The one mystery even the 'Friends' cast can't solve about their own show

Lisa Kudrow and Courteney Cox
Photo credit Michael Kovac/Getty Images for P.S. Arts
By , Audacy

The highly-anticipated “Friends” reunion divulged plenty of behind-the-scenes secrets, but one question remained hot on everyone’s mind.

Courteney Cox, who played Monica Geller, posed the question while wishing her co-star Lisa Kudrow, who played Phoebe Buffay, a happy birthday on Instagram.

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“I just have one question,” Cox wrote towards the end of her post, adding, "Did you ever find out what they were feeding smelly cat?"

The question refers to the lyrics of “Smelly Cat,” a comedy song penned by Phoebe about a pungent feline, which she sang at the Central Perk.

"Smelly Cat, Smelly Cat, what are they feeding you? Smelly Cat, Smelly Cat, it's not your fault…" Phoebe sang on the sixth episode of the second season titled, "The One with the Baby on the Bus".

After becoming an instant hit, the song turned into a running gag, appearing in several episodes of the series and becoming an integral part of Phoebe's character.

However, despite her extensive knowledge on the subject, Kudrow, who celebrated her 58th birthday, wasn’t able to provide any clarity on the matter.

"You see… THAT IS THE QUESTION!” she responded vaguely.

“Smelly Cat” was revisited during the reunion special that aired on HBO Max earlier this summer. Kudrow performed the signature song with a little help from pop sensation Lady Gaga. Gaga joined her on the iconic coffee house couch to play a rendition that was backed by a choir.

Despite performing the song throughout the sitcom’s ten-season run, Kudrow admitted that she had to re-learn the song to prepare for the duet.

"I was really nervous when I first heard that [it was going to be a duet]. And then I prepared. I realized I had to learn 'Smelly Cat' again. I tuned my guitar and realized I don't know the chords," Kudrow explained during an appearance on “The Ellen Degeneres Show.”

"I Googled it. All the chords were there for Smelly Cat!" Kudrow admitted.

She gave credit to the fans who kept the song alive all these years, noting: “So thank you world, for posting the chords."

Kudrow also told DeGeneres that she was “so panicked I couldn't get anything out. I didn't know what was going to happen” in her musical performance with the Grammy Award winner, in part because her guitar playing was only for the show.

Fingers-crossed that Marta Kauffman and David Crane will provide an answer to one of TV’s biggest mysteries one day! Maybe it will happen in time for the "Friends" musical?

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