Monday, April 7, 2014

HIMYM Finale Review

How I Met the Finale

The title of the show explains the plot of the series; How I Met Your Mother is exactly that, a story about how a desperate for love man in his twenties, Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor) meets the mother of his children. The show last Monday completed nine seasons. The final season follows Ted’s friends Robin Scherbatsky (Cobie Smulders) and Barney Stinson (Neil Patrick Harris) getting married. Throughout the ninth season the mother(Cristin Milioti) has met his friends without Ted himself meeting her. They all agree that she is a nice woman that is perfect for Ted.  Predictably, all of his friends played a part in encouraging him to meet the infamous mother.  

            This hour long episode is called Last Forever. TV Guide has described the proposal of Barney to Robin as uberomantic and it is the central theme of the ninth season, a wedding between Barney and Robin.
With as quick as the plot moved, the ninth season’s plot could have done without an in detail report of a 56 hour time period.

What would How I Met Your Mother be without bringing Robin into the mix? Fans may be tired of this merry-go-round but the merry-go-round had a point that was explained why Ted bothered to share all of his drama with Robin.
            People had violent reactions to the finale of How I Met Your Mother. Some claimed that it was satisfying but there were slightly more fans that found it disappointing. The tension of nine years was hard to beat and the people who were not satisfied let out that tension with intense anger. This was demonstrated on twitter.
"Only one explanation: the finale was written after 2AM. Nothing good ever happens after 2AM" #HIMYMFinale
Worst finale ever!!! #HIMYMFinale
            Perhaps the reaction was such a drastic one because in this time some critics would say that people are not watching comedies (although the Big Bang Theory is almost always on TV Guide’s list of top watched shows). The fan base has stayed loyal, many people have joined in on the series.

According to Alex Epstein’s book Crafty TV Writing: Thinking Inside the Box, an established show’s script has to follow a format on how the characters would act, their personalities should be recognizable stereotypical version of themselves. The problem with the finale was not even the shocking plot twist. It was the fact that many die hard viewers had no idea what show they were watching anymore. The characters had changed drastically in four seasons; they retained their flaws but had seemingly learned from them. In one episode the writers discarded many character developments and story arcs.  Many character developments were forgotten that made it look like the end was not well planned out, when it has been planned since the start of the show.
            The ending made sense and would have been better received if the season had not focused on Barney and Robin’s wedding but instead gave the audience time to adjust to massive amounts of new information. The problem with the finale was all the flashbacks and flash-forwards that even though time had elapsed for the characters, the plot twists were devastating for the fans experiencing a synopsis of the characters’ next ten years in about 30 minutes, including watching the group slowly drifting away from each other
            The writers acknowledged some character growth by giving all of the characters heartfelt moments that they responded to according to their personalities.
            There were still a few highlights of the episode though. The audience does get a great deal of tributes to running gags including robots, renaissance fairs, cockamouse, and even the return of The Playbook.  The pineapple mystery still goes unsolved though.
            Even though it all does make sense, they led the viewers down a red herring road. It may have stayed true to the show in many regards but when it comes to character development, the show betrayed its audience.

            Although the episode may not be a favorite, it is sure to be counted among a historic ending, so watch it but be warned that the last five minutes may bring quite a shock. The casual viewer would probably see it as a good ending. However to the many viewers who kept up with the show and talked about it with friends, the ending is more likely to be less satisfying.
If a viewer watches it and is not satisfied simply remember the good times, forget that this episode exists. It is not worth throwing out all the good times for one episode.

Update: The Writers have declared an alternate ending will be presented on the DVDs

Thomas, Craig, and Carter Bays. "Last Forever." How I Met Your Mother. CBS. 31 Mar.            2014. Television.

"Last Forever: Part One." IMDb., n.d. Web. 03 Apr. 2014.

Epstein, Alex. Crafty TV Writing: Thinking inside the Box. New York: Owl, 2006. Print.

Patricia, Rollins (Ptreee). “Worst finale ever!!! #HIMYMfinale” 31 March 2014, 8:01             p.m. Tweet.

Ensamblador (Ensamblador). "Only one explanation: the finale was written after     2AM. Nothing good ever happens after 2AM" #HIMYMFinale 31 March 2014,        8:04 p.m. Tweet.

"'How I Met Your Mother' Finale Secrets Revealed." TV Guide 20 Mar. 2014: n. pag.       Web.