Friends Central

"The One With The Secret Closet" is the fourteenth episode of the eighth season of Friends, which aired on January 31, 2002.


Rachel lets Joey feel the baby kicking.

Monica is getting massaged by a professional masseuse, while she never lets Phoebe massage her. This upsets Phoebe, who wants to be the one that massages her. When Phoebe can't stand Monica any longer, Monica agrees that Phoebe can massage her, and it turns out that she likes her massages very much - so much, that she starts making sex noises, which Phoebe doesn't like at all and finds very annoying. As she tells Monica, Monica is afraid that she can't get massages again, but Phoebe knows a way to fix this: she acts that she really likes it, which makes both of them uncomfortable and ends the massages.

I hope you're a better father than you were a friend!!

Joey has a dream about Rachel giving birth to his baby, who turns out to be little baby Ross, exclaiming I hope you're a better father than you were a friend. Just that moment, Rachel storms in: the baby is kicking for the first time. Ross is disappointed that he has to miss all pregnancy-related stuff and wants Rachel to call him every time something happens. When Rachel has Braxton-Hicks contractions, Joey calms her and takes her to the hospital. Ross again comes way too late and when the doctor even thinks that Joey is the father, he feels very left out. Joey then suggests that Rachel moves in with Ross. While Rachel is reluctant at first, she agrees, which kills Joey, as he really liked living with Rachel. He reveals his feelings about living alone to Chandler, and quickly gets so depressed that he asks for a hug, which Chandler gladly gives him.

Phoebe massaging Monica who is making sex noises.

Bob and Faye Bing, whom Chandler hasn't seen in fifteen years, send Monica and Chandler a very ugly punch bowl. Chandler wants to throw it out onto the street, but Monica refuses in case they ever stop by. Chandler wants to put it in the closet by the bathroom, which turns out to be locked, after which Chandler realizes that he has never seen what's in there and when Monica refuses to show it to him, he starts trying to break it open. It doesn't work using his credit card, nor does Joey succeed in opening it with a wire. He finally manages to break the door open all on his own - using his wife's tools. It turns out that there's a giant mess of all kinds of crap behind the closet, which is the reason why Monica wouldn't let him see what's behind it, as she feels really bad about it. She makes him promise not to tell anyone about it, but when he offers to use the closet for storing his own stuff, she is afraid that he might "mess it up".

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

Amanda Carlin - Dr. Long
Richard Penn - Doctor
Joel Berti - Guy in Coffee Shop (uncredited)


