Moments Joey Was Secretly Brilliant on ‘Friends’

Moments Joey Was Secretly Brilliant on ‘Friends’

Joey Tribbiani contained multitudes. He was a ladies man, a sandwich connoisseur and a Sigmund Freud impersonator.

But throughout Friends (and probably his time on Joey, who the hell knows), it was clear that Joey wasn’t exactly the sharpest giant poking device in the… wherever you keep giant poking devices. But despite the plethora of storylines in which Joey looked like a total dum-dum, such as the time he attempted to learn French, Joey also showed the occasional nuggets of unheralded genius, like when…

He Fixed the Radiator That Ruined a Christmas Party

Joey and Chandler were busy with Phoebe tracking down her birth father when Monica and Rachel were forced to throw a Christmas party in a sweltering hot apartment thanks to a faulty radiator. Even the building’s super couldn’t do anything about the hellish temperatures due to the lack of spare knobs. But when Joey returns, long after the party is over, he switches the radiator off at the bottom, bypassing the need for a new knob and ending the sauna-like existence his friends had been condemned to.

Joey’s Culinary Palate Was More Sophisticated Than Monica’s

One famous moment presented in the show as Joey being a mindless eating machine was when he happily consumed Rachel’s botched trifle, which contained custard, jam and ground beef. But it’s not so absurd to combine sweet food items with meat — people put mint jelly on lamb, Monte Cristo sandwiches are soaked in custard and dipped in raspberry jam and a staple of Thanksgiving is cranberry sauce for the turkey. Hell, you can buy a hamburger with a donut instead of a bun in this country. Is Joey’s taste really so out there? And how is Joey more open-minded than Monica, a literal professional chef

This is just further evidence that Monica’s culinary skills were pretty mid.

Joey Figured Out Monica and Chandler’s Secret Before Anyone Else

Even though it should have been painfully obvious to absolutely everyone, it was Joey who first figured out that Chandler and Monica were hooking up after piecing together clues that included a missing eyelash curler and… Donald Trump?

He Understood the Correlation Between Taste and Smell

When Chandler attempted to steal a whiff of Joey’s precious meatball sub, Joey chastised him, claiming that “half the taste is in the smell.” While Joey may have been a little off base in terms of the sandwich containing a finite amount of smelliness that could be stolen, he was right that taste and smell are intimately connected; it’s actually even more than Joey estimated, reportedly “our sense of smell is responsible for about 80 percent of what we taste.”

No, There’s Nothing Wrong With a Man Carrying a Purse

Joey was right: There’s absolutely nothing wrong with a man carrying a fancy handbag. The rest of his so-called “friends” were entirely wrong to bully him into giving it up.

Condoms Would Be Handy in the Apocalypse, Actually

During Ross and Rachel’s big break-up fight, the rest of the gang holed up in Monica’s room, where Joey has stashed a number of items, including condoms — just in case there’s an apocalyptic disaster and they have to “repopulate the Earth.”

Chandler made a snarky comment about how condoms aren’t the best way to save the human species — and while he’s technically right, Joey’s instinct to stock condoms in the event of an apocalypse was a good one. Depending on the state of the world, the survivors may want to have sex without bringing new lives into the world. Planned Parenthood even included condoms on their list of items to store in the event of a zombie apocalypse because they provide “birth control and STI prevention in one!”

Moo Point Just Makes More Sense

In one episode, Joey mistakenly said “moo point” instead of “moot point,” but when Rachel called him on it, he had an entire, surprisingly rational explanation for the saying: “Like a cow’s opinion, it doesn’t matter. It’s moo.” Which is more than most people could say to defend the word “moot.”

Joey Wasn’t Wrong to Want to Aestheticize Hands

Joey once saw the potential entertainment value in a double act featuring him and his identical hand twin — pretty stupid, right? Wrong.

Joey may have been onto something here. Some of history’s greatest artists have focused on the aestheticization of hands, including surrealist masters Salvador Dali and Man Ray. And while you hear more about foot fetishes, hand fetishism is totally a thing as well. Joey and his blackjack-dealing buddy easily could have been on the vanguard of that extremely specific market, with “Joey Tribbiani” becoming the most popular search on Celebrity Wikihands.

You (yes, you) should follow JM on Twitter (if it still exists by the time you’re reading this). 

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