Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Trim: 6½ x 9⅜
978-1-5381-1273-1 • Hardback • December 2019 • $41.00 • (£32.00)
978-1-5381-1274-8 • eBook • December 2019 • $37.00 • (£28.00)
Jennifer C. Dunn is an associate professor of rhetoric and public culture at Dominican University. She has written and published a number of journal articles, book chapters, edited books, and a textbook, including Pursuing Popular Culture: Researching the Everyday (2017).
Dunn’s in-depth look at ’90s TV phenomenon Friends goes beyond fan service for a warts-and-all examination. Rather than tracing the show’s development and the explosion of its stars’ careers, she instead focuses on the show’s cultural impact, from its place at the top of must-see TV to Jennifer Aniston’s famous haircut to its centering of friendship above both work and family life that set it apart from sitcoms before it. While clearly a fan, Dunn devotes considerable page space to detailed examinations of the show’s postfeminist take on gender dynamics, its problematic portrayal of characters of color, and its lazy reliance on transphobia and fatphobia for easy laughs. . . . Dunn convincingly explains Friends’ role as a reflection of Gen X culture, and this will be appreciated by Friends viewers who, 25 years after its premiere, are interested in a more academic, critical look at its place in pop-culture history.— Booklist
Recommended . . . Dunn’s book is a nuanced and interesting study of a cultural touchstone.— Choice Reviews