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The How I Met Your Mother Scene That Went Too Far

"How I Met Your Mother" was a wildly successful sitcom that defined early '00s television for many viewers. But for all of its successes, the show did have some major stumbles, and did a number of things that outraged its viewership. With the show finally managing to launch its spin-off series, "How I Met Your Father," several years removed from a memorably contentious series finale, it's time to ask our readers: What's the moment that finally pushed the envelope and, in your opinion, went too far?

With hundreds of Barney sexcapades that challenged good taste and shocking betrayals that left the audience reeling, there was a lot of ground to cover in the poll, and the ultimate answer will probably surprise. From Stella leaving Ted at the altar to Barney settling down and becoming a dad, our readers have chosen the show's most shocking point. Let's get into the moment that "How I Met Your Mother" fans thought was too much.

Tracy's death left a terrible taste in everyone's mouth

We polled 536 U.S. residents and asked them which of the show's scenes went too far, and it's perhaps unsurprising that the ultimate shocker for them was the death of The Mother, Tracy McConnell (Cristin Milioti) – which came in at just under 30% of the votes.

In "Live Forever," Ted (Josh Radnor) and Tracy meet and – in a non-linear fashion – finally manage to eke out a happy marriage with their two kids. Unfortunately, it lasted only 11 years, as The Mother's unnamed terminal illness destroyed their happy union. 

It's an ending that, after years and years of build-up for Ted and Tracy's wonderful marriage and future happiness as a family, felt like a gut punch to the audience. The show's final season had done such a good job making the audience fall in love with Tracy and root for the two of them to be together that brushing everything aside in less than thirty minutes infuriated fans who had stuck with the show for nearly a decade. Furthermore, it returns Ted and Robin (Cobie Smulders) back to square one — she is a lonely career woman with many dogs, and he steals blue French horns so she will fall in love with him.

Adding insult to injury, Ted's kids were children when their mother died, making their impatience with the story and their declaration that Ted needs to pursue Robin kind of horrific in retrospect. It's an ending that was controversial enough to force CBS into creating a secondary conclusion for DVD viewers, cementing its place as one of the most contested series finales in recent memory.