Q: One of the main characters in "Friends" was named Rachel Green. In "ER," there is also a character named Rachel Greene. Is there any connection?

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Adam Thomlison / TV Media

Yet another Rachel Green, this one a New York comedian, wrote the following for Britain's Metro newspaper: "Rachel Green is a pretty common name for a Jewish girl from the Tri-State area (New York, New Jersey, Connecticut). I even went to camp with a Rachael Greene (who obviously spells it wrong)."

Green's article discusses something that she's been addressing for years: people always point out that she has the same name as Jennifer Aniston's character on "Friends."

She could just as easily be speaking for the "ER" character, another lesser-known Rachel Greene (though, as you point out, she also spells it differently), because there is, in fact, no connection that led to them having the same name. However common the name is, though, there are a few surprising coincidences in there.

The biggest one is that they were "born" (in TV terms) just three days apart, and on the same network.

"ER's" Rachel Greene (Yvonne Zima, "The Young and the Restless") appeared in the show's pilot, which aired Sept. 19, 1994, on NBC. She was a side character, daughter of central character Dr. Mark Greene (Anthony Edwards, "Top Gun," 1986).

"Friends'" Rachel Green was, of course, a central character who appeared in that show's pilot, which aired on the same network three days later, Sept. 22, 1994. (For the record, comedian Rachel Green was born in 1979, so she beat both of them to the name.)

The two shows' fates were also linked by their success ("Friends" ran until 2004, "ER" until 2009), and as with so many shows that shared a network in the '90s, they had a crossover -- or almost did.

George Clooney and Noah Wylie, who played Dr. Doug Ross and Dr. John Carter, respectively, on "ER," appeared together as doctors in an episode of "Friends." Their characters' names were different, however, and the hospital they were at was in New York, not in Chicago like in "ER."


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