Disclaimer: this post contains spoilers. If you haven’t seen the series finale of How I Met Your Mother (HIMYM) and want to, I suggest you go watch it and develop your own opinion first. Though personally, I think you’re better off living in complete ignorance of what actually happens and in a world of how you think it should have ended.
Now while I could and should be doing something a lot more productive (like my dissertation or the three other essays I have due by the end of the month), I feel it’s necessary, not just for myself, but also for all the fans of HIMYM to explain (read: vent) why the finale of the nine-year long TV show was not just a mere disappointment, but a betrayal. It was a betrayal to everyone who stood by the show even and especially at its worst. It was bad enough that it took the writers nine seasons to build up to Ted Mosby meeting the girl of his dreams, but we watched on, knowing that he’d eventually find the one and it would all be worth it. It could have easily been wrapped up neatly, concisely and with an ending that encompassed all that the show has been over the last nine years. But no.
The creators, Carter Bays and Craig Thomas, decided it would be a swell idea to completely ruin every main character on the show in the last 45 minutes. I would be lying if I said Ted Mosby, despite being somewhat relatable (being a grammar Nazi is okay), didn’t annoy me every single time he realised he still loved Robin after each failed relationship, that Lily and Marshall didn’t overdo it with their lovey-dovey crap, that Barney’s “legen-wait for it-dary” jokes didn’t get old, or that Robin remained indecisive about Ted and Barney right up until her wedding day; but we sucked it up and went along with everything the writers threw at us. But no.
Unfortunately, all we got out of the finale was an abomination of everything the latter had built up to. And that wasn’t even the worst part. Season 9 finally introduced us to the Mother. In every progressive episode, the writers gave her more character and with that, more reason for us to believe she was perfect for Ted. She was funny, quirky, cute and everything the audience loved and wanted as Ted’s wife. What then, do the makers decide to do? Yep, kill her right off. Like, “you were great and perfect and everything, but no, you gotta go.” Why then, even make her an essential and even more so, a lovable part of the cast if you were just going to make her character die?! What’s more, all of the last season focused on Barney and Robin’s wedding weekend. Given all the courting, troubles, decisions and indecisions, you would expect them to finally get married and live happily ever after. However, somehow getting them divorced and distant from each other seemed to be the better option. Not only was this a complete waste of a season in terms of introducing the titular character, but one that broke up a relationship between two of the main characters—that took a whole lot of the last three seasons to develop—within seconds, only for Robin to realise she’d have been perfect with Ted all along. And all this ends with Ted’s kids persuading him to go after her again now that their mother’s dead, leading him to show up at Robin’s apartment with that godforsaken horn. Well great, the writers not only took nine very long years to do what they could have done in three episodes, but brought down pretty much everything, namely the plot, the characters and all that the show stood for in the final 45 minutes that could have possibly made it go down in TV history. So again, no.
Writers, it’s perfectly fine to give your viewers—especially those that have been rather annoyed at the fact that it’s taken you this long to tell a simple story—a predictable ending to a show they have invested a significant amount of time in. Six friends, three happy marriages and lots of kids would have been more than enough for a show to end gracefully and with a whole lot of dignity. Unfortunately, you decided to take the inexplicable and risky route to include new, and might I add, strange, elements to the finishing product (Barney has a baby, what?!). While it’s something I and, from what social media tells me, almost all your viewers won’t ever seem to understand, I can safely say this goes down as the worst finale I’ve ever seen, and I will most definitely keep myself away from anything you create in the future, for fear that you’ll just screw it up at the end. So thank you for ensuring I never tune in to reruns of this show again; the last nine years were not worth this.
If you TLDR’ed this, HIMYM was basically the longest and worst Ted talk of all time.