January 28, 2014

"How Your Mother Met Me" Review: HIMYM's 200th episode

If you have read my previous posts about How I Met Your Mother,  you might be surprised to see that this one is filled mostly with praise. But if you watched last night's episode, you'll know why.

The show's 200th episode flipped the camera to the mother in an episode aptly titled, "How Your Mother Met Me." The result was phenomenal. It filled in details that committed fans were expecting, and yet did so without being boring. There are three things the episode - and I suppose the writers/directors/producers of the show - did exceptionally well.

Source: cbs.com
1. Cast Cristin Milioti. This amazingly talented actress has done the impossible: exceeded eight-season old expectations. She has brought something fresh to a show who's last season was filled with stale performances by tired actors. Oh, and she can sing like a meadowlark, too.

2. Gave attention to detail and seamlessly edited previously aired scenes with new content. I guess I was most surprised that Ted didn't look disproportionately young in any of the scenes from old episodes. Also, the fact that the show's property masters keep every single prop and costume piece exactly because of this show's dedication to a singular storyline without holes, absolutely astounds me.

3. Ignored all comedic instinct in favor of a real, heartfelt, tragic storyline. This episode is receiving a lot of praise for its emotional beauty, and it's well deserved. In 30 short minutes - minus commercials - the writers added a depth to the title character that I was not expecting. The revelations that her first love died, that she struggled to know what to do with her life, and that she broke up with a man as he proposed the night before she met Ted, deepened her like I would not have imagined. And I am so glad. I couldn't have accepted a happy, whole "Mother" as a match for the careworn, broken Ted. Instead, they will meet as two people with long, complicated stories that their children can tire of hearing years from now.

Yes, How I Met Your Mother gave us an eighth season so disastrous, I honestly considered giving up on the show altogether. But "How Your Mother Met Me" made me glad I didn't. Don't get me wrong, there have been some misses in this, HIMYM's final season. But this episode wasn't among them.

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