Dear HIMYM Sorry Excuses for Writers,
If I wanted to have a penis slapped in my face, I would’ve gone to Thunder from Down Under. This final episode was everything that most of the internet didn’t want it to be – about Robin. For a show titled “How I Met Your Mother”, it’s messed up that the episode spent 80% of the episode focusing on Robin and 15% on the Mother (the other 5% was about Lily’s awkward Moby Dick costume). Because you make Robin sad, does that make it ok for Ted to go back to Robin in the end? I’ve watched cereal commercials with more emotional depth than this episode.
I understand that the show is about big moments and growing up, but the finale went back on it all. After spending 63 painful episodes dragging out Barney and Robin’s wedding, their 15 minute marriage stomped on everything. It was going to be how even those who don’t want to grow up (both Robin and Barney) can grow up in their own way. Not in the Ted and Mother way, not in the Marshall and Lily way, but in their own unique way. In a way that wasn’t mindnumbingly stupid and pointless, which is what it ended up being. Apparently you spent the 9th season baking up a lovely batch of “f- you”.
I also noticed that a very unflattering point was that you cannot be happy unless you have children. Lily and Marshall ended up with 3 children. Barney was super depressed and was only happy once he had a baby girl. Ted and the Mother had 2 kids and were happy – although I have to assume this because we only saw the Mother for 5 FREAKING MINUTES. Poor single and lonely Robin was left to die in the world alone, surrounded by her dogs. Screw you, Writers. Families come in all shapes and sizes, and not every family wants, needs or has children.
It’s exhausting being this angry, but thank God for the internet. Someone out there who actually understood the audience for this entire freaking show put together the right ending.
It’s beautiful, lovely, short and sums up everything we’ve been hoping for. There’s no “it’s ok to go bang Aunt Robin…again.” No stupid looking 50 year old Ted grinning with a damn blue french horn in his hand. Nothing that will make you want to punch a hole in your television. Do yourself a favor and watch the real ending to a (formerly) great TV show.
Also, did something happen to Bob Saget?
As the last thirty or so minutes of How I Met Your Mother‘s hour long series finale unfolded last night, I kept looking over wide-eyed and unbelieving at my wife. She too sat mouth agape in disbelief. Did they really go there?
Yes, in fact they did.
Every crazy theory seemed to come true. Barney and Robin got divorced. The Mother was dead (long dead at that). Ted and Robin got back together.
What the actual hell.
At first I was angry at what happened. This is not at all what I had signed up for when I started watching this show. It was a cop out and basically invalidated the whole premise.
However, the more I think about it the more I realize I’m not angry with what happened as much as the way it happened. These things weren’t earned. They felt like the characters being shoehorned into a story that the writers insisted on, but the characters no longer organically fit.
The writers knew where the story was going. They filmed the scene where the kids insist Ted pursue Aunt Robin years ago! (That must have been one hell of a non-disclosure agreement for those kids!) So why didn’t they organically build what was coming into the story? Sure, we had hints that the mother was going to die. And in retrospect carrying on the Ted and Robin thing to the point of being ridiculous makes a bit more sense now. (Plus the death of the Mother’s first love and her story about moving on now seems like a big red flag.) But why spend the entire final season on Barney and Robin’s wedding if you are just going to break them up twenty minutes into the finale? Why even get Barney and Robin back together if Ted and Robin were end game?
They could have easily truncated the wedding into the front 12 episodes and spent the back 12 fleshing out the fifteen years that was crammed into the hour finale. People change from who they were in their twenties. Friends who were inseparable grow apart when life happens and have to work to build a new different kind of friendship. People find the love of their lives and only get to spend ten years together before they lose them. These are all stories worth telling, but only if you take the time to actually develop them organically into the story.
I feel cheated by the writers, not because they didn’t give me what I wanted (though they didn’t), but because they didn’t take the time to make what they wanted actually make sense in the story they were telling. With a long ago filmed final scene and an announced final season they had the time and the resources, and that is what I find most disappointing.
I think if I had been in the writers room, I would have taken a look at that final scene then taken a look at what I had built up over nine seasons, and I would left that scene on the cutting room floor (perhaps for a crazy bonus alternate ending on the Full Series Blu-Ray release). I would have ended the series with the Mother and Ted meeting under the umbrella for the first time, because happy endings aren’t a bad thing and the truth is everything that happened to Ted over those nine seasons made him into a person ready to meet the love of his life, all of it no matter how arbitrary it seemed or slightly creepy it was that he was telling his children about all the chicks he banged. Becoming the person you need to become before meeting your soul mate – that’s the story that I thought they were telling. Evidently I was wrong.