Fans rooted for them to be together for years. The will-they-won’t-they drama kept viewers on their toes, waiting for something to happen. Their first kiss melted our hearts, but are they really the best couple on Friends?
There were many other sweet, compatible couples on the show that viewers could support. Ross and Rachel’s back and forth relationship was filled with drama and and dysfunction, overshadowing many other romances that could have been just as passionate and entertaining.
While watching Friends, it’s easy to get caught up in the trivial, “we were on a break” drama of Ross and Rachel and forget that there are other relationships on the show. While the on again, off again aspect of Ross and Rachel is exciting, it's time to explore some other couples that could have been better.
Here are the 15 Couples That Would Have Worked Better Than Ross And Rachel.
15 Ross and Julie
Everyone remembers Julie. Rachel had just realized her feelings for Ross, and she went to the airport to passionately declare her love for Ross as he got off the plane. Viewers were so excited... and then Julie walked out with Ross.
If you’re watching from Rachel’s perspective, you automatically dislike Julie. However, if you view it from Ross’, it makes a lot of sense. His crush on Rachel was going nowhere. Julie is the one who helped him move on from it.
If Rachel wasn’t in the picture, Ross and Julie may have stayed together. When he makes a list to determine if he wants to be with Rachel or Julie, the only con for Julie was “she’s not Rachel."
Julie and Ross were intellectual matches to one another. Rachel never really understood Ross’s “geekier” side, but Julie embraced it. She also got along well with all of his friends and tried to be a part of their lives. They seemed genuinely happy together.
If given the chance, they could have been a better match than Ross and Rachel.
14 Rachel and Joey
When Rachel and Joey got together, it was probably one of the most controversial moments in Friends history. However, the relationship that formed between Rachel and Joey wasn’t really all that random, it was just overshadowed by Ross and Rachel's tension.
Joey hit on Rachel in the pilot episode, after all, so it’s no secret that he’s always been attracted to her. Also, in the episode "The One That Could Have Been", Rachel is attracted to Joey, even if it is in some alternate, nonexistent timeline. Their chemistry was always there, under the surface.
While Ross and Rachel seemed to have constant drama and arguments, she had genuine fun when she was with Joey. She was able to let loose and forget about her problems when he was around since they were already so close. Not only that, but Rachel changed Joey. He fell in love with her, which is huge for him.
Rachel was pregnant at the time, and Joey was ready to be a family man. They had the best kind of love stems from friendship. If they had stayed together, they could have had a beautiful family.
13 Phoebe and David
Although Phoebe and Mike ended up together, one of her exes still stands out. Phoebe and David had serious chemistry, and they were both happy together. It was clear that David and Phoebe loved each other, but David also loved his job. It was a classic conflict that made them break up: career versus love.
If David hadn’t moved to Minsk, he and Phoebe would have ended up together. This is actually confirmed by the original ending for Phoebe’s love life. The actor that played David, Hank Azaria, revealed that the original plan was to bring David back, but Paul Rudd’s character Mike was simply too charming to let go.
David did return for one episode in which he and Phoebe spent one last night together. That certainly gives Ross and Rachel a run for their money.
12 Rachel and Tag
Tag was the dreamy assistant that Rachel hired just because he was handsome. While they were cute together and flirting around the office was fun, Rachel quickly realized she was ready for something more serious than anything that the 24 year old could offer at the time.
Though there was a bit of an age difference, Tag was sweet and always supported her career. Eventually, he was ready to commit to a more serious relationship and told Rachel, but she was pregnant with Ross’s child. If she hadn’t been, she may have chosen to get back with him.
Their relationship didn’t have the ups and downs that Ross and Rachel had. If Tag had been ready to commit earlier, he and Rachel could have had their happily ever after.
11 Chandler and Kathy
While it’s terrible that Kathy and Chandler betrayed Joey, they should have been together all along. Chandler was always incredibly insecure, particularly with women. Kathy is the one who helps him feel more confident and helps him improve his initial fear of intimacy.
Of course, he doesn’t totally move past it-- after seeing her play he becomes obsessed with the idea she’s cheating on him. It is even revealed that she slept with her costar after he freaks out about it. If it hadn’t been for the play and her cheating with her costar, Kathy and Chandler could have made it.
Kathy sleeping with someone else after a fight is a lot like Ross sleeping with someone after a fight with Rachel. Chandler and Kathy could have had the on-again, off-again romance that fans seem to love with Ross and Rachel.
10 Ross and Elizabeth
Ross and Elizabeth were an exciting couple because they started with a secret romance. Hidden relationships always do well with fans. They had a lot of fun together, and Elizabeth often kept Ross on his toes.
However, much like Rachel and Tag, their age difference caused problems. While she could be mature at times, she was much younger than Ross, and he couldn’t seem to let loose the same way she could. After breaking up with her, however, Ross turns around thinking that he had made a mistake (and then she chucks a water balloon at him).
If she hadn’t thrown the balloon, he would have asked for her back. They had a lot of chemistry together, and as she grew older and became more mature they could have been a great match.
9 Monica and Alan
Alan was one of Monica’s earlier boyfriends all the way back in season one. She’s terrified her friends won’t like him, but it turns out to be the complete opposite.
Phoebe, Rachel, Joey, and Ross couldn’t get enough of Alan. If your friends adore your boyfriend, that’s a good sign. He was sweet, charming, and handsome. There’s no real reason why Monica shouldn’t have liked him.
In the first few seasons, Monica was always talking about wanting a boyfriend. She should have given it longer before breaking things off with Alan. It’s hard to know if someone is right for you after only dating them for a short period of time.
