I’m sure you’ve seen the tweets and blog posts about the How I Met Your Mother finale last night (watch it here), so I figured I’d throw my hat in to the ring. Here are five thoughts on last night’s hour-long episode.
- The Barney character was ruined over the last 3-4 seasons. A big part of the gang’s transition near the end was Barney’s growth and maturity that led him to commit to Robin. Then it took one hour to blow that up and turn him back into a caricature of his former womanizing self, which, by the way, was the source of much of the comedy that drew us in over the first few seasons. So, are we really supposed to believe the guy who fell in love with Robin and showed he had a heart would suddenly not care about the birth of his child?
- Marshall and Lily were the heart of the show. When you look back at the entirety of the nine seasons, Marshall and Lily are the only two who wind up truly happy with a healthy relationship, and the entire show revolves around that relationship. The turmoil surrounding Ted, Barney and Robin would never survive without the rock that was Marshall and Lily’s relationship. Sure, Ted and Robin end up together (as we all expected), but all that proves is the premise of the mother was only a tool to get them together after they both married the wrong person first.
- The moment when Ted met Tracy was perfect. When he taps on her shoulder and she invites him under the umbrella, the ensuing conversation was simply perfect. It was my favorite moment of the finale and gave us every reason to understand why the show was centered around how he met her. Which is also why the ending was so disappointing to me. Which leads me to …
- Ted wasn’t a particularly likable character. He was fairly funny and his quest for love was entertaining when we weren’t covering our eyes from the trainwreck that it was at times. And Stella ditching him at the alter was a good, if slightly unbelievable, way to make Ted a sympathetic character. But he steals the thunder from Robin and Barney’s wedding by supposedly leaving for Chicago in the middle of the reception (we find out later he chooses to stay). And we later find out he was only lying to himself by repeatedly saying he’s over Robin, even though we knew he wasn’t. So in the end, what reason do we have to like Ted?
- Tracy’s death was heartless and disappointing. I understand the premise that we didn’t really get to know Tracy like we did the other characters. But we all had this preconceived notion in our heads of how happy Ted would be when he met the mother, and then we saw it with the scene under the umbrella and their ensuing relationship. We loved her even before we knew her. Then we get a vague reference to her being sick, followed by no more references to her illness, then the sudden realization that she’s gone and that Ted wants to date Robin again. So we lose a woman we couldn’t wait to meet, and find out that a relationship that left many of us worn out and wanting Robin and Ted to be happy with other people was rekindled in the end.
So, as you can tell, I didn’t like what the finale presented in most aspects. There were funny moments, for sure, but the overall scoop of the finale relative to the entire series was a major disappointment.