Directed By:
Kevin S. Bright

Written By:
Brian Buckner & Sebastian Jones


  • The Magna Doodle in this episode shows a drawing of a hockey goalie.
  • When Joey is talking to Chandler about Rachel just having moved in with Ross, Joey is drinking juice. On the juice bottle the brand name is partly blacked out. Instead of "Minute Maid", it says "Vinut Vaia". But when Joey turns the bottle around, you can clearly see on the back label it says Minute Maid.
  • After discovering what's inside the closet, Chandler jokes "I married Fred Sanford.", This is a reference to the 1970s sitcom Sanford and Son, where Fred Sanford is a junk dealer. After this quote, Chandler proceeds to sing the Sanford and Son theme song. Sanford and Son, like Three's Company mentioned earlier in the series, originated with a British sitcom, in this case Steptoe And Son.
  • Chandler tells Joey "there's got to be a way" when he can't open the closet door. This line was previously used in Joey's TV commercials in "The One With The Metaphorical Tunnel".
  • Monica mentions Enya, a Celtic New Age singer, whose song "Only Time", was heard in the previous episode "The One Where Chandler Takes A Bath". NBC had also used her song in commercials to promote the show during season 8.
  • Rachel moves into Ross' apartment in this episode. She lives with him until the season 9 episode, "The One Where Monica Sings", where she moves back with Joey. However, Rachel moves back in with Ross in the series finale, when they get back together. This is the second time she moves in with Ross as she briefly lived with him around two years ago until she discovered they were still married.
  • In the uncut version, there's extra dialogue from Monica when she is talking about Alexandra giving her a massage and she says, "That's why Alexandra wears earplugs when she gives me a massage". This comes after when Phoebe questions Monica why she makes sex noises while being massaged.
    • However, the beginning of "The One With Joey's Bag" (S5E13), Monica was getting massaged by Chandler and she was not making any sex noises.
  • In the uncut version contains extra dialogue when Ross says to Rachel, "You know, if you stick your hands down your pants, you're the spitting image of Joey" when she is lying down with a can of soda on her belly. Rachel also says, "Living with the father of the baby? Its a little conventional for us". Ross then comments to Rachel, "Hey, you have always liked my building. And there's more room. You can have a closet dedicated to shoes", in which Rachel replies with, "Uh, you do know your audience". In "The One On The Last Night", Monica stated that Rachel has 147 pairs of shoes, though this was clearly an exaggeration.
  • Chandler suggests dropping the bowl from the balcony. In "The One With The Lottery" , Phoebe accidentally drops a glass bowl onto the street containing the gangs' lottery tickets.
  • Chandler wonders what lies behind the green door. In fact it's a way the crew accessed the stage.
  • In this episode, we are shown the "4th wall" of Monica's apartment while Chandler and Joey attempt to open the locked closet.  That 4th wall is sometimes visible from inward facing shots of the balcony. 
  • In the closet we can see a large globe. 5 years earlier, in "The One Where Ross And Rachel Take A Break" Phoebe wondered where her date's country was and Monica said "I have a globe", then brought a tiny "globe/pencil sharpener". Monica must have acquired the large globe in the meantime. There was a large globe visible by the large window during season one and a large globe in the boys apartment for a time, possibly the same one.
  • When Joey is talking to Chandler about Rachel having moved out, Joey mentions that he'll be able to walk around naked again. Rachel later moves back in with Joey after a fight with Ross and in "The One With The Blind Dates", Rachel and Ross comment that Joey has finally put clothes on after the 5th time leaving his bedroom naked. Joey also mentioned naked Thursdays in "The One With Ross' Denial" when Rachel had to move out of Monica's apartment.
  • Joey is understandably upset that Rachel has moved out. After Ross and Rachel get back together in the series finale, Rachel moves back in with Ross leaving Joey on his own again.
  • When Ross arrives late at the hospital, he almost passes the waiting room. In the bloopers for the scene, David Schwimmer actually runs past the waiting room causing Jennifer to burst out laughing. In the next take, Matt and Jennifer hide out of sight so when Ross walks in he can't see them. David calmly walks into the waiting room, doesn't see Jennifer or Matt so without pausing David then calmly leaves the waiting area and continues down the corridor.
  • Joey's dream includes Rachel telling him that the sex they had is "the best she's ever had". In "The One Where Eddie Moves In", Rachel tells Ross the same thing before they sleep together in her bedroom.
  • The tools Chandler uses belong to Monica. These are presumably the same ones which Joey says he left in the park in "The One With The Late Thanksgiving".
  • Joey tells Chandler "easy there, Captain Kirk". Captain James T. Kirk was the captain of the USS Enterprise in the original Star Trek series and the first seven films, briefly rising to the rank of Admiral.
  • It is unusual for Phoebe to knock at Monica's apartment since in most other episodes, she normally just walks in just like the other friends. However, it is possible that she just simply lost her key to the apartment and hasn't told Monica to make up a new copy for it.
  • Rachel and Joey mention the soccer player Mia Hamm. Mia was an international soccer player who represented the USA in two Olympics and World Cups. She retired in 2004 and is married to her second husband, Nomar Garciaparra, a former MLB player with whom she has three children. Mia is part owner of MLS side Los Angeles FC, another part being owned by her husband.


  • In this episode, Monica tells Phoebe that she won't let her massage her because she would feel awkward, and then they talk as if Phoebe has never massaged her. However, in "The One Where Rosita Dies", Phoebe tells them she has only massaged two people that year, in which Monica then states that the two were her and Ross.
  • After Chandler goes to see if Monica has a bobby pin, Joey uses air quotes when sarcastically saying "Monica". However in "The One Where Emma Cries", Joey tells Ross he doesn't know what air quotes mean.
  • When Chandler is going to the closet for the first time to store the punch bowl he tries to open the door with his right hand, but when the camera changes he is with the bowl on his right hand and the left one on the door knob.
  • After Chandler carries the punch bowl into the bedroom, it reappears on the dining table as Phoebe and Monica talk.
  • This episode is about what's behind the closet but in "The One With The Routine", Rachel checks this closet for the presents so they should know what's behind there. Additionally, in "The One With The Boobies", we get a full shot of Monica's closet which is open and appears to have clothes neatly hung with a few storage boxes tucked on a shelf. It was also seen open during "The One With The Dozen Lasagnas" when Rachel was breaking up with Paolo.
  • After Rachel agrees to move in with Ross, as he pats her stomach, you can see the edge of the fake pregnancy belly.
  • In this episode, Joey says that giving Rachel pickles is like giving him a salad. However in "The One Where They're Up All Night" Joey says he should always order both soup and salad.
  • In the scene where Rachel comes in to have Joey feel her stomach, he gets up from the bed and you can see the boxer shorts he is wearing. You can also see them at the end of the scene, even though he is supposed to be naked. In the blooper for this scene, Jennifer does see "it".
  • After taking off the door to the closet, Chandler doesn't pick up his credit card which he'd pushed through earlier.


External links

Episode Navigation

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Preceded by
"The One Where Chandler Takes A Bath"
Season Eight Episodes Followed by
"The One With The Birthing Video"