If you have not watched the How I Met Your Mother finale yet, you should probably be asking yourself why. You also should not read further if you have not and are adverse to spoilers.
If you did not get this joke, you probably do not watch How I Met Your Mother. That is okay. The first four-ish seasons are amazing, but maybe you would be happier re-watching Friends.
That being said, I feel like the series finale of How I Met Your Mother is vindication for calling my ex-girlfriend. I mean, we broke up a couple years ago, after trying several times to make it work and realizing that we were different people with different paths. We have not talked in ages. But maybe I should just appear out of nowhere with a token of our relationship.
I have been scouring the internet since the finale, trying to make sense of this episode, trying to contextualize and understand and I just cannot. There are, however, five things I really loved about this episode.
1) She is The Mother, but not immediately The Wife. Things happen and life is hard, and sometimes it just does not work for people to get married in ideal timing. That does not mean that two people cannot be committed to each other over a significant period of time. This is a huge thing for a major television show to show, even as brief as it was.
2) People make choices, life moves on, and sometimes people we were once very close with can be as distant as the stranger next to you on your commute. The finale, over a very short period of time, demonstrates this very well.
3) Barney stays in character. Despite the whole season being about Barney changing for Robin because he loves her – remember the whole “I don’t have to wait for it because I have you” thing earlier this season? – I just did not buy it. I could not see Barney changing. I know people do change. But some character traits are so engrained that sometimes it takes a serious life shift to make it happen. So I see Barney becoming more responsible with a daughter, but not necessarily changing.
Overall, the finale was a great, very fast-paced homage to the show, to the great jokes of the early seasons, and sure, I can see how completionists love the conclusion. But I would have loved for the episode to have ended about five minutes early, with a shot of Bob Saget saying “and that, kids, is how I met your mother.”
What do we get? No Bob Saget.
And Josh Radnor back on the front steps of Robin Scherbatsky’s apartment (which, for some reason is the same?) , where we ended the pilot. Where he has stood so many times before, waiting around for it to work.
Seems like someone was kept on the hook.