US

Friends fans are left baffled as they berate James Corden’s hosting on reunion special

James Corden’s stint as host of the much-anticipated Friends Reunion special left many viewers baffled on Thursday.

After tuning into the one-off special, fans took to social media to question why the British presenter, 42, was picked as the main presenter, with some suggested that an American star should have been the host.

This comes as MailOnline also reports that James was the number-one choice by all six of the show’s cast members to host the reunion, which saw the stars look back at some of the sitcom’s most iconic moments.

Why him? James Corden’s stint as host of the much-anticipated Friends Reunion special left many viewers baffled on Thursday

James appeared as host when the cast made their way to the show’s iconic brown sofa, placed in front of a replica of the famous fountain that appeared in the opening credits.

Courteney Cox (Monica Gellar), Jennifer Aniston (Rachel Green), Matthew Perry (Chandler Bing), Matt LeBlanc (Joey Tribbiani), Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe Buffay) and David Schwimmer (Ross Gellar) all returned to the sitcom’s original set for the show.

Admitting it would hard to hear the stars during the interview, James proceeded to stand up and turn off the fountain, before chatting to the cast about some of Friends’ most iconic moments.  

Top pick: This comes as MailOnline also reports that James was the number-one choice by all six of the show's cast members to host the reunion

Top pick: This comes as MailOnline also reports that James was the number-one choice by all six of the show’s cast members to host the reunion

Nostalgic: James appeared as host when the cast made their way to the show's iconic brown sofa to look back at some of the US sitcom's gretest moments

Nostalgic: James appeared as host when the cast made their way to the show’s iconic brown sofa to look back at some of the US sitcom’s gretest moments

Talking points including Ross and Rachel’s legendary will-they won’t-they romance, alongside unknown tales around how the stars first landed their famous roles.

However James’ appointment as host puzzled some viewers, who offered questions including why the special even needed a host, and why they didn’t choose an American presenter.

Others suggested that former recurring star Paul Rudd, who did not appear in the special, could have been host, with some fans also stating Conan O’Brien or Andy Cohen could have been good choices.

One wrote: ‘Please don’t text, really mad about James Corden hosting the Friends reunion,’ while another added: ‘Stop putting James Corden on my screen.’

A third penned: ‘I mean I love James Corden, and he did an okay job, but he’s much better on his own show.’

One viewer also tweeted: ‘Why oh why did they get James Corden to host the Friends reunion,’ with a disgruntled fan also tweeting: ‘The #FriendsReunion really didn’t need James Corden. Talk about tainting a good thing.’

‘The #FriendsReunion really didn’t need James Corden. Talk about tainting a good thing,’ with one fan also tweeting: ‘I was looking forward to the #FriendsReunion until I found out James Corden was hosting.’

A fan added: ‘Been so excited for the Friends reunion and then James Corden shows up… why is he everywhere?’

‘So watched the Friends reunion and it’s about 60% good but Lady Gaga and James Corden ruined it.’

Odd option:

Odd option: 

Others were quick to suggest that an American star should have hosted the special, given it was about a US sitcom set in New York with a wholly Stateside cast.

One said: ‘James Corden British accent sooo,’ while another added: ‘James Corden is British. He shouldn’t be hosting this.’

It came after the highly-anticipated Friends reunion was branded ‘bloated’ and jammed with ‘tiresome filler’ by critics. 

James was  widely-panned for his interview with the show’s stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, David Schwimmer and Matthew Perry, with one slamming his ‘banal’ questions. 

While the nostalgic element has been called upon and praised by experts, the lack of awareness towards the more problematic nature of the show set tongues wagging as well as James’ appearance as host. 

