Season 5 Episode 4

The One Where Phoebe Hates PBS

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Oct 15, 1998 on NBC

Episode Recap

Rachel knocks on Monica's bedroom door. Monica, thinking it's Chandler knocking, tells her to come in. Rachel opens the door to find Monica in a very compromising position. Monica tells her that she was waiting for a guy from work whom she has begun dating. Joey and Ross enter, having been thrown out of a movie theater because Ross was talking too loudly on his cell phone. He's on the phone with one of Emily's relatives, trying to get Emily to talk to him. Chandler comes in at last with a bottle of champagne. Seeing that everyone is there, he tells them the champagne is to celebrate that his office "finally got wrinkle-free fax paper".

The next morning, Joey enters Monica and Rachel's apartment wearing a tuxedo. His agent has gotten him a job co-hosting a PBS telethon. Phoebe informs the others that she doesn't like PBS because she wrote to Sesame Street after her mom killed herself, looking for some emotional support, and all she got back was a key chain. Joey says he just wanted to do a good deed for PBS, like the good deed Phoebe did having Frank's triplets. Phoebe says that Joey's just looking for TV exposure, so his "good deed" is really selfish, and Joey argues that all good deeds are selfish because they make the person doing them feel good. Phoebe vows to find a selfless good deed and prove Joey wrong.

Emily finally calls Ross's cell phone, but it's only to tell him to stop harassing her relatives. He tells her he will call everyone in England if that's what it takes to get her to talk to him, and she confesses that she misses him and the two finally have their first conversation since the wedding.

At the coffeehouse, Rachel asks Chandler if he's heard about Monica's new secret boyfriend, the "guy from work". Rachel reveals that Monica said her new boyfriend is the best sex she's ever had, and Chandler is elated. Ross enters and tells Monica, Chandler, and Rachel that Emily is willing to work on the relationship if Ross moves to London. Ross wants to convince Carol and Susan to move to London with Ben, but Monica doesn't think there's too much chance of that happening.

At Joey's telethon, he finds out there's been a mix-up at his agent's office, and instead of co-hosting, he's answering phones and taking pledges. Meanwhile, Phoebe laments her continuing inability to find a selfless good deed to Monica and Rachel. Chandler enters to ask Monica a "cooking question": "If you're cooking, on the stove…does that mean that your new secret boyfriend is better in bed than Richard?" Monica declines to answer, saying she wants to respect her new boyfriend's privacy. Chandler says that if it was him who had found out that he was the best she'd ever had, he'd be dancing, and proceeds to give a demonstration of his dancing skills on top of Monica's coffee table.

At Ross's apartment, Ross is on the phone with Emily and tells her that he cannot move to London without Ben. He tries to convince her to come to New York instead, and she agrees on one condition: that Ross doesn't see Rachel anymore. At Monica's apartment, Ross tells Chandler, Monica, and Phoebe about Emily's ultimatum, and they don't know what to do about it any more than he does. Joey calls the apartment and Monica answers. He tells her about the mix-up but figures he's still on TV, so that's good exposure, until Monica tells him they've been watching all day and he hasn't shown up on screen once.

Chandler's alone in his apartment when Monica enters, looking for a broiling pan that Joey borrowed. He tells her they used it when the duck was throwing up caterpillars, and agrees to buy her a new one. He tells her Joey's going to be gone for the rest of the day, and wants to know if she wants to "book some time" with the best she's ever had. Monica says she'll pass; she's angry about Chandler's dance number back at her place.

Phoebe calls Joey at the telethon to inform him that she finally found a selfless good deed: she let a bee sting her. She figures the bee is happy and she is not, until Joey tells her that the bee most likely died after he stung her. Joey hangs up, and tries to get one of the other volunteers who's in front of the camera to switch phones with him. The man refuses, and the two get into a wrestling match.

Ross storms into Monica's apartment. He's decided he can't decide between Emily and Rachel, so he's going to let a Magic Eight Ball decide for him. However, the Magic Eight Ball keeps telling him to "Ask again later". He declares that it is broken, but Monica tries it, asking, "Will Chandler have sex tonight?" The Eight Ball says, "Don't count on it," and she says it seems like it works to her.

Phoebe calls Joey at the telethon again, this time to donate $200. She's still mad at PBS, but she knows that "they bring happiness to lots of kids whose moms didn't kill themselves", so she's doing a good thing, but isn't happy about it. Phoebe's sure she's found her selfless good deed, until the host says that Phoebe's pledge put them over the edge to surpass the previous year's pledge total. This gets Joey on TV at last, since he was the one who took the pledge, and now Phoebe feels good because her pledge got Joey on TV.

Chandler finds Monica in her apartment. He tells her that he may have gotten carried away before, but if he's the best she's ever had, it's only because Monica made him the best. He says he was nothing before her, but that they're great together. He tells her he understands if she never wants to sleep with him again, but that that would be wrong, because they are too good together, and they "owe it to sex". Monica agrees to forgive him, and they are happily reunited.

Ross is alone in his apartment, trying to fix the Magic Eight Ball, when Rachel knocks on the door. The two of them were supposed to go see a movie, but Ross asks to take a rain check since he's waiting for a call from Emily. Rachel says she heard Emily is willing to come to New York, but Ross tells her that it's complicated, and that there is still "relationship stuff" to be worked out. Rachel offers to help, but he tells her he has to do it without her help. Rachel tells him to just fix whatever Emily wants fixed, because he'll hate himself if he doesn't try. Emily calls and Ross tells her that he can do what she wanted him to do. Rachel hugs Ross, unaware that the thing he just agreed to is not to see her anymore.