The ending was shit for Lily too though tbh. Friendly reminder that this is a woman who felt as if being a mom to just one kid was too much and who had times when she just wanted to get the fuck out of her family life.
Well congratulations on giving her two more kids and never saying at any point in this final episode if she ever succeeded in her art career!
Lily Aldrin, reduced to being a wife and a mother, even though that was her worst nightmare!
I'm not thrilled of 9 years of Barney being a jerk to women ending with a daughter and...going to bars being a jerk to women in a different way. And, apparently, the complete irrelevance of his...wife? Co-parent?
EXACTLY. They spent so long growing Barney as a character just to throw it all away. 9 years of maturing and growing as a person just to end up back where he was, except now he’s the paternalistic, benevolent kind of sexist instead. And it’s total bullshit that the mother of his baby doesn’t even get a name or a face or a story or anything, she’s just “girl #31”.
I was going to let this sit until tomorrow when I (one would hope) might be thinking more clearly—but my anger over the absolute ruination of what is quite probably my favorite sitcom of all time is 100% justified, so I’m going to slam this down right here and now.
Ted and Robin dated in the second season of “How I Met Your Mother,” which took place roughly eight years ago; since then, they have engaged in various on-again-off-again relationships, most of which ended abysmally on both ends. Throughout the series, whenever Ted is at his very lowest—generally between serious girlfriends, and questioning whether or not he will ever find love—he falls back on Robin. If his feelings for her were ever indeed love, they have since then morphed into the unhealthiest kind of obsession possible. And, time and again, Robin responds negatively to his continuing advances (at one point even openly telling him that she has moved past him—that she considers him a friend, and feels that making another attempt at connecting in that way would only end badly).
Ever since the third season (Barney and Robin first kiss in 03x16) we have watched this relationship progress—and we have watched as, slowly but surely, Barney learns to value himself and others. While Ted and Robin prove over and over again that they are toxic for one another, Barney and Robin learn from one another; their relationship forces them to evaluate their faults and their failings, to grow as people.
“I love everything about her, and I’m not a guy who says that lightly, I’m a guy who has faked love his entire life, I’m a guy who thought love was just something idiots felt, but this woman has a hold on my heart that I could not break if I wanted to. And there have been times when I wanted to. It has been overwhelming and humbling, and even painful at times, but I could not stop loving her any more than I could stop breathing. I’m hopelessly, irretrievably in love with her. More than she knows.”
As for Ted, episodes as recent as those of the ninth season blatantly portray him as moving away from Robin. One episode focuses almost exclusively on his inability to let go of his obsession, and it ends with him physically dropping her hands, and watching as she floats away from him—a metaphor that evidently has no purpose or meaning now. In the penultimate episode, Ted realizes the scale of Barney and Robin’s love for one another and relinquishes the part of her he had been clutching for so long—the locket. It is also in this episode that Barney overcomes one of his greatest faults (his insistency upon deceiving those he loves, though often with well-meaning intentions) for love of Robin; he not only apologizes, but promises always to be honest with her, effectively allaying the last of her fears regarding their marriage.
This doesn’t happen once; much of the ninth season revolves around Robin’s and Barney’s respective fears about marriage (Robin worries that Barney is too like her father; Barney pines for his lost days of womanizing); these issues and more are addressed and resolved in season nine. In fact, Barney and Robin’s relationship is arguably more of a focal point for the show’s more recent episodes than Ted himself; they certainly receive more screen-time.
But even putting aside the idiocy of building up a relationship (and the character development that accompanies it) only to cast it aside abruptly, this episode stumbles too many times to be ignored.
