|The One With The Apothecary Table|
The new apothecary table Rachel bought
|Written by||Brian Boyle|
|Directed by||Kevin S. Bright|
|Guest stars|| Elle Macpherson - Janine Lecroix|
|Original airdate||January 6, 2000|
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"The One with the Apothecary Table" is the eleventh episode of the sixth season of Friends, which aired on January 6, 2000. The plot concerns Rachel Green buying an apothecary table from Pottery Barn and trying to keep Phoebe from finding out that she bought it from a chain store.
The episode was directed by Kevin S. Bright, written by Brian Boyle (from a story by Zachary Rosenblatt) and guest-stars Elle Macpherson in her final appearance as recurring character Janine Lecroix. The episode and producers attracted criticism for the blatant product placement present in the story.
Rachel buys an apothecary table from Pottery Barn for the apartment she shares with Phoebe. Monica warns her that Phoebe hates mass-produced products and anything that does not have a history. In order to keep the table Rachel pretends to have bought it at a flea market, so Phoebe will think it is an antique. Rachel goes to Ross' place and she realizes that Ross had bought exactly the same aphotecary table at Pottery Barn. Ross disguises the table with some sheets but after spilling wine over it, Phoebe discovers the aphotecary table. Rachel gives the excuse that Pottery Barn copied their "original" apothecary table. Eventually, Rachel ends up buying a lot of home decor from Pottery Barn, still lying about where they were all purchased, saying it was all bought at the flea market. Ross later gives the idea of taking Phoebe to the flea market to buy something of her own. When coming back from the market, Phoebe and Rachel pass by Pottery Barn. Phoebe realizes that the window has exactly the same copy of their living room and finds out Rachel has been lying. Rachel admits she likes the Pottery Barn furniture and does not want to part with it. Phoebe notices a lamp at Pottery Barn, which is the one thing Rachel hadn't bought, she intentionally coerces Rachel to threaten to move out if she does not buy that lamp.
Meanwhile, Joey and Janine go on a double date with Chandler and Monica. When they get home, Janine tells Joey that she cannot stand his friends for two days in a row (Janine thinks Chandler is "blah" and that "Monica talks very loud for a small person") and asks Joey not to go out with them the next day. However Joey and Janine give different excuses leading to Joey confessing the truth to Monica and Chandler. After a second double date, Janine again states that Monica and Chander are very dull. Chandler and Monica hear her remarks and protest. Joey talks to Janine and says that their relationship will never work if she and hisfriends don't bond. Janine leaves and apologises to Monica, which she relunctantly accepts. However, a fight ends up between Monica and Janine and they go down stairs to solve it. After realizing what happened between the girls, Chandler and Joey go watch the fight. Torned because of his feelings for Janine but knowing he did the right thing, Joey breaks up with her and Janine moves out.
Cast and CrewEdit
Kevin S. Bright
Entertainment Weekly rates the episode B+, describing Janine's criticism of Monica and Chandler as inspired, and enjoying the mockery of the "omnipresent" Pottery Barn. The authors of Friends Like Us: The Unofficial Guide to Friends point out that viewers are aware that new characters will not remain on the series for long, citing Paolo, Julie, Richard Burke and Emily Waltham as examples. They further describe Janine's character as lacking personality, suggesting it is either bad writing or bad acting by MacPherson.
In a 2004 feature to mark the end of the series, EW compiled a "best product placement" list, placing this episode at number one. When questioned in 2000 about why there was product placement in the episode, Peter Roth of Warner Bros. played down the criticism by stating that the deal struck with Pottery Barn "offset the high cost of production". The episode had lasting effects for Pottery Barn; in a 2004 interview Patrick Connolly of Williams-Sonoma said the "phones light up with catalog requests every time it airs" in syndication.
This episode is cited in a study of product placement in television.
- This is the last appearance of Janine Lecroix in the show.
- This is the first episode to air after the millennium.
- At the beginning of the episode, Joey says to his friends that he just kissed his roommate Janine. This happens only moments after the previous episode. However, everyone wears different clothes than the previous episode.
- While Phoebe, Ross, and Rachel were watching the movie at Ross' place, there are two glasses of wine. The glasses of wine are purple and blue, but when the camera switches position, the glasses of wine swap places.
| Preceded by|
"The One With The Routine"
|Series Six Episodes|| Followed by |
"The One With The Joke"