Why the How I Met Your Mother Series Finale was Actually Genius

The mother makes her first appearance.

Almost a year ago on March 31st, 2014, How I Met Your Mother fans everywhere were sad to see the story of Ted Mosby and his search for love finally come to an end. After eight seasons of waiting to find out who the mother was, she was finally revealed to the world in the last sixty seconds of the season eight finale, carrying her iconic yellow umbrella and bass guitar. She was then present throughout all of season 9, shown not only meeting everyone except for Ted, but also shown developing her relationship with him through clever flash-forwards, including their first date and Ted’s heartfelt proposal. Fans got to know the mother and watch her become a real character in the show for the first time, but they were not able to actually witness the moment she and Ted meet until the last five minutes of the final episode. While their meeting was the moment that everyone had been waiting for since the very first episode, it was not what had everybody talking after the series finale.

Tracy on her deathbed.

After Ted is shown meeting the mother, the show flashes forward to him talking to his kids on the couch and finally being able to say, “And that, kids, is how I met your mother.” Penny’s response was not what was expected. After sitting down and listening to her father talk her ear off for what seemed like an eternity, Ted’s daughter responds with, “That’s it?” and proceeds to take an unexpected, skeptical approach. This is where fans watched in absolute shock as Penny began to accuse their father of being madly in love with their “Aunt” Robin. Viewers almost did not have time to process what was happening while the mother is revealed to be deceased for six years, the kids encourage Ted to call Robin, and he makes his way to her apartment, holding out the one and only blue french horn. When the credits came, fans were raging.

The whole point of the show was ruined, Robin and Ted are overrated, the mother was incredible, etc. These are the types of reactions that originally formed directly after the classic sitcom finally came to an end. Everyone was utterly disappointed. However, when looking back and analyzing every aspect of the show, it is extremely evident that this ending was absolutely brilliant, not only because of its “wow” factor, in the sense that no one saw it coming, but also because every single detail presented throughout the series finally made sense.

First, let’s take a look at Ted and Robin’s relationship, starting from the very beginning, the very first time Ted lays eyes on her in the first episode. He is talking to Barney about Marshall proposing to Lily and how it is making him question whether or not he should be at that point in his life as well. Ted goes on, in a joking manner, saying “Ok, I’m ready. Where is she?” and then he turns and sees Robin for the first time. There she was. Ted was always a head in the clouds romantic, always ready to settle down and start a family, but in that moment, he was truly ready. If it were up to him, he would have looked no further and he would have married Robin on the spot. It was always about her. The creators of the show revealed to us who Ted’s true love really was right in the first five minutes of the series, and then discouraged us by saying, “because, that, kids, is the true story of how I met your Aunt Robin,” at the end of the episode.

Love at first sight.

No matter what happened between Robin and Ted from that point on, viewers always had it in the back of their minds that Robin was not the mother (which was true) and that Ted would not end up with her (which was not true). She was eliminated as a possibility right away, making the show’s finale that much more clever and unexpected. However, there was one small glimmer of hope in the middle of season 7 which made viewers question what was really going to happen between the two. In episode 17 of season 7, titled No Pressure, Barney finds Marshall and Lily’s box of long-term bets, one of which is “Lily bets Marshall that Ted and Robin won’t end up together”. The show then presents a montage of moments where Lily has told Marshall to pay up during times where it seems as though Ted has moved on, such as his wedding with Stella. Marshall’s response was always, “Not yet.” At the end of the episode, Robin tells Ted that she does not love him and she moves out of the apartment, causing Lily to tell Marshall to pay up. This is the last time we hear about it, but Marshall still says, “Not yet,” with no explanation. As Ted’s best friend, Marshall knows who Ted is meant to be with. Most fans do not catch this or relate it to the fact that Ted and Robin actually do end up together, but it is one of the minor details that becomes very clear with the show’s end.

The Final Page, Part One And Two
Barney proposes to Robin.

Another argument that skeptics of the finale posed was the fact that Barney and Robin seemed perfect for each other. She was the only girl who actually got Barney to walk down the aisle and yet they ended up getting divorced for what seemed like not a good enough reason three years later. Most fans were more upset about Barney and Robin breaking up rather than Ted and Robin getting together. These same fans were also team Ted and Tracy (the mother). She and Ted had so much in common and also seemed meant to be, just like Barney and Robin. However, these viewers did not take a step back and look at yet another minor detail which pointed directly to the fact that these “dream couples” were in fact not meant to be together.

One of the most iconic and well received episodes of How I Met Your Mother took place in the ninth season. The 200th episode, titled How Your Mother Met Me, walked through the mother’s life during the same timeline as Ted’s, touching on the various moments where they were in the same place at the same time. This episode in itself reflected the brilliance of the show, putting the whole story together and tying in parts from various seasons and episodes throughout the series. However, the one key detail comes from the words of wisdom Tracy provided us with recently after her boyfriend, Max, passed away. She is talking to her future roommate, Cindy, in economy class (where Ted happens to accidentally teach that day) and she happens to mention, “I believe that each of us only gets one. And I got mine already.” This may not seem like such a big deal in the moment, but it all makes sense when the season finale rolls around and Ted, in fact, does not end up with Tracy for the rest of his life.

Max was Tracy’s one. Robin was Ted’s one. Barney was incapable of being anybody’s one. Furthermore, if Barney and Robin had stayed together, Barney would have never experienced the emotional moment of holding his own daughter in his arms. Fans reportedly loved those rare moments when Barney would show his soft side, and this was the biggest soft side of all. He finally had something that was genuinely important to him, that gave him his meaning in life and made him truly feel “legendary”. If he had stayed with Robin, they never would have had kids, and even if they did, it would not be their own because Robin was incapable of having children. Barney had his daughter, Ted finally got Robin, and Tracy was able to spend the rest of eternity with Max. Most fans did not even realize that everybody actually ended up with who they were supposed to be with.

Barney meets his daughter.

Finally, let’s not forget Ted’s heartwarming speech about lasting love. As mentioned before, Ted was always a head in the clouds, hopeless romantic. He moved audiences to tears with his multiple lessons on love and destiny. However, arguably Ted’s most prominent and memorable speech took place in episode 17 of season 9, titled Sunrise. For those of you not familiar with this speech, here it is:

Ted giving his speech on love.

“Actually, there is a word for that. It’s love. I’m in love with her, okay? If you’re looking for the word that means caring about someone beyond all rationality and wanting them to have everything they want, no matter how much it destroys you, it’s love! And when you love someone, you just, you don’t stop, ever. Even when people roll their eyes or call you crazy. Even then. Especially then! You just– you don’t give up! Because if I could give up if I could just, you know, take the whole world’s advice and-and move on and find someone else, that wouldn’t be love. That would be that would be some other disposable thing that is not worth fighting for. But I– that is not what this is.”

He was talking about Robin. No person on earth can speak words like that about another human being and simply throw all of those feelings away. Like Ted said, when you love someone, you don’t ever stop. Ted always loved Robin and was always meant to be with her. What Tracy did was give him a glimpse of the life he had always dreamed of. She was the woman who played bass guitar, the woman who bore him children, the woman who shared his love for coin collections, dorky driving gloves, corny jokes, and so many other things that simply made her “too perfect”. In the end, Ted and Tracy were far too similar and there was no real passion. She gave him what he had always thought he wanted for a few years, and he gave her a few years of happiness before she was to be reunited with her one true love. But when everything was said and done, he still wanted Robin. He never stopped fighting for her, just like he said in his speech.

