Does it matter if the mother is dead? YES IT DOES.

A couple of weeks ago, I read multiple posts about the theory that the mother on How I Met Your Mother is dead at the point when future Ted is telling his children the story. (If you are a fan and have somehow avoided this theory? Congratulations…)

I was not, and am not, okay with this.

Part of what’s fueling these theories, apart from clues and odd moments in the show, are the tweets and posts and comments from cast members regarding the series finale. Cobie Smulders, apparently, said in an interview that she “immediately started weeping” after reading it. Alyson Hannigan tweeted a photo from the table read, consisting of her script surrounded by used tissues.

Today, I read an article on TV titled “Does it Matter if the Mother is Dead?” The authors thesis is, of course, that it does not.

I am not okay with this.

I was okay with the finale of Six Feet Under being what it was, because this was a show about death and mortality. I was fine with the end of Breaking Bad, because really…how else would a show like that end? But How I Met Your Mother is a sitcom, and at its heart, a love story. A romantic comedy, if you will. I have certain expectations from a story like this. Yes, the show has had moments that were heartbreaking and poignant, but ultimately, I will feel betrayed by an ending that tears Ted’s true love away from him…one that we have all waited SO LONG to meet. (and don’t even get me started on how I’ll feel if that happens and it leads to him somehow ending up with Robin after all. No.)

In the aforementioned article, the author says, “…sitcoms tend to feel forced to wrap up with a neat bow and rainbows and kittens because God forbid what would’ve happened if Rachel never got off the plane…”


 She got off the plane.

Yeah? So what? I will fully admit with zero shame that I would have been upset and disappointed if Rachel hadn’t gotten off the plane. As I said, these are romantic comedies. In a romantic comedy, Rachel gets off the plane. In a romantic comedy, the mother doesn’t die.

I get that there’s a place for tragedy. I do. I get that people don’t always get to live happily ever after, and that in real life, loved ones die. But I respectfully disagree that all of our art needs to reflect reality. I know where to go for reality; I want stories that offer hope. I want Ted to get married and raise his children and grow old with the woman he loves. I want Ross and Rachel to find their way back to each other and finally make it work. I want Harry and Sally married and talking about their wedding cake at the end. I want Lloyd and Diane holding hands on the plane, heading off to England ready to defy the odds against them. I want Westley and Buttercup literally riding off into the sunset together.


Wuv. Twoo wuv.

And I just don’t get what’s so terrible about that.

I don’t know if this has always been the case, but there seems to be this persistent idea that what makes for good writing is subverting expectations. (In this case, the expectation that the audience expects Ted and the Mother to have the happy ending I described above.) There’s also a persistent idea that the best love stories are the most tragic ones. I’ll bet you aren’t surprised by this, but most of the time, I kind of hate tragic love stories.* 


I’ll never let go, Jack…

(Side note…don’t you dare even try to bring up Romeo and Juliet. If you think “tragic love story” is the point of Romeo and Juliet, well…that’s a whole different rant.)

My bottom line is this: we have enough heartbreak and sadness. In this sea of portrayals of bleak desolation, of horror, of darkness, of anti-heroes, and of tragedy, this show has been one of my bright spots. Over the course of this season, I have fallen in love with Cristin Milioti and her beautiful portrayal of the mother, and I have forgiven Ted for his past douchebaggery. Over the course of the past nine seasons, I have laughed and cried and loved with these characters…

Is it really to much to ask for it to not break my heart at the end?

*I still harbor some resentment over the way the movie Once ended. Seriously, ask my husband. 

Why I have not (and will not) watch/read GoT

Despite generally being a fan of fantasy, I really, really don’t want to experience Game of Thrones. I came upon this blog post that pretty much sums up why. Here’s one quote:

I HATED THE BOOKS. But I read EVERY SINGLE ONE. Hating it the entire way but not able to put them down.  And now with the show, I cannot stop watching.  Those who read and/or watch Games of Thrones know there is little sense of rules or mastery or fairness.  Instead, there is violence, abuse, systems of power that favor the powerful, good people dying, why are they ALWAYS dying?!  Good people die.  All the fucking time.  And no magic to save them.  Well, very little, and it is dark and scary and uncontrollable.

And another:

George R.R. Martin is such a different kind of fantasy writer.  Where is the hero(ine)?  Where is the arc of self-discovery and mastery?  Where is the MAGIC?!  I hated the books not because they weren’t well-written — Martin’s world and characters are some of the most (morally) complex I’ve seen; there is a terrible beauty to it all — but because of how they made me feel.  Constant anxiety and disappointment and rage.  And distrust!  I did not, could not, trust the writer anymore.  Horrible things could happen at any moment, betrayal and loss and trauma at every turn.  (Umm, the Red Wedding. What.The.Fuck.)  I found myself trying to disengage emotionally, trying not to care about characters as it became increasingly clear that Martin had an almost perverse interest in the exact opposite of character preservation.  But I couldn’t.  I kept reading. I’m still watching.  And I’ll await the next book, the next season, with both excitement and dread.

