How I Met Your Mother (contains all the spoilers!)So I finally got to watch the last episode of How I met your Mother last night. e4, in their infinite wisdom, had split a two parter into two. This led me to guess the second half of an ending I had already had spoiled for me.
I was already aware that the mother was dead, but from Barney and Robin's divorce, I guessed that Robin and Ted were likely to get together for the conclusion. Which I don't hate. There are some nice things about that: the refutation of the idea that there is only one right person for you, and that they do kind of acknowledge that some relationships do fail.
But, here's the thing. The writers knew that they were going to have Ted ask out Robin at the end. Failing killing off Barney (which I think would have worked fine, but I guess they didn't want that note of sadness?) they knew that Robin and Barney would need to break up. However, they wanted to have their cake and eat it. They wanted to capitalise on the chemistry that Robin and Barney had developed, and they also wanted to have their ending they had planned from Season 2.
And again, it does make sense that Barney and Robin would divorce, although to have Barney regress immediately after was super tiresome, but to spend three seasons building to their wedding, and having their wedding take an entire season, and then at its happy conclusion, tell us they get divorced in the next episode? Thats a bit of a sucky structural choice. For that matter, offing the mother after again, somewhat inadveratly, setting up this amazing character? Bit lame. I do think they'd have been better off just cutting that final conversation with the kids and restructuring the end, but sadly they were too attached to it.
Oh well, it was a good ride. The show decayed in quality: Seasons 6 and 8 in particular were pretty weak, but I still found that it remained funny, and managed to tell interesting stories, right up to the end.