Even if you haven't seen every episode of "Friends," you probably know the general trajectory of the Ross and Rachel story. It got a little tired for even the most die-hard fans of the show -- that back and forth can weigh on you over 10 seasons -- but the fact of the matter is that Ross and Rachel were supposed to end up together, case closed.
Part of the not-so-straight road to love for these lobsters was Ross' marriage to Emily Waltham. Their romance was expedited, to say the least, and their wedding was...not so great. In the two-part season 4 finale of "Friends," the gang (sans pregnant Phoebe) heads to London for Ross' wedding. Rachel, realizing she's actually still in love with Ross after their break-up the previous season, lags behind, showing up just before the ceremony. As Ross recites his vows, he infamously utters, "I, Ross, take thee Rachel..."
Turns out, that blunder was inspired by David Schwimmer's own recitation mistake. In his new tell-all book "Generation Friends: An Inside Look at the Show That Defined a Television Era," pop culture historian Saul Austerlitz puts together exclusive interviews and secret, lost plotlines from the classic '90s sitcom. In one anecdote, Austerlitz talks about how creators and producers had no idea how to end the wedding episodes while they were filming them.
While Schwimmer was running lines for a different scene, he was supposed to say, "Emily, the taxi's here," but swapped the names: "Rachel, the taxi's here."
According to Austerlitz's book, "[producer] Greg Malins turned to [creator] David Crane and said, 'That’s what happens.'"
As a result, producers wrote the script to have Ross say the wrong name during his wedding vows, which easily could have sown the oats for his and Rachel's story over the remaining six seasons.
I mean, there are plenty of other reasons Emily and Ross may not have stayed together (not living in the same country, rushing into marriage, Ross being generally insufferable), allowing him and Rachel to rekindle a romance, but this definitely made for better television.