Ah, the friend zone. When it comes to relationships and crushes, there are few things worse than being stuck there. No one likes to hear their crush of all crushes say something like, “Aw, you are SUCH a good friend,” or “I need some advice on this person I like.” Ugh.
I’ve learned a lot about the friend zone thanks to some of my favorite TV shows and movies. There are tons of fictional characters out there who were stuck in the friend zone. Since that’s Hollywood and not real life, most of these characters eventually leave the friend zone – but that doesn’t mean we can’t feel for them as they deal with it over, like, seven consecutive seasons or whatever. Check out these TV and movie characters from the ’90s (and early 2000’s) who helped us realize how much it sucks to be friend zoned.
Doug from DougPoor Doug. If you ever wanted to know what the friend zone looks like, watch this show. The entire time it was on-air, Doug was obsessed with Patty Mayonnaise... but she could never figure it out and he could never tell her, for one reason or another. The series ends on a hopeful note, though: Patty asks him to a dance. However, we never see what happens. Bummer.
Gordo from Lizzie McGuireGordo was another character forever stuck in the friend zone. He was one of Lizzie's BFFs and that's exactly how she saw him - as her BFF. While she went on and on about her love for that doofus Ethan, lovable and adorable Gordo sat on the sidelines. They FINALLY got together at the end of The Lizzie McGuire Movie, but we never got to experience their relationship.
Quasimodo from The Hunchback Of Notre DamePoor, poor Quasimodo. Not only is he an orphan with a terrible excuse for an adopted father and is completely hated by everyone for no reason, but he also has to deal with the friend zone. I mean, Quasimodo literally risks his life for Esmeralda yet she's still all like, "you're such a great friend!" Sad face.
Luke from Gilmore GirlsThankfully, Luke was able to move past the friend zone, otherwise I don't know what I would have done with myself. But for the first few seasons of Gilmore Girls, we watch Luke pour Lorelai coffee and give her advice while she dates every other guy ever. We also watch him basically bend over backwards for her and do everything she could ever want and then when people are like, "Lorelai, Luke loves you," she's all like, "What? No. We're BFFs. He pours me coffee." Finally, FINALLY, Luke managed to get past his friend status. What a hero.
Roger from Sister, SisterWatching Roger on Sister, Sister was sort like watching your annoying little brother on TV. He was constantly crushing on Tia and Tamara even though they were SO mean to him most of the time. He was stuck in the friend zone for a while and totally knew it, until he dated one (or both?) of the girls. Then he sort of just... disappeared.
Sam from Freaks & GeeksSam is an example of how sometimes being in the friend zone might be even better than actually getting out of it. Sam spent most of his pre-pubescent time lusting after Cindy, who, for a while, didn't think of him as anything than a good pal (that's because Sam was a "geek" and Cindy was a popular cheerleader). Then Sam managed to start dating Cindy, only to realize that she was... totally boring. Ugh.
Ross from FriendsPoor Ross. I always had a soft spot for him, especially watching him fall all over himself in front of Rachel in the beginning of the show and in every single flashback they did. After, like, half his life, Ross managed to get himself out of the friend zone and date Rachel until he totally messed up (yeah, I know, they were on a break) and things got weird. And then the rest of the story is way too complicated. But let's just say that in the beginning of Friends, Ross was the definition of friend zone.
Screech from Saved By The BellDuring the majority of Saved By The Bell, Screech was obsessed with Lisa... obviously she wasn't into him because, you know, he was Screech and he was weird. Thank God for their little Hawaii vacation, or he might have never gotten out of the friend zone.
Urkel from Family MattersThis is yet another TV show where the nerdy but sweet underdog is stuck in the friend zone because he's in love with the cool, beautiful, popular girl. How did this not get old, fast? Urkel was always in love with Laura, but she didn't give him much attention until the end of the series, when they finally ended up together.
Snape from Harry PotterI know Snape and Harry Potter aren't really from the '90s, but I couldn't make a character friend zone list without including Snape because he was in the ULTIMATE friend zone relationship. He spent his entire life being in love with Harry's mom, only to have her end up marrying his worst enemy. Even after she died, Snap was so devoted to her that he basically dedicated his life to protecting her son. It almost makes you want to give him a hug.
Which of these characters is your favorite? Have you ever been stuck in the friend zone? Which characters did I miss? Tell me in the comments!