My brother and sister-in-law started watching "How I Met Your Mother" a couple years ago, and seemed to really be liking it for the most part. So this past April, over the Easter weekend, I went back and began catching up on all six seasons. Conveniently, my aunt had bought the first four seasons of the show on DVD under the assumption she would start watching them at some point, but it turns out I got to them first.
It took me only a month to get caught up, and the fact that the show's early seasons felt so natural and fluid only encouraged me to watch at a rate of about eight episodes a night. Along with "The Big Bang Theory," it remains one of only two TV comedies with a laugh track that I watch - only "HIMYM" feels like a show that probably wouldn't have a laugh track nor be filmed with multiple cameras were it not aired on CBS. The structure of the show is such that it can't even be filmed in front of an audience because the number of flashbacks and cutaways on the show, as well as its use of narration, would make the show feel like a "hostage situation" for a live audience, according to its creators. More importantly, the comedy of the show is genuinely funny enough to make me laugh; the same can't always be said for "TBBT".
Somewhere along its run, however, "HIMYM" has lost its way. I know this because every TV critic has been saying it and writing about it for a while now. A friend who watches and loves the show and I were texting the other night about the current state of the show, as we've done many times before. And each time I feel like we're going to talk in circles again about the show's flaws, we always seem to find new areas of concern or trace problems back to possible origins that we hadn't thought about before.