This not like Friends. There are no viewers clamoring for another season. Yes, the ratings are still solid, but that’s only because we’re all sticking around to find out who the mother is, and we’re growing increasingly bitter by the week. Add yet another season to that wait, and you’re spoiling what little good will we have left in the show. Will we watch another season? Probably. Maybe. With our eyes half open. We’ve been with the characters so long now that we’re unlikely to completely abandon them and we’re anxious for the anti-climactic finale (seriously, after nine years, unless it’s Alison Brie standing naked under that yellow umbrella, there’s no way we won’t be disappointed). But if we do stick around, we won’t enjoy it. We will bitch and moan and call for the death of Ted Mosby every single goddamn week of the season. And you know what? The audience may be so bitter with the show that they will tune out to the HIMYM reruns, and there goes the syndication money that was going to put all your kids in college someday.
Perhaps as detrimental, however, is that even as we’ve grown weary of the show, everyone LOVES the cast of How I Met Your Mother (except for maybe Josh Radnor). On a personal level, I don’t think there is a more well-liked cast in television. You make this deal, though, and the public will turn on you. You will have put greed over the good of the show, and while your contracts had kept you in the show up until this point, that will not be an excuse for next year. We will not blame CBS for an ninth season. We will blame the cast for accepting a deal to allow such a travesty to happen.
You will have Office’d How I Met Your Mother. You may as well bring in Catherine Tate for the final season.
So say no, Jason Segel. Do it for the good of your cast mates, who may not be able to see past the dollar signs. More importantly, do it for your audience. Do it for the people who still have some affection for your show while we still have it. And let’s hope that, if Jason Segel says no, the rest of the cast will, too, because a How I Met Your Mother without Marshall is, well, it’s just dumb, and anyone that green lights a final season without him should get the sh*t slapped out of them.