October 4, 2023


Art Is Experience

‘How I Met Your Father’ review: Kim Cattrall shines

This one’s not so “Legen … Dary.”

“How I Fulfilled Your Mother” is back again, type of, in a re-imagined sequel series referred to as “How I Achieved Your Father.” Premiering Tuesday (Jan. 18) on Hulu, “How I Fulfilled Your Father” follows Sophie (Kim Cattrall), who, in the yr 2050, decides to movie-get in touch with her unseen offscreen son and tell him about how she fulfilled his father – employing that as a leap-off stage for the greater part of the series.

It is established in the current working day and follows the friendship and courting adventures of Sophie (Hilary Duff) in her 30s. Sophie, a New York-primarily based photographer, is hopeful about locating correct adore regardless of owning skilled a slew of insipid Tinder dates.

Chris Lowell and Hilary Duff stand next to each other in a crowded room, smiling and taking a photo of someone offscreen.
Jesse (Chris Lowell) and Sophie (Hilary Duff), suitable, in “How I Satisfied Your Father.”

Not like the primary collection, Sophie’s group of close friends is not developed-in when the series commences, but grows along the way. She satisfies Uber driver Jesse (Chris Lowell, “Glow”) , cynical right after a movie of his turned down proposal went viral on the web — leaving him acknowledged to the planet as “Mr. Proposal Fail” his pal Sid (Suraj Sharma), who is about to propose to his possess prolonged-length girlfriend at his bar, Pemberton’s Jesse’s sister, Ellen (Tien Tran), who just lately divorced her wife and moved to New York for a clean begin “to inquire out Kate McKinnon” and Sophie’s impulsive roommate Valentina (Francia Raisa, “Grown-ish”), a stylist who returns from a organization vacation to London with a rich British beau, Charlie (Tom Ainsley). Charlie is now Sophie’s shock next roommate (“One issue led to a further and now he … life with us!” Valentina says).

Tom Ainsley, Hilary Duff, and Francia Raisa stand in an apartment kitchen talking in "How I Met Your Father."
Sophie (Hilary Duff), center, is amazed when her roommate Valentina (Francia Raisa, proper) springs her new boyfriend, Charlie (Tom Ainsley, still left) on Sophie as their new 3rd roommate.

The authentic series, which aired for 9 seasons on CBS from 2005-2014, followed Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor) while his more mature incarnation (voiced by Bob Saget, who never ever appeared onscreen the way Cattrall does) narrated a identical premise to his have youngsters.

Sid (Suraj Sharma) smiles and stands behind a bar in "How I Met Your Father."
Sid (Suraj Sharma) is one particular of Sophie’s new close friends who is proposing to his lengthy-distance girlfriend, in “How I Satisfied Your Father.”

“How I Fulfilled Your Mother” was a hit — averaging 9.5 million viewers its to start with season — and made use of Ted’s tale to also adhere to his womanizing pal Barney (Neil Patrick Harris), who experienced the catchphrase “legen… wait around for it … dary,” electric power-few Marshall (Jason Segel) and Lily (Alyson Hannigan) and quirky Robin (Cobie Smulders). The display stood out from a slew of similar “friends hanging out” sitcoms that all trailed in the wake of “Friends” with its elaborate inside jokes that manufactured the pals group truly feel genuine — and the viewer sense in on the jokes.

Jesse (Chris Lowellm left), Sid (Suraj Sharma, center) and Ellen (Tien Tran) sit next to each other on a couch on "How I Met Your Father."
Jesse (Chris Lowellm still left), Sid (Suraj Sharma, middle) and Ellen (Tien Tran) are 50 percent of the new gang on “How I Fulfilled Your Father.”

“How I Fulfilled Your Mom,” even though, had a notoriously awful ending. Its premise, ideal there in the title, really should have been a slam-dunk –  but, in its place, the tale swerved off the rails in the 11th hour, killing the mother and possessing Ted get a “happily ever after” with Robin. It’s possible, in retrospect, they should really have termed it “How I Acquired Back Jointly with Robin Soon after Your Mother’s Dying.” 

So how do you clean around that tarnished legacy in a followup sequence? By awkwardly disregarding it and generating a fully distinctive present, as it turns out. 

Hilary Duff and Francia Raisa lie on yoga mats in their living room, wearing work out clothes with their legs extended.
Roommates Sophie (Hilary Duff) and Valentina (Francia Raisa) work out with each other in “How I Fulfilled Your Father.”

Apart from a identical title and opening topic tune, “How I Achieved Your Father” bears small resemblance to the unique. So considerably, no people from the initially show appear in this a single (though there’s one particular critical spot in it) and the people are diverse (but, Sophie and Jesse do seem to be bound for a Ted and Robin type connection arc).

Hilary Duff and Francia Raisa stand outside on a sidewalk holding coffee and looking at a phone.
Sophie (Hilary Duff, left) with her most effective good friend and roommate, Valentina (Francia Raisa, proper) in “How I Fulfilled Your Father.”

There is nothing erroneous with getting distinct. “How I Satisfied Your Father” is a high-quality, if absolutely nothing-unique sitcom with a winsome solid. Cattrall is a stand-out. As she lounges on her sofa with wine, regaling the viewer with tales of her youth, she’s obviously owning more pleasurable on this demonstrate than all a few of the other “Sex and the City” ladies are getting on their reboot series, “And Just Like That,” sans Cattrall’s character, Samantha.

“How I Fulfilled Your Father” is hampered by its very own tenuous and bafflingly unneeded connection to the original sequence. The only connection concerning the two appears to be the “brand recognition” of its identify and the extensive flashback premise.

It would be better off striving to stand on its have feet somewhat than trying to piggyback off a different sequence that’s long dead and buried.