How I Met Your Mother series finale review
How I Met Your Mother has never shied away from difficult and sad times. It's not all sunshine and high-fives. But, this is it, this what you leave the fans with, and the writers kicked fans right in the cojones.
MASSIVE SPOILERS AHEAD
We resume progress back at the wedding of Barney and Robin, where Ted sees the Mother at last. We've seen flashbacks of pieces of their future together, but this is the first sighting. Then, Ted says his goodbyes to main cast and heads to the train station. Ted sees the Mother at the train track as well. Then, for most of the episodes, we see the main 6's lives throughout the years up until the "future" where Ted is telling this story to his kids. These flash forwards consist of several big events for our cast. Here's where the spoilers begin:
Robin and Barney divorce. Robin's career in the news is skyrocketing and taking her across the world, Barney is sick of traveling because he can't work and he never gets time with Robin, so he decides it's best for both of them to divorce, and Robin agrees. Due to this, Robin spends significantly less time with the group and it upsets Lilly. We will get back to Robin's fate later. Barney goes back to his old ways for a couple of years, he even creates a Playbook 2. He continues to hit on women, even when Robin is around. Barney states that if it couldn't work with Robin, it'll never work with any other woman. So Barney is basically destined to his old ways. Until, the end of his "perfect month". He had a different woman's company each day of a month, and number 31 became pregnant. Barney is reluctant to be a father, he has no interest in it, until he meets his new baby girl, Ellie. Then, in what is probably one of the most touching scenes in TV I've ever seen, Barney dedicates his life to his daughter. It is so sweet, and so well done, and Barney lives up to that promise. So Barney, as far as we know, remains a single parent with Ellie, and lives happily.
Marshall and Lilly end up with 3 kids, Marshal gets bumped up to judge after waiting for so long, and goes for an even higher promotion. They also move out of the apartment they have been living in this whole show. Nothing really shocking or big happens to them outside of these few things. The showings of these years mostly has Marshal job focused and being a good supportive person, and Lilly is upset over the group becoming more separated, though not truly apart. So, that's where the show leaves them.
Now for the real controversy of the show, Ted and the Tracy's fate. Ted obviously doesn't leave Chicago after meeting the mother, so his friends are happy for him. Ted proposes to her, as we've already seen in a previous episode flash forward. After a little while, she becomes pregnant with their first child. They end up with the true children, and don't get married for 7 years because Ted was waiting for enough "wow" factor to warrant the waiting, but 7 years was a long enough wait. Then they get married, they have their 2 kids and a new place and it is wonderful. Then, the show, punches us in the face with the last 5 minutes. Six years before the "future" Ted telling the story to the children, Tracy dies from disease. Then Ted wraps up the story, and the kids tell them that the story is actually about how much he loves Aunt Robin. They convince him to go ask her out, and that's what he does. He shows up outside Robin's house, she looks out and sees him, smiles, he smiles, roll credits.
Seriously? I mean, kudos to the writers for not giving us what we were expecting, but this is what you want to leave your fans with? After YEARS of build up to the Mother and Ted's life with her, you kill her?! The "happy ending" of the show is Ted with Robin?! Shocking, definitely, but it feels like the payoff this show was building up to flopped harder than your belly on a pool. Actually that's how it felt watching this ending, diving towards the end, and big belly flop to cripple you. I mean, Barney's ending was sweet, after the incredibly sad revelation of the divorce. It kind of defeats all the progress made with Robin in the past couple of seasons.
Marshal and Lilly's lives actually just continued along well and they ended up happy. But, this mother payoff hurts so much. Not only does it rob the build up this show was designed for, but it happened so suddenly and just "oh by the way", that it just was a big let down. Now the point has been made clear that this show takes the realistic approach of life that stuff happens and it's not always a happy ending. They achieved that, got it loud and clear. But the way this ending wraps up, it's just unsatisfying. I feel like one more rewrite to change it around a bit would be better.
But there certainly good things about the finale. The acting was all very well done. You could really feel the emotions from the characters, and it was all impressive. Except Ted's kids, it kind of felt phoned in, but it wasn't horrible. There are several scenes that really payoff, and there are jokes carried through the show like "Judge Fudge" and the "High-Infinity". So there are funny parts amongst so much depression.
Overall, HIMYM ended on a note that will leave an impression on you. It doesn't just fizzle or just go away. It will leave you with mixed emotions and have you thinking about it days later. While I don't think it was great, I also don't think it was horrible. I just feel disappointed in how the show ended. Yes, life isn't always happy endings, but that doesn't mean I enjoy seeing characters we have grown with for almost a decade go through this. Granted, everyone technically gets a "happy ending", but the way it's delivered just came off more sad than anything. But, the story has been told. We know how Ted met Tracy, and where the gang all end up. I look forward to going back and watching this show again, because it is a great show and it is very sad to see it go. So whether you agree or disagree with how it all ends, at least celebrate a show that has impacted the media and made us all laugh. We will miss you How I Met Your Mother, thanks for everything.
I give the How I Met Your Mother series finale 3 high fives out of 5
Bro Code rule #0:
Bros don't let Bros not watch How I Met Your Mother