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HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER - "The Last Forever" REVIEW:
before i progress further into this review, let me just make it clear that this is entirely my opinion, and that i feel i have every right to feel the way i feel about this so-called "official series finale". i had discovered himym two years ago, and even though i hadn't been with himym from start to finish, nonetheless i had diligently watched every single episode with the rapt attention of a good student. i was more emotionally invested in the show than i had realized, which made this series finale even more devastating and disappointing and heartbreaking a blow than towards anyone who had simply watched the show for the sake of finishing it.
i honestly didn't understand what the writers were trying to do. part of what i'm angry about is how most people just accept this ending (the ign rating for this was 9.7? what kind of shit reviewer is that? on top of that, the writer of the review praised the fact that barney had completely regressed to his shallow character from season 1. no, it is not "nostalgic", it's sickening. barney had developed into such a deep and relatable character and it's all taken away within one episode - nine seasons worth of character development completely ignored and disregarded in the most important episode of the series), when in fact most of the episode doesn't make sense with the past six seasons or so, where the characters aren't themselves and do things that only themselves in - maybe - 2006 would've done. this finale was pre-taped and forced, an idea that carter bays had felt that he needed to see happen.
first, let's talk about barney. you see barney has had a lot of deep and sentimental moments, and as the seasons progressed we could see how much his love for robin had caused a change in himself. he had developed from a pretty shallow character who only sleeps around with women to someone who has father-abandonment issues, and we could see that he's a man who's actually insecure deep inside and just wants to be loved by somebody.
and the writers somehow took all that development away from him in less than a few minutes, successfully reversing him back to no more than a shallow character who resorts to the playbook to get laid and just enjoys sex. it was funny once, but after having matured so much and then suddenly going back - it's not the same. in fact it's sad and revolting.
next point: a lot of the series had shown barney and robin never getting their timing right and how despite they always miss each other by a little, they never gave up hope they'd be with the other. perhaps you might not think so but that "divorce" was not in character for either barney or robin. it's a bit more in character for robin, as robin has always been insecure about her decisions and always thinks about the "what-ifs", but after all the emotional torture they've been through because of each other, all the relentless chasing, i don't believe that barney and robin don't love each other enough to try and work things out. i know barney said that he'd always be honest to robin, but i think instead of "not working out" it's more that they really miss each other and barney just wants to spend some time with robin.
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besides, if work interfering with robin's time spent at home with her spouse is the problem, then considering how clingy ted is, ted and robin wouldn't really work out either. this was one part that didn't make a lick of sense. in retrospect it kind of seemed like the barney/robin marriage and relationship that the writers had spent so much building up for was being tossed away like it wasn't really that important within a few minutes. it was a horrible slap to the face, and on top of that, the love had completely vanished. from that moment onwards, there was not even one lingering glance that screamed "what if we had stayed together" when they saw each other. robin seemed to long for ted more and even though that was the direction they were steering in, it still didn't make sense. robin loved barney so much and suddenly she wants to run back to ted even though he's already with the mother? there was that scene before the b/r marriage when robin started freaking out and thinking about how she'd be better off with ted but at the end of the episode she was completely won over by barney. this is the hugest middle finger that anyone who had been emotionally invested in the barney/robin pairing had ever received.
and how ted runs back to robin anyway in the end? lots of people swoon over how because of this, they knew he and robin were "meant to be", but i disagree. personally, i find barney and robin to be a better match because they understand each other better. from what i've seen, the love they shared was deeper than all the love ted would have been able to offer to robin. and even if the flash-forwards were quite vague and briskly paced, i don't see how robin's love could have possibly diverted towards ted. she had spent a long time pining after barney and even if she finally realized that ted who had always stuck by her was "better suited for her", that realization couldn't really have evolved into love that quickly, especially how after being shown so many seasons of how robin never came around to ted and always ended up in the arms of barney.
if ted and robin were going to end up at this endpoint where they're once again back with each other, then what exactly was the point of showing so much character development in barney and robin concerning their former love for each other? if the show was 100% intended to steer towards this direction, if ted was so "hot for aunt robin", ted could've pretty much skipped any and all the sentimental and deep moments for barney. let's disregard the fact that barney had regressed back to his old, womanizing ways and say he still loves robin. if that was the case, isn't ted's constantly going back to robin kind of a slap in the face for the barney/ted brotherhood-friendship? i realize that barney is kind of the one who "took" robin away first, but robin fell in love with barney for most of the seasons up to the second last episode, not ted. but with what the series finale had offered as a "conclusion" to suffice, much of what was considered extremely important parts of how i met your mother (the entire barney and robin relationship dynamics) has been rendered completely useless and pointless to the development of this shit finale.
majority of the episodes within seasons 7-9 (if we're pushing it, i'd even say 3-9) - useless. more importantly, the episode "sunrise" where ted "finally lets robin go" didn't need to exist because in the end ted never learned to let what he loves go. he did let go for a while, when he was with the mother, but after the mother's death, he's shown to go back to robin so "sunrise" was important but then ultimately not important. all the barney/robin stuff had gone down the drain anyway, the only reason they had proved to be "important" was because ted met the mother at their wedding. otherwise, they relationship was not a vital part to the story, even if it was thought to be important, even if it was thought to be an indirect way of motivating character development for ted himself.
another thing: having the mother die was also not only another slap delivered to the faces of the viewers but also completely disrespectful to the character herself - i'm not sure how to describe it, but the writers had her killed off so that ted/robin could happen and i'm not sure about other viewers of the episode but i feel this ted/robin relationship is not really important to the story. their relationship was important to the shaping of ted's character throughout the course of these nine seasons, but ultimately, ted/robin is not the point. the point of the show is to find out how ted met the mother (i guess it's debatable about how aunt robin could also be the "mother" as assuming that ted/robin works out after the series finale, they'll marry and robin will end up the (step)mother) - and barney/robin, in the end, is more important because most of ted's character development was not only through his relationship with robin, but also his relationship with barney. how ted became the person he came to be by the end of season 9 when he meets the mother (disregarding every single flash-forward) was through the barney/robin relationship, the barney/robin marriage.
if this episode had been executed better, in which the character development had remained (i can't be the only one who thinks that barney's baby daughter coming from a complete stranger was extremely anticlimactic and unfulfilling?) and the characters were in character instead of acting like the people they were in 2006 (which was coincidentally - or not? -when the finale's storyline was written), this would have been a much more amazing finale. and if the episode ended on the note "and kids, that's how i met your mother" and left the course of how the barney-robin-ted love triangle open to viewers' interpretation, it would have been much better than what had been delivered to us as a so-called "canon conclusion".
but i guess what's done is done and there's no use for me to brood and rage over this show anymore. himym may have possibly the worst series finale in the history of series finales (i'm pretty sure cobie smulders, nph and josh radnor were just as skeptical and unsatisfied with the himym finale just as a lot of viewers were), but in the end it was the journey of getting to the series finale that proved the brilliance of the show and what it's worth. the series finale does not ruin the show, because the show itself from start to near-finish was a beautiful and underrated masterpiece. however i do feel like the series finale had sucked out all life from me and had left me an empty, soulless husk.
pm me for further discussion about himym, if you like. if anybody has read this at all lol
-list to be finished-
P.S. Jam still plagues the depths of my mind.
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