Does Anyone Like How I Met Your Mother Anymore?

It looks like you can add Neil Patrick Harris to the list of people who disagreed with my impassioned plea on behalf of How I Met Your Mother's sixth season. The Emmy nominated star of stage and (small) screen booked a three-night stint leading the Stephen Sondheim musical Company earlier today, and he used the occasion to somewhat bury the veteran sitcom.

"It just allows the performer a great opportunity to mine as deep as they choose. My day job requires a shallowness that will be fun to play against," Harris told Dave Itzkoff from the New York Times. "I don't know that Barney [on How I Met Your Mother] has the deep-seated desire to couple up like [Company's] Bobby probably does. But then again, Bobby doesn't have to respond to laugh tracks."

Ouch? Sorta. If those not-so-veiled digs at How I Met Your Mother sound familiar, it's probably because you recall Jason Segel's summertime interview with GQ.

When your idol is Peter Sellers, playing one character for eight years isn't what you're trying to do. I don't really feel like I have that much more to offer with [Marshall on HIMYM]. Maybe if we got divorced or something -- but that's not gonna happen. It's gonna be some iteration of, like, my TV wife opens the fridge, and she's like, "What happened to the birthday cake?" And I walk in with a little frosting here [points to corner of mouth] like, "What birthday cake?"

OK, that's an ouch. For their part, Harris and Segel have not slacked in their performances on the series, but it certainly doesn't sound like they're is getting creative fulfillment either. Which begs the question: Which HIMYM star will speak out next? Guesses welcome in the comments below.

· In Comes 'Company,' Starring Neil Patrick Harris, in New York Philharmonic Production [NYT/ArtsBeat via Vulture]


  • Citizen Bitch says:

    my money is on the mother

  • Emotionally Retarded says:

    Wow, remember how up in arms everyone got when Katherine Heigl spoke crap about her gravy train? I wish actors would remember that there are people who actually do enjoy the work they do on these mindless series and find some way to phrase their creative restlessness or ambition without turning into a dig on the lucrative work they do now.

  • Bernadette says:

    No kidding. And they should be counting their blessings anyway. HIMYM has had a lot of really great, really classic moment. It's not like they're on 'Mike & Molly' or something.

  • Emotionally Retarded says:

    You know, upon further reflection, Harris seems to be simply referring to the limitations of the situation comedy format. And in that light, although Segel's comments are harsher, so does he. How much do characters grow and become more complex over the life of a sitcom? Part of what we enjoy about sitcoms is how much the characters stay the same. Sure, Mary Richards moved into a new apartment, the Romanos entered marital counseling, and Hawkeye Pierce became increasingly introspective and serious -- but did anyone really like those developments?

  • zooeyglass1999 says:

    I concur. But the biggest problem here is that maybe sitcoms should not run for so long. Other than for commercial reasons, there really is no point. HIMYM is the biggest example of this as this is a show that would have done better as a 4-5 year show.

  • Mike says:

    Funny how these two have the most going on outside the series--showing up is probably a nuisance right now. Still, old school showbiz rules say you shut up and stick with it. As much as the show might owe it to you, you owe it to the show.

  • caslab says:

    "When your idol is Peter Sellers . . ."

  • KevyB says:

    As crappy as HIMYM has been this year, I do agree that Jason Segel should be a little less harsh about a show that has at least given him the opportunities to be in movies. Unless he's under some delusion that his tiny part in Knocked Up made Hollywood decide that he could star in I Love You, Man instead of just writing it. But Peter Sellers he's not. Any role he's done hasn't been a major departure from the one before, and he's certainly not the future Paul Rudd, so maybe he should stop burning bridges. At least NPH was talking about having to play a sitcom character and not the sitcom itself. Though all this seems like the first shots fired in an upcoming salary war. That does happen after six years, right?

  • aaronconnorm says:

    I've been loving HIYM this year, but hey maybe that's just me.

  • Jack says:

    HIMYM is really funny.I love them there.I dont care how old himym is and i dont want to miss it.
    HIMYM is better than friends...

  • KevyB says:

    Just realized I wrote that Segel wrote I Love You, Man when he wrote Forgetting Sarah Marshall. But, sadly, thinking of either movie just reminds me how far HIMYM has fallen. Maybe he should finally meet the mother (not Zoey!) and end this thing before it really starts leaving a bad taste in our mouths.

  • captain pylon says:

    At some point, everyone wants more. How I met your mother is hilarious at times and average at others. Get over it. Stop trying to find something that isn't there. That said, if these guys are too stupid to realize that this is their platform for other things, then that is their problem.

  • CDW says:

    Jason Segal doesn't owe this terrible sitcom to the reason he was cast in "I love you, Man". He owes all of his success to Judd Apatow and his production team.

  • Tomas says:

    HIMYM could easily be fixed provided they got the casting right. Introduce the d@mn mother and transfer Ted's story into the wooing and courtship - this doesn't break from the whole "story of how I met your mother" theme because that's part of the freaking story. Let marshal and lily have that baby and explore the changes it causes. Give Barney something to deal with the forces him to grow - maybe his mom dies or his brother and his husband do and leave him the kid(Bam! got a reason for him to stick around with marshall and lily after they've had their kid) They live in New York, let Robin become a success and get consumed with her work, watch the change that has on her. The reason why people are getting bored is because after SIX FREAKING YEARS they're still the same people they were when it started. Someone needs to tell these writers that they've written themselves into a corner and it's time to take a chance - go big or go home.

  • KevyB says:

    No, he doesn't! He was cast in I Love You, Man because he knew the director. He was ALLOWED to be cast by producers because of HIMYM. Forgetting Sarah Marshall hadn't been released yet, and his part in Knocked Up was so small nobody would've given him a lead in a movie if he didn't have some degree of fame. Unless we're supposed to believe he was cast because of Undeclared or Freaks and Geeks, which have both been forgotten by most people. And considering he WROTE Forgetting, then he certainly doesn't owe "all his success" to Apatow. Apatow produced that film, but he sure as hell didn't write it and he had nothing to do with it being a funny movie. And Apatow certainly didn't have anything to do with HIMYM being a popular sitcom.

  • Wolf says:

    I just love Tomas's reply. Someone should get THAT to the writers!