I used to love me some How I Met Your Mother. You guys remember when that show was funny? When as a viewer you could delight in the witty banter between friends in a bar and marvel at the time-bending plot devices they used just to tell a simple story? Before everything got dragged down into the swirling vortex of a terrible, terrible plot device, i.e. Ted, i.e. the entire premise for the show.
One of my favorite things about the show was Cobie Smulders’s character Robin and her Debbie Gibson-era Canadian heritage. Back in the beginning, her being Canadian wasn’t just something they’d throw in for shallow laughs, but slowly peppered into her daily behavior to make her cool girl news anchorwoman get taken down a few pegs and become progressively more human. I loved Robin’s initial descent into dorkery. And even though lately I’ve been hate-watching the last season of the show on Netflix (because most episodes are pretty bad), I was delighted to find one bright spot in an episode about Robin.
The episode starts off with an older Robin apeing Ted’s typical opener of addressing his future children with a story he’s going to tell. Robin starts relaying a tale to HER future kids of how she found out she was pregnant, and then not pregnant, and as the episode continues, she receives the news that, in fact, she can never HAVE kids. Once she realizes this she addresses the kids from the beginning with a “and that’s why you don’t exist” and they fade away. I loved that even though this was an upsetting discovery for Robin, her character has always maintained a lack of desire to have kids or to be a mother in any capacity. And even in the small amount of time when she thought she was pregnant, she held steadfast to that opinion. It was refreshing to see them let her remain that way when I’m certain many other shows would’ve had her character become “miraculously” pregnant at some point.
So here’s to Cobie Smulders, who I look forward to seeing cast in more ass-kicking roles as that of Agent Maria Hill in The Avengers. But hopefully with more screen time.