Season 10 Episode 9

The One with the Birth Mother

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Jan 08, 2004 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
230 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Monica and Chandler travel to Ohio to meet a potential mother for their child, but they're put in an uncomfortable situation when the mom-to-be thinks they're a reverend and doctor. Joey's date picks food off his plate. Rachel picks out an outfit for Ross to wear on a date, but accidentally gives him the bag with her purchases instead.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • The episode that introduces Erica as the birth mother of Chandler and Monica's future children and shows Joey in a pretty poor light.

    This is pretty much a mediocre episode lifted solely by the Birth Mother storyline. The storyline of Joey not sharing food was pretty silly, and pretty much hurt his character. Joey is suppose to be this sweet, gentle and loyal kind of guy and the silliness of him not sharing food which is freshly invented because he has shared food on many occasion with other friends and other people, and I don't think he would stop Emma from eating from his plate. I can understand his attachment to Hugsy since it was his childhood pal but this seems to spiteful and Joey is far from that.

    Ross's storyline of wearing Rachel's cloth was dumb too and a little unrealistic since Ross is much much more larger than her, but still was pretty passable and the credit scene with Joey not sharing food was actually funny unlike the rest of Joey scenes in this episode.

    But the show stealer was Chandler who delivered one of the most terrific, tear jerking speech to Erica convincing her to let him and Monica have the baby. Especially when he tells 'She is a mother without a baby', I was close to tears for the first time in any television show (I haven't cried much in my life, maybe because i am dead inside :p). You can actually feel emphatically with Chandler and Monica's predicament and their joy when Erica consents to give the baby.moreless
  • This is probably one of the best episodes in the series entire 10 year run solely due to continued depth Matthew Perry brings to the role of Chandler Bing

    When the series first started, I was amazed at how well the actors and writers knew these characters from the first scene. Perhaps Joey got a little dimmer with each passing season or Phoebe became more political. But the characters were always well rooted. They were always real!

    This brings me to the character of Chandler Bing who is the most consistently funny characters ever created. Thanks in large part goes to Matthew Perry because any lesser actor would have made this character invisible. The beauty of Matthew Perry is that as sarcastic and homophobic as Chandler Bing is, he equally can be spot on when the charcaters experience stark reality. Both Ross and Joey have their sincere moments as well, but it\'s almost expected in the scene. Those moments tend to be more melodramatic. But Matthew Perry is brilliant in making these moments seem very simple. Very honest. Very real.

    This episode crystalizes the entire essence of Chandler and his only reason for happiness. Monica. In that final scene with Erica as we hear Chandler painstakingly define how important Monica is to him, we never see any crescendos. No moments of melodrama. No actors tricks. It was said as if any of us would have said that about the person we love. And that is Matthew Perry\'s brilliance.moreless
  • So sweet...

    Monica and Chandler fly to Ohio and find out the woman that chose them to adopt her baby think they are a Reverend and a doctor. The story is funny and sweet, and the scene with Chandler and the birth mother is one of the most wonderfully lovely moments in the show's history.

    Ross is hilarious in the pink shirt, and Phoebe and Rachel is very funny in the clothing story.

    But by far the funniest storyline of the episode is Joey not sharing food. When his date comes back and Joey has eaten her dessert, I have probably never laughed as hard at any other moment in the show.

    Season 10 had some funny stuff, maybe not as much as previous seasons. But there is still a lot of great stuff here.moreless
  • funny

    Monica and Chandler travel to Ohio to meet a potential mother for their child, but they're put in an uncomfortable situation when the mom-to-be thinks they're a reverend and doctor but monica plays along just so she can have the baby but they tell the truth and get the baby. Joey's date picks food off his plate which upests him leading him to buy side plates for her to eat. Rachel picks out an outfit for Ross to wear on a date, but accidentally gives him the bag with her purchases instead and ends up going on the date with the same clothes on as his date.moreless
  • Hilarious, emotional, full of laughs

    Matthew Perry shows his emotional, devoted side when there is a mix-up at the adoption agency mistakes Monica for a reverend and Chandler for a doctor. This leads to a hilarious but desperate for a bavy Monica to lie to the baby's mother and take quotes from the bible. When Chandler feels guilty for lying to Erica, he reveals all and has to convince her to let him and Monica have her baby. This is a fantastic storyline which deserves a lot of high credit. Joey goes on a date with one of Phoebe's friends and is annoyed when she keeps taking his food. Phoebe doesnt understand how this could bother him so much but Rachel confirms that 'JOEY DOESNT SHARE FOOD!!!!!!' The way he says it is top-notch. Meanwhile, Rachel buys clothes for Ross for a date but one of their bags get swapped - leading Ross to wear the same top as his date!

