With TV and film, people come for the romance but stay for the friendships. The fact that we choose people to care about with no expectation of anything in return is wild, and we’re here to celebrate all the BFFs out there.
So, grab a bag of popcorn and see just which friendships from movies and TV shows are most like you and your besties'.
Han Solo & Chewy: Besties That Speak Their Own Language
Han Solo and Chewbacca are one of the most iconic duos in all of science fiction history. They break into the film already attached at the hip. But their affection comes out in a delightfully put-upon way. They love each other, but they're going to complain about it all day long.
The heart of a friendship like theirs is that it’s rooted in deep understanding. So, if you and your bestie get each other on a telepathic level, it's time to pick out who's the Han Solo and who's Chewy.
Charles, Oliver, & Mabel: Age Really Is Just a Number
Hulu's hit investigatory comedy show Only Murders in the Building brought us the unlikely but lovable intergenerational pairing of Charles, Oliver, and Mabel played by Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez. This is the best portrayal we've had in decades of a friendship that shows age really is just a number.
As these friendships often start, the three bond over one shared interest — a murder podcast. From there, you’ve got the typical dynamics of a mysterious, introverted soul with a sensitive and troubled older character chaffing against the lovable antics of a drama queen. From height differences to jokes at your expense, this friendship has it all, and yours probably does too.
Woody & Buzz: Rivals to Besties
Antagonistic relationships make for great cinema, and one of the best examples is actually the animated characters Woody & Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story. Woody, with his acerbic asides and irascibility, butts up against newcomer Buzz’s idealistic, compassionate nature.
But the line between hate and love is paper thin, and sometimes rivals make the best friends. Here’s to you, work or school rivals turning over a new leaf and realizing you're stronger together.
The Cheetah Girls: High School BFFS That Never Looked Back
Y2K girlies will know exactly why The Cheetah Girls makes this list. Because they're not just Cheetah Girls but…"Cheetah sisters." This Disney Channel friendship represents the motley crew of dissimilar high schoolers who band together against all odds.
There's really no rhyme or reason to how you and your pals forged your bonds, but they're going to last forever. And the singing quartet says it best, "once a Cheetah Girl, always a Cheetah Girl."
Shaggy & Scooby: The Besties That Break From the Group
Everyone has that larger group of friends where there's one set of people who're just closer to each other than the rest. They always show up to the functions carpooling, plan solo vacations with just the two of them, and are up to date (to the second) with the other person’s life. You all know that if you can wrangle one of them into plans, the other one’s sure to follow.
If that's the case for you and your bestie, grab some Scooby snacks because you’ve turned into Shaggy & Scooby from Scooby Doo.
Tom Wambsgans & Cousin Greg: Toxic With a Capital T
Hopefully, you're not in one of these friendships right now, but you might have one in your rearview mirror. Just like Tom Wambsgans and Cousin Greg from HBO’s Succession, you're always trying to one-up the other person and keeping score about any transgressions they make. Meanwhile, the power dynamic is constantly shifting, with each of you fighting for dominance.
But the thing that keeps this toxic dynamic going is the feeling that the other person's seen your uglier side and hasn't been turned away. It might be cathartic to lash out and indulge in your worst traits with someone at your side, but these friendships always crash and burn.
Kirk, Spock, and McCoy: The Best Things Come in Threes
Trio friendships aren't as common as duos or larger groups, but James Kirk, Spock, and Dr. McCoy from the Star Trek: The Original Series show just how balanced they can be. One person's weakness is another's strength, and you've got all the bases covered when it comes to logical planning, emotional caretaking, and wild risk-taking. So make like Ted Lasso's Triangle Offense and find yourself two other people to always be ready to answer your call.
Archie, Betty, Jughead, & Veronica: Best Friends to Lovers
Riverdale's final season might’ve made its audience feel like they were being punked, but it settled a series-long debate over which of the main characters would end up together. The joke's on the audience because they all landed in a heavenly polycule; only winners here, folks.
But what this bordering-on-camp show’s quartet represents is the classic best friends-to-lovers trope. Here’s to all the friendships that always had a simmering undercurrent of something there.
SpongeBob and Patrick: Childhood BFFS That Never Grow Up
SpongeBob and Patrick from Nickelodeon's SpongeBob SquarePants cartoon are the definition of childhood BFFs that never grew up. Sure, they're (presumably) paying mortgages and buying groceries, but they're also getting sugar highs at Weenie Hut Jr's and co-parenting a baby clam.
If the way your friendship story starts is with the line “I've known them since we were in diapers,” then take a deep breath, because you’re absolutely SpongeBob and Patrick.
Meredith Grey & Christina Yang: Platonic Soulmates
We're not sure what blood curse Shonda Rimes signed to keep Grey's Anatomy on air for this long, but these later seasons don't compare to the original cast's shenanigans. And while the show pushed Meredith and Derek's romance to be the centerpiece, it was her and Dr. Christina Yang's friendship that really shined.
They overcame divorces, affairs, pregnancies, and cataclysmic plane crashes together. With a line like, "He's very dreamy, but he is not the sun. You are," we couldn't consider them anything but platonic soulmates. If you and your bestie have ever been mistaken for dating, then guess what? You’re probably platonic soulmates, too.
Shawn & Gus: Best Friends Never Die
Psych took a tired concept and turned it into a fantastical but just-this-side-of-real comedy cop drama. Shawn and Gus, with their disparate but equally quirky personalities, have been best friends since childhood.
No matter how impossible the odds are, these two always come back to each other. They're the best friends that never die, and we hope you've got a friend like Shawn or Gus in your life.
You Get a Bestie & You Get a Bestie!
Film is one of the best mediums that explores friendship in its most intimate, complicated, and heartbreaking moments. These characters' connections feel real because they mimic the friendships we have in everyday life. No matter who you are, you've got a friendship worth documenting, just like these.