Wednesday, November 5, 2014
How I Met Your Mother: Transcendent TV
While this is trying to be spoiler free-ish, I can't guarantee anything. You've been warned.
It's been a long road. Yeah, nine years. You don't stick with a TV series for that length of time if it sucks. Obviously, How I Met Your Mother doesn't suck for many of us. In fact, it's a great show. If you've never seen it or dropped off somewhere in the middle, I definitely think it deserves another go.
The wife and I just finished watching the last episodes of season 9 last night. Whew! An emotional rollercoaster ride. I got sucked in and now that I've seen the entire series, I feel (as cheesy as this is probably going to sound) transformed.
The DVD has two endings. Only the last 4 or 5 minutes is different but you get a choice. We watched the ending broadcast on TV first, and I'm glad we did. That's the one everyone (I'm exaggerating, of course) is all up in arms about.
In fact, I didn't even want to watch the alternate "safe" ending because it pulled punches, it chickened out. HIMYM deserves a legendary ending because it was a legendary show. Anyways, below are more of my thoughts about season 9.
The review I just posted on Amazon...
Now THAT was a series finale! A perfect combo of... everything. You had the dumb humor, smart humor, drama, romance, great characters changing (while still mostly staying the same - just like real life), mystery, suspense, tragedy, and introspection. We got to see the past, present, and future.
I've seen the last few minutes of season 9 criticized for turning the tables or pulling out the rug or something. I don't see it. Because of the ending - that's why Ted is telling the story. That's why he's been reminiscing with his kids about his journey and the journey of his friends. Knowing what happens to the mother doesn't ruin the show's premise - it reveals it!
Six years is a long time. I would have preferred his making a move earlier than that. Oh well, that's my only quibble. The entire series, especially season 9, sowed the seeds of Robin and Ted. It felt right, it still feels right.
All in all, I can't recommend season 9 strongly enough if you're a fan of How I Met Your Mother. Want to know what the dream is? Creating a nine-season epic of television storytelling that transcends sitcoms and whatever kind of show "Friends" is. That's it. That's the dream.
And here's my comment to an Amazon reviewer (one of many) who panned season 9 because of the finale...
It's fun to lift up the hood and take a look at the inner workings or to imagine what might have been. But that's not the point of the show. It's about the journey, and that journey was inspired... nay, forged by the events of the future. What happened to Ted's wife is the reason he's narrating the past - because it leads to his future. Life happens. Season 9 felt real, was real. It showed us a deeper truth and transcended the whole "Hey kids, here's a bunch of stories about my troubled youth when I was single and looking."