As How I Met Your Mother begins to draw to a close, 8 episodes into its 9th and final season, I am now growing weary of the show. It is incredibly disappointing as it was a show I used to eagerly wait the week to watch the new episode, and enjoy week in week out. But alas, this is no longer the case. I have run out of steam with it. I will of course continue to the end as I have come this far, and I am loyal. But as I sit here disappointed after another poor episode, I find my thinking – was this inevitable?
HIMYM has been so strong for so long it seems at first glance that something has gone terribly wrong for it to fall so flat. However, at second glance – it actually isn’t that surprising when you think about it. We’ve all known from the very beginning exactly how the show is going to finish … Ted will meet the mother of his children. For crying out loud, it’s the title of the show … how did I not see this coming sooner! The lure of a final season is to find out how it will all turn out for everyone – what have the writers got in store for me? What surprises am I going to see? What’s going to make me feel some kind of emotion? But when you know what’s going to happen – the allure is gone, and with HIMYM it now just feels like we are going through the motions to get to the end point we’ve all been waiting the last 8 years to get to.
And it isn’t just Ted who we’ve known the score about for too long. The Barney-Robin storyline has had the writing on the wall for far too long. Frankly, I dislike this storyline anyway. Barney was always funniest as the freewheelin bachelor, and shackled by the Robin storyline just doesn’t work for me. I have never been a fan of the Robin character, she has had her moments, but I still don’t care that much for her. And honestly, I still haven’t forgiven her for what she did to Barney during the Nora and Kevin era of the show. Maybe it is just me, but Robin is the one character I didn’t make an emotional connection with – the writers tried to do this in the later seasons, but it was too late for me, she was too far gone for me to come all the way back.
The show has always been about Ted, however this season has seen him relegated to much of a second thought while we watch the wedding weekend playout. Far too much time is being spent focused on the wrong characters, and especially as they have lost their humour. The writers seem to have gotten lazy, the running jokes are getting tiresome, and most weren’t that funny to begin with – if I hear one more “Thank you Linus” come out of Lily’s mouth I may scream! Even the laughter track seems to be becoming less impressed!
Marshall is horrendously underplayed in this series – confined to the car he doesn’t have the freedom to be Marshall, and provide the heartwarming laughs he has for the last 8 seasons. I think that is one of the main problems of this season in general. By placing the whole season over one weekend, in one location, the characters are suffocated and have no room to manoeuvre, and I think is what has made them lose their spark. Only Ted seems to still hold his character and have the connection with the audience.
Perhaps showing us the mother at the end of season 8 was a mistake. We now all know who she is, what she looks like – what else do we have to wonder about? Unless the writers have a bombshell ready to drop on us, I can only see this season continuing plodding along until it falls over the finish line. I am now seriously doubting I will be able to feel satisfied when Ted finally meets the mother, because the show has taken that opportunity away from me by showing too much of its hand way too early.
It’s disappointing, the show has given me laughs, tears, highs and lows over the last 8 years, but I have barely so much as had a laugh, or felt any emotion for anyone thus far in season 9. However, I will continue to the end with crossed fingers for a glimmer of the former glory returning to the show I had dubbed a few seasons back as better than Friends.
But, as always this is just my opinion … how does anyone else feel about this season?