“How I Met Your Mother,” or “HIMYM,” was one of the most successful sitcoms of the 2000s and 2010s, winning 10 Primetime Emmys throughout it’s nine-year run.
“HIMYM” is based around a father recounting the story of how he met his children’s mother, through flashbacks to his post collegiate years alongside his best friends. It follows architect Ted Mosby, played by Josh Radnor, going through the highs and lows of finding his true love with his four friends, Barney Stinson (Neil Patrick Harris), Robin Scherbatsky (Cobie Smulders), Marshall Erickson (Jason Segal), and Lily Aldrin (Alyson Hannigan), (via IMDb).
The show was full of memorable moments from slap fights, Robin’s on-again-off-again relationships, and the biggest one being when fans finally saw the Ted’s wife and the mother of his children after eight seasons. During the Season 8 finale, fans met Tracy, played by Cristin Milioti. What was a victorious moment soon turned sour the further Season 9 chugged on. While “HIMYM” was a bit risky with its content at times, there’s one scene that’s still up for debate with many fans.
Tracy's death angers fans to this day
Looper polled over 500 U.S. residents which scene went too far, and nearly 30% said it was the death scene of Tracy. Fans finally saw in the last episode of the show where Ted met Tracy, and in typical “HIMYM” fashion, viewers watched their lives together in a non-linear sequence.
From their wedding to them finding out about their first child, fans were happy to finally see who’d Ted end up with and get his happily ever after. However, the episode also showed Tracy dying of an unknown illness after 11 years together. The final scene of the episode was Ted professing his love to former, on-again-off-again girlfriend, Robin, who his two kids give him permission to pursue. And then – fans lost it.
Longtime viewers felt robbed that after years of build-up, the writers just brushed aside their long-awaited romance in 30 minutes. Because of the major backlash, in the DVD set, the producers put in an alternative ending where the mother doesn’t die, to hopefully make their dedicated fans happy again.
Cristin cried when she first found out about Tracy's death
In an interview with Vulture, Cristin Milioti sat down and talked about the controversial ending and how she cried when she found out that her character was supposed to die.
“Because it was so sad. It was super sad,” she recalled. “I just burst into tears as soon as they told me. I had to write an e-mail later that night to [co-creator] Craig [Thomas].”
She continued, “The way that he and Josh [Radnor, the actor who played Ted] explained it to me was, ‘Well, Ted has two loves, and basically what we’re trying to say is that life comes at you in ways you can never expect.’ Once they put it that way, I understood it more. I was like, ‘That’s really involved and awesome.'” And honestly, it kind of is.
She was asked during an interview with TIME about if she was shocked with the controversy, to which she replied, “Oh no, I wasn’t surprised. That show always had such a passionate fanbase … There’s no way to please everybody.” Well, at least fans have the alternative ending to watch at the end of a binge session.
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