I do not find the show “How I Met Your Mother” to be all that awesome. It certainly has its moments of greatness; there have been some episodes, mostly in the early seasons, that were both hilarious and touching. Many a memorable night was spent in front of the TV back in Minneapolis with Lauren, chilling on the couch for several hours with a beer in hand (just like the characters on the show) watching many episodes in succession. But for the love of God… Who the hell is the mother already?! And why do so many things about this show not make any sense?!
These kids have been sitting patiently on the couch listening to a supposed 50-something-year-old Ted Mosby in the year 2030 spill the tiniest details of his life story to them for what… seven years now? He continues to assure them that all of the 22-minute stories have a point and they all are necessary to help us understand how he meets their mother.
But they don’t! I can certainly overlook the fact that these kids couldn’t possibly have been sitting in the couch in the same clothes for over 100 straight hours. At this point that’s really the least of my concerns. What bothers me is over 90% of the episodes do not lead us any closer to finding out who the mother is.
Yes, we found out that she at one point in her life was a roommate of someone he dated though he didn’t know it at the time. We know that she once carried a yellow umbrella several years earlier, but really, how will they ever make that connection later on? “Oh, I lost a yellow umbrella in 2005.” “Oh, that’s weird, I found one in 2005. It must have been yours!”
Flashbacks to 20-year-old Lily in college couldn’t possibly have anything to do with the story. Barney’s co-worker standing up and peeing on the conference table definitely can’t have anything to do with the story—Ted wasn’t even there for it! Marshall searching all crevices of New York looking for a perfect hamburger certainly has no place in the story. Robin starring with Alan Thicke as a Canadian pop singer in the 80s? No way that ties in to the story, hilarious as it may have been. I get that this is a sitcom and the show would have ended years ago if they hadn’t stretched it out with these side stories, and the real talent of the show lies within its big-name co-stars Neil Patrick Harris, Alyson Hannigan, and Jason Segel. But each episode should be pulling us a little bit closer and it rarely does!
There’s always this underlying suspicion that Robin is really the mother, even though they have concluded many times that she cannot be. For one, we recently found out she can’t have kids. Ted also mentions that she later in life travels the world and goes to Argentina and Japan, while he continues to live in New York in an old run-down house that he bought several years earlier but never moved into and never gets mentioned while he continues to stay in his Manhattan apartment. But several times per season, Ted or Robin ends up having feelings for the other one, and we all wonder, “is it possible that Robin somehow really is the mother?” and we rack our brains trying to find some insane loophole that would open up that possibility.
As much as I am bitching about this show, we still watch it religiously. I have devoted so much time to it; there’s no way we can give up on it at this point. We got sucked in after the episode where they found the Vikings bar in New York; that was hilarious and spot-on accurate, but only from the perspective that we were living in Minnesota and could relate. Personally, I don’t care about the Robin stories anymore, and I’ve been over the Marshall/Lily stories for a very long time. The fun parts of the show lie within Barney and Ted, the two single dudes out for a legendary night on the town.
Okay, I’m going to wrap it up here. The show is getting stale, the characters are less funny now that they’re growing up and not in their twenties anymore, and I honestly don’t think the writers have the slightest clue what they’re going to do with the story and are going to really struggle to bring it all together.
But at the same time, they have us right where they want us. They can do whatever the hell they want for a thirty-minute block once a week and we can’t look away.