, 2001
Ross becomes nervous when Mona wants to mail a joint Christmas card with the couple's picture. As the hormonal effects of her pregnancy kick in, Rachel searches for possible romantic partners - such as Joey.
12 182 TOWJoeyDatesRachel "The One Where Joey Dates Rachel" Sherry Bilsing-Graham David Schwimmer January 10, 2002
To prepare Joey for a big date, Rachel goes out with him for a night on the town. But things take an unexpected turn: the date is a success and Joey becomes intensely attracted to Rachel.
13 183 TOWChandlerTakesABath "The One Where Chandler Takes A Bath" Vanessa McCarthy Ben Weiss January 17, 2002
Joey is crazy with guilt over his newfound affection for Rachel - and things get screwier when Monica mistakenly thinks he's infatuated with Phoebe.
14 184 TOWTSecretCloset "The One With The Secret Closet" Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones Kevin S. Bright January 31, 2002
Chandler becomes obsessed with finding out what is behind the locked door of Monica's forbidden closet. Phoebe feels betrayed when she discovers Monica has been using another massage therapist.
15 185 TOWTBirthingVideo "The One With The Birthing Video" Dana Klein Borkow Kevin S. Bright February 7, 2002
Monica goes all out for Valentine's Day with sexy lingerie and X-rated entertainment. But Chandler is too shell-shocked to respond after he accidentally watches a birthing video meant for Rachel.
16 186 TOWJoeyTellsRachel "The One Where Joey Tells Rachel" Andrew Reich & Ted Cohen Ben Weiss February 28, 2002
Joey tells Ross about his true feelings for Rachel. They agree that Joey should tell Rachel during dinner, regardless of the consequences. Chandler fears that Phoebe's new boyfriend Don may be more compatible with Monica than he is.
17 187 TOWTTeaLeaves "The One With The Tea Leaves" Teleplay by Steven Rosenhaus, Story by R. Lee Fleming Jr. Gary Halvorson March 7, 2002
Phoebe determine through reading tea leaves that she'll soon meet the man of her dreams. Feeling awkward after revealing his true feelings for Rachel, Joey keeps a low profile.
18 188 TOIMassapequa "The One In Massapequa" Teleplay by Mark Kunerth, Story by Peter Tibbals Gary Halvorson March 28, 2002
Monica regrets her request to supplant Ross as the designated toast-giver at their parents' 35th wedding anniversary. Phoebe's latest boyfriend drives everyone at the party crazy with his upbeat optimism.
19 189 TOWJoey'sInterview "The One With Joey's Interview" Doty Abrams Gary Halvorson April 4, 2002
Joey is thrilled when his name is used in a Soap Opera Digest crossword. But he's reluctant for them to do a profile of him because his last interview got him into so much trouble he was written out of the show.
20 190 TOWTBabyShower "The One With The Baby Shower" Sherry Bilsing-Graham & Ellen Plummer Kevin S. Bright April 25, 2002
Rachel panics that she is unprepared to care for a newborn and reluctantly goes along with her mother's plans to move in and help out - which hardly makes roommate Ross jump for joy.
21 191 TOWTCookingClass "The One With The Cooking Class" Teleplay by Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones, Story by Dana Klein Borkow Gary Halvorson May 2, 2002
Monica's restaurant is hit with a bad review, and she drags Joey along to a class taught by the critic in the hope of changing his mind. While shopping for baby gear, Rachel is put out when a salesgirl flirts with Ross.
22 192 TOWRachelIsLate "The One Where Rachel Is Late" Shana Goldberg-Meehan Gary Halvorson May 9, 2002
An overdue Rachel will try anything to get the baby moving. Joey is ticked off when Chandler nods off during he screening of his new movie.
23 193 TOWRachelHasABaby-1 "The One Where Rachel Has A Baby, Part 1" Scott Silveri Kevin S. Bright May 16, 2002
Rachel's baby nears delivery with an anxious Ross nearby. While she's in endless labor hell, her waiting friends cause hospital havoc. Chandler and Monica search for privacy in a quest to have their own baby.
24 194 TOWRachelHasABaby-2 "The One Where Rachel Has A Baby, Part 2" David Crane & Marta Kauffman Kevin S. Bright May 16, 2002
Rachel has her baby and names her Emma. Joey finds Ross's ring and Rachel thinks Joey is proposing to her!