I would hate it. And yet I would find it compelling. And I would keep reading/watching with that sense of dread and anxiety. And I would be angry. SO VERY ANGRY.

The author ends this piece speculating about what has drawn people into this story…in particular, a sense of catharsis that comes from “loving and rooting for and mourning and even reviling these characters intensely.” And while I’m sure this (and her other points in favor) is valid, I just don’t think it’s for me. Trust me, we’re all better off this way.

You probably don’t want me to talk about my love/but mostly hate relationship with Breaking Bad either…

(Here’s a secret…I’m saying this out loud because sometimes not liking the thing everyone likes is lonely. If you feel the same way, please speak up and make me feel a little less lonely!)

30 Day Challenge – Day 7

Favorite TV Show


I love TV. In fact, there’s a 30-day meme going around that’s ALL TV that I might have to do when this one is finished. But in the meantime…

There are so many things to love about The West Wing. I had a hard time choosing a scene to post, but I do rather like this one where Ainsley Hayes meets the president for the first time.

I love this show. I love the writing. I love the characters, and the actors who play them. I love the blend of drama and comedy. I love everything about it.

I have lots more to say about TV, so I think I will be doing that other meme. 😉

30 Day Challenge-Day 1

Favorite Actor

I will probably cheat on many of these, because I have such a hard time narrowing anything like this down to just one choice.

So, there’s this guy…

paul rudd

And this one…

adam baldwin

And I’ve become a huge fan of this one, too.


And honestly, I could be here all day with this…but here are a few others I can’t go without mentioning:

Victor Garber, Neil Patrick Harris, Matthew Perry, Jason Segel, Alec Baldwin, John C. McGinley, Colin Firth, John Cusack…and I’ll probably remember a whole bunch more two minutes after I post this. 🙂

Things I am behind on

1. Grading. Always. I need to accept that this is just a normal state of being for an English teacher…especially one who took on an extra class. (I love, love, love teaching my college class. I really do…the class is fun, and they’re a great group of students. But I am exhausted.)

2. TV watching. Watched HIMYM last night, but not Big Bang (yes, I did hear how funny it was…). Almost caught up with Glee (just last week’s ep to watch, which yes, I also heard was awesome, thanks). Some shows I have given up on watching currently and will catch them on DVD (Dollhouse and Castle among them).

3. TC stuff. Must do newsletter for October…I am committing to doing that today, even though I should be grading and/or lesson planning. Sorry ’bout that.

4. Birthdays. My sister-in-law’s birthday was yesterday and I have not mailed her card yet. I did write on her facebook wall, though… (happy birthday, Leslie! I’m sorry!)

Ah…in other news, I am greatly enjoying my new MacBook Pro! I have the most awesome husband ever. 😉

On that note…

5. Moving all of the information and applications I need from the old computer to the new computer. I’ve got all my documents, pictures, and music, and some applications. I need to get all my bookmarks (from firefox) and my address book over to the new computer.

6. Reading. Um, yeah. I did finish Transmetropolitan. Also, Rand has me reading some horrible, overwritten, soap-opera-y comic from the late 70s-early 80s that he read as a teenager. But pages filled with words? Nothing, except the stuff I’m reading for school and my college class (mostly short stories and epic poems. sample: “The Secret Life of Walter Mittty,” “The Necklace,” “The Most Dangerous Game,” “Gift of the Magi,” “Beowulf,” “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight,” “The Lottery,” “The Things They Carried.” etc.

I need more hours in the day.

—>side note. I’m really tired of freshmen telling me that “they read that story last year.”One of the problems of teaching in a Catholic school, I guess, is that it’s nearly impossible to align the curriculum. Ah well.

Ok, I should get to work on…something. Toodles.

All about me (AV edition)

As seen on the blog of miss_shortskirt:

I think the best shows on TV right now are

How I Met Your Mother

I think the best show(s) NOT on TV is (are)

The West Wing
Arrested Development

Shows I think I would like but haven’t watched yet are


The show I am most anticipating is

Glee (oh, yes! me too!)

My go-to movies for repeat viewings are

When Harry Met Sally
Say Anything
The Princess Bride

I will watch any movie starring

Paul Rudd

I will listen to any CD by

Um…Ookla the Mok? (hee)
Carbon Leaf
Great Big Sea
Hawksley Workman
Ron Hawkins

My favorite musical soundtracks are

Les Miserables
Jesus Christ Superstar

My favorite Beatles song

Let it Be
or Come Together

My favorite Regina Spektor song

(Sorry, I don’t know who that is)

My favorite Weezer song

Uh….Buddy Holly? I’m actually not all that intimate with Weezer.

*ETA* Just realized that “Island in the Sun” comes up in my Pandora station all the time. I <3 that song.

