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"The One After The Superbowl" is a double-length episode of the second season of Friends, which aired on January 28, 1996, immediately after NBC's telecast of Super Bowl XXX. In the uncut format, the double episode runs for 43 minutes.


Ross reminisces about his former pet monkey Marcel after watching the Monkeyshine Beer ad, which happens to feature a monkey with uncanny similarities to Marcel. During a short stay in Los Angeles for a paleontology conference, he visits the zoo he gave Marcel up to, and asks for his monkey, but apparently he can't seem to find him. The zoo owner, however, regretfully informs him that his monkey had gotten sick and died. Saddened and shocked by the news, Ross is taken by surprise by one of the zoo cleaners when the latter reveals to him that Marcel was stolen during a break-in.

Following his debut on Days of our Lives as Dr. Drake Ramoray, Joey is excited about receiving fan-mail from a certain Erika Ford. What he doesn't realize is that Erika is a lunatic who is obsessed with him and thinks he's actually Drake, and not an actor. This he learns at his expense when a guy chokes at Becco, the restaurant he and Erika are dining in, and she introduces him as Dr. Drake Ramoray and prompts him to save the choking guy's life, which he's unable to do. Eventually, Joey breaks up with Erika - when she sees him on the show kissing Sabrina in Salem, she thinks he's cheating on her. Ross helps Joey out by trying to pass him off as Hans Ramoray, Drake's evil twin. Rachel helps by saying he pretended to be Drake to sleep with her and throws a glass of water at Joey; Monica and Chandler do so likewise. After sharing one final kiss, Joey sends her off and is happy to be free of her. However, he promptly goes after each of his friends for the water.

Phoebe is hired by a cute guy, Rob, to sing to children at a library. He thinks that Phoebe's fantastic - as the two end up kissing - and the kids find Phoebe's songs terrific. The parents, however, are shocked by her repertoire, which contains inappropriate lyrics about life's painful truths. When he tries to dissuade Phoebe from such songs by suggesting she sing about farm animals, she misinterprets him to sing about the cruel way they're raised and killed for food. Phoebe is ultimately fired from the library, but the children enjoy her songs so much that they come to listen to her at Central Perk, where she sang about bisexuals.

After some research and calls, Ross discovers that the monkey starring in the Monkeyshine Beer ad is actually the one he used to keep as a pet. What's more, Marcel is in town, filming Outbreak 2: The Virus Takes Manhattan. The guys visit the set, but are not allowed anywhere near Marcel. When the gang sing The Lion Sleeps Tonight, Marcel's favorite song, A cappella, Marcel recognizes it and re-unites with Ross.

Cast and Crew[]

Main Cast[]

Jennifer Aniston - Rachel Greene
Courteney Cox - Monica Geller
Lisa Kudrow - Phoebe Buffay
Matt LeBlanc - Joey Tribbiani
Matthew Perry - Chandler Bing
David Schwimmer - Ross Geller

Supporting Cast[]

Dan Castellaneta - The Zoo Employee
Roark Critchlow - Dr. Mike Horton
Chris Isaak - Rob Donnen
Brooke Shields - Erika Ford
Thomas James Kepner - Concerned Parent
Karman Kruschke - Coma Woman
Lawrence Mandley - Security Guard
Sean Masterson - 'Monkeyshine' Guy
Tahj Mowry - Kid
Fred Willard - Mr. Lipson, the Zoo administrator
D. Elliot Woods - Waiter
James Michael Tyler - Gunther (uncredited)
Katie - Marcel the Monkey (uncredited)
Kevin Bright - Director (uncredited)
Marta Kauffman - Director (uncredited)
David Crane - Director (uncredited)


Directed By:
Michael Lembeck

Written By:
Jeff Astrof, Mike Sikowitz & Michael Borkow


Erika: Oh Drake, you are so talented. Let me see those hands. Oh, these hands, these beautiful hands. Oh, I could just eat them. [Looks up at Joey.] But I won't.
Joey: Good. Otherwise my watch would fall off.


Entertainment Weekly rates the episode "C", calling it "fragmented, poorly paced, and only sporadically funny. Cramming the already crowded ensemble with celebs may have been a ratings grabber but the results are forced sit comedy and stilted acting". The authors of Friends Like Us: The Unofficial Guide to Friends write of the first part "There are some lovely moments of slapstick", mentioning "what Matthew Perry does with the washing-up liquid bottle when he first sees Erika", though call Isaak "positively wooden".

Brooke Shields' performance in this episode impressed NBC so much that she was offered her own sitcom, Suddenly Susan, for the network's 1996 fall lineup.