How I Met Your Mother Series finale was actually genius


After looking at the first episode, the last episode, and a few key messages and hints from those in between, it is obvious that the How I Met Your Mother series finale was, in fact, one of the most well crafted plot lines ever executed in TV history. In addition to its long running series of hidden connections, the show gave fans laughter, tears, suspense, romance, drama, and, most importantly of all, hope. If the show had simply ended after Ted met Tracy, the message would have been that everyone eventually finds their soul mate, which is a remarkable message indeed, but this ending gave viewers more. Yes, everyone does eventually find their soul mate, but the real message is that it can happen in the most unexpected and unimaginable way possible. Love is about risk and sometimes even heartbreak, but that is the beauty of it. When you find someone you are willing to take that leap for, someone you will never stop fighting for, you have found your soul mate, no matter how long it takes or how many obstacles fall in your path. This is the real message of How I Met Your Mother, and this is why the show’s finale was undeniably and indubitably, absolutely genius.

What do you think? Leave a comment.

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  1. Matthew Sims

    A lovely and well thought out article, Jessica. I think that time will treat both this series and how its final hours played out better than it was initially. While it is not as instantly likeable as other finales, it is meant to be seen as a part of the larger story, rather than the end most people want. Another integral part of its reading is the episode ‘The Time Travelers’, where Ted imagines asking Tracy for another 45 days, still a heart-breaking scene. Despite the fact that he knows they were not meant to be together, he still wants to make the most of the time he has got.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I agree, the 45 days scene is absolutely heartbreaking and I also admire the fact that Ted did appreciate Tracy to the fullest. He also talks about it in the last episode where he says, “I have to love this woman for as much as I can and as long as I can, etc.” He still gave his all to Tracy for as long as he had her even though, like you said, he knows they were not meant to be together. Thank you Matthew!

  2. Nice article. I like it. I find it funny. Yes, it’s formulaic, but it’s a sitcom and there’s only so much you can do with that format.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      This is why I think the creators of the show are brilliant. They took that sitcom, comedic format and made it into this incredible story that all came together in the end. I think they did a wonderful job with it. Thank you WiMie!

  3. They would have been better spending more time on the last episode and less on the Barney/Robin wedding, a good deal of which was not funny. The last ten minutes especially felt like a real let down, and I for one was dismayed at the way it looked so rushed. It went out with a whimper rather than a Big Bang.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I think by leaving it all until the last ten minutes they were trying to prolong the suspense even more. The fact that they were able to keep the story going for nine whole seasons and then still make you wait until the last few minutes of the very last episode to ACTUALLY see the moment where they meet was brilliant to me. If he had met the mother earlier in the season or even before season 9, the show “How I Met Your Mother” would have technically been over. Thanks Slack!

  4. Barnhill

    I always thought the premise of the show was an interesting conceit. There was some lovely writing during the show, although it was never the funniest or otherwise best of US sitcoms. But making nine series – 80 hours – of a sitcom with the ending itself as the hook, now that was a brave thing to do. Perhaps in hindsight that bravery was foolhardy.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I think setting the ending as the hook was the perfect tactic because it made fans want to watch the entire thing in order to see how it all turned out. Although many people disagree with the series finale (which is the reason why I wrote this article), they still cared enough and stuck around to watch it. Thanks Barnhill!

  5. The final series was patchy, jumped all over the place, and wasn’t as great as those that had preceded it. Even so, I still rate HIMYM as one of my favourite sitcoms of all time (it made me laugh a lot and I never missed a single episode), but that final season needed to be rewritten.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I see that you are talking about all of season 9 as a whole. My article was simply addressing the final episode and how everything turned out in the end. While I am a strong defender of the series finale, I do agree with you in some aspects of season 9 AS A WHOLE. At first I thought it was cool that they decided to stretch all of season 9 out over the span of a few days before the wedding, but then I found myself missing all of the other seasons and feeling like something was off. So, I do agree that the final season could have been improved, but the actual ending itself was brilliant. Thanks GYU!

  6. DonnieSexton

    I found the entire episode to be patchy, uneven and ultimately a massive let down. On the positive side, it was nice seeing Marshal realise his dream of being a judge, but on the flip side, no mention was made of what Lily was doing after the year in Italy. It’s almost as if she was “just a wife and mother” was good enough for her character (which it shouldn’t have been).

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I agree that it would have been nice to see more of Barney, Marshall, and Lily in “present day” time, meaning as Ted is telling his kids the story. However, there has to be a point where the writers put the pen down. Otherwise, the series could have gone on until all of them passed away. The premise of the show was not simply about the lives of all the characters. Instead, it was “How I Met Your Mother”. It was all about how Ted met Tracy and the intention was to stop there. I think the flash forwards they provided for us were the perfect amount. People will always be wanting to know more and know what happened after the show ended, after Ted and Robin got together, etc. I think that is part of the beauty. It leaves a bit for the viewers to think about.

  7. Christina Cady

    Nice read, I think that the show’s ending made sense for the reasons that were laid out here though I will agree that the final season wasn’t the best but that’s beside the point. HIMYM has always been a show that had a strong grounding in it’s story concepts and arcs I think this is a theme that was pretty well reflected in its finale. Thanks for the article!

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I also am a bit on the fence about season 9 as a whole, but I stand strongly by the finale and how everything actually turned out in the end, as you can tell. Thanks Christina!

  8. LaurenCarr

    Great read. It’s typical for last shows/seasons to be a let down or at least not as strong as the beginning. I like your perspective.

  9. Brooke McQueen

    I honestly, from the very first episode of this show, never ever thought for a second that from the moment Ted laid eyes on Robin that he was not in love with her and that he truly wanted to be with her the whole time. I am absolutely in love with this article, very well written. I also completely agree with what you said the message of the show was. I always thought it was about how things happen so unexpectedly and how that leads to ending up with who you are supposed to be with. Ted never stopped fighting for her. He wanted her to stay apart of his life so bad that he was willing to be just friends with her and even watch her date his best friend. This article is very informative and I would definitely encourage anyone who has watched “How I Met Your Mother” to read this. Yes, I do agree with your article, but you also gave me so many connections and points of the show I did not really catch.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I’m so glad you enjoyed reading it! Unlike yourself, I was completely blindsided by the ending because I was one of the ones who ruled Robin out the second he said that was aunt Robin in the first episode haha. But thank you so much for the positive feedback!

  10. Interesting look on the finale! Its nice to see a more positive look at it. You brought up a lot of points I hadn’t thought about! Well done!

