Back when I was in middle school and was involved in community theatre, I remember discussing the possibility of making our very last performance of a play a sort of gag show. You know, missing cues, improvising lines, coming in with strange costumes: each person trying to outdo the next in terms of utter ridiculousness and, what we thought at the time, comedic genius. Obviously, we had to wait until our very last performance because only then were we invincible. It made no difference if we did it correctly or not in terms of future ticket sales and what could the director have done to us? Nothing, really. We had power. We could shape the last performance to be whatever it is we wanted it to be and nobody could really do anything about it. The fate of the audience was in our hands.
We never did it.
When I was a senior in college, I went to the UT vs OU football game. I had amazingly good seats (like second row) and when it became clear we were going to be winning this particular game, there was lots of murmuring about how we should storm the field when the clock ran out to show our pride and just generally be annoying college students.
We never did it.
You want to know why I think we never did those things? Because deep down we knew that the people watching us expected better of us. These people bought tickets to support our play and watch it done right. In the case of the football game, we felt the eyes of Texas upon us and storming the field isn\’t exactly a classy or upstanding move (I\’m looking at you Texas Tech). Ultimately, we respected our audience enough to follow the rules. We cared what they thought because you never know how bad impressions might impact you later on.
|I wonder how the actors feel about the finale?|
That\’s what makes me so angry about the How I Met Your Mother series finale. To me, it was the equivalent of doing either of those things. Ruining the end of something that would otherwise have been great, superb even, just because you feel like it and can without any real consequences. It\’s over. Pack your bags and go. So what if everyone around is teeming with contempt. I\’ll pick up my million-dollar paycheck and laugh all the way to the bank, because I\’ve just duped them all.
For nearly a decade we have been waiting for all of the plot holes and story arcs to be tied up. To get to the \”point\” of the story in the first place. To me, why I\’ve always thought this show was ingenious was because the defined end-point actually gave the show a legitimate point (unlike most television shows) and really allowed the creators of the show a lot of flexibility in their story-telling. It didn\’t always have to be 100% accurate or in the right chronological order, because that\’s the nature of telling a story. You get side-tracked. You go off on tangents. You forget to mention that everyone smoked cigarettes. You exaggerate certain points and diminish others. But, from the very beginning, there was always a point. The one driving point. The Mother.
I know a lot of people who got really tired of the waiting. Personally, I didn\’t. On an economic level, I know that they will drag the story out as long as possible and I don\’t really hate \”fluffer\” episodes (or in this case, off-topic tangents). Those happen in story-telling all the time. I\’ll gladly go along with that. I defended the show, truly believing that it was one of the best written and most creative shows of our time. I would compare it to a much more mainstream version of Arrested Development. It rewarded you for your loyalty and gave clues along the way that you could \”get\” jokes like eating sandwiches or the infamous slapbet. I was able to look past some of the minor flaws of the series because I always had hope that in the end it would all be worth it. These trials and tribulations were all meant to lead somewhere amazing. Ted would be rewarded and this confusing twisting story of his life would lead him to the exact place he needed to be.
I think that was a major draw. As we live our lives we will sometimes ask the question: How would my life be different if (insert life event) happened differently? If I had never moved to Texas, my life would be unrecognizable. I never would have met my husband, for example, or any of my current friends. I would have a completely different group of people to interact with and who knows how this could have possibly influenced my interests or dreams. I think that everybody, especially everyone who is searching for something, can relate to Ted\’s predicament. He wants it so badly and it isn\’t the right time yet. However, what he has been doing does make a difference. He has been planting his own seeds of happiness this whole time, even in, no, especially in times of trial. I think that\’s what we all hope for.
|Really, just when we thought things couldn\’t possibly get worse.|
|You killed the mother. Prepare to die!|
A message to the creators: If you know the ending of the series (which they did since season 2), do not put your main love interest girl (Robin) in a serious relationship with the most popular character on the show. Playing up the romance between Barney and Robin served as a major distraction, so \”we would never see this coming\”. But in reality, Barney is a much better character than Ted in most ways. He is weirdly complex and his sweet moments are some of the best in the series. Yes, Barney is sleazy and a total womanizer, but he has this softness to him that makes him much more likeable and far more interesting than Ted. Honestly, why would we even want to see Robin with Ted anymore? After the millionth time of him desperately pining over her, like the Playbook at 40, it\’s just really sad.
But, probably the most upsetting thing about this entire thing and the one fact that makes this all completely unforgivable is that there is absolutely no excuse at all for this poor work. The creators were married to this \”Ted and Robin\” idea from the beginning and despite the fact the story clearly went in a different, and more legendary direction. They couldn\’t just let that go. No, it had to come back to this because the only way to have a \”good love story\” in their eyes is the most obvious and boring one. The problem here though, is that I don\’t think that most people really wanted Ted and Robin to end up together in the first place. Not when The Mother is really \”the one\”. So while the creators were trying to go for a Ross Rachel thing, what they ended up making was more of a Jack Liz thing.
|At least this finale was a fulfillment of dreams.|
|No one really wants to see this.|
And there is no excuse. They had 9 seasons. They didn\’t have to make this up on the fly because they were about to get canceled. They didn\’t have to pull something together quickly. This is ultimately what they chose to do. This is what they wanted to do. This ending was their Plan A. What could have been original, fresh and a brilliant ending to a brilliant show turned out to merely be predictable, boring, annoying and above completely detrimental to the entire series. I expected better from these creators, not a gag performance reminiscent of middle school theatre.