Alyson Hannigan talks about how the series finale of How I Met Your Mother could have been different. Three years ago How I Met Your Mother ended with a series finale that people are still discussing. After nine seasons of audiences listening to Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor) tell the story of how he met the mother of his children, they were stunned to find out that the titular mother was dead. While it did mean that Ted and his on-again, off-again girlfriend Robin could finally end up together, many fans felt cheated that there was so little time spent with the Mother before she died.
One of the stars of the show was Alyson Hannigan, who played Lily Aldrin. A member of Ted’s group of friends, she was engaged or married to the character Marshall (Jason Segel) throughout the show, making her one of the few women on the show who was clearly never going to be the Mother. Lily and Marshall also represented the life that Ted was looking for throughout the series.
Hannigan recently gave an interview to News.com in which she admitted that – like many fans – she feels the series finale could have been better. One of the things that disappointed her was how quick it was:
“I was bummed they didn’t just make it a two-hour season-ender, so they would get to show certain parts [that were cut]. The table read for the finale was so good, so right, but it was also like 14 hours long. So when I actually saw the final version of the show, I was like ‘they cut out everything!’… It just seemed too quick. Obviously it was a tear-jerker, but with all the stuff that got cut out it was too fast … like ‘OK, now we’re going to find out the mum’s dead, then suddenly, OK — he’s with Robin now’, and you’re just like, ‘wait, what happened?!’”
Hannigan mentioned that one of the scenes which got cut that she wished had been kept was a funeral scene, which would have given the audience more time to come to terms with the Mother’s death. Instead, Hannigan felt like the information hit them “like a slap in the face.”
The amount of cuts and how quickly things moved were not her only complaint. Hannigan also made it clear that she was not a fan of the fact that Robin married Barney, even though their marriage only lasted three years. While Robin dated Barney on and off throughout the series, he was frequently moving through girlfriends and one-night stands and Hannigan felt like it was out of character for Robin to marry a man who avoided commitment so completely.
“I didn’t think Barney should have ever gotten married. I liked Barney and Robin. But in my heart, I always wanted her with Ted. I just feel they [Barney and Robin] shouldn’t have gotten married.”
Hannigan began filming How I Met Your Mother just two years after Buffy the Vampire Slayer finished its seven year run. When given a choice between which of the two hit shows she would like to revisit at some point, she was ready with her answer: “How I Met Your Mother — I would do it again in a heartbeat. It was so much fun going to work every day.”