If you're naming a baby, why not look to the most nostalgic '90s show ever for inspiration? These baby names inspired by Friends can be obvious odes to the show, or simply subtle nods to this influential sitcom. And given the show's decade-long run, there are a lot of names to use for inspiration.
Airing from September 22, 1994, to May 6, 2004, the sitcom Friends is still super relevant today. In fact, a pop-up for the 25th anniversary of Friends appeared in New York last year, complete with the Central Perk couch. (Tickets for a similar show in Boston are currently sold out.) There's still a huge audience for the antics of Rachel, Ross, and the rest of the gang. In fact, Netflix paid $100 million to stream Friends through 2019, according to the New York Times. Not to be outdone, WarnerMedia paid $425 million total to stream Friends on HBO Max for the next five years, according to Hollywood Reporter. Chances are, the fan base for this particular group of friends isn't going anywhere soon, so it's a fun bit of culture to use for kid naming inspo.
Please note that there are some spoilers for the show ahead, so proceed with caution if you haven't finished watching the entire series yet. Otherwise, read on for all the top names inspired by the folks at Central Perk.
The sarcastic friend, Chandler Bing always got a kick out of roasting his BFF Joey. Played by Matthew Perry, this member of the main cast appeared in every episode of the series. The name Chandler comes from an Old French word for candle, and it signifies brightness, according to Oh Baby Names. Could there be a better name for your kid?
Who could forget Dr. Drake Ramoray, the Days of Our Lives character who brought Joey (some) fame? Granted, the name is more associated with the rapper and songwriter Drake now, but some Friends fans might catch the reference. There's nothing like Joey playing a neurosurgeon, after all. Perhaps he'll grow up to master "smell the fart" acting.
The name of Ross and Rachel's baby, Emma is a classic name. On the show, the name was suggested to the couple by Monica, who wanted to name her own future daughter Emma. In other words, it's one of the most important baby names on the show, and a fine choice for your own kid. Good thing R & R decided against having a "little baby Ruth."
Of course, Emma wasn't the only baby on Friends. Monica and Chandler adopted twins, Erica and Jack, in the last episode. The name Erica means ruler according to Baby Name Wizard, so it's a solid choice for your take-charge baby.
If you want a low-key way to reference Friends, then use the main characters' middle names. For instance, Eustace is Ross’ middle name. At any rate, it's a handy fact to keep in mind for your next Friends trivia night.
Also on the middle name idea, consider this one. Francis is Joey's middle name. For the record, his full name is Joseph Francis Tribbiani Jr. (There's another tidbit for your trivia night.) Of course, there was that brief period of time when he changed his name to Joseph Stalin (good one, Chandler).
The manager of Central Perk, Gunther is one of the show's most recognizable guest characters. Meaning warrior, the name Gunther, according to SheKnows, Gunther is a solid name choice if you're a fan of both coffee and Friends. Here's hoping your kid is luckier in love than the ever-pining barista.
It's back to baby names directly inspired by the show's babies. In this case, Jack is other twin adopted by Monica and Chandler. If you do have twins and happen to name the other one Erica, then you're well on your way to making Friends fandom history.
Chandler's on-and-off girlfriend (and don't forget her hookup with Ross), Janice is the one with that laugh. A form of the name John, Janice according to SheKnows, Janice is the kind of name you don't forget, much like the character. If you name another one of your kids Joey, someday they can go on to enjoy Joey and Janice's day. Of. Fun!
Although Joseph is the full name, your kid will almost certainly go by Joey. Every time you check on the baby, say "How you doin'?" Hey, keeping yourself entertained is all part of parenting, right?
Which of the main six characters has the middle name of Karen? It's Rachel, whose full name is Rachel Karen Green. This is another way to give a subtle nod to the show when naming your baby.
Ross' younger sister and Rachel's BFF, Monica E. Geller is a core member of the Friends cast. Honestly, naming a pair of siblings Ross and Monica would be the ultimate '90's tribute. (In other words, go for it.) Just do the world a favor and vow to teach them that unforgettable New Year's Eve brother/sister dance routine.
It's time for another round of middle name trivia. This one belongs to Chandler, a fact he was less than pleased to share with the group. (Please note that this is a different name from Marcel, the monkey that Ross briefly kept as a pet.)
Few guest characters are as memorable as Nora Tyler Bing, Chandler's mom and the author of best-selling erotic novels (played by Morgan Fairchild, of course). Nora Bing's hair alone is #goals. Plus, Nora is just a lovely name all on its own.
Lisa Kudrow's character Phoebe Buffay danced to the beat of her own drum, and that's what viewers loved about her. The quirky friend who famously sang "Smelly Cat," Pheobe brought a lot of free-spirited silliness to Friends. It's a fun name choice for your kid. Plus, you can call her Phebes.
This was the character whose iconic locks launched a million haircuts. Even if you haven't personally rocked "The Rachel" cut, you can definitely honor your kid with this name. After all, she's the character whose flight from the altar set the whole series in motion.
Played by Tom Selleck, Dr. Richard Burke was Monica's love interest for a time on the show. The characters had to navigate an age difference for their relationship, as well as decide what each of them wanted for the future. In any case, Dr. Burke was a fan fave on the show.
A paleontologist, Dr. Ross Geller rounds out the core group of friends, known for his serial divorces, sandwich-possessiveness and strong feelings about "breaks" from dating. If you do name a baby Ross, please get a matching 'Frankie Say Relax' onesie as well. (Actually, Ross's t-shirts in Friends sometimes had a pretty cool meaning.)
Played by Eddie Cahill, Tag was Rachel's assistant at Polo Ralph Lauren. Although his relationship with Rachel didn't pan out, he's still a fan favorite in the series. Plus, Tag is such a fun and unusual name.
Phoebe's twin might look identical to her sister, but she's as different as can be. If you don't mind naming your kid after a sometimes porn star who "forgets" to tell Phoebe about their mom's suicide note ("Goodbye Phoebe and Ursula. I'll miss you. p.s. Your mom lives in Montauk").