Oh, How I Met Your Mother. We really, really want to love you as much as we did during your earlier seasons, but you keep making it so hard.
Warning: This article has big spoilers for How I Met Your Mother Season 7, Episode 16: "The Drunk Train." Read at your own risk.
Last night's episode started out well. The end of Robin (Cobie Smulders) and Kevin's (Kal Penn) relationship was surprisingly moving, given that we already knew it couldn't last, and we liked that it was perfectly in line with Robin's character arc. It was good to see Robin re-confirm that her desire not to have children comes from more than her inability to bear them, and no one can blame Kevin for deciding that was a deal breaker.
But, instead of just leaving us with one of the better executed relationship arcs in recent seasons, the show had to go and ruin everything by having Ted declare his love for Robin. Again. For, what, the hundredth time?
We'll give the writers this: They foreshadowed this tired twist by having Victoria hint that Ted was not over Robin earlier this season. And, sure, it's believable that Ted — drunk, depressed, and still single years after deciding to seek out the woman of his dreams — would turn back to Robin. We can even buy that he'd trick himself into thinking that having children isn't something he cares about, even though it obviously is.
All that doesn't excuse the fact that we've been down this road too many times before — as viewers, we just can't find it in ourselves to care that Ted might still love Robin, even if it's realistic. On again-off again relationships are annoying enough when there's a chance the couple might actually work things out; it seems pointless when we already know the ending.
But hey, maybe we're just in V-Day overload. Do you agree that this was one "I love you" too many, or do you think there's potential in this plot?