Friends cast
Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, and David Schwimmer in Friends (1994) NBC

If Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman wasn't impressed with the fan theory that Phoebe is a lonely, homeless drug addict who imagined the whole 10 seasons, then the latest interpretation may not go down very well either.

Radio and TV presenter Alex Baker has suggested that NBC's beloved series, which fans can now binge watch on Netflix, was all part of Starbucks' elaborate scheme to dominate the hot beverage market.

"Wouldn't it be mad, if we found out that Friends (as in 'THE WHOLE TV SERIES') was just an elaborate stage-setter for Starbucks," he wrote in a post shared on his Twitter.

"An elaborate, meticulously-planned priming exercise to manipulate human behaviour, getting them away from pubs (Cheers) and into coffee shops (Friends)."

After watching a few episodes, Baker delivers his findings, which he says support his bizarre theory. According to Baker, it isn't a coincidence that Rachel's surname is 'Green', which is the main colour of Starbucks' branding, and her hair resembles the company's logo. He even makes less-than-plausible connections between the sitcom and Moby Dick to justify his twisted theory.

Although there is no proof that Friends is responsible for the success of Starbucks, which now operates in 70 countries and has a market valuation of $84.4bn (£65.2bn), that doesn't stop Baker inviting fans to join him down the rabbit hole.

"What is one of the hallmarks of a visit to Starbucks? They yell you name when your coffee is ready, right? Well did you know that the name "Geller" as in "Ross and Monica Geller" is derived from the German word "Gellen", meaning "one who yells" (seriously)" he points out.

Baker's sinister take on the light-hearted comedy that starred Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc is not the first and certainly won't be the last. In 2016, a blog post dedicated to the theory that Ross's erratic behaviour led him to lose custody of his some Ben went viral.

Kauffman responded to the dark Pheobe theory telling Entertainment Tonight: "That's the saddest thing I've ever heard! No, I never heard that – that's a terrible theory. That's insane! That's, like, crazy alt-television theory. Wow".

She added: "I just think that someone needs a life. Someone needs a life, that's all I'm saying."