After over a year of pandemic-induced delays, Friends: The Reunion has finally arrived on HBO Max. Just like the classic sitcom did, the special welcomes on a number of celebrity guests, ranging from host James Corden to BTS to Tom Selleck. One of the biggest names to join the original cast on the recreated Friends set is Lady Gaga, who sits on the Central Perk couch with Lisa Kudrow to sing “Smelly Cat”.
Yes, Phoebe Buffay’s strange yet classic tune about an odorous feline had to show up at some point during the reunion. As odd a number as it is, “Smelly Cat” has endured over two and half decades since it first appeared in the Season 2 episode “The One with the Baby on the Bus”. Kudrow even sang it on stage with Taylor Swift at a 2015 concert.
The actress revisits it again on Friends: The Reunion, sitting on the Central Perk set strumming to herself before Lady Gaga comes through the door. Of course, the latter just happens to also have her own guitar, so she joins Kudrow/Buffay to belt out her own “Smelly Cat” rendition. As if Gaga’s theatrical, Oscar-winning pipes weren’t extra enough for the goofy song, a full gospel choir bursts into the coffee shop to close out the scene. Watch the segment below.
While anyone around the world with HBO Max can watch Friends: The Reunion, not everyone will see Lady Gaga’s cameo. According to Vice, her appearance was removed from the Chinese version of the special in continuation of Gaga’s ban from the nation’s TV broadcasts after she met with the Dalai Lama in 2016. Other Friends guests China excised from The Reunion include Justin Bieber (who’s been banned from China since 2017 for “bad behavior”) and BTS (who have faced backlash after group leader RM made positive comments about America’s involvement in the Korean War).
smelly cat – lisa kudrow ft lady gaga pic.twitter.com/KpGkGaLkNN
— qiqi ✦ FRIENDS REUNION (@pizzasexntrolls) May 27, 2021