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151 SEPTEMBER 25, 2003

  'Friends' Throws 27th-Year Party with Sitcom 'Legends'

By Jamie Gadette and Jeremy Mathews


he cast and crew of “Friends” held a celebration in honor of the popular show’s 27th and almost final year on television by inviting all of the gone-but-not-completely forgotten heroes of sitcoms past to an Emmy after-party. “I’m really excited to meet ALF,” Jennifer Aniston said prior to the event. “When I was a little girl, I always dreamed of marrying someone like him. That’s why I really dug Brad in ‘Kalifornia,’ when he was all hairy.”

The bittersweet gala took place at Chin Chin on Sunset, a California chain devoted to creating high-priced Chinese food for white people.

  ALF and Katherine Helmond mourned the loss of Mr. Belvedere at the recent party in honor of the second-to-last season of 'Friends.'

Katherine Helmond (Mona of “Who’s the Boss?”), Pam Dawber (Mindy of “Mork and Mindy”), ALF and Jaleel White (better known as Steve Urkel) attended the all-star event.

“Getting token slots in 1-800-COLLECT commercials just made me feel cheap,” ALF said. “This party reminds me what it’s like to be surrounded by people who pretend to care. It’s wonderful.”

“This is the first time in years that I’ve wanted to placate the people who urge me to recite my catchphrases, like ‘Did I do that?’ and ‘Got any cheese?’” said White. “Well, it’s also one of few times in recent years that someone has asked me.”

Gary Coleman was also on hand to sign copies of his self-released “Diff’rent Strokes” limited-edition DVD. The diminutive (in physical stature) former child star also took the opportunity to champion his candidacy for governor in the California recall election. “Unlike Arnold [Schwarzenegger, Republican frontrunner in the election], I love women. I don’t imagine there’s anything better than coming.”

Attendees appeared confused following Coleman’s impromptu oration. Thanks to the short attention spans that their profession requires, however, the actors and actresses quickly turned the conversation to more pressing matters. The most heated topic surfaced when Matt LeBlanc mentioned his fondness for skeet shooting.

“I heard Ben [Affleck, frontrunner for the leading role in the upcoming David Lynch film, “Man Without a Personality”] is thinking about purchasing himself a gun,” Courtney Cox Onassis Arquette said while attaching a bib to husband David Arquette’s neck. “He said he wanted to start hunting, but I think he’s just sick of the paparazzi.”

“Oh, the poor lad,” said Mon…er, Helmond, “trying to compensate for that which he couldn’t give J. Lo [aka Jennifer Lopez, frontrunner to star in the upcoming Nora Ephron film, “My Best Friends Like to Speak With Gossip Columnists”].

This statement caused a near-riot when David Schwimmer jumped up with what some of Lopez’s friends called “a crazed look in his eyes” and shouted “You bastard, don’t slander Ben’s and Jen’s good and rhyming names! They’re not broken up, they’re just faking it so they can get married without the dirty press snooping around everywhere. Are you really too stupid to see that? Are you?”

“Get over it, Mr. I’m-a-Loser-Who-Doesn’t-Have-His-Own-Spinoff,” said LeBlanc, whose publicist reports that prior to the confrontation, the star hadn’t read the articles in which Lopez’s friends revealed Schwimmer’s resentment that NBC didn’t offer him his own show.

“Spinoffs only exist so that money-grubbing hacks can make a few bucks by pushing an auxiliary character into the spotlight when it’s clear that he can’t sustain his own show,” returned Schwimmer. This started a fist fight between him and White, who became famous on “Family Matters,” a spinoff of “Perfect Strangers.”

“I thought that they were all friends in real life,” Dawber said.

Soon, however, the fighting subsided and the party broke up. All guests left, happily reporting the authenticity of the Chinese food. Everyone agreed that the party was pretty average. The conflicts didn’t even phase David Arquette, who spent the whole event sitting with his bib on, repeating the sentence, “Giant spiders, dog-flatulence jokes…what was I thinking?

“It was boring—not even half as interesting as the weekly TGIF-block wrap parties. Now those were fun,” said White.

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