It’s one of those weird truths of the history of television production that one of the biggest TV shows of all time—a network-saving miracle that dominated the haircuts and conversations of an entire nation for the better part of a decade—devoted a vast and unfathomable amount of its early run time to the antics of a monkey. Yes, we’re talking about Marcel the monkey from Friends, famously immortalized by co-star/soulmate David Schwimmer in an Entertainment Weekly interview that begins with “I hate the monkey.”
Schwimmer-feud notwithstanding, Katie the capuchin has had a long and relatively successful career in Hollywood over the last 20 years, including appearances on 30 Rock, and in a number of commercials. (She also met Ariana Grande, which is probably more than Ross has ever done.) Now she’s scored a prime primate gig indeed, with THR reporting that she’ll be playing Ampersand the monkey in FX’s upcoming (and long-anticipated) Y: The Last Man adaptation.
Ampersand is a weirdly major component of the original Y comic, which sees every male in the world (save one guy, and his monkey) abruptly drop dead. Besides offering up the occasional shit-related antic, Ampersand also helps underline exactly what kind of dude protagonist Yorick (played by Barry Keoghan in the show) is, i.e., a Ross-esque dumbass who thinks owning a monkey might be fun. (Spoiler: It pretty much never is.)
Anyway, Katie’s return to the limelight was noted by, of all people, FX president John Landgraf, who worked at NBC back in Friends’ heyday, and thought he recognized the former star when he was checking out the show’s early footage. “I recognize that monkey!” the incredibly powerful television executive was heard to remark.
THR confirmed that Katie was, indeed, co-starring in the project, as well as the fact that she’s now in her late-20s—roughly middle-aged for a capuchin, so kudos to Hollywood for overcoming its deeply entrenched ageism against female performers for once, we guess.