The Mother: This show is called "How I Met Your Mother"—but as a tumblr user so wisely observed it may as well have been called “How I Met Your Mother but Then She Died and I Banged Aunt Robin.” Part of what made “How I Met Your Mother” so fascinating was how it played with time, dropping small clues about Ted’s future wife in order to keep the idea of her accessible enough for audiences to continue to want to meet her—to put a face to the name we have heard so much about. The show spends much of its allotted time establishing parallels between Ted and Tracy (the mother). Understandably, to see this phantasm of a woman come to life in season nine was an exciting experience, particularly since her chemistry with Ted was so effortless. It stings that such a multi-faceted and engaging female character has been relegated to the role of a decoy—introduced and teased purely in order to keep viewers in suspense. It stings, too, that the crew chose to quite literally contradict the title of their own show, making nonsense and mush out of its once-consistent story structure and leaving us guessing (much like Ted’s son and daughter) at what the point of all of this was in the first place. But what, perhaps, hurts most of all is how disrespectful this is to the mother—that she should be introduced after eight years of fanfare, then killed and ushered offscreen without so much as a fond farewell, let alone a moment of mourning. The narrative disposes of her completely indifferently, intent on reviving a pairing that most fans would hazard had died years ago.
Lily and Marshall:Nothing in particular happens to Marshall and Lily in this episode—and while that may seem something to be grateful for (given that every other character was royally screwed over) it’s worth noting for the fact that nothing in particular happens to Marshall and Lily in this episode. They have a baby, but we don’t know its name or even see it. Marshall becomes a judge, but we don’t see him at work anymore than we see Lily’s year in Rome. Within this episode, they exist only as complements to the stories of the other characters, reacting to ongoing events but not existing much beyond that.
Barney:In a single hour, years of character development evaporate, and we are left with the Barney of season one—a crude, callow, unattached man, compensating for his insecurities by preying on significantly younger women; he even revives the awful playbook, despite the fact that his decision to make “The Robin” his last play of all time was an enormous step forward for Barney as a character. In a matter of minutes, gone are the many painful self-realizations, the gradual unraveling of years of poor behavior; gone is the man who slept with two hundred women and realized, afterward, that he felt emptier than ever before—that he had grown past such antics, that he had grown as a human being. Realizing this hole in the plot’s fabric, the writers seek to set Barney back on the right path…by having him knock up a complete stranger (one whose face is never cast, and who does not appear in this finale whatsoever) and bond with their child instantly; the baby is never seen again after this, and referenced only vaguely, but evidently this settles the fact that Barney is once again developmentally where he should be—that years worth of development have crumbled and been pieced back together in the blink of an eye.
Robin:The slight on Robin by this show is so awful and so unnecessary that it burns even to talk about it. Robin is a woman who knows what she wants and goes for it—a woman who has spent nine years fighting to reach the very top of her field with the support of both her own determination and the support and love of her friends. For nine years, Robin has graced this television screen as a unique and refreshing female character—a female character who excels at her job but is not only her job; a female character who achieves and achieves and continues to achieve, but also manages to create bonds with others, and to exist three-dimensionally. Robin Scherbatsky climbed the ladder to success over the course of nearly a decade—but the finale has decided that she does not deserve to be proud of her work and how far she has come. Instead, she becomes cold and distant; the work that she once loved consumes her, and it makes her miserable when it never did before. She shuts out her friends, her family, and eventually her husband—and she is left, alone and empty, waiting for Ted to sweep in on his white horse and rescue her from the destruction that all of her backbreaking dedication has caused.
This finale is an insult—not only because it makes no sense narratively, or because it betrays fans who have followed it so closely and lovingly for so long, but because it disrespects its own characters, because it denies them the ending they have worked for, and the ending that they deserve. This finale is an outrage.
This. Everything wrong with the finale. I’m so upset
One thing that’s constantly pissed me off about HIMYM is that they always turn Robin into the bad guy. According to the writers, Robin is a terrible, selfish human being for choosing her career and doing what she wants. Robin put her career first and there’s nothing wrong with that, that’s what Robin does, that’s what her friends know and love about her, but they made it seem like Barney didn’t know what he was signing up for. Barney knows how important Robin’s job is to her. Barney is the one that told Robin to put her career first, because he loves her. Saying that it was tough for Robin and Barney to make it work because of Robin’s job was a complete cop out that made no sense whatsoever and it really pisses me off.
Barney and Robin’s relationship was so important to this show because it demonstrated character development and how people who are so similar yet so different can make it work because they understand each other so well.