Monica and Alan could have clicked, just like her friends did. Additionally, there was no back-and-forth drama like Ross and Rachel, so it would have been simple.
8 Joey and Cecelia
Joey didn’t have many women that he was serious about. His role was the womanizer, so when he developed feelings for someone, you knew it was special. Cecelia, played by Susan Sarandon, was the highlight of Joey’s love life.
Their romance started because he was replacing her character in the soap opera and she was teaching him how to act. Because acting is so important to Joey, he felt closer to her because they shared that particular connection. While they only hooked up once, it was clear that they were drawn to each other and that there were genuine feelings there.
They had great chemistry, but their relationship ended because Cecelia was moving to another country. There was a clear “what could have been” feeling as she told him the news. If Cecelia had stayed in New York, she could have been Joey’s lobster.
7 Rachel and Paul
Bruce Willis played Paul, the attractive father of Ross’ girlfriend Elizabeth. Rachel was immediately attracted to him, and they ended up making out the same day they met. A bit unconventional, yes, but it shows that there was an immediate connection.
Paul was a really “neat guy”, but he could be a little too emotional. Rachel gets him to open the flood gates, and realizes it’s hard to get them to shut again. If she had stayed the course and given Paul a chance, she would have had a very strong, handsome, and sensitive guy.
Her only issue with Paul was that he could get too emotional, whereas she and Ross had too many issues to count. Paul was mature and well-off, and could have been much better for Rachel than Ross.
6 Ross and Charlie
Charlie was the perfect match for Ross. She was beautiful, intelligent, and kind. She was the smartest girl Ross dated-- she was able to keep up with his geeky jokes and actually enjoy them. She even read one of his academic papers before meeting him and admired his work.
Although she dated Joey first, she quickly realized that he couldn’t quite keep up with her the same way Ross could. When she dated Ross, their relationship was fairly drama-free and fun. That is, until her ex-boyfriend came back into the picture...
If it hadn’t been for Charlie’s ex, her and Ross would have been perfect for each other. He took her seriously and wasn’t condescending like he could be with other women. Additionally, Charlie was a much better match for Ross than Rachel, both intellectually and emotionally.
5 Monica and Pete
Pete was one of the highlights of Monica’s love life. He was funny, sweet, and head over heels in love with Monica from day one. He pushed himself to the best person he could be and was confident in himself, and all of her friends liked him.
He was always thinking of Monica, wanting to help her accomplish her all of her goals, such as being a chef. They were happy together and made each other want to be better.
Pete did take it a little too far, though, insisting that he had to be the best at everything, including fighting. Monica couldn’t face the idea of him getting seriously injured or killed in the ring, and decided to end things. If he had given up fighting and asked for Monica back, it would have been her happily ever after.
4 Ross and Emily
While it’s easy to dislike Emily when watching from Rachel’s perspective, she really wasn’t that unreasonable. Her fiancé was best friends with his ex-girlfriend and he said that same ex’s name at the alter. She wasn’t paranoid-- Rachel really wanted Ross back, and it’s kind of weird to be that close with your ex.
Disregarding the Rachel drama, Emily and Ross were cute together. They immediately hit it off, falling in love faster than any other couple on the show. Their relationship seemed like a fairy-tale, starting off with a weekend trip and quickly jumping to marriage.
They had a romantic love story. If Rachel hadn’t been at the wedding and Ross hadn’t said her name, their marriage could have worked out.
3 Phoebe and Gary
Gary and Phoebe had a very unique beginning-- meeting after she used his police badge and tried to impersonate an officer. Lucky for her, he found this act cute, and decided not to press charges. Their relationship took off from there and they quickly found themselves getting serious.
Even though they were moving fast, Phoebe was really into him. They moved in together, and everything was going great... until he shot a bird in front of her as it was chirping in their window. You’d think that, if he was dating her, he would have known she was a vegetarian and wouldn’t be exactly thrilled when he killed an animal.
If it weren’t for the bird incident, Phoebe and Gary could have built a life together. Fans would have loved to see more of their sweet flirting on their television screens.
2 Monica and Richard
Richard and Monica were one of the most iconic couples in the entirety of Friends. Before she ended up with Chandler, he was her great love. He was romantic, understanding, patient, and smart. Richard, played by Tom Selleck, was the person who helped Monica learn to accept herself and fully embrace falling for another person.
They broke up because they wanted different things in life, but their love for each other never fully disappeared. He was the guy that Monica would never fully get over-- she would only be able to move forward.
When Richard reappears and tells Monica that he is ready for kids and all of the things she wants, she truly considers it. While her and Chandler certainly are sweet, Richard was finally offering her everything she ever wanted. If Monica had ended up with him, it would have been just as romantic, if not more so, than Ross and Rachel.
1 Ross and Marcel
Forget Ross and Rachel, it's Ross and his pet monkey Marcel who were the most iconic pairing on Friends. When Ross had to give Marcel away, our hearts immediately broke. We had grown to love the little guy.
Marcel was more than just a monkey; he was also Ross’s best friend. When Ross had nothing else, he always had Marcel to cheer him up. They were inseparable. Ross took him everywhere, even to Monica’s apartment for New Year’s Eve.
The last time Ross saw Marcel was on a movie set, and audiences were so excited to see the two back together again. We wish Marcel could have gone back to live with Ross.
The two could have had a fun-filled, happy life together with many sing-a-longs to "The Lion Sleeps Tonight". Because, let's face it, even Ross and Marcel were a better match than Ross and Rachel.
Do you disagree? Are you pro or anti- Ross and Rachel? Can you think of any other couples on Friends that could have been a better match than Ross and Rachel? Tell us in the comments!