To be honest, I don't have much to say about this one. It's fine - there are definitely some laughs. But it's exactly what I don't love about the first season. Just flat and sitcomy.
There are some great points. The opening glimpse of Joey's musical, Freud!, is my favorite of his bad acting jobs. We also see Estelle for the first time, who is a wonderful recurring character, and we also see Chandler do his first "bllaahh, blaahh, blllllaaaaahh" of the show. Love that. Monica's OCD comes into play, but not in any way that's very interesting.
The rest is basically a snooze. It's nice to see them being so supportive of Joey, but... meh. Not the best.
One hook-up from this episode... when polyamory goes bad: Chandler & Aurora
The Great Hook-Up Round-Up:
"A thing through which you can tinkle, or play with, or simply let hang." - Joey
"Thank God you din't try to fan out the magazines. I mean, she'll scratch your eyes right out." - Chandler
Episode 1.7: "The One with the Blackout"
This is more like it! The blackout provides fun fodder for the friends to play with - starting with Phoebe's aborted attempt at coffee house music.
We also have her singing a great song about souring milk and "Top of the World"... am I alone in being doubtful about Phoebe's skills to do that?
The stuff that's going on in the apartment is pretty good - Joey's prognostication of "Never gonna happen" pretty much sums up where we are in the Ross/Rachel arc. Their chemistry is building at a nice pace throughout the season and this is perhaps the first episode where I feel thoroughly invested in that relationship. Ross' later confrontation of Paolo "Crap Weasel" Italian Guy is lovely, and I enjoy Joey being a good friend to Ross in trying to get Rachel. It shows his softer side. (We also see Mr. Heckles for the first time... Love. Him.)
But the highlight of this episode is Chandler trapped in an ATM vestibule with Jill Goodacre... or as he tells Joey- "Emm apped en anaytemwestable wit ill GOOachre." Perry's comedic skills are given free rein as he reacts to his voiced-over internal monologue, leading to him accidentally spitting his gum out and then choking on the stranger's gum he picks up. And we get one of the best lines in Friends history: "Gum would be perfection."
Hook ups for 1.7 are more numerous, as we find out about some of the Friends' randier moments (especially Wisconsin sex...): Monica & the Pool Table Guy, Joey & the Library Girl, and Phoebe & the Milwaukee Guy.
The Great Hook-Up Round-Up:
"And the milk is getting sour/But for me it isn't scary/Cuz I stay away from dairy." - Phoebe
"Technically the sex is not being had." - Ross
"Bob Buttons. You owe me a cat." - Mr. Heckles
As always, see AV Club's recaps for 1.6 and 1.7