    Great, great, great!moreless
Jim O'Heir

Jim O'Heir

Adoption Agency Worker

Guest Star

Annie Parisse

Annie Parisse


Guest Star

Jorge Luis Abreu

Jorge Luis Abreu

The Waiter

Guest Star

Anna Faris

Anna Faris


Recurring Role

Cali Sheldon

Cali Sheldon

Emma Geller-Green [uncredited]

Recurring Role

Noelle Sheldon

Noelle Sheldon

Emma Geller-Green [uncredited]

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (6)

    • Trivia: The cap with the Kangaroo logo donned by Ross at the beginning of this episode is a Kangol, popularized by actor Samuel L. Jackson.

    • Goof: When Chandler tells Erica that Monica is always right, that's not entirely true. Monica was the one who didn't want to tell Erica who they really were, and Chandler had to convince her to be honest with Erica.

    • Continuity: Joey has issues with his date eating off his plate, because "Joey doesn't share food." However in "The One Where Rachel Goes Back to Work" Phoebe asks Joey if she can have a bite of his muffin and some coffee and Joey agrees.

    • Goof: Ross's jacket was open as he was walking in with his date. She could have seen that they were wearing the same shirt already.

    • Continuity: Joey eats and drinks everything, so it's hard to believe that he wouldn't eat his cheesecake because of the "red crap" on top.

    • Goof: When Rachel accidentally switches her shopping bag with Ross's and he ends up with her pink sweater, wouldn't you think that her sweater would barely be able to fit Ross, since he is much larger than she is?

  • QUOTES (13)

    • Joey: I can't believe it. When you guys come back, you're gonna have a baby! That is so weird!
      Chandler: And so incorrect!
      Monica: She's only a couple of months pregnant. She liked our application but who knows if she's gonna like us.
      Ross: Oh, come on, she's gonna love you guys.
      Chandler: Ah, thank you, but we're really trying not to get our hopes up.
      Monica: And a lot could still get in our way.
      Chandler: Yeah. I mean, this girl could decide against adoption or she could like another couple better...
      Phoebe: What are you gonna name the baby?
      Chandler: ...I can develop a condition in which I talk and talk and no one hears a word.

    • Phoebe: (naming a friend Joey slept with and didn't call back) Mandy!
      Joey: Mandy, huh? Uh... really hot blond, big boobs?
      Phoebe: No.
      Joey: (aside to Rachel) That's prob'ly why I don't remember her, huh?
      Rachel: Do you think I'm someone else?
      Joey: (to Phoebe) Okay, I may not have treated your friends well in the past, but I have grown up a lot, really. Honest. (turning to Rachel for support) ...Rach'?
      Rachel: Yeah... Believe it or not, it's true. When Joey and I were together, he was wonderful. He was thoughtful and mature. And for the one week that we went out, he didn't sleep with anybody else.
      Joey: (pointing at himself) Growth!

    • Monica: (before the interview) Well, this is it. Are you okay?
      Chandler: Yeah. Just weird, you know. It's like: "Hi, I'm Chandler. May I have the human growing inside you?"
      Monica: We're gonna be great.
      Chandler: You're gonna be great.
      Monica: Well... obviously!

    • Joey: Joey doesn't share food!

    • Rachel: Ross, look, I know that some of this stuff is out there, but I mean, come on, look at this, look at this sweater! (she picks up a blue sweater). I mean, this is just beautiful!
      Ross: (touching the fabric) Wow, this is really soft. (he looks the price tag). Three hundred and fifty dollars?!
      Rachel: Yeah, down from seven hundred. You are saving, like, two hundred bucks!
      Ross: Both logic and math are taking a serious hit today.

    • Ross: So you're saying, if I wear these pants I might be getting into hers?
      Rachel: (to Phoebe) Why do men keep talking to me like this?

    • Erica: Reverend, does the Bible say anything about adoption?
      Monica: It says "Do it!"

    • Phoebe: I'm not sure about some of the bras I got.
      Rachel: Oh, really? Do you want to try some of them on for me?
      Phoebe: Oh, okay! Wait, are we in Joey's imagination?

    • Chandler: We are not signing those papers!
      Monica: Why not?
      Chandler: It's wrong. They made a mistake. They think we're somebody else.
      Monica: God works in mysterious ways.
      Chandler: You have gotta stop!
      Monica: But she liked us.
      Chandler: She likes "Doctor Chandler" and "Reverend Monica".
      Monica: Well, if you think about it, I am kind of like a Reverend. I mean, as a chef, I serve God, by feeding the hungry and the poor.
      Chandler: Your veal chop is $34.95!

    • Joey: (to the waiter) Excuse me, sir. There seems to be some sort of red crap on my cheesecake.

    • Joey: (about eating his date's dessert) I'm not even sorry.

    • Chandler: The agency must have made some mistake. My wife is not a reverend and I'm not a doctor.
      Erica: What?
      Adoption Agency Worker: That's impossible.
      Chandler: I could perform an operation on you and prove it if you'd like.

    • Chandler: I love my wife more than anything in this world. And it, it kills me that I can't give her a baby. I really want a kid. And when that day finally comes, I'll learn how to be a good dad. But my wife, she's already there. She's a mother without a baby.

  • NOTES (6)


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