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"The One With The Birth" is the twenty-third episode of the first season of Friends, which aired on NBC on May 11, 1995.


When Ross' ex-wife Carol is rushed to the hospital to have their baby, all the friends come along, but prove less than helpful. Rachel only has eyes for the unmarried obstetrician, and Monica becomes despondent, believing she'll never have a child; Chandler attempts to comfort her and tells her that, if they're both still single when they're 40, they could have a child together. His good intentions backfire on him when Monica wants to know why he thinks she'll still be single when she's 40. When Joey has an argument with Lydia, a single pregnant woman, he finds himself the only available birth coach. After Carol throws Ross and her lesbian life-partner Susan out of the room for bickering, Phoebe manages, while lecturing the pair, to lock all three of them in a janitorial closet. While in there, Phoebe responds to Ross and Susan arguing in an unusual way: by telling them how great she thinks it is. She says that, when she was a kid she barely had enough pieces of parents to make one whole one, but this baby isn't even born yet and he has three people fighting over which one of them gets to love him the most, and it's just the luckiest baby in the world. When Phoebe later puts on a janitor's outfit with a nametag reading "Ben", it inspires Ross and Susan to propose Ben as the name for the newborn baby.

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

Jonathan Silverman - Dr. Franzblau
Jane Sibbett - Carol Willick
Jessica Hecht - Susan Bunch
Leah Remini - Lydia
June Gable - Nurse
Carlo Imperato - Roy
Jackie Bright - Gavin (credited as "The Janitor")


Directed By:
James Burrows

Written By:
David Crane, Marta Kauffman, Jeff Greenstein & Jeff Strauss


  • Rachel: Hi. I'm Rachel Greene. I'm Carol's ex-husband's sister's roommate.
    Dr. Franzblau: It's nice to meet you. I'm Dr. Franzblau. I'm your roommate's brother's ex-wife's obstetrician.


  • This is the first birth in the series.
  • This is the first episode not to feature Central Perk and Monica and Rachel's apartment.
  • This was originally the season finale but Director James Burrows insisted that viewers cared more about the fate of Ross and Rachel than the baby.
  • June Gable, who plays the nurse helping Lydia and Carol, will later play Estelle Leonard, Joey's talent agent. Although not shown in the TV episodes, Gable plays the part of Estelle first, in "The One With The Butt" (S1E6) (this can be seen in the uncut DVD episode).
    • This is the only episode for June Gable to play a part other than Estelle Leonard in the show.
  • When discussing names, Ross mentions 'the whole Jesse, Cody, Dylan fiasco.' One of the actors who would later play his son is Cole Sprouse, whose twin brother is named Dylan. Cole played one of the main characters named Cody with his brother Dylan, who played Zack, on the successful Disney Channel series The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and The Suite Life on Deck.
  • Chandler's proposed backup marriage to Monica may foreshadow their eventual, wholehearted engagement in Season 6 and then marriage in Season 7.
  • Chandler says "if neither of us is married by the time we're forty, how about you and I hook up?" By the age of 40, Monica will have been married to Chandler for seven years.
  • In the scene where Monica sees one of the women going home with twins, she says that it's not fair that she gets two when Monica doesn't even have one. Chandler and Monica would adopt twins in Season 10.
  • Jonathan Silverman, who plays Dr. Franzblau, is one of the stars of the movie Weekend at Bernie's. In "The One With The Embryos" (S4E12), it is revealed that is Rachel's favorite movie.
  • It's revealed in this episode that Rachel's father is a doctor. Rachel will date and later marry Ross who's a doctor in paleontology. Her ex-fiancee, Barry, is also a doctor while she also briefly dates Russ (a doppelganger for Ross) next season in "The One With Russ" who's a doctor in dentistry (or gums according to Ross).
  • When Ross is introducing Ben to the gang, Rachel remarks that "I can't believe one of us has one of these." In just over 7 years time Rachel will give birth to her and Ross' daughter, Emma.
  • This is the first birth to feature in the series. In Season 5 Phoebe gives birth to triplets, Rachel and Ross have a daughter in Season 8 while Chandler and Monica adopt the twins born to Erica in Season 10.
  • Ross and Carol's son ends up being called Ben in this episode. In "The One That Could Have Been", their son is also called Ben even though the events in this episode couldn't have taken place.
  • In the tag scene, Rachel asks if anyone wants to "get some coffee". This is similar to her last line in the series when in "The Last One" she asks Monica and Chandler "have you got time for coffee".
  • This episode appears on "Friends - The One with All the Babies" DVD.
  • The music playing in the background of the tag scene is the nursery rhyme "Baa Baa Black Sheep."


  • Ross attempts to shoulder charge the door open but later in the series when he and Rachel get locked out of their apartment, he tells her he bruises like a peach.
  • When Joey walks away from Lydia's room, he grabs the inflatable by the wrong arm.
  • Susan sarcastically tells Ross when he picks up the vacuum cleaner "what're you going to do, suck the door open?" The door opens outwards.


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 Ick Factor"
"The One With The Birth" Followed by
"The One Where Rachel Finds Out"