'Banal': Critics have slammed James Corden's (L) interview of the Friends cast during the reunion special, which is set to air on HBO Max on Thursday

‘Banal’: Critics have slammed James Corden’s (L) interview of the Friends cast during the reunion special, which is set to air on HBO Max on Thursday

Entertainment Weekly gave the show a grade B in its sharp review, noting there were ‘flashes of reunion magic’ but added: ‘Unfortunately, the bloated, 104-minute (!) special sandwiches these flashes of reunion magic between a lot of silly, tiresome filler…

‘Corden’s interview is banal, though he manages to unearth one (obviously thoroughly vetted in advance) revelation about two of the stars.’

The Hollywood Reporter noted the Late Late Show host, 42, was only able to draw out ‘superficial conversations’ from the cast which resulted in ‘glibness’ rather than ‘introspection.’ 

Deadline claims the reunion will satisfy ‘hardcore’ fans only, noting: ‘If you don’t have a standing order at Central Perk, you’ll probably want to skip the much-hyped, almost two-hour-long shindig that is way more filler than killer, to put it kindly.’  

EW gave it a grade B noting there were 'flashes of reunion magic' during the show, but added: 'Unfortunately, the bloated, 104-minute special sandwiches these flashes of reunion magic between a lot of silly, tiresome filler'

EW gave it a grade B noting there were ‘flashes of reunion magic’ during the show, but added: ‘Unfortunately, the bloated, 104-minute special sandwiches these flashes of reunion magic between a lot of silly, tiresome filler’

The cast of the show received a reported $2.5M appearance fee for the TV special.

The New York Times called Corden’s interview ‘peripheral’ in the ‘sweet, shaggy special’ but it gets ‘better when it gets out of the cast’s way and shows us what drew us to them, and them to each other.’

NYT critic James Poniewozik wrote: ‘There’s plenty you won’t hear about. The contentious contract negotiations…

‘Criticisms of the show for casting mainly white actors; personal or health issues. When an audience member asks what the actors disliked about making the show, Corden jokingly chides, “Way to keep it positive!”‘

THR noted the 42-year-old Late Late Show host (L) was only able to draw out 'superficial conversations' from the cast which resulted in 'glibness' rather than 'introspection'

THR noted the 42-year-old Late Late Show host (L) was only able to draw out ‘superficial conversations’ from the cast which resulted in ‘glibness’ rather than ‘introspection’

When an audience member asked what the actors disliked about making the show, Corden jokingly chided: 'Way to keep it positive!'

When an audience member asked what the actors disliked about making the show, Corden jokingly chided: ‘Way to keep it positive!’

James likely got the gig thanks to the Friends: The Reunion director Ben Winston, who also happens to helm CBS’ Late Late Show With James Corden. 

Variety said the ‘Corden weirdness eventually devolves into a fashion show that ‘can only describe as “unhinged.”‘

‘The live-audience component is ostensibly why HBO Max held off on producing the special earlier,’ Variety critic Caroline Framke wrote.

‘And yet throughout the reunion’s impressive run time of over an hour and a half, it also proves to be the least essential.’

'It felt like every night like I was going to die if they didn't laugh': Variety reported Matthew Perry (2-L) - whose addiction struggles impacted his time on the show - brought a 'palpable unease' to the special

‘It felt like every night like I was going to die if they didn’t laugh’: Variety reported Matthew Perry (2-L) – whose addiction struggles impacted his time on the show – brought a ‘palpable unease’ to the special

Framke said Matthew Perry – whose addiction struggles impacted his time on the show – brought a ‘palpable unease’ to the special.

‘When his castmates talk about staying in touch with each other, he cracks a joke about how he doesn’t hear “from anyone” so dryly that it’s impossible to tell if it’s actually a joke,’ Variety reported.

‘Later, as the rest of the cast laughs about the takes they messed up and how the audience reacted, Perry remembers how he felt every night “like I was going to die if they didn’t laugh,” and acknowledges that “it wasn’t healthy, for sure.”‘

CNN called the 104-minute special ‘big, slightly bloated, and unapologetically nostalgic valentine to fans.’

