Friends vs HIMYM: Why Pick One When They’re Both Actually The Same

There are two kinds of people in this world; those who love Friends and those who love How I Met Your Mother (and then there’s me who loves both). But upon scrutinizing both shows, I’ve come to the stark realisation that both the shows are pretty much the same in some respects.
The first similarity being that they both feature a gang of twenty something year olds and their lives in Manhattan.


The second similarity lies in the setting of the show.

Both the shows are set in New York and are mainly shot in two locales namely:

Central Perk in Friends and MacLaren’s Bar in HIMYM.

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The apartment above the hangout place which belongs to a member of the group

In Friends the hub is Monica and Rachel’s apartment whereas in HIMYM the hotspot is owned by Marshall and Ted.

The other similarities lie in the characters and the plotlines of the shows. So let’s continue our comprehensive evaluation one character at a time.

The nerdy guy

The similarity between Ross Gellar and Ted Mosby is staggering. Not only are Ross and Ted both excessively nerdy guys with an ardent love for star wars and insignificant details that no one else cares about.What’s more hilarious is that they both have similar defining physical features!

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Ross and Ted both had pretty boring jobs before they eventually took up positions as university professors.


Not to mention Ross and Ted both fell in love with the girl newly introduced to the group in the pilot episode.


And Ross and Ted both proceeded to have an on/off relationship for quite a while until it finally didn’t work out.

In addition, they both have a troubled romantic life. Ted being left at the altar twice, and Ross, well, he was divorced three times (yikes!).


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Ross and Ted both spend a lot of time correcting the others’ grammar.


And in their time as professors, they both dated a student at some point.

The guy who always wears suits

Chandler Bing and Barney Stinson are the two top guys who are almost always seen on the show wearing suits. And both of them are primarily defined in their gangs for the use of their humour, where Barney sticks to exaggerated humour and Chandler’s humour is more situational and sarcastic.

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Additionally, Chandler and Barney both have jobs that literally no one else actually knows about.


Not to mention that Chandler and Barney both are mysteriously quite rich. Though no one has any idea where all that money comes from.

The mom figure

Yes folks, we all know that ultimately, Lily and Monica can be summed up as the ‘moms’ of their friend groups where both are slightly more practical than the rest of the characters and keep them all on track throughout the show.


Apart from simply the mom role, Lily and Monica both marry a character in the friend group and hence are known in the group for their long term relationship.

Both girls also follow their dreams (art for Lily and cooking for Monica) which eventually towards the latter seasons leads to a progressive career.

The career oriented girl

Rachel and Robin are both the perfect examples of the career oriented members of the social circle. But both of them are often not taken seriously due to their gorgeous looks.


Rachel and Robin were both initially introduced as a new friend to the already existing groups in the pilots of the two shows from where they both went on to delve into an on/off relationship with the nerdy guy of the group.


Not only this, but they both enter into relationships with the “playboy” of the group (Joey in Friends and Barney in HIMYM) for a brief period of time in the show before it goes downhill between them.

And of course, in the very last episode, Rachel and Robin both manage to end up with their own old nerdy guys respectively (Ross and Ted).


The nice guy

There exists a sweet guy in both the shows, who is evidently stuck in a job that he hates. Chandler and Marshal both end up taking a break in between to become stay-at-home dads. Moreover, they’re both physically defined by a slightly broad face and build and somewhere between brown and dirty blonde hair.


Both the sweet guys, namely Marshall in HIMYM and Chandler in Friends eventually marry the moms (Lily and Monica) of their respective groups and they were both college roommates with the ‘nerdy guy’ of their group.

The ‘Playboy’

Barney Stinson and Joey Tribbani may look staggeringly different but are in many ways, the same in one vital aspect; they both are the casanovas of their groups and have barely ever been turned down from a date.


They both date the career oriented girls of their groups and give up their womanizing for her as a show of their love.

Not to mention, Joey and Barney both officiate the weddings of the married couples in their groups.



Source : thedoublevision

Now, with the major character and storyline similarties set aside, there’s a few other similarties that I feel need to be addressed:

Both the groups had a member who made songs


With Phoebe in Friends and Marshall inHIMYM  both the friend groups had their share of homemade songs to clap and sing along to.

This girl was dumped in both the shows on her birthday


Believe it or not, it’s true, she got dumped on the day of her birthday in both shows. This is just brutal.

The regular Bartender/Barista in the hangout place

Gunther and Carl both make frequent cameos in the show with their stagnant presence in the background.

The legacy of long lost dads

Barney and Phoebe both had to face the reality of encountering their ‘long lost father’.

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About the author /

Shraya is currently an engineering student with a flair for writing. Apart from being a student she is a part time Jedi and inhabitant of Middle Earth with and has an insatiable love for books and fantasy. But in truth she is a storyteller; the purpose of a storyteller is not to tell you how to think but to give you questions to think upon, and that is what she does.

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