Phoebe's Ending in 'Friends' Was Originally Supposed to Be Very Different

Really happy this isn't how things worked out.

Phoebe may have had a rough start to life, but by the end of Friends, she was in a great place, married to the love of her life: Mike Hannigan.

Except now it turns out that Hank Azaria, who played Phoebe's scientist boyfriend David, has revealed that things were supposed to end differently for dear old Pheebs. On the show, their relationship ended when he went to Minsk to do important research, but they had some good times.

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Later, Phoebe falls in love with Mike, but they break up after Mike says he never wants to marry again because of his failed first marriage. David comes back from Minsk and proposes to Phoebe, leading Mike to propose to her, too.

She turns down both of them but gets back together with Mike and marries him later on because he's her lobster.

Well, it turns out, Phoebe was supposed to end up with David, but Mike, aka Paul Rudd, was so damn charming that they had to change the storyline.

"The plan always was kind of to bring [David] back," Hank said in a recent interview with The Huffington Post (opens in new tab). "I think, honestly, what happened was Paul Rudd is so awesome that they sort of found a groove with him and [my character] became more of just the grist for that mill. As opposed to the other way around."

He was a bit disappointed for the guy, as we all were. "It actually did sting a little bit," he said. "Whatever part of me is David the science guy who went to Minsk, which admittedly is probably a small part of me [laughs], but that part of me wanted to end up with Phoebe. So I was sort of sad when I didn't."

But even he had to concede that Mike was The One. "He certainly has gone on to prove that he was comedically deserving of Phoebe's love."

No doubt.

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Diana Bruk
Diana Bruk

My writing has regularly appeared in The New York Times, The Paris Review, Salon, VICE, Guernica, The New York Observer, BuzzFeed, Cosmopolitan, Seventeen, Esquire, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, and many more publications.

I was previously the Senior News Editor at Best Life Online and the Viral Content Editor in the Newsroom of Hearst Digital Media. My portfolio consists of a vast and diverse body of work that includes personal essays, lifestyle articles, breaking news posts, and viral content. My areas of expertise, however, are Russia, sex and relationships, and mental wellness.