  11. Francesca Turauskis

    Nope. I get the mum dieing (why else would Ted talk about her ALL the time). I get Robyn and Barney breaking up so he can have a lil’ girl. But I still can’t get over two things. 1: Ted basically uses Tracey as a baby mamma. What if she HADN’T conviently died? Ted and Robyn have an affair? Because let’s face it, if he still loved her, it would have grown to resentment soon enough…it’s just sloppy writing for convienience.
    2: Ted and Tracey’s kids have lost thier mum very young, not too long ago. Are we REALLY expected to believe thatbthe first time they hear of thier dad’s love for someone they have known all their lives is going to be met with ‘go get her Dad!’ Not ‘how could you?’ not ‘did you ever even love mum?’ just ‘yeah we’re totally up for this brand new change in our circumstances’ !! lazy writing, ignoring reality.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      Well to hit on your first point, there is no what if. The mother did die and it happened for a reason, not just so Ted could be with Robin but also so that Tracy could be with Max, as mentioned in the article. Maybe she could be seen as a baby mama but the same could be said for Ted. He also gave Tracy the family she was never able to have with Max. It works the same way and everything happened for a reason and I thought that it was brilliant.
      As for the second point, I think the fact that the kids had known Aunt Robin their entire lives made them more inclined to be excited for their father. If it was some random woman, they may have been more skeptical. Furthermore, it had been six years since Tracy died and maybe they had seen how unhappy their dad had been raising them alone and wanted him to move on and be happy. They put his happiness above theirs because they cared about him.
      Some people did complain that they did not show enough of the grieving of Ted’s family after the mother passed, and maybe that’s why the kids’ reactions seemed more detached and heartless. However, we do not know how difficult it was for them all to move on after Tracy passed. Maybe they all knew that it was time to move on. Thanks Francesca!

  12. I’ve watched the show more on than off since it began. Barney has always and continues to annoy the piss out of me.

  13. Downing

    barney is the most repellant sitcom character ever whilst being entirely absent of any comedy value whatsoever. in many way’s ‘it’s always sunny in philadelphia’s dennis is quite similar, and that show goes way further but it always make clear the joke is on him.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I agree that Barney could get pretty annoying at times, but where would the show be without him? It seems like he is the one causing a lot of plot lines even if he is not the one directly contributing to the humor of the situation. Thanks for your comment Downing!

  14. My wife was in tears and outraged at the treatment of the mother. I quite liked the final episode but had grown bored of the interminable episodes devoted to Robin and Barney’s wedding, which didn’t even result in anything enduring. I never believed they made a convincing couple and so was glad to be proven right in that regard.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      Yeah in a previous comment I talked about how the the kids may have seemed heartless when urging Ted to go for Robin in the end, but it is only because we did not get to see the grieving period right after the mother passed away. In my opinion, them pushing Ted to go for Robin was an attempt at moving on and allowing themselves and Ted to finally be happy. Six years had passed, after all. Thanks Sean!

  15. I have enjoyed How I Met Your Mother for many reasons, including a great nickname it once gave to one of its characters.

  16. Bell Speer

    I tried watching this, along with The Big Bang Theory, but they’re pretty rubbish. I’ve been watching early seasons of Frasier on YouTube. Now there was one amazing show.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I’ve never seen Frasier but if you don’t like How I Met Your Mother I’m not sure I can take your word for it.;) To each his own! Thanks for your comment Bell Speer!

  17. Jacque Venus Tobias

    Thanks for this article, I could not continue with the program and wondered how it ended. Thanks.

  18. I think I must be one of the few people who doesn’t find American comedy these days in the least bit funny (Big Bang Theory excepted) I hate all the pretty people in beautiful houses, the formulaic plot lines, the good looking characters. Modern Family and How I met your Mother make me want to scream. I yearn for the days of MASH and Married with Children.

  19. Very interesting article. At first, I was upset, like many fans from around the world that it did not end the way everyone expected it to. Barney and Robin was suppose to live happily ever after and adopt a few kids and Ted and Tracy were suppose to sit by a fireplace surrounded by their loving children like from one of those 50’s infomercials. However, I soon realized that by turning the tables and making such a huge plot twist, stimulated conversation and frenzy and thats what any writer should aim for. Its not always about giving exactly what the audience wants, but what can improve the story and allow viewers to feel a genuine connection. Men around the world can understand Barney’s sudden revelation with his baby girl, men who have lost wives can comprehend Ted’s pain, and Robin, wishing to have to be a successful career woman and putting everything on hold. The episode was emotional, but importantly it touched upon what reality really is: it doesn’t always go as planned.

  20. Tyler McPherson

    Personally I liked the finale, I would have liked to see more of Ted and Tracey but unfortunately that couldn’t happen. I liked that it stuck to it’s own, it didn’t aim to impress fans but stuck to the plan they originally had, as well as to provide an ending that was true to the show.

  21. Violeta

    Totally agree!!! I loved the finale, honestly, it made me cry (and i NEVER cry watching movies or tv shows).Thanks for writing this, enough with all the finale hate!!!!

  22. Kenneth Merchant

    This show has been absolutely thrilling to watch, and I’ve been watching it inclusively from the very beginning. I agree with you completely that the season finale was ingenious because it delivered what the audience must have been expecting all along, but never had it quite delivered. In some ways we could have expected it to end this way, but a part of us wanted to disbelieve it because of how obvious it would be. Now for some quick criticism:

    I enjoyed reading this article, but I feel it was all too lengthy for what your were trying to deliver. Some parts of this article were a bit repetitive and some other parts could have been cut down shorter.

    • Jessica Zalzman

      I guess I was just really trying to prove my point because all I’ve heard about the finale is nothing but hate. I let my passions get carried away haha but thank you kmercwriter!

      • Kenneth Merchant

        Trust me when I say I wasn’t trying to be harsh with my comment. I just felt like this article was long winded for what you were attempting to do. I personally felt like your article would have been stronger if it were more focused instead of being a long rant. I was convinced within the first couple of sections, and with the conclusion.

  23. It’s quite a gentle nondescript comedy with some pretty faces. There will be another to replace it.

  24. How has this show been allowed to run for almost a decade? John Goatbirth and airy fairy are quite right, HIMYM isn’t a patch on the likes of Frasier or MASH and is barely a level above Everybody Loves Raymond. How many more years will E4 run repeats of the show for?

  25. Remembering the fact that Ted’s daughter did say he clearly told the story because he still loves Robin so why would he not be mentioning her wedding day which at that moment of time in his life was probably ripping him apart.

    The ending was rushed and all could’ve been better but the final series to me, made a lot of sense.

  26. I was disappointed with the ending, and thought that Ted and Robin getting together was basically spitting in the face of the Mother.

  27. Hi Jessica!
    Great article filled with insightful observations. I am always fascinated by how the writers of long running shows like HIMYM, Friends and even J.K. Rowling with the Harry Potter series seem to map together such intricate clues throughout the story that all tie together in an otherwise “surprise ending.”
    I have to admit I was one of the disappointed viewers at the finale because of the very reasons you outlined. However, after reading your article I have to say that you’ve swayed me! Which can only mean that you hit the mark on your rationale.
    The fact that in the first episode we are basically told the ending to a never-ending story is both ironic and hilarious. Kind of like a joke between the writers–you know?
    I also think your point on the ending telling us about true love is very sweet and also so fitting with Ted’s character and the tone of the entire series.
    Yeah they could have given us a bit more time to accept both Tracy’s death and Ted’s decision to go to Robin (it felt like IMMEDIATELY after Tracy died Ted got over it, which obviously wasn’t the case) but overall, and after your argument, I can say that the ending was rather touching.
    Great job. I hope to read more of your work.

