Friends was aimed at the mass audience and the bigger audience is the simple. A comedy with clever scientists would probably not have appealed to an audience of 50 million and been must see TV.
But your opinion of society dumbing down and celebrating idiots is sad.
People used to be admired for skills, opinions and reputation. Now celebrities are famous for being a celebrity, reality TV, singing contests. They are famous for being themselves.
Youth aim to be famous not famous for being brilliant at something.
Reading should be embraced. The shallowness of the internet has reduced people’s ability to focus and think.
Reading non fiction provokes deep thinking on subjects.
Reading fiction quiets the mind and kicks your imagination into gear. You stop to view the world from other perspectives.