Friday, January 27, 2012

Why I don't want to meet your mother

Not YOU specifically, but "you" Ted Mosby's children you. I've been watching "How I Met Your Mother" since it started, and when we made it to season 2 all I could think was "wait really?! You're going to pick this up for more seasons? I mean, I love it, but no one else is watching it."
We got to season 5, and I was surprised. I was happy, but I was surprised that it lasted this long. And that it persists. Still. The show is contracted for 8 seasons. So far.

My first complaint is this.

The name of the show, as I recall it, is "How I Met Your Mother," and the first two and a half seasons were about that. About halfway through season 3 the show made a switch. It became vaguely about Ted and the long road to meeting his future wife, and it moved to what should now be titled "How Barney Slept with Way Too Many Women Before I Met Your Mother, and How Inappropriate It Is That I, Your Father, Am Telling You These Things." (As evidenced by this picture that barely contains Ted's face.) Don't get me wrong, I love Barney Stinson. I adore Neil Patrick Harris. And I loved the chance to hear a little bit more about Marshall and Lily, because I want to marry Jason Segel and I want to be Alyson Hannigan. And the heart-breaking news about Robin not being able to have children forcing her to realize just how much she wanted them. It resonated. These are all important things, and I'm sure they do play a role in how Ted's life shapes before he meets his future wife. All of that except Barney's promiscuity.

But what I don't ever want, more than anything what I don't want is to meet their mother. I just don't. It's bad writing if we meet her. Because from the beginning we've been told the kids know the short story of how Ted met their mother. So all of the story we're hearing should lead up through that point, and at most see the back of her head. Any person they give us will be a disappointment, and anything beyond that moment will be "How Your Mother and I Began To Live Our Lives Together."

But, we will meet her, and it could easily go beyond. Though it never should. Something about American television says "Drag it out as long as you can. No matter how little sense it makes." I'm looking at you, "The Office."

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