When Friends first aired in 1994, nobody knew exactly how popular it would become. A whopping 10-series later, 52.46 million viewers in America, tuned into the Friends finale. But what made this show such a success?

Well, characterisation played a huge part. Each cast member had a distinctive personality with food-loving womaniser Joey Tribbiani bringing dim-witted but good-natured humour to the screen. Who can forget his famous chat-up line – “How You Doin’?” While it’s no secret he was a budding actor and the ‘ladies’ man’ of the group, what details might we have missed?

Here are seven things you didn’t know about Joey.

1. His middle name is Francis

We all had a good chuckle when it was revealed Chandler’s middle name was Muriel in ‘The One With Rachel’s Date.’ But did you know that Joey’s middle name is Francis? That’s right, Joey Francis Tribbiani Jr. is his full title, just in case you ever find yourself in a Friends trivia quiz and need to nail down into the details.

Fun fact: In a bid to land more acting roles with a more neutral name, Chandler convinced Joey to use ‘Joseph Stalin’ – until Joey realised who Stalin was.

2. He had a childhood pretend friend

He’s cute and loveable. That’s what makes Joey so popular and this was emphasised further in ‘The One With the Embryos’ when it was revealed he had a pretend childhood friend called Maurice. This little gem of information came out during the lightning round of a quiz designed to prove Joey and Chandler knew Monica and Rachel better.

3. Joey likes to put books in the freezer

Contrary to popular belief, Joey reads. And is a big Stephen King fan. The only problem is, he has a pretty unique way of dealing with fear. When Rachel finds The Shining in his freezer he states, “I was reading it last night and got scared, so…” Little Women met the same fate when it got too sad. Oh Joey!

4. Joey has a whopping seven sisters

‘The One Where Chandler Can’t Remember Which Sister’ reveals that Joey’s from a rather large Italian family. Poor Chandler gets all confused when he kisses one of Joey’s sisters and can’t work out which one it was. But did you know Joey is the only brother to seven sisters? Their names are Gina, Tina, Dina, Mary Angela, Mary Theresa, Veronica and Cookie.

Fun fact: Joey’s sisters are hardcore. Cookie once told Phoebe she shot her own husband.

5. Joey had 17 flings and relationships

Joey has tried many different ways to attract the ladies. From his made-up tale of hiking in Europe to using Ross’ baby for the cute factor, he’s always up to something. Indeed, Joey has had the most flings or relationships, hooking up with an impressive 17 women during the course of the show. Phoebe follows closely behind, with her relationship number totalling 16.

6. Matt LeBlanc is fluent in French

Joey is not good at languages as we found out in ‘The One Where Joey Speaks French’. Phoebe tries to teach him French for an upcoming acting role but is somewhat unsuccessful at helping him say even the basic phrases. Who could forget the “Je m’appelle Claude” moment? However, Matt LeBlanc, the actor who plays Joey, is fluent in French seeing as his dad is French-Canadian. Even his surname has the French word for ‘white’ in it.

7. Joey could have been a different character

When Matt LeBlanc first read the Friends script, he wasn’t impressed to say the least. His main issue is that he thought Joey should be more of a loveable dimwit and so put his own spin on the character. While the creators were not overly impressed, NBC loved it and encouraged them to revise Joey’s traits and cast Matt LeBlanc.

Are you looking for Cardiff attractions and things to do in Cardiff? Then don’t miss the romantic yet funny Friends Show. Friends the musical is sure to put a smile on your face. So, come and watch Friendsical in Cardiff New Theatre.