  28. Ashley Allen

    Great article that really makes you think. Loved the show and was very sad to see it go, but I felt that it went on for a few seasons longer than it needed to.

  29. I completely agree with your view of the finale. When the it originally came out, I was not disappointed. I knew that most people had been, as it did develop very suddenly, and it did not allow viewers much time to adjust. However, it felt to me like the last five minutes was just nine years in the making. To finish the show with the Ted and the mother happy and in love would not have been true to the show itself. The show progressed in such a way that a denial of Ted’s love for Robin in the end would have made those nine years of memories of his constant devotion to Robin seem meaningless.

    I remember in one episode in the first or second season, Ted got a response from an online dating service, where the woman he was matched with had all the qualities he had been searching for (and all the qualities he eventually found in the mother). Ted, however, decided that he didn’t even want to meet that perfect woman, because he didn’t want perfect, he wanted Robin. I feel like this perfectly describes why the show had to culminate in Ted once again vying for Robin’s affections.

    Anyways, I appreciate that someone else had a similar outlook on the merits of the finale.

  30. I completely agree. I was rooting for Ted and Robin the entire time and upset as to how Robin could not be the mother when Ted so clearly loved her. I thought that there would be a process of Ted getting over Robin somewhere down the line because he would have had to in order for her not to be the mother but the way they did it was way more clever.

    Well done article!

  31. Jenna Mae

    Seeing romance-drive Ted outside Robin’s apartment again with the blue French horn resulted in a beautiful full-circle. To find love again, renewed, after so long is extraordinary.

    I only wished for a few things:
    More time with the mother (on-screen time): I wish to have seen the relationship develop and flourish, as we have seen with all the potential others (Robin, Stella, Zoey, etc.) While I fell in love with the mother in the little time we were given, I can’t helped feeling robbed of a large part of Ted’s love story.

    Robin to have maintained character development: Robin grew so much throughout the series. She came to a point where she finally chose love over her career (Don), yet in the end, we briefly find out that all that development had been scratched out. She, yet again, chose her career over her marriage, becoming a large reason contributing to the reason it eventually failed.

    Ted mourning: I think closure and acceptance would have been easier if we were able to see Ted mourning the mother. Instead, we find out that she has died. In the next moment, we find out that Ted wants to get back together with Robin. While a lovely ending, it was difficult to jump from one scene to the other.

    The story was, however, brilliant of the writers. The audience was led to believe one idea right up until the very last moment. If that isn’t clever story-telling, I don’t know what is:)

  32. I have to admit, reading this has made me hate the finale a little less. You raised some interesting points (particularly with Barney and his daughter and how the characters were all able to find their “one”). Although, I still don’t really like the finale itself ( I felt it was too rushed and why would they spend the whole ninth season set the weekend of the wedding that they were going to erase three minutes later?), I can sort of understand the plot points a little more after reading your take on it. Very insightful article. Also, you pointed out a few more hints throughout the series that I had not previously been aware of which I appreciated. Well done:)

  33. Nope! The show mass itself to clever in the end. The issue most people had was the fact that the mother was killed off so soon. It was almost as if we participated in a murder.

  34. Mark Huppert

    I just finished binge watching the whole series. What a stunning, towering creation. I don’t really have words to express what the show did to me. Thanks to everybody involved in its creation.

  35. It’s nice to remember that show-runners and writers have planned out the arc of a story for many years. For me, the show did too good of a job developing The Mother’s mystique and set-up to create the perfect match for Ted. Of course, your perfect match shouldn’t be exactly what you’ve always imagined! That is what made Robin and Ted such an interesting couple. If the show had ended in season 4 or 5, Ted and Robin would still have had the same magical chemistry that more fans rooted for initially as opposed to a 9 season run where the idea of Ted and Robin felt a little stale.

  36. As someone who completely wanted Barney and Robin together from the moment they played laser tag in season 1, I can see your point in this article. Obviously, Ted was in love with Robin from the beginning, and they tried dating in Season 2 only to be ripped apart by fate. They had met too early, Ted had needed to find Tracy. Even though they weren’t meant to be, Ted was meant to find Tracy, fall in love with her, get married, have kids, and eventually witness her death. Tracy was meant to have Max die on her and go on to meet Ted. Robin and Barney were meant to fall in love in the crazy way that they did, and of course Barney was meant to have his child. Everything was meant to happen the way that it did, and I love how well you articulated that.

  37. As much as I agree with everything this article says, I also wholly disagree with it. The show was beautiful, it really couldn’t have ended any other way. It was both satisfying and infuriating at the same time, and, to quote a certain legendary blonde man, that’s the dream. But being that I am, like Ted, a hopeless romantic, I have to find fault with ending, no matter how much I like it. Yes, Barney needed to have a daughter, but he also needed to stay with Robin. Yes, Ted needed to be with Robin, but he also needed to be with Tracy. I realize that that is a really confusing thing to say, so I’ll explain. The show did one thing wrong. They discounted those relationships that are, as has been said, “too perfect” and replaced them with relationships that didn’t make sense. Ted and Robin being together makes no sense. Ted and Robin being in love makes no sense. It has been my experience, and I don’t mean to tout this as a universal truth, but it has been my experience that relationships that don’t make sense don’t last. Had Tracy not gotten sick, she and Ted could have been happy for the rest of their lives. Had Robin not had to travel so much, she and Barney could have been happy for the rest of their lives. But Ted and Robin are so different, that there will be times in their future when they aren’t happy, and I think that alone should be reason enough for them not to end up together. Because I am a hopeless romantic. I believe there is someone out there that is “too perfect” for all of us, and if we settle for less, we’re selling ourselves short.

  38. As an avid HIMYM watcher, I knew it had to end and by the 8th season I was ready. Like is said in the article, the show did a great job of not just showing the mother in the last season, but in tying up the loose ends to make all of these people we have grown to love over the years happy. It makes it easier to lose them now that they are off the air… maybe.

  39. The is really awesome. HIMYM was a good show, but it turned out to be a great show after it ended. The show had a great balance between closure and thought-provoking interest. Great article.

  40. This show has absolutely changed the way I look at love and life. I was in-fact one of those people who were upset that Barney and Robin didn’t end up together; however, I did enjoy that the ending to the show was very surprising and kept me on my toes. I did not get closure in the show, but it kept me searching for something more in my life and wanting me to make the most out of everything; which was, in my opinion, the essence of the show.

  41. I totally agree , the ending was amazing

  42. Watching the finale of HIMYM I, like most fans, was in shock and disbelief. I felt like the ending was just slapped together and completely out of nowhere. My main reason for these feelings was because I loved Barney and Robin and thought they were perfect for each other. Due to this love for a couple that the writers tore apart I was unable to see the bigger picture. I really loved this article and how real it was. It actually made me see the, as the author puts it, “genius” behind the finale. I also really liked how this article talks about the unexpected moments that comes with true love and how you know it is real when you would set your life on fire to keep it.

  43. As an avid watcher I found the series finale both above and below expectations. I had always wanted and expected Ted to end up with Robin. But always wondered how. When at the end of season 8, when they showed the mother-I kinda lost hope, but some how in early season 9 could speculate that they might kill the mother-but thought this as bizarre and offcourse too sad. At the end when they showed Ted with the blue french horn that was romantic, but expected a bit longer episode. This does gives faith that eventually everyone finds their Ted or Robin.

