Showing posts with label how i met your mother. Show all posts
Showing posts with label how i met your mother. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

special comment: the finale of 'how i met your mother' - a response (VIDEO)

The more I think about this resolution to this TV series, the less I like it. That's telling.

Okay, I needed to get that emergency out of the way, Anette Olzon's coming up soon, stay tuned!

Monday, March 31, 2014

special comment: the finale of 'how i met your mother' - a response

I've been watching How I Met Your Mother since Season 3. I didn't get on board straight away because it reminded me of Friends and I've never been able to stomach that show. And since then, for nine seasons, I've watched the show and rewatched the show time and time again. I know some of the classic episodes beat-for-beat. I've laughed, I've cried, I've cheered and defended this show even in the seasons I saw it circling the drain - which, namely, was Season 5, because despite the Zoe arc in Season 6, there were moments in that season that had emotional pathos and goddamn it, I bought it.

And then we had Season 9, the season encapsulating just a few days of Barney and Robin's wedding - and I'll be honest, despite the gimmicky nature of some of the episodes and the reliance on callbacks that has become more of a crutch for this show year after year than a strength, I was on board. Some of the callbacks felt like the payoff of seasons of build-up, emotional and character arcs that lasted for years and finally met their righteous ending. I'm not going to lie, there were moments that were glorious and well-earned and I even bought into Robin and Barney as a couple, the two who had always been the most deeply broken inside and how they made each other stronger as they stayed together. 

And there were telegraphed moments throughout that season that built to the finale tonight. Going in, I had a feeling in my gut that there was tragedy in the future. I didn't know if the mother was going to live - I assumed she wasn't, it was obviously telegraphed - and honestly, I expected Ted could have been dead, and he's retracing the moments of his life that led up that climax, and how everything else didn't matter as he faced Purgatory or whatever. That would have given some real weight to the moment when Ted meets the Mother, the high point, the climax, the moment for which we've been waiting. And it would have been devilishly charming if it had ended at that moment, a quiet moment of anticlimax that would have been goddamn beautiful and earned.

The finale went in a different direction. And I will say this: on paper, the majority of makes sense. Friends, even as tightly knit as these have been, drift apart. If you have kids, you'll go weeks or months or years without seeing people. If you're on an insane travel schedule, marriages will fracture, especially when both partners are as driven and free-spirited as the two in question. And when that happens, people regress until they make stupid decisions and are forced to turn their lives around. And spouses die, and eventually, it's believable that you might return to that old flame that you've nurtured in the back of your heart year after year after year. From a position of human drama, I buy everything that happened in the finale of How I Met Your Mother - on paper.

The reason the finale does not work - and really does impressive amounts of damage to the show's many dramatic arcs as a whole - is entirely a matter of tone. And you know, tone is a tricky thing, especially when you're working with footage cobbled together for years and you've had the finale lodged in your mind almost a decade since the very first episode. And here, the misunderstanding of tone is mindboggling - because in the writers' minds, it's always been about Ted and Robin. It's the central locus, the primary element since the pilot that has defined this show - and really, it's never been about the Mother.

It was that pilot in the mind of the writers when they wrote the finale. It's just a shame they didn't consider all the other elements they had brought in, and for a show with this sort of storied history, it's amazing how much they forgot and disregarded to create this finale, most specifically the final moments.