Friends is one of the most admired television programs ever. Millions of people watched the escapades, relationships, and challenges of a group of six friends in New York over 10 years.
On September 22, 1994, the series’ first episode aired. The program will celebrate its 28th birthday on September 22, 2022.
It won’t be a surprise to anyone, it will be said. True, but even in 2022, especially a cult product like Friends has to endure a content reduction due to some incomprehensible morality.
After detecting alterations in a version of the show recently broadcast in mainland China, including the deletion of an LGBTQ subplot, Chinese fans of the TV comedy “Friends” complained of the censorship.
What took place?
Several Chinese streaming services, including Tencent, Youku, and Bilibili, started airing episodes of the well-known series on Friday. It is a product from about thirty years ago, so even across the globe, it is hard to not be familiar with the specifics. Still, soon the viewers recognized something was off.
We are not discussing a joke or a short skit because it is one of the series’ primary subplots. Details like Ross’s ex-lesbian wife’s orientation, which has been suppressed in China, are only one example.
Another instance is when the character in a scene when Joey advises going to a strip club is changed to say, “Just go have fun.”