IndieWire noted: 'The opening shots are the most powerful by far, as each star walks through the studio doors into the recreated NYC apartments'

IndieWire noted: ‘The opening shots are the most powerful by far, as each star walks through the studio doors into the recreated NYC apartments’

Ben Travers wrote: 'Random celebs vouch for the show's bona fides, as if their fandom somehow speaks to the show's value: "Popular people endorsing a popular thing makes them both… more… popular?" Seriously: Why is David Beckham here?'

Ben Travers wrote: ‘Random celebs vouch for the show’s bona fides, as if their fandom somehow speaks to the show’s value: “Popular people endorsing a popular thing makes them both… more… popular?” Seriously: Why is David Beckham here?’

‘It’s inevitably hard-pressed to justify the hype,’ CNN critic Brian Lowry wrote.

‘Working best when it lets the cast casually reminisce, while getting carried away with cameos, some of which, well, couldn’t be more random.’

IndieWire gave it a grade of C- and said that ‘hiring Corden as moderator is an immediate red flag.’

‘Trotting out The Late Late Show host to toss softballs at the cast and cackle hysterically at mundane gossip is exactly the kind of thing that contributes to the perception of Friends as shallow and superficial,’ IndieWire’s Ben Travers wrote.

‘Random celebs vouch for the show’s bona fides, as if their fandom somehow speaks to the show’s value: “Popular people endorsing a popular thing makes them both… more… popular?” Seriously: Why is David Beckham here?’

However, Travers noted: ‘The opening shots are the most powerful by far, as each star walks through the studio doors into the recreated NYC apartments.’

Among the celebrity guest highlights were Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai being described by her best friend Vee Kativhu as ‘Joey with a hint of Phoebe’ and K-pop boyband BTS revealing they learned how to speak English watching Friends. 

Critics seemed to agree on the six stars’ recapturing their chemistry during script readings of episodes ‘The One Where Everybody Finds Out’ and ‘The One Where Ross Finds Out [That Rachel Likes Him].’ 

The Guardian’s Lucy Mangan quipped: ‘We can call it The One That Was Just Good Enough. The One That Was a Nostalgia Fest Not Revisionist History. The One That Did What It Needed to Do. The One That Was Fine.’ 

Also weighing in on James Corden’s appearance was Adam Miller from Metro, who wrote: ‘Concerns when James Corden was announced as host are understandable and, yes, the few minutes he yells questions to the cast like he’s filming an episode of Carpool Karaoke from the back of a jet engine could be done without…

Among the celebrity guest highlights were Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai being described by her best friend Vee Kativhu as 'Joey with a hint of Phoebe' and K-pop boyband BTS revealing they learned how to speak English watching Friends

Among the celebrity guest highlights were Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai being described by her best friend Vee Kativhu as ‘Joey with a hint of Phoebe’ and K-pop boyband BTS revealing they learned how to speak English watching Friends

‘However, without him and his production company we wouldn’t have a reunion at all so it’s a price worth paying.’ 

While The Independent was praising of the cast’s tender connection, the publication stated: ‘ Less successful are the reunion’s more celebrity-filled moments. 

‘Corden, who interviews the cast from the famous fountain they danced in for the show’s opening credits, is its Janice figure: an ear-splitting source of cringe everyone seems to be enduring rather than enjoying. 

‘He was presumably recruited based on the assumption that the reunion needed a moderator. Truthfully, though, the moments in which the cast just sit around and talk amongst themselves are often filled with far deeper and more introspective exchange.

Snapped back into fine form: Critics seemed to agree on the six stars' recapturing their chemistry during script readings of episodes 'The One Where Everybody Finds Out' and 'The One Where Ross Finds Out [That Rachel Likes Him]'

Snapped back into fine form: Critics seemed to agree on the six stars’ recapturing their chemistry during script readings of episodes ‘The One Where Everybody Finds Out’ and ‘The One Where Ross Finds Out [That Rachel Likes Him]’


Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button