  44. As an avid watcher I found the series finale both above and below expectations. I had always wanted and expected Ted to end up with Robin. But always wondered how. When at the end of season 8, when they showed the mother-I kinda lost hope, but some how in early season 9 could speculate that they might kill the mother-but thought this as bizarre and offcourse too sad. At the end when they showed Ted with the blue french horn that was romantic, but expected a bit longer episode.

  45. The show has been off the air long enough that I havent thought about it in a while. I’m not one to normally be all “I TOLD YOU!!” however, when I watched the ending I literally jumped out of the chair and pointed at my friends and said I TOLD YOU!!! I had said right from the start “If the mother isn’t dead at the end of this show, I’m gonna be pissed.” Mostly everyone thought I was morbid and strange for feelig that way, but it was immediately clear to me that it was the only way to make the entire series make sense. I miss this show dearly. It makes me so badly want to create a sitcom based on my own life

  46. Vanessa Fernandes

    Wow love this article!
    I feel like you and I think the show was brilliant!
    It was always about Robin 🙂

  47. Finally, someone who truly understands the series. You put the right words, I also thought it was an amazing ending. Yes, in life, you can think that achieving certain things are happiness. But the universe or whichever force that regulates our existence can prove us that what you want to live is not actually what you are meant to live. Life gave them both what they thought would make them happy, but how many of us can certainly know that?

    We see it in our friends, when I get money, when I get a promotion, when I get married, when I have kids…I will be happy. But when having those things, life will show you that that’s not what happiness is all about.
    I also believe that when someone loves you this deeply when never forget all that. People felt disapointed of not having such a predictable ending which would have made the series so common. However, they were not really thinking that Ted has been pouring in all seasons his true love for her. Both, Ted and Robin made sacrificies for each other, that is true love.
    Tracy and Ted were just too ideal, and that can be nice and fulfilling for the ego to believe that a quiet love is meant to last.
    The energy that made you love someone this much even if at some point life sets you apart may also bring you back together. I love this series so much!

  48. Finally, someone who truly understands the series. You put the right words, I also thought it was an amazing ending. Yes, in life, you can think that achieving certain things are happiness. But the universe or whichever force that regulates our existence can prove us that what you want to live is not actually what will make you truly happy. Life gave them both what they thought would make them happy, but how many of us can certainly know that?

    We see it in our friends, when I get money, when I get a promotion, when I get married, when I have kids…I will be happy. But when having those things, life will show you that that’s not what happiness is all about.
    I also believe that when someone loves you this deeply, they can never forget all that even if they move on in life. People felt disappointed of not having such a predictable ending which would have made the series so common. However, they were not really thinking that Ted has been pouring in all seasons his true love for her. Both, Ted and Robin made sacrifices for each other, that is true love.
    Tracy and Ted were just too ideal, and that can be nice and fulfilling for the ego to believe that a quiet love is meant to last. I just saw an episode of Ted trying to make the perfect match in Season 1, but even when he gets her he refuses seeing her. He didn’t want perfect, he wanted Robin.
    In the end, life gave him the perfect so he could moved on but at heart, there was always Robin.
    The energy that made you love someone this much even if at some point life sets you apart may also bring you back together. I love this series so much!

  49. Absolutely great article to sum up a fantastic show! A series that anyone can connect with. Hats off to the creators/writers/actors of this show.
    Brilliant work

  50. Burbuja

    Everyone who claims that Barney and Robin should’ve ended up together forgets the episode 12 of season 8, where Barney after various lies including asking Ted to hold the fact he was getting engaged with Patricia on the top of the WWN so eventually he would tell her so she can be happy. This episode shows how good-hearted Ted was and how manipulative Barney was to get her. On top of that he thought that if Ted would do tell her that, he was letting her go and giving his blessing…but it isn’t like he knew the truth, it was all set up…so it makes you wonder, if Barney was able to lie all that he really didn’t deserve Robin and Ted deserved that much less.

    In the end, it was that proposal and that wedding that set apart Ted and Robin for years…because Ted really thought there was no hope between them and because Robin wouldn’t let him be without the kids and family he so much wanted. That is why it makes me soooo mad when I see these comments wanting these two together and not understanding these little details.

  51. I still don’t like the final. For me it wasn’t a twist or unexpected at all. It’s was exactly the opposite and just made the show end like every typical love story in movies. Where one already knows the right couple from the start but they don’t get together till the end. It’s always like this.
    I don’t really mind Ted not ending up with the mother, but ending up with Robin was a quite boring end to me and made the whole last season completely useless to me.

  52. Bootsie

    I NEVER comment on articles like these but I just had to after reading this. I’m sorry but the idea that Max and Tracey somehow got a happy ending because they were reunited after death is a really creepy way of looking at things. I find it weird that you can class that as ‘everyone ending up with who they were supposed to be with” and that “Tracy was able to spend the rest of eternity with Max.” The concept that “you only get one love and if you die, no big deal, cos one day they’ll die too and you can be together then” is a really simplistic and idealistic vision of life and death.
    I feel the programme was saying something far more mature – and far more interesting.That you can love more than one person in your life, that different loves exist in different ways for different people, and one isn’t necessarily better or more perfect or more “meant to be” than the others.
    And I really wouldn’t count someone dying and potentially (but only if you believe in an afterlife) being reunited with their loved one after death as a happy ending, ever.

  53. Brilliantly written . Just perfect

  54. Aaron Mattson

    Okay, here’s the thing: I’ll lead with the statement that i am on the side that hates the finale, or at the very least, the last few minutes of the finale.

    I’ll also start by saying you wrote a very well thought out article and it was a very interesting read and if I’m being honest with myself, it only furthered my appreciation for what the writers attempted, but failed to accomplish (in my humble opinion).

    Here’s my thesis: it’s not the idea of the finale that is awful, but rather the execution.

    I’ll jump into my arguments now:

    1) If you want to analyze the series’ finale, you have to also analyze the rest of season 9. Season 9, while providing wonderful moments that sparked some new life and nostalgia into the series, was horribly constructed at a fundamental level. I get that the wedding of Barney and Robin is a huge milestone in Ted’s life (nothing shows us this more than by introducing her character in the pilot episode with such sincerity), but they should not have spent an entire season on this. I know from reading other comments on this thread that you agree, but you have to understand that because they spent so much time on the wedding is part of the reason so many of us hate the finale. And honestly, for me anyway, it’s not even the fact that Barney and Robin divorce, because as much as i hated it then i’ve learned to accept it now, but it’s because they spent so much time on this wedding and did not allow enough time to develop their breakup. Which also leads to the fact that if they had not spent so much time on the wedding they could have allowed for more time to let the audience feel the mother’s death. And this brings me to my second point.

