Skip to main content

Krispy Kreme is rolling out 'Friends'-themed doughnuts. But you probably can't get any

Krispy Kreme releases ‘Friends’-themed doughnuts. (Courtesy Krispy Kreme via CNN Newsource) Krispy Kreme releases ‘Friends’-themed doughnuts. (Courtesy Krispy Kreme via CNN Newsource)

Krispy Kreme's newest doughnuts celebrate the 30th anniversary of the sitcom "Friends." But while the show was set in New York, the doughnuts aren't for sale in NYC – or anywhere else in the U.S. The new flavours are available only in the U.K. and Ireland.

The decision has annoyed fans of the show (and of the doughy treats), with social media awash in comments ranging from annoyed to flat-out angry. "Friends" was produced by Warner Bros., which shares the same parent company as CNN.

The kerfuffle underscores how these kinds of promotional items can bring extra attention and publicity to companies, especially as Krispy Kreme said in a recent earnings call that the doughnut maker is trying to keep its brand fresh for consumers.

"We're constantly innovating, constantly bringing excitement to the brand, and we're fresh, fresh daily," said CEO Josh Charlesworth on a first-quarter earnings call in May, according to a transcript made available by FactSet. Special doughnuts — like the "Friends" flavours now — helped drive consumers to stores, he said, such as Valentine's Day or eclipse-themed promotions.

But fans had a few words for Krispy Kreme on that score.

"This is where I am just confused by the decision making process," noted one commenter under an Instagram post by "Snackolator "about the release. "'Friends' was a huge U.S. show (I know it is big internationally as well, but come on), yet this is a U.K. thing." CNN reached out to the commenter but did not get a response.

On Krispy Kreme's own Instagram account, fans have even commented on posts unrelated to the "Friends" offer. One fan, @moniica__garcia, commented under a post about new doughnut-hole flavours in the U.S., "Are we going to get the Friends donuts in the U.S.? Lots of 'Friends' fans here who would love to spend their money."

Another Instagram user, Ashley Smith, commented under a different unrelated post, "Why the friends donuts only in the U.K.?! We'd love to have them here as well!"

The doughnut selection includes "Friends," a chocolate glazed doughnut topped with an image of the fountain in the show's opening credits. "Trifle" is a strawberry and custard-filled doughnut that references a 1999 episode about a failed dessert. "How You Doin?" echoes Monica Geller's (played by Courtney Cox) iconic front door. Then there's "We were on a Coffee Break," a caffe latte-flavoured doughnut that includes the "Central Perk" cafe logo. It echoes Ross Geller's (David Schwimmer) defence to Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston) of his brief affair with a girl at the copy shop.

Krispy Kreme has launched its own share of U.S.-exclusive doughnuts, including its most recent collaboration with singer Dolly Parton, the Southern Sweets Doughnut Collection, announced in May.

A representative for Krispy Kreme declined to comment on whether the "Friends" collaboration would be made available in the U.S. and told CNN there was "nothing additional to share at this time." Top Stories


NEW Things flight attendants say they would never do when travelling

For some airline passengers, flying can be a daunting and stressful journey. For others, it's a welcome experience to see the world from hundreds of feet high. spoke with a Canadian flight attendant to find out what he wouldn't advise passengers to do before and during flights.

Local Spotlight