Worst TV Show Finale? It’s Always How I Met Your Mother.

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There is a constant battle on Twitter about which television show had the worst ending. It happens once every few weeks, and we all go through shows we think were bad, but why are we even trying to pretend like the answer is not How I Met Your Mother? For those of you who have never braved the world of Ted Mosby or Barney Stinson, let me take you on a journey.

How I Met Your Mother premiered with the concept that the events of the story were something Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor) was telling his kids about how he … well, met their mother. Throughout the first season, it seemed as if Robin (Cobie Smulders) could be the woman he ended up with. Then, show went on long past the Ted and Robin relationship, and thus the problem with the finale of How I Met Your Mother was born.

In the ninth and final season of the show, Ted finally meets the mother of his children. Played by Cristin Milioti, the Mother came crashing into Ted Mosby’s life while his best friends were getting married, and he heard her sing La Vie En Rose through a hotel wall and fell in love.

But, because the show couldn’t leave well enough alone and just have Ted meet his wife (even though that was literally the entire setup of the show for nine seasons), the audience would soon discover that Ted’s wife had died between then and the “present,” and that’s why he was telling his kids this story in the first place—and then he got back together with Robin, even though we’d all long since moved on from that pairing.

Unnecessary, rude, and truly an effective way to ruin your characters quickly, the show took every established relationship (with the exception of Marshall and Lily, but even they had their issues in that last season) and threw it out the window all to fit into this terribly constructed idea from when the show first premiered in 2005.

The show, essentially, forced a relationship that absolutely no one cared about anymore just because they had already pre-filmed the two kids and their reaction and didn’t think to maybe just change it and not include the kids reacting to anything? What’s even better is that there was an alternate ending in which Ted just meets his wife and the show ends, giving the audience exactly what we were promised, but I guess somewhere in the twisted minds of those in charge, they thought it would be a better idea to have the show make no sense and ruin it for many of its fans.

So, no matter what show you think had a terrible finale, there will always be How I Met Your Mother, looming in the background, waving to remind you that no show will top the terrible destruction of its own characters with one simple mistake. Robin belongs with Barney; Ted’s wife didn’t need to die. We could have just had a happy little meeting and went on our way, but no, y’all just had to ruin it.

(image: CBS)

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Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.