    2) I understand that when you take a step back and see that the Ted letting Robin go happened 17 years earlier and the death of Tracy happened 6 years ago, it lets you see that Ted moving on to Robin makes sense, but the very fact that you have to take such a large step back to see this means that the screenwriters failed in allowing that connection to flow gracefully. I disagree that just because fans are riled up in a negative way after an ending to a story means you were successful. That’s simply not true. You can make a bittersweet ending without having your fans hate you. What needed to happen in order to satisfy their fan base while also sticking to their original concept was spending more than 2 lines of dialogue and 5 minutes of screentime to let us soak everything in. They needed to give us time to feel the mother’s death, to feel the grief of Ted, to feel the pain the children felt when they see their father miserable when he could be happy. By not giving us that kind of screen time, we feel cheated as an audience. Tracy is a character beloved by all fans and to not give us a proper way to deal with her passing is a betrayal. Essentially, with those last few minutes, the screenwriters turned Tracy into just a plot point for Ted to use in order to fulfill his need for a family instead of treating her as a real character. I also want to bring up something you had mentioned either in the article or the comments about how it doesn’t matter if the mother hadn’t died or not doesn’t matter because she did die. I have to disagree and say it completely matters, especially based on some of your other points. If some part of Ted was always destined to be with Robin like you believe and the mother did not die, then what would that mean for Ted? For Robin? For all three of them? The mother’s death, in some ways, was used as just a way out for the Ted and Robin ending. I’m not saying that Tracy’s death had to be pointless, but if what you’re saying about Ted is true, well then it kinda was. We have to believe that if the mother hadn’t died, they would have spent the remainder of their lives in total happiness. I would like to argue that Ted really did let Robin go (just as Tracy really did let go of Max) and after the mother died and he had a chance to grieve, then he and Robin started to rekindle things again when they were both in a place to do so. I can get on board with that since it doesn’t render Tracy’s character completely mute. Which leads me into my third point.

    3) Honestly, even though the mother died, that was not what pissed me off. What got under my skin was how the writers did not handle her death with any grace whatsoever. I’ve read up on a lot of viewpoints of the finale, both for my side and your side, and i have to say that i really do like the ingenious concept of Ted ending up with Robin and each of them becoming fulfilled with their needs in life before returning to each other. But again, this is where bad execution comes into play. If the writers intended for Ted to be fulfilled by the character of Tracy and for Robin to be fulfilled by her career and her own life, great. But don’t give us all that in a rushed finale. We as an audience have to feel this transition and a transition like that takes time, especially after spending 9 seasons making us believe it’s going in a different direction. Tracy is perfect for Ted in every way and is able to give him what he’s always needed. And sure, he does get all of this and 11 years with the woman who by all accounts is his soulmate. But do we get to see that? Sure, bits and pieces in the 9th season, but no where near enough to let us feel that. Being a film student myself (and not trying to sound pretentious in any way), one of the fundamental things they tell you in screenwriting is “show, don’t tell.” HIMYM is my favorite show of all time for a lot of reasons, but one of those reasons is this idea. Show, don’t tell. For the majority of 9 seasons, this show followed that rule beautifully…and then threw it out the window when dealing with it’s final resolution. Instead of seeing Ted and Tracy’s relationship/marriage (and I’m talking really seeing, not just little windows here and there), we’re told about it. Instead of seeing the mother die, we’re told about it. Instead of seeing Ted’s grief and emotional state after this, we’re told about it. And instead of seeing the kids’ grief and eventual excitement for Ted and Robin, we’re told about it. That’s what makes the lot of us feel so betrayed by this ending, not because we don’t like Ted and Robin together necessarily, but because we don’t buy it. I’ll go to point 4 now.

    4) I won’t spend as much time on this since it’s been brought up before, but it’s still worth noting: the writers spend 7 (if not 8) very long seasons telling us Ted and Robin are not right for each other so why should we want them to be together? I get that you don’t want your audience to guess the surprise ending, but why make us (or at least most of us) hate the notion of them together? It just doesn’t make any sense. Also, as i mentioned before, somewhere in your article or comments, you mention how Robin and Ted are really meant to be together, but the mother is almost a complete match for him with all her little quirks. My problem with this is how can you say Robin and Ted are meant to be together while also saying Ted and Tracy are perfect for each other? It just doesn’t follow logically. Side note: just went back to look at your article again and you use the words “too perfect” to describe Ted and Tracy’s relationship and how there is no real passion in their relationship. Where did you get this from? I’ve watched and re-watched the relationship with Ted and Tracy time and time again and no where do i even get the hint of where this idea came from. Okay back to it. Again, i love the idea of Robin and Ted being together in the end if they had spent more time developing that character arc between them post mother. Alright. Time for point 5.

    5) I have to agree with you that i don’t think Barney and Robin were perfect for each other. However, i do have to counter with i think Barney and Robin make more sense together and click better together than Robin and Ted ever did. This is where i think most fans on my side of the debate are coming from. And again, part of the reason for this is in the poor construction developed by the creators. They gave us one season of Ted and Robin together and then spent the equivalent of 3 seasons or so building up and giving us the Robin and Barney story. By giving us more time to feel and ultimately care more for Barney and Robin together than Ted and Robin is where they screwed up. I know this is not an opinion every one shares, but if you look at it objectively, the screenwriters could have convinced us of the finale more if they had spent less time on Barney and Robin. Going along with this note, another reason a lot of people love Barney and Robin together is because their character arcs grow significantly more when they are together than when Ted and Robin were together. Where Ted and Robin did not change through the course of their relationship, Barney and Robin made huge strides, even if Barney made admittedly larger leaps than Robin.

    In conclusion, the idea behind the series’ finale is genius, I’ll give it that, but the execution was what made it fail for a lot of the fans, myself included. After looking at all the points I’ve made and then knowing that the creators knew all along the direction they were headed makes it all the worse. Ultimately, they should have known better in constructing the ending they wanted in a believable way and they should have had a larger grasp on their fan base as a whole.

    I’m sorry for writing such a long response, but that is because i am so passionate about this show and screenwriting in general. I also responded because you seem to be someone who can have civil debates on heated topics which is something i value. If you read through this entire comment, i want to thank you and i want to thank you again for writing a great article that made a lot of great insights into the show that i didn’t necessarily think about until now. The fact that your article warranted such a heavy duty response shows that you are a talented writer.

    • alexandra

      THIS! Thank you for pointing out exactly how I felt watching the show. I agree with all the arguments that you made directed at this article as well.

  55. I agree. I loved the show and the finale and was surprised by the outcry against it. There were so many clues the mom was dead. If you want a separate debate about who the love of his life was – The Mother or Robin – fine, but the show was brilliant in its largely consistent path from start to finish. I hated season 8 exactly because Robin let herself be manipulated into saying yes to Barney’s proposal. It was literally a play in his playbook. Robin even says she must be crazy to do it before saying yes. But, Robin and Barney had to marry, and season nine had to happen over one weekend, for the story to end with Ted meeting The Mother at a wedding as the show told us would happen. Brilliant and unappreciated finale.

