What is with all you weirdo Friends theorists? Recently, the Internet was taken with a bonkers Friends alternate ending suggesting that Phoebe, the most wonderful friend of the friends on Friends, was actually a meth-addicted homeless person fantasizing that she knew the other characters. Now, from another twisted mind, comes a re-imagining of this classic comedy as a dark and disturbing exploration of human misery. Thankfully, this one only tarnishes Ross, who probably deserves it.
Writer D.F. Lovett has written a blog post pointing to (what you could very, very generously call) clues in Friends suggesting that at some point, Ross lost custody of his child.
Ross has a son, Ben, who plays a fairly important role in the first several seasons of Friends. But then he disappears. Which makes me wonder if it’s possible that Ross’s disturbing antics have caused him to lose custody of Ben?
Friends was on for ten seasons, but Ben doesn’t show up in person after episode twelve of season eight. He’s only mentioned six times in the remaining fifty-four episodes after his last appearance.
But, most troubling, is that it’s during these remaining fifty-four episodes that Ross’s second child is born. Not only does Ben never meet his new half-sister on screen, but a meeting between the two of them is never even mentioned. We never learn about if Ben has met his sister, if he likes her, if he is a good older brother. We simply never see him again.
Which raises a serious question: does Ross still see Ben? Sure, he mentions Ben in these last two and a half season, but does he have any role in Ben’s life? When he references Ben, is he referencing something that once was, a child he no longer sees or knows?
Lovett points out that Ross has exhibited a lot of erratic, aggressive behavior that might have made him seem like an unfit parent. He "tries to kiss his first cousin," he acts "manipulative and disrespectful in his relationships," and he "sleeps with one of his students." He spends all his free time imagining depressing, doom-filled alternate endings to light, happy television programs (probably). Lovett wonders if all of this points to the idea that Ross's ex-wife decided to "take full custody of her son."
As a thought exercise, here's another alternate ending to this alternate ending: maybe the child actor who played Ross's son had to be somewhere else, like school.