When Matt LeBlanc Ended a ‘Friends’ Debate With a Slap to Jimmy Fallon’s Face

Published 09/21/2023, 10:08 AM EDT

via Getty

As the Friends’ most lovable character of Joey Tribbiani, Matt LeBlanc quickly became synonymous with effortless charm and innocence. With a heart of gold and a goofball-like demeanor, he became many fans’ absolute favorite among the Central Perk gang. Meanwhile, his pursuit of Hollywood would often lead to hilarious and sometimes misguided endeavors. Unlike his character, who remained a struggling actor throughout the 90s series, LeBlanc became a much-celebrated one. 

However, when he auditioned for Joey, he probably did not imagine that he would be slapping one of the biggest late-night hosts in American history one day.  

Matt LeBlanc failed this Friends trivia

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In 2019, Jimmy Fallon shared a video of his rather unfortunate interaction with Matt LeBlanc. When he asked the Joey actor if he knew how many claps are heard in the theme song of Friends, the former said “Five“. However, the correct answer was four, which the host then told LeBlanc. After much back and forth, they settled on four. But only after Fallon had been smacked across the face by the now 56-year-old.

Since Matt LeBlanc found it difficult to watch himself in the show, maybe he actually did not know the answer. Thankfully, the video was intended to be a comedic skit and was enacted jokingly. Moreover, it was also reflective of Joey Tribbiani’s character, who was not one to possess much knowledge of the Emmy-winning show.

Joey, however, was not the simple-minded and slightly dim-witted man initially. He was made that way later for a surprising reason.

Why was Joey Tribbiani portrayed as being dumb?

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Besides being an endearing ladies’ man, Tribbiani was known to be the slow one among the group. One of the show’s directors, James Burrows, revealed in his memoir that this was done on purpose. According to them, if Joey was smarter, he would be too much like his best friend, Chandler Bing. Since this would take away the uniqueness of the duo’s unlikely friendship, they chose to “dumb down” Joey instead. 

via Imago

This resulted in the many hilarious sequences fans got to enjoy through Joey’s antics and sometimes also through Matt LeBlanc’s distractions. Especially since the ‘How you doin’ catchphrase could have only suited a feeble-minded Joey. One thing is for sure, like LeBlanc, Joey would have never known the number of claps in the theme song either. 

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Were you expecting Jimmy Fallon to get slapped by the end of the video? Share your answers in the comments. 

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Ibadat Kaur

586 articles

Ibadat Kaur is an entertainment writer at Netflix Junkie. Her love for Narcos & Pedro Pascal is what brought her to the world of entertainment news. She has immense love for historical and investigative documentaries on people and cultural practices.

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