My favorite Simon and Garfunkel song

Kathy’s Song

My favorite Britney Spears song

Sorry, got nothin’ here

My favorite movie soundtracks

Garden State
Moulin Rouge
**can’t really argue with those, but I will add:
and also, Walk Hard (the Dewey Cox Story)

My favorite Disney movie

The Little Mermaid.
No, The Lion King.
No, Beauty and the Beast.
No, Aladdin.
Definitely one of those. 😉

My favorite song from a Disney Movie

Friend Like Me
or Kiss the Girl
or Under the Sea

My favorite songs at this exact moment are

Pregnant Women are Smug
The Future Soon
Cold, Cold Heart
Short Skirt, Long Jacket

Chuck is saved!

Ok, so this is now officially yesterday’s news, but I’m still happy about it. 😉

I *heart Chuck. In its odd little way, it helps me get that Alias fix I’ve been missing. It has a cute, nerdy lead! It has ass-kicking spy stuff! It has Adam Baldwin, whose awesomeness cannot be rivaled! It has Captain Awesome, and Gift Shop Girl from Scrubs. It has a theme song by Cake! And the finale? The finale was jaw-droppingly amazing.

Chuck is fun, clever, well-written, and genuinely emotional, and it’s definitely become one of my favorites. I look forward to its return…hopefully in a time slot where it’s not against everything the world loves (seriously…it was up against House, Dancing with the Stars, and the CBS Monday comedies. Gee, I wonder why the ratings suffered?).

So, um…get yourself some DVDs. Netflix them, whatever. Then watch Chuck when it comes back next year!


Well, my general blogging malaise is still with me, but I’m poking in to share a few brief things.

Don’t forget to stop by this post and let me know who you are!

I’ve tried to deal with the sluggish loading problem by removing some things from my sidebar. It seems to have helped a bit. If I ever get the energy, I might try a new theme and clean things up even more. Or, I might just move the whole thing over to wordpress so I don’t have to deal with all of the pain-in-the-butt issues that come withh hosting my own blog. Meh, I don’t know.

I’ve been baking a lot lately. It seems to be my current way of dealing with stress/creative outlet. I’ve taken a bunch of pictures, which I will one day upload. I’ll post recipes, too. My most recent successes have been breads. I made a pumpkin bread last week that was yummy, but for the fact that it got a teeny bit overcooked around the edges. And yesterday, I made a (white) batter bread that is also pretty tasty.

I’m a little bummed out about this whole Channel 4/Time Warner thing because of How I Met Your Mother. Thank goodness for the Internet, eh? I’m not likely to hop ship to a satellite service, because our cable comes with our condo association membership. Maybe this whole thing will be settled soon. Until then, iTunes will be my best friend.

I have watched none of Heroes (we watched 10 minutes into the premiere and got a little bored) or Chuck. Rand and I did watch Dirty Sexy Money last week, which we both continue to love.

I’ve now read most of A Raisin in the Sun, but have not yet started Of Mice and Men. I’d better get on that, as my class will be starting it later this week. (has anyone seen the recent version of A Raisin in the Sun w/Sean Combs aka Puffy or Puff Daddy or Diddy, or whatever name he’s using these days? I haven’t. Just curious.)

Okay, I need to step away from the computer now. Hope everyone’s having a happy Monday!

What I (will be) watching

BufBloPoFo Topic for Day 13: When the writer’s return kicks back in and all the good TV comes back, what’s your viewing list going to be?

Ooh…it’s going to be way too long, as usual. At one time, I had a list of things that will actually be returning this season, and what won’t be returning until fall, but I don’t know where that is. So here is what I was watching, and what I will be watching whenever it returns:


Despite the drop in quality from season 1, I just can’t seem to walk away. I’ll be watching Heroes whenever it comes back.

Dirty Sexy Money

This was my surprise new favorite of the small season. I can’t get enough of Peter Krause or the Darling family.

How I Met Your Mother

Oh, I am so in love. Rand and I watched both seasons 1 and 2 on DVD and have been watching the repeats as they’ve been airing. I think we’ll need to download one episode to be caught up before new episodes start up again. (Aside–what is up with Alyson Hannigan’s hair? Do not like.)

The Office/30 Rock/Scrubs/My Name is Earl

NBC manages to rock Thursdays again. I don’t know what the current status of Scrubs is, to tell you the truth, and I’m just as annoyed by the whole JD/Eliot thing as the next guy, but I will follow it through to the bitter end.

Oh, and I *heart* Tina Fey.


If I’m not mistaken, Chuck is a survivor of the strike, but won’t return until next season. I’ll be there.


Of course, Lost has been airing for the past several weeks. I’m sure I will be hungry for new episodes when this run ends.

*Possibly* Pushing Daisies. Rand and I still haven’t gotten through all the episodes that aired. I enjoy it, but it isn’t at the top of my list. I totally adore Chuck’s dresses, though. Love.

chuck dress example

Yeesh, that’s a lot of TV! 🙂