  • The title refers to the Super Bowl, a sporting event between the top NFL football teams of each division. However, it is rendered as a single word, possibly due to trademark concerns.
    • This is the only episode title that refers to both its time slot and its airing date.
  • This is the most-watched episode of Friends, drawing 52.9 million viewers on its premiere night.
  • Chris Isaak appears in this episode as Rob Donnen. Three episodes later, while Ross and Rachel are in the planetarium in "The One Where Ross And Rachel... You Know", Isaak's song "Wicked Game" is played by Ross.
  • Ross tries to repel Erika from Joey by stating that he's not Drake, but Hans Ramoray, Drake's evil twin. In Season 7, the Days Of Our Lives show on Friends actually introduces a twin brother of Drake, Stryker Ramoray.
    • Contrary to most doppelganger characters in TV and film production, Stryker is acted by a lookalike of Joey. This is due to Joey not wanting to audition for the part as he assumes he's offered the part directly.
  • Instead of reveling in others' joys, Joey scoffs about the monkey which gets to make movies after all his efforts to appear on TV. This he does again in season 5 with Ross' son Ben in "The One Where Rachel Smokes".
  • Director Michael Lembeck won the 1996 Emmy Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Directing for a Comedy Series for this episode. This was the only Emmy won by the series in that year.
  • Barney the dinosaur was mentioned in this episode.
  • The zoo janitor is played by Dan Castellaneta, who is known as the voice of Homer Simpson.
  • Brooke Shields later guest starred in a dream sequence as the mother of Miley Stewart (Miley Cyrus) in the Disney Channel show, Hannah Montana. Also, the actor who played Dean Lipson, Fred Willard, also appeared on Disney Channel as well as Brooke Shields, but on Wizards of Waverly Place, as a half-human, half-gargoyle creature, Mr. Stuffleby.
  • It's obvious that Jennifer can't keep a straight face in the scene with Erica in Chandler and Joey's apartment as she turns her head away from the camera on several occasions.
  • The TV version has a few differences such as omitting the gay joke in Phoebe's song in the coffeehouse. Also the uncut DVD episode includes Chandler reading a story book immediately before Phoebe begins her song. (Judging by Monica's and Rachel's reaction, this was an adlib by Matthew Perry).
    • Another difference is that on the TV version especially on TBS and Nick @ Nite, Dramatic Impact 3 can be heard after the museum guy who tells Ross that his monkey is alive; all other versions especially on the season 2 and season 2 25th anniversary DVDs cut this music track.
    • Additionally, Dramatic Impact 3 is uncut on the Complete Series Blu-Ray box set.
  • When the gang are standing at the barriers, the Warner Bros logo can be seen on the side of the trailer. Warner Bros produced the real film, Outbreak (1995) which also featured a Capuchin monkey. Friends is filmed at Warner Bros studios in Burbank, California.
  • Phoebe sings an excerpt from Smelly Cat to Rob in the tag scene. (This is omitted from the DVD double length version). This is the second time a professional musician has joined Phoebe in singing Smelly Cat, as she taught Stephanie Schiffer (Chrissie Hyndes) the song in "The One With The Baby On The Bus".
  • Ross mouths "play along with me" to Rachel behind Erika's back.
  • The steakhouse where Joey and Erika have their date is Rocco, which is located in Madison Avenue. The name isn't spoken but seen in a transition shot.
  • In the coffeehouse scene immediately after the opening credits, Rachel is wearing the same clothes she wore in "The One With Russ".
  • During filming of the scene when Brooke Shields' character licked Matt LeBlanc's hand, her then boyfriend Andre Agassi stormed onto the set and Brooke and Andre had a blazing row, leaving her in tears.
  • The Nick @ Nite version cuts a ton of dialogue including the opening Monkeyshine plot and starts with the opening cast credits; this may confuse some people[the reason is likely due to added commercials].
    • This complicates things even more considering that Ross' line ' ...He really is the Monkeyshine monkey,' is uncut on that version.
  • This episode was used as "Z is for Zoo" in the Nick at Nite Friends A-Z Event (January 2023).


  • In the TV version, Ross' position jumps between shots when the zoo employee sweeps behind Ross and Ross offering him zoo dollars.
  • Brooke Shields character, Erika, has two hair strands framing her face during her dinner with Joey. However briefly there is one that has been pinned back, then reappears.
  • When we first see Chandler, Monica and Rachel at the back of the classroom, Monica's bag is lying flat. In the next shot its upright.
  • After Rachel throws the water at Joey, Monica stands up and visibly starts saying her line, but her voice is not heard until the shot changes a few seconds later.
  • Joey's watch disappears from his wrist during the scene with Erika and then reappears in the next shot.
  • When Rachel is behind the sofa in the coffeehouse, she has her hands resting on the back but in a close-up, she's leaning over with her arms resting on the back. Then in the next wider shot she's back in the previous position.
  • When Joey begins singing along to "In the Jungle" in a high pitched tone, Ross and Chandler slowly look over at him in surprise. In the next shot, they slowly look over again.
  • Joey could have easily gotten a restraining order against Erika if she was stalking him.
  • When Phoebe is taking her guitar out of the case at the library, the children say "Ooooh" as they see it. After this, Phoebe says "I know", but her mouth doesn't move during the line.

External links[]

Episode Navigation[]

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
Preceded by
"The One With The Lesbian Wedding"
Series Two Episodes Followed by
"The One After the Superbowl, Part 2"