It’s been a year and a half since How I Met Your Mother (HIMYM) fans had to say goodbye to their favorite group of friends, but students at Slippery Rock University had the opportunity to say hello to the show’s leading actor Josh Radnor Monday evening at the Robert M. Smith Student Center.
Radnor, who played the show’s central character Ted Mosby in the CBS Emmy award-winning sitcom, took advantage of the opportunity to speak to college students by expressing his love for scriptwriting, acting and directing. He also allowed students to ask him questions about HIMYM and his character, along with other questions regarding his new PBS drama series Mercy Street which premieres this upcoming January.
The HIMYM season finale has become victim to a lot of scrutiny since it first aired in late March 2014, but Radnor took a moment to defend it. He told the crowd that there is probably just as many people who enjoyed the ending but they’re just not as vocal as those who did not like it. He thinks that fans will accept the ending as time passes, acknowledging that the entire show’s plot and ending is pretty much revealed in the its pilot episode.
“If you watch the pilot episode, you can see the entire DNA for the series right there,” Radnor said. “The whole episode you think he’s talking about the mother and then he says ‘Oh no, that’s how I met your Aunt Robin.’ The show is really about his infatuation with her, the mother is more of a side plot.”
The University Program Board (UPB) hosted the event and decided to pursue Radnor as a guest speaker due to the overwhelming amount of votes he received on a survey sent out by UPB during the summer.
“The whole process went very smoothly when we were trying to get him,” UPB Director of Speakers, Ryan Logue said. “There were a couple of other dates we were trying to book, but some things came up and we couldn’t. Finally we were able to get him for Monday.”
At the beginning of the event, Radnor told the student body that his favorite thing about speaking to college students was interacting with them and answering their questions. He even acknowledged a few students in the crowd who had brought some HIMYM memorabilia, including a woman in the front row holding the show’s iconic yellow umbrella and a man in the second row with a bottle of the fictional soda titled ‘Tantrum’.
“The whole night was very surreal for me,” Logue said. “I’ve been a Josh Radnor fan for a while. I was really [nervous] to talk to him at first, but everyone is just a normal person. Once I got the nerves out of the way it was easier to talk to him.”
Radnor was the final guest speaker UPB brought in for the fall semester, but Logue indicated that UPB intends to send out another student survey for suggestions and that the organization is already working on bringing in its first spring semester speaker in February.