  56. Alex O. Pinto

    I agree with Aaron and will add up a little fact that it’s hardly brought to it: The Mother could have be the one for Ted. Simple as that. Most people who defends that Ted and Robin are meant to be together and that the shows says it all the time fail to notice that this very argument is one of the biggest facts to support the ‘alternative’ ending. Why would Ted tell his sons a history that goes around Auntie Robin? Because she’s special. She’s the one that made everything happen. The title states that the show is the history of how Daddy have met Mommy and, well, Robin is the driving force of the whole show. AAAAND one more little fact: killing The Mother in a one-liner was a big example of poor show scripting. Really. You don’t build up a character to kill it without any heart, long goodbye-scene, not in a show that deals with human emotions. Tracy’s death didn’t have a reason for us. It was like she got killed to “fulfill” the show’s purpose… There’s no way you can like it, c’mon. The ending was already sad by throwing Robin and her character development to the trash, at least give Ted a break. It’d be a much bigger and deeper reflection of how life really works if it endend with Robin rich, alone, but depressed. At least I think of it like that. Great article, anyway.

  57. Anonymous

    Sorry Jessica your second point (the one about Marshall and the bet) is false. In the last episode (at least I think it was the last episode) Marshall pays Lily at the bar (I think it was before the wedding of Ted).

    • Waterbottle Man

      Yes!!! You’re absolutely right! I saw that as well

  58. I think I spent a lot of time trying to figure out who the mother was only to figure out they told us, in the first season, on Thanksgiving, at the strip club. After he buys the homeless man a lap dance and Ted talks to the stripper and he introduces himself and she says some cliche stripper name and laughs and says Im tracy and he says and that kids is how I met your mother and they yell WHAT….

  59. I love this article. I haven’t spoken to anyone else who agreed with this point of view. Thank you

  60. I agree! The ending was perfect and tied everything together.

  61. Ameya Bhujbal

    😭😭 Perfect ,I love you so much!

  62. Thank you. Brilliant article. Brilliant show. So well crafted from episode one. The storyline, the soundtracks, the laughs and tears and bloopers and brilliance. HIMYM was legendary.

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  64. I am so happy after reading this. After the show ended, I saw everyone so furious about the ending and every time the topic popped up I kept quiet because I loved the ending and it seemed like it was only me. I loved this article. I had the exact same feeling. Ted never stopped loving robin its just that Tracy gave him everything he ever wanted and thus he just stopped thinking about robin. Robin was “THE ONE” from the very beginning. Thanks for this article. 😘😘😘

  65. Fantastic article. It should also be noted, with regards to the “not yet” foreshadowing, that it was well established that Marshall was unstoppable when it came to games and bets. Every bet he made with Lily was either unconfirmed or won by Marshall. So even without the “not yet” comments, the fact that Marshall made the bet about Ted and Robin in the first place was a key piece of foreshadowing.

  66. This is an amazing article! While I am definitely on the side that believes that it should have been TedxTracy and BarneyxRobin, the answer for the show lies in the title. The show is called ‘HOW I Met Your Mother’, it doesn’t imply he stays with her for the rest of his life, and this is something the writers pointed out in an interview after the finale. Ted would never have met Tracy if he didn’t meet Robin, and he never would have ended up with Robin if it wasn’t for Tracy. The show is one big butterfly effect, but I do agree with you when you mentioned that everyone ends up with who they were meant to be with.

  67. I see some of your points, but there is one thing that always bothered me about the ending. What was their message with Barney and Robin? At first it seemed to me that the message was that everyone can change, that even the worst of the worst deserve a chance. Then when Barney and Robin get divorced Barney goes back to his old self, at that point it’s implying that even if you think someone has changed, they will go back eventually. That it’s not worth trying to change them. Even after he has a child it shows Barney chasing after women.

  68. I agree with the article, well written.
    I also agree that it was a well put together end episode but personally I think that the build up was too hasty and poorly put together.

    I always thought that Ted should be with Robin therefore I agree that everyone ended up where they were meant to be and with who they were meant to be with but I agree that season 9 was rushed, they shouldn’t have spent so much time on Barney and Robin’s wedding just to obliterate it in the last 5 minutes.

    They could’ve done it over a few episodes and then spent more time with the disintegration of Barney/Robin, the Ted and Tracey development/ending/back to Ted and Robin and if they were absolutely determined to spend an entire season on Barney and Robin’s wedding then they should have taken another, additional season to delve into the post wedding with Tracey leading back into Ted and Robin.

    To be honest, I was never a fan of Barney and Robin together but it would have been less of a disservice to not spend all that time forcing it to strip it with little explanation and I would have loved to see more Ted/Tracey and Ted/back with Robin.

    I think that the above way, with more development, the ending wouldn’t have felt so abrupt, I get wanting to encourage people to think Ted and Robin are over to ensure the landing/surprise of the ending but it felt more like a slap in the face than a well rounded climax.

  69. Good article and while I originally hated the finale, it’s grown on me but I respectfully completely disagree with you. To say Tracey was meant for Max is a reach at best…she said he was the one before she met Ted, haven’t you thought that about an ex at the moment while dating. Only to be wrong when that falls apart and you meet someone else, who you eventually Marry. To say they weren’t meant to be together is ignoring the fact they CHOSE that they were by marrying. It belittles their entire relationship which is why people were upset with the finale in the first place and since you took that from the whole show, proves it. I see it differently. I think Ted and Tracey were meant for each other but that was cut short. He even says it in that 45 days speech, he’s always loved her and he always will. If you look at the events of the show, it is indeed a story of how he met Tracey and that if he hadn’t met Robin and done everything, he never would have met her. He needed to meet Robin to be at her wedding to meet Tracey…he didn’t need Tracey to meet Robin. To me, they were soulmates, but Robin and he have always had a mutual respect and love for one another, so why not rekindle and enjoy each other. The show doesn’t show us what happens after. They could break up, she could go back to Barney, they could get married, they could just date forever. It doesn’t matter because Ted’s love story with the mother is complete, which is the entire point. Robin and he rekindling something was their attempt at fan service and a happy ending. As I said, I disliked it at first but I’ve come to appreciate it because it’s real…things like that happen. People lose their soulmates and then eventually move on because they’re lonely, but no one will ever usurp the love they shared.

  70. Season 9 episode 16 ted says what Louis and Tracy had was fine but just wasn’t love… but than fate intervened showing that his speech while it may have applied to robin also would have applied to Tracy.

  71. Waterbottle Man

    Actually, Lily and Marshall’s bet about Ted and Robin ending up together is shown one last time other than the one you stated in the article. In a quick scene, it shows Marshall loses the bet in the very last episode with about 8:11 time remaining. Marshall slips a smug Lily a bill, which contradicts the part about Marshall overseeing that Robin and Ted wind up together. I agree the plot was interesting in the end, but I wished that Barney would be able to settle down, as he noted that he might want to settle down with a wife and kids when he was older.

