“How I Met Your Mother” Series Finale

My thoughts on the “How I Met Your Mother” finale? I loved it. I loved every single second of it. Unlike every other person on the internet, I don’t think that the finale was a “major disappointment” (get that?). I personally think it was the most satisfying finale ever to a series I’ve watched. I never really wished for that particular ending but I’m definitely not upset that it happened. I liked it because it was real. People don’t always stay together and you may not end up with the person you thought you would. Many people are upset that the titular mother or rather the whole never-ending story was ultimately just an excuse for Ted to trick his kids to allow him get back together with Robin. And to someone who said the last slap was not for Barney but rather for the audiences who were with them for the last 9 years, I say I beg to differ.  It wasn’t about the mother; it has never been about the mother. Early on, Ted & Robin were incompatible. They wanted different things from life. But 25 years later, they had both gotten exactly what they wanted out of life. They both loved, and they both lost. But all that was left was each other. Now that the series has ended, I believe it gives perspective to the last few stretched seasons and shows how even after years of disappointing relationships, Ted was lucky enough to find the love of his life, twice!

This hast to be the most honest ending possible to the series I have it watched, loved and hated for years. It shows how friendships do not last a lifetime, how the people you believe (and hope) will be there with you forever might just leave a big void in your heart when the one above deems it fit to call them back and how sometimes you do get a chance to move on. Moving on doesn’t mean insulting the memories of the one you loved, but rather it means honoring them. He loved her, and he lost her. Tragically, their time together was brief. Life is not perfect. We keep moving forward with the memories of our loved ones to keep us hopeful, to remind us that every moment is brief. Looking back, HIMYM was in fact one long story about moving on from loss, accepting pain, reality of friends drifting apart and how “one true love” is not really a thing.

And now towards the specifics. No matter how much the writers wanted us to believe it, but Robin never belonged with Barney. Their incompatibility was highlighted time & again, and love, no matter how true it may seem to us at that point, doesn’t always endure. The trials and tribulations of life wear the sheen off our love and in the end, one cold glance at all that is left  brings forth the realization that what we began with, hasn’t really stood the test of time.

Now a special mention for Cristin Milioti. When she was revealed in season 8 finale, I was disappointed to say the least. She looked like someone had smashed together Lily & Robin to create one person. But now, I admit, she’s amazing! The way she got into the skin of The Mother was phenomenal. Whatever screen time she had in season 9 was, dare I say, worth the 8 year wait. Her rendition of La Vie En Rose was exceptional to say the least. The way she accepted Ted’s proposal in the finale was so damn cute! She deserves all the praise for her performance as the much discussed (and speculated) mother of the nearly decade long series.

And there is nothing to say about Neil Patrick Harris that hasn’t been already said. The character of Barney has attained almost cult status in modern pop culture, and no one, and by no one I mean absolutely no one, could have pulled that off except Neil.  Barney’s parts in the finale scene (circa 2018) where the gang meets again at MacLaren’s were exceptional.

Finally, I respect the show’s creators for having the guts to go with this ending, in spite of the harsh backlash and criticism which they surely must have been anticipating. They went through with the ending they conceived at the beginning of the series! I never could have imagined that they would have been able to top off the last 4-5 mediocre seasons with such a satisfying finale. Kudos!

This finale leaves me with a lingering feeling that we all should take a long hard look at life and realize that everything around us is ephemeral, and we would be blessed if we could cherish every moment while it lasts.

–          Anjum Singhania

HANNIGAN, SEGEL, RADNOR, SMULDERS, HARRIS

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4 thoughts on ““How I Met Your Mother” Series Finale

  1. Being someone who’s followed the show religiously, i was disappointed, to put it mildly. I remember the golden days of HIMYM, the first five seasons. Season 6 onwards, as a whole, the series has only gone downwards. But atleast they were still consistent with their character’s attributes and the show’s theme. The very points you praise are the ones that put me off. While you talk about the ending being real, something i agree with, you fail to realize that this itself was the problem. Has HIMYM ever been real? I mean, does anyone ever pull of a perfect week? Lily the teacher, Ted the mostly unemployed architect, Robin the unsuccessful news anchor, partying every weekend in New York, supposedly one of the most expensive cities in the world. There are tons and tons of other things i can point out, but i think we can agree that HIMYM has never been about reality. Infact, one of the biggest reasons behind their audience was the escape they gave us from reality. So, No, you can not sell fiction for 9 long years and then suddenly preach reality in the last 40 minutes. The fact that they were bold enough to show the harsh realities of life might be a commendable effort on its own, but with their 9 year long past of unbelievable gags and impossible feats, the finale does not fit in. And, woah, what about throwing in 9 years worth of Barney’s character development straight down the pit. The baby thing is a straight copy from a British sitcom, Coupling, which i personally believe has the worst series finale ever. But even they managed to pull the baby thing better than HIMYM, because they were true to their characters, something HIMYM was not. I agree with Barney and Robin being incompatible, i personally believe that it was always about the blue french horn, never about the yellow umbrella. That is to say, that the show was always about Ted’s journey, the mother was merely a destination. So yes, the last 3 minutes, which were a reminiscence of the very first episode of the series, were good, but the 40 minutes before it sucked.

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    • Again, I agree that the series as a whole has never been the one to conform with reality, But the review was for the finale as an individual entity. I know that they cannot be separated as one is the logical extension of the other, but my views were limited to what was shown in the finale.
      Keeping in mind your rebuttal, I do agree with what you said. It can be said that after years of unrealism they decided to preach reality. But personally, I loved the first 40 minutes as well as the last 3, except the scene involving Barney getting all emotional, that was absurd! 😛

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  2. Had I been in business, I would have just said…
    “And there she was…
    After banging babes, looking for slutty pumpkins, dating lesbians I was just climbing steps towards your Aunt Robin. And with your due permission, since your mother is buried for six years now, allow me to be the hopeless romantic I always was!”
    I disagree that they forced reality, for me it remains as unreal. Imagine a group of friends, now with kids, a loving couple, a mad guy who puts his career at stake for a girl he met at some train station..because they have unknowingly shared the same umbrella for some years, a woman who is super busy as a Journalist yet has time to walk her five dogs and sleep with two friends in her group and be married the two and a guy who is the father to a love child is almost like they are professing anti-abortion laws.
    I was late in watching the finale, only saw it yesterday. It surpassed the unreality of all the unreal things shown in the entire series for the convoluted relationships. I agree there always cannot be happy endings and life is imperfect (most of the times), but this twisted ending was definitely the most unreal of all endings ever possible to the series.

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    • I agree that the series has never been the one to conform with reality, and Ted has always been a hopelessly pathetic romantic. And neither do I personally endorse his going back to Robin, but keeping in mind his undying devotion to Robin, it does not strike me unreal (in Ted’s universe) that he again went back to Robin. As I said, moving on doesn’t mean that he has forgotten all he loved about his wife.

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