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The 'How I Met Your Mother' series finale, one year later

Nine seasons of How I Met Your Mother and its super-sweet, super-long story wrapped up one year ago—on March 31, 2014. Upon airing the one-hour series finale, fans took to social media to express their oh-so-divisive emotions. And boy, was it divisive!

How I Met Your Mother Series Finale - Twitter

In case you miraculously forgot what happened, here’s the gist: Even after the show devoted its final season to their wedding weekend, Robin and Barney’s marriage doesn’t make it. In the end, the Mother dies and Ted ends up with Robin.

In honor of the one-year mark, a few of us at the EW Community decided to take a look back at the show’s ending. Here we go, from love to loathe:

“A beautiful love story”

I’m going to say something VERY controversial: I LOVED the HIMYM finale. Personally, I think the entire series told a beautiful love story. I realize why people were angry, but truthfully, to me, it felt so forced that I waited around for 10 seasons, only to be introduced to Ted and the Mother’s actual story in the final episodes.

No, the real love story was Ted and Robin’s, and it was perfect. T and R knew they were in love with each the moment they met at MacLaren’s. But they wanted different things in their lives at different times, so it didn’t make sense for them to be together when they were young. When they were older and had accomplished everything they wanted in life, they could be together again. (And don’t be sad about the mother, because I think she got to meet back with the love of her life too.)

It wouldn’t have made sense for Ted to tell Robin he loved her in the first episode and have him continue to go back to her so many times if the story weren’t actually about them. —Cara Cooper

How I Met Your Mother Series Finale - French Horn

“I never liked the mother”

In a word? Satisfied. And I suspect plenty of fans felt the same, but didn’t take to Twitter to vent/rant/share.

You should know I never liked the Mother. Compared with most of Ted’s exes—charming Victoria, glorious Stella, even complicated Zoe—Tracy was just Lady Ted, sappy and sentimental, an ace at telling dad jokes. She was a footnote in Ted’s story, start to finish, and I didn’t feel much of anything when she died.

I placed my bet along with Marshall that Ted would end up with Robin, even after that was seemingly squashed in episode one. It took decades to get there, but it felt right. Sure, it sucks that Robin and Barney didn’t end up happily ever after, but that’s not reality. Some couples divorce. Some parents grow apart from friends. And some people find, or reconnect with, their soul mate late in life. —Wendy Hathaway

“Last season was a waste”

Truthfully, I was a diehard Ted and Robin fan. I wanted them to be together, but I expected and accepted that wouldn’t happen because Robin wasn’t the mother. Therefore, when I first saw the finale I liked it. I was glad Ted and Robin finally got their happy ending together. However, I quickly realized the whole last season was a waste because Robin and Barney didn’t even stay married that long. Moreover, the finale showed the group’s whole future and the death of the mother in the span of an hour, something they could’ve used the whole season for. Last, the mother was basically just a surrogate so Ted could have kids, and they killed the mom so he could be with Robin. I wanted Ted and Robin to be together, but not at the cost of ruining a show I otherwise loved. —Zakiya Jamal

“All five characters regress in the span of an hour”

After watching How I Met Your Mother for several years and seeing these characters grow, it was disappointing to watch all five characters regress in the span of an hour. Robin and Lily’s rock-solid friendship waned, Ted seemingly valued Robin over the mother, and the worst of all might be Barney.

Barney started the series as a womanizer who hated the idea of relationships. He grew to be kind, nurturing, and open to getting married. Yet the minute his marriage ended with Robin, he reverted back to his old ways, like the last nine years didn’t happen. It’s hard to believe that Barney didn’t change. Barney spent nine years growing and had outgrown his womanizing ways. The fact that having a baby (which is something Robin couldn’t give Barney) was the one thing that ultimately changed Barney for the better is very upsetting. —Justin Carreiro

How I Met Your Mother Series Finale - Barney and Baby

“What it did to Robin—sad dog lady”

I have a long list of what I hated about the HIMYM finale. At the top is what it did to Robin Scherbatsky. What is truly unforgivable is how “Last Forever” reduced the fiercely independent Robin to a sad dog lady who couldn’t handle seeing Ted happy with Tracy. She vanished from the gang’s lives. The whole show, we had been told that Robin was around Ted’s kids from a young age … and the finale negated it. It turned her into a lonely career woman who pined for the one who got away. A woman who sat around hoping Ted would finally come for her. The look of relief on her face when Ted finally DOES show up with the blue French horn was supposed to make us cry, but all it did was make me sick to my stomach over the complete decimation of a once wonderful character. —Kim Rogers

“The treatment—or lack thereof—for the mother”

Yes, I’m still bitter. Maybe it was all a massive joke? From the get-go, we’re going to let you know that the mother is not, I repeat, not Robin, but we’ll put you through the ringer with the ups and downs of her relationship with Ted—never letting you get fully attached, because, you know, she’s not the mother. BUT in the end, she turns out to be the love of Ted’s life … or so we’re meant to think. Ugh. But you know what really burns me (it still does)? The treatment—or lack thereof—for the real mother, Tracy (the absolutely adorable Cristin Milioti).

Tracy was the bright spot in an otherwise horrible final season. In the midst of Robin and Barney’s wedding-weekend mayhem, we get a peek into Tracy and Ted’s relationship—all the gooey, sappy stuff. And she’s perfect for Ted. The audience falls in love with her—and then in the last five minutes, we learn she dies and BOOM, Ted is off to declare his love for Robin. (Although years have passed since Tracy’s death.) But for us, the fans, we have ZERO time to mourn. It’s heartbreaking—and all it does is make me angry. And for those of you who say it’s reality—people die, divorce, etc.—this was a TV show! A comedy, no less. It should have ended happily—for all. See: Parks and Recreation. —Joanna Skrabala

How I Met Your Mother Series Finale - Ted and Tracy

As you can see, we’re all a bit divided—while some love the ending, others still feel the pain. It’s your turn to weigh in. Vote in our poll and sound off below!


TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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