Times Paul Rudd Stole The Show On “Friends”

He may be Ant-Man now, but back in the day we fell in love with Paul Rudd all over again when he guest starred on Friends as Phoebe’s main man Mike Hannigan. It was easy to crush on Mike as hard as Phoebe was as he wooed her and viewers with his quirky humor and cutie good-looks. Friends has become a pop culture icon thanks to the six main characters and the amazing chemistry of the cast, which Paul Rudd fit into effortlessly. There have been tons of great moments from the show and here are Paul Rudd as Mike Hannigan’s 12 best!

12. Mike? Mike? Mike!

Paul Rudd’s character Mike Hannigan is first introduced to the Friends’ gang when Joey and Phoebe promise to arrange a date for one another. When Joey realizes he’s forgotten to do just that, he makes up a name and then must track down a man to fill the role. He does so by yelling “Mike!” in the coffee shop and a hand raises in response. Luckily for Phoebe, and viewers, just the right Mike was on-hand and up for the strange set-up. When Phoebe later asks why he would get involved, he answers that he was promised a free meal and that he’d get to meet a pretty woman. He didn’t end up getting the free meal, but he did end up with Phoebe. Good deal!

Source: Warner Bros.

11. Joey and Mike, Best Friends Forever…Or, Like, 30 Minutes

Paul Rudd has viewers tumbling further into their crushes with Mike when he appears along with Joey, Phoebe, and Phoebe’s fix-up for Joey. Faking their acquaintance turns out to be a not-so-easy task for Joey and Mike who claim that they went to college together…no wait, high school…or, um. An adorably awkward further introduction to Mike’s character ensues and viewers loved every minute of it.

Source: Warner Bros.

10. Air Piano Rockstar

If you remember any scene from Paul Rudd on Friends, it may be one of the first. After their disastrous first date, Mike tracks Phoebe down in order to apologize. When he tells her that he’s left his law practice in order to pursue his love of playing piano, she asks him to show her his skills. He points out that there’s no piano present and she counters that if he was a real pianist then he wouldn’t need a piano. Challenge accepted! Mike shows off his pretend-ivory-tickling skills in a flamboyant display that thoroughly impresses Phoebe and left a lasting impression with fans.

9. Pimp Spit Can’t Derail True Love (But Eeew!)

You know things are getting serious when it’s time to meet the parents. This makes Phoebe nervous since it’s her first time and she wants to impress Mike’s super-rich, super-uptight folks. Phoebe’s fake British accent and puking in a closet doesn’t quite win over the parents and neither does her story about a pimp that spit in her mouth (yeah, Mike’s parents looked as horrified as you remember). But what won viewers over was Mike’s refusal to be swayed by his parents negative opinion and instead confessed his love for Phoebe right then and there. That’s some swoon-worthy scripting (well, not the pimp-spit part).

8. Worst Bro-Date Ever

When Rachel whisks Phoebe away for a girls-night-out, Ross and Mike decide to have a bro-date to get to know each other better. Instead of some manly bonding, they end up having nothing in common except for the painful evening they’re suffering through together. After finally making his escape, Mike takes the boyfriend-of-the-year medal by forcing a reluctant Ross to let him back in to help Rachel out at Phoebe’s request. Mike is wildly-reluctant; Ross is horrified; Phoebe is grateful; Rachel is saved; and viewers are left loving Paul Rudd’s character more than ever.

7. Tactfully Plays On

Reminder: If you’re ever intending to be on stage, or anywhere with bright lights for that matter, DON’T WEAR A SEE-THROUGH SHIRT. And if you accidentally do, then pray you’re like Monica Gellar, who hopped on stage for some karaoke to the delight of the crowd. Unfortunately, they were more entertained by Monica’s chest than her chords. Mike, the musical accompaniment and being as boyfriend-worthy as ever, tactfully plays on. When Monica asks if she’s helping Mike make tips, he nods and refrains from mentioning that it’s her nip-slip of sorts that may be the real tip-trap.

6. Mike vs. Monica, Super-Competitive Ping-Pong

Monica is undoubtedly the most competitive of the six original Friends, but she meets her match in Mike Hannigan. While on vacation in Barbados, bad weather drives the gang indoors and when Phoebe and Chandler refuse to play ping-pong with Monica because of her notoriously spastically-tempered playing style, Mike steps up for a game. And that’s where we meet super-competitive Mike, a new side of the usually mild-mannered fella. Slamming serves and raging returns make for an epic match and Phoebe is turned on by Mike’s unexpected competitiveness. Can you blame her when it’s the adorable Paul Rudd?

5. Mr. Romance to the Rescue

When the love of his life is proposed to by another man, Paul Rudd’s character will go any distance to prevent losing Phoebe. Flying all the way to Barbados just in the nick of time not only won Phoebe back, but it won viewers’ hearts all over again.

4. Plagued Proposals

Phoebe may not have accepted Mike’s Barbados proposal, but she was thrilled to find out that he was planning another attempt to pop the question. Unfortunately, Phoebe unwittingly ruins Mike’s attempts over and over and over again. Mike’s dashed plans and undaunted determination couldn’t be thwarted forever and only highlighted his relentlessly romantic side.

3. To Donate or Not To Donate

One of the things that made Phoebe an endearing character was her difficult and quirky background. When she and Mike finally get engaged, they decide that they don’t need a lavish wedding and instead donate the money to charity. Buuut when her friends remind Phoebe that she’s never had a really special day, they convince her to go ahead with the wedding, which means they need to get the money back…from a charity. Yeesh. Mike comes to the rescue and gets the money back and the wedding plans can go ahead.

© Warner Bros. / Courtesy: Everett Collection

2. Winter Wedding Wonderland

Phoebe and Mike faced weather-related bumps in the road on their wedding day when a storm descends upon Manhattan and prevents their plans from going ahead. But the romance won’t be stopped and instead the pair ties the knot in the sweetest street-filled winter wonderland. Phoebe finally gets the man of her dreams and viewers get to witness a deliciously dream-like ceremony.

1. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock and Crap Bag

Once married, Phoebe considers whether or not to take Mike’s last name, hyphenate, or come up with something else entirely to commemorate her marriage. In Phoebe’s signature style, she opts for something unique and proudly announces that she’s become Princess Consuela Banana Hammock. Mike responds as only he could, by proposing that he change his own name to Crap Bag. Much love to the Princess and her loving husband Crap.


Desiree O