“How I Met Your Mother? Oh really” A Feminist Analysis on the Three Main Female Characters

When I started watching How I Met Your Mother I really enjoyed it. After every episode, I get excited whenever I try to guess who the mother is. The show was funny and did not require so much critical thinking, at first. I looked up to the main female characters in the show because of their strong personalities as women. However, in the long run, I lost interest and simply got disappointed with the way these women were portrayed. The ending was a failure. Others may argue otherwise, but in my opinion, for someone who continuously watched the show from the pilot episode to the ending, it was not the ending I expected or hoped for.

In this paper, I will be talking about Robin Scherbatsky, Lily Aldrin, and Tracy Mosby (the “Mother”)

Robin was my favorite. Her personality and characteristics depicted someone I ever dreamed to become, well minus the part where she slept with lots of men and jumped from one relationship to another. Personally, I hated that part because there were some men who objectified her that was really a turn off, but then again, she could do anything she wants that gave her more power as a strong female character. What made me like her was the fact that she was independent, a career woman, and a busy body, yet she was still fabulously a lady. She knows how to handle a gun, and boy she is good. She was actually my inspiration in learning how to shoot guns and like her, it was my “stress reliever.” She knows how to fight, she smokes cigar, and grew up being raised like a boy. Despite her “masculine childhood” she still turned out to be a very feminine woman.

She was portrayed as a very strong woman, but did not turn out to be a stereotype. She was not buffed nor butch for someone who was “one of the guys” or a “bro,” because she was really a

beautiful woman. I do not know everything about feminism, but when I watched the show and saw who Robin was, I saw women empowerment emanating through her.

It was going great, unfortunately as the story progressed and new seasons came up, things changed badly. At first, Robin was emotionally strong. She did not breakdown like how women are often portrayed in media, but later on, she became cranky and had fits over her co-worker and to some guys she dated. There were some parts where she felt insecure about herself and valued the opinion of men towards her.

At the beginning, I thought Robin was a feminist. One sign to support that was the fact that she hates kids and motherhood. If she was a real person, she would be the first. When she thought she was pregnant, she was horrified, but her heart eventually softened up and there was a slight sense of deep longing for motherhood that kind of sparked in her. I saw it from the way she acted. However, when she found out she was not pregnant because of infertility, I thought she would celebrate or be happy, but she was actually sad. When a guy broke off their engagement because of her infertility, she became slightly depressed about it. Honestly, Robin had so many issues with her identity as a woman. At one point you may think she is a feminist, but then something would happen that will make you think otherwise.

Lily, on the other hand may seem like a feminist, but there is so much about her that says otherwise. Initially, I mistook her as a feminist because her mother was deliberately one. When she married Marshall, she refused to carry his last time and lived on known as “Lily Aldrin.” For a wife, her opinion matters most and she is not the stereotypical housewife who is merely there to take care of the kids, clean the house, and cook for her husband. Her choice of not having kids in the few years of her marriage was respected and it did not bother her nor pressure her for being childless for years. However, although she sometimes hates Barney for all his ruthless acts to get women to sleep with him, she barely stands up for these poor women. Yes, she pities them, but in a way where she looks down on them for falling for Barney’s tricks. I really do not think that is was feminism is about. She failed in that.

Tracy Mosby, the woman we all waited for while watching this long-running sitcom, was someone I really did not get to know even though the title gives a sign that this show was about her, “How I Met Your MOTHER,” however it was never about her. It was only in the last few episodes when we finally get to know who she is, but even in that short span of time, her role was not given justice as the mother of the two children who were listening to this 9-season-long plot. In the middle of watching this show, I had personal theories on the possibility that she was dead to begin with because the plot begins when Ted, the protagonist and her husband, starts telling the story to his children on how he met their mother. But like what I said, it was never about her. I thought he really loved her so much to share his memories of her to his kids, but the stories focused mainly on the gang of five and his on and off relationships, as well as his complicated love story with Robin. The story concluded that Tracy Mosby was never Ted’s “love of his life,” that she was not valuable at all. Yes, she bore his children, but that fact did not even give her much dignity as a character.

All I want is for Tracy to have justice in that show. She was merely a tool for Ted to have kids and still end up with Robin despite her infertility. Tracy’s role was the most hated. She was not given importance when we thought it was about her because of the title itself. She is a woman, not a baby-making machine. I hate how the show killed her off and did not even establish her value in Ted’s life. I get that she is not his “true love,” but at least a proper funeral would do. To sum it all up, the final episode flushed all 9 seasons of episodes down in the toilet.


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