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The One Where Estelle Dies
Season 10, Episode 15
Air date 22 April 2004
Written by Story: Mark Kunerth

Teleplay: David Crane & Marta Kauffman

Directed by Gary Halvorson
Episode guide
The One With Princess Consuela
The One With Rachel's Going Away Party
Paul-rudd-top-11-friends 288x288

"The One Where Estelle Dies" is the 15th episode of season ten of the television sitcom Friends. The episode aired April 22, 2004 on NBC and received generally positive reviews from critics. The story was written by Mark Kunerth and the teleplay was written by David Crane and Marta Kauffman. The episode was watched by an average of 22.64 million viewers, ranking second place for its timeslot.[1] The episode saw the return of Janice to the show, played by Maggie Wheeler.


Rachel (Aniston), having lost her job at Ralph Lauren, received a job offer from Marc. She decides that she wants to move to Paris in order to take the job and returns to tell the friends of the news. When she tells them, they are sad at the idea of her leaving, Joey (LeBlanc) feels estranged because too much is changing and Ross (Schwimmer) says that he wants her living in New York. Ross goes to speak with Rachel's ex-boss, Zelner, to try and ask if he will give Rachel her job back. Ross attempts to buy favours for Rachel by offering a tour around a Museum of Natural History to Zelner's son, Ross (an up and coming paleontologist). Zelner agrees that if he does this then he will give Rachel her job back.

Meanwhile, while reading the obituaries, Phoebe (Kudrow) discovers that Joey's agent, Estelle Leonard, has died. Phoebe tells the friends that they can't tell Joey about this because, after all the changes, he would overreact and she feels it might cause him to go over the edge. She asks them not to disclose it to him for a couple of days until everything blows over. Later, Joey and Phoebe are sitting in Central Perk and Joey is angry at his agent because she did not offer him a role that he felt he was perfect for, he contemplates ringing her, but Phoebe rapidly tries to talk him out of it. Phoebe phone Joey soon after however and he picks up, she pretends to be Estelle and Joey, annoyed that she isn't getting him jobs anymore, fires her.

Back at Joey's apartment, Rachel tells Ross that she was offered her old job again, but she says that, despite Ross's efforts, she is still not going to take the job because the Parisian company offered her more money. Meanwhile, Chandler (Perry) and Monica (Courteney Cox) go and visit the house next door to the one they are contemplating moving in to (for comparison), however they find out that Janice is putting in an offer for the house next door from them. Janice says that she will definitely be buying the house knowing that they will be neighbours. Joey is talking to Phoebe about how he feels bad for firing Estelle, Phoebe tells him not to call her but wait for her to call him.

Ross goes back to Zelner and offers him a pterodactyl egg replica, passing it off as a genuine and Zelner says that he will offer Rachel a raise at his demand. Joey hears a voice recording on his phone saying that Estelle passed away, but soon after Phoebe calls him, pretending to be Estelle and he is surprised that she is calling him from the dead, Phoebe tells him that there were no hard feelings for firing her. Back at house next door to the one they are buying, Chandler pretends to Janice that he still loves her and she tells him that they can't be together, kisses him and leaves, telling him that she won't buy the house because one of them has to be strong. Ross finds out that Rachel finally took the old job, but he feels guilty having crushed her dreams and tells her that she, in fact, should go to Paris. The episode ends in Estelle's memorial service and Al Zebooker eats Joey's speech.

[edit] Reception[]

The episode received generally favourable reviews. ReviewStream.com reviewed the episode positively saying that it was "another funny episode", rating it 8/10.[2] The episode was watched by an average of 22.64 million viewers, ranking second place for the week, narrowly beaten by American Idol.[1]