While fans might not know the name James Michael Tyler, they probably recognize his face as Gunther, the sarcastic and often exasperated barista at Central Perk who annoyed the living hell out of Rachel throughout her time in New York on Friends. Gunther’s crush on Rachel was one of the show’s greatest secrets that fans had always wondered about. Thankfully, now thanks to Mr. Tyler himself, we can finally confirm that there was definitely something more between Gunther and Rachel than meets the eye! Secret Love: Gunther and Rachel’s Hidden Romance on Friends
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While he was a recurring character in every season of Friends, James Michael Tyler didn’t come to appreciate his role until after it was over. The actor is best known for his recurring role as Gunther, Central Perk’s ever-grumpy barista. But little did viewers know that they were watching some incredible chemistry between two fictional characters; one that was actually rooted in reality. During an interview with Ellen DeGeneres, Tyler revealed that he and Jennifer Aniston were engaged to be married in real life—but for many years had managed to keep their relationship a secret from their close friends due to his role on the show.
The One with Ross’ Denial
When Monica confesses her love for Ross to Phoebe, she realises that he already has a crush on Rachel. Although Phoebe tells her that it is too late because Ross is interested in someone else, she still tries to win him over with a kiss. She sees what an effect it has had when Joey asks if they have made up yet,
but is determined not to let it get in her way of having a relationship with Ross. She manipulates events so that Ross can see how much better he could do than Rachel. She also gives him advice about kissing women, based on what she knows from watching Janice kiss Chandler, as well as allowing herself to be kissed by him so that he will practice.
The One with Joey’s Big Break
Season 5, Episode 10 of Friends (1999-2004) sees Joey audition for a part in a sitcom after he was convinced by his agent that he was destined to be the next big thing. Unfortunately, it doesn’t go as planned. But, according to James Michael Tyler (who plays Central Perk barista Gunther), it could have been very different. In an interview with Maxim Magazine , he explained that producers originally wanted him to be another main character … but not for long.
The One with Phoebe’s Cookies
If there’s one thing that could be said about Friends, it is that it presented a unique set of love stories. Chandler Bing (Matthew Perry) was in love with his best friend Monica Geller (Courteney Cox). Ross Geller (David Schwimmer) was in love with Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston), who he married at first opportunity. Meanwhile, Phoebe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow) fell in love with her brother-in-law, as well as a postman named Bill. And then there’s Gunther. The barista at Central Perk seemed to have feelings for every female regular customer—but did he also have feelings for one of his coworkers?
The One Where Monica Sings
Monica Geller (Courteney Cox) tries to keep a secret from her boyfriend, Chandler Bing (Matthew Perry). In The One With The Secret Closet she sings at Central Perk. A deleted scene also shows that Monica’s song was all about Chandler. In another deleted scene, Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) tells Joey (Matt LeBlanc) that Monica loves him when she sang I’ll Be There For You. However, viewers never got to see what happened next as CBS didn’t allow scenes with sexual content in them. This left fans wondering if Monica had gone through with it or not.
The One with All the Kissing
The last episode of Friends was broadcast on May 6, 2004. The final scene shows a series of video clips of Monica (Courteney Cox), Chandler (Matthew Perry), Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow), Joey (Matt LeBlanc) and Ross (David Schwimmer) projected onto New York City skyscrapers as comic book-style words flash across them — 15 years, 194 episodes, etc. The four friends look at each other, smile and say, We were on a break! Then they all turn to look at Rachel. Finally, there is a close-up shot of her eyes opening.
The One Where Ross is Fine
Ross’s relationship with his quirky pal, Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston), is arguably one of TV’s most memorable bromances. However, viewers who were paying close attention may have also noticed that Ross, played by David Schwimmer, had a secret crush on fellow coffee shop employee Gunther. At first glance, there didn’t seem to be anything special about him—but it turns out he was hiding some serious fanboy feelings for our favorite girl next door. In fact, in season 1 episode 13 The One Where Underdog Gets Away, Ross goes so far as to leave a message in his journal confessing his true feelings for…Rachel!
The One Where Emma Cries
One of my favorite episodes is The One with Rachel’s Going Away Party. It was not only one of Phoebe’s greatest songs, but it also included a scene that featured some secret love. In many ways, I believe that if we watched Friends from an objective point of view (which obviously isn’t possible), we’d see a lot more in-between moments like these that showed how special their friendship really was. In The One with Rachel’s Going Away Party, James Michael Tyler does an amazing job as Gunther, who couldn’t hide his sadness about losing Rachel from Chandler.
The Last One (The Final)
In season 9, Monica buys a pregnancy test after being late for her period. She tells no one, as she is afraid that if she does, everyone will be looking at her like some big fat pregnant lady. When Phoebe finds out that Monica has been lying to them all, she confronts her. Monica admits it but begs Phoebe not to tell anyone else. The day before Thanksgiving, Phoebe goes into labor.