  72. Esteban

    Amazing analysis, i just finished the show and i too think the ending was amazing and destined to happen. 🙂

  73. Disagree to the deepest bone of my body!!!
    Let’s see it from the total opposite view, starting from the very beginning, Robin and Ted’s Love was always forced, always incomplete, and always linked with troubles and bad circumstances even for all around them.
    The idea of him telling a story of the kids’s mother and knowing it is not Robin made us always waiting to see the right one and how she came and fixed all this mess in Ted’s life.
    On the other hand, Barney and Robin were perfect with each other, the two people who had never thought about marriage or settling down; finally did that for each other, and throghout the last season we noticed how even the smallest things about Barney had changed just for this very special unique girl. and by taking a look at their history; we can clearly observe that they were actually in love, this silly pure spontaneous love, they’ve always got on and off with each other and once they fall in love they never stopped, Robin was totally in love with Barney as much as he  was in love with her, and let’s see the fact that once she fell for barney, she never actually thought about Ted this way, they’re more like best friends than they’re in love!
    And she said it very obviously, she wasn’t in love with him!
    Barney,  the biggest womanizer of all times had left Nora, burned the playbook, given up his women and cheap tricks, proposed in the most possible romantic way, made a super rehearsal dinner, and started changing many things about his personality just for Robin, and since he needed those changes, and they  made him a total better person, then this had been a Healthy beautiful relationship.
    Robin, on the other hand, fall for Ted in the first seasons, but once she fall for Barney, she never thought about Ted this way, he was just her super amazing best friend that she can absolutely count on, and that’s why whenever she’d felt weak she turned into him, but that wasn’t Love!
    Now, Ted, the story’s hero who made us feel his joy, his pain, his love, and every single emotion he had been through, and it would be super to see him finally finding “the one” just like he wanted, and  feeling completely safe and settled inside, which lost all meanings when he went back to Robin leaving the impression that he’d never loved tracy, which sucks!
    So this guy needs a perfect love story, a one that pays him off for all the miserable years, for all the pain, the tears, and the heartaches he had been through not by getting back to a girl that had rejected him like a million times and had always belonged to someone else! But by finding the girl that was meant for him!
    Tracy, was a very great and smart character and surely honored our love. she was the perfect one for Ted, the simple love he was always looking for, no waiting, no rejection, no stupid three days role, no catch phrases or pranks, and  that’s how true love should be!
    She wears driving gloves,  is in a band, and said yes to him once and twice and triple when he had asked her, and even before he’d finished his proposal!
    However, Destiny had made a very beautiful story and strange yet adorable connection using a yellow umbrella as a tools in its little game!
    So, A very touching and influencing character like this, shouldn’t had been killed off just to make a lousy match!
    Now, finally, let’s think of it this way:
    Fate decides to put a little plan called “The Mother” in action so it starts…..
    Ted sees this girl across the bar and falls in love with her, as a part of a bigger plan meanwhile max dies to start the story from the other side too.
    And by Ted’s love for Robin she’s become a part of the gang, and that’s a step on the long road of meeting the mother, and where Ted got a very best friend, and  Robin got to know Barney, the guy that when she marries, Ted gets to meet the love of his life.
    Life goes on and there are alot of experiences, pains, stories,and memories that they needed to go through to be ready and mature enough to finally be with the right one.
    Tracy meanwhile starts her own journey dating this guy that would help her to get over max.
    Ted had been always and will always be Barney’s and Robin’s best friend, and by having those left feelings for her, he helped making their wedding perfect, just so he gets as ready as possible to the meeting place, and Tracy was doing the same, as Stella once said to Ted:”she’s getting here as fast as she can!” and when Robin freaks out and asks him if she should’ve been with him, he realizes that his feelings are all gone, he’s now ready and robin-free!
    Tracy also gets Max-free,Ted-ready as this guy she was with proposes but she says no!
    They’re both now ready to meet each other, and that’s why all of these stuff had to happen, why it’s all worth it, and when they finally had found the missing piece, it just fit perfectly and they lived happily ever after!
    Plus, what’s the point of the stupid Ted-Robin love anyway -if there was such a thing- if you come back to it when you’re 50!!!
    That by itself is a stupid idea!

  74. This is madness! The finale was really disappointing as the ending was rushed. I’m okay with Robin ending up with Ted but they should’ve showed a little drama or something that brings us to this. In fact, they didn’t even show anything about Tracy and Ted the way they did for the other girls. The little that was the wasn’t even close to enough. The point where he mentions about him sticking to her when she was sick, dude, you have to show that because that’s what really touches the heart. I mean maybe it was Jason or someone, but these actors must know that they have built a really connection with us, the audience and just leaving us hanging like this is kind of like Barney dumping the girl he slept with last night which was legen-wait for it-dary only to him.

  75. Robin was a woman with a lot of issues and as time progressed she turned into the lowest type of tramp. Her value plummeted from the episode she has sex with an ugly guy just because he was there and naked. By the last episode her organism is a biological experiment in super stds she is so used up from every point of view, she looks 60+ she has a rotten attitude, she is the insane dog lady and so on. There is no reason why a man in the prime of his life like him would want her. Also through 8 season she makes it clear she has no love for him. He is the last ditch guy. In that episode he turns from a regular guy to the ultimate cuck. Also the whole idea with a woman finding a great guy after she is past her expiration day and had a mile of cock run through her is a feminist myth. Most guys are not that dumb.

  76. I don’t think the fact of Tracy dying and Ted getting back together with Robin, makes Tracy any less of being the love of Ted’s love. Yes, for Tracy, Max was her love but that doesn’t mean he had to be the love of her life. We don’t know much about their relationship. I doubt there was a person other than Ted that was so similar to her. They shared the weirdest little quirks, and love the same things. Just think about the time he picked up the three things in Cindy’s room.
    Yes, Ted never stopped loving Robin, but she was never able to give him what he wanted the most. It was Tracy and if she never had died he would end up with her. Even in the deleted scene when he met Robin and went grab lunch and she hinted that she still loved him, he said “I don’t spend much time thinking about what if” saying “I guess that’s happiness.” If he had Tracy, Robin would never happen.
    I think the reason for Ted to end up with Robin, was to show it is okay to move on with your life after you lose your loved one. I don’t think Ted to be happy on his own with just his kids. Let’s be honest he is the hopeless romantic who needs someone to take care of to make him happy. While it couldn’t be Tracy, Robin was still there.

  77. I think I get your point in this article. However, it’s unfair to make it seem like the time Ted and Tracy had together had “no real passion.” Yes, maybe Ted and Robin were really meant to be together in the end, but Ted also loved Tracy. Ted and Tracy loved each other and they had a wonderful, delightful, and passionate time together. It wasn’t just portrayed as much in the show because deceivingly, it wasn’t the main point of the show. It’s unfair to say that Tracy only gave Ted “what he thought he wanted,” because Ted really wanted what he had with her. If Tracy hadn’t died early, and even if Robin stayed single and available, he would have definitely stayed happy and contented by Tracy’s side for as along as he could have.

  78. Anonymous

    I had to leave this comment before I read your article which seems very well thought out and presented but initially you mention that Marshall says ‘Not Yet’ to Lily because he knows who Ted is supposed to end up with. Fast forward to Ted’s wedding with Tracy, Marshall can be seen giving Lily the bet money which contradicts the claim that it was a build up.

  79. Tamish Gupta

    This is it. Everyone who thinks that the ending is far from perfect needs to read this. This is a beautifully crafted show and the writers don’t get enough credit for that. The whole story line just keeps you engaged throughout the show, though admittedly the wait for the Titular Mother was getting a bit irritating but the show totally makes up for that in the final season. Barney and Robin, Ted and Tracy, both these couples had their wonderful time together and I was always rooting for Ted and Robin anyway, so for me the show was perfect. At times I did find Robin a bit selfish but if you really think about it from her point of view, it’s not a big sin. Ted deserved Robin. Robin deserved Ted. Perfect show. Perfect ending.

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