I've been watching How I Met Your Mother
, a funny, feel-good sitcom about five friends in their mid-to-late 20s living in New York City. Its concept and structure (laugh track, running gags, etc.) are similar to Friends
, but it's original enough to stand on its own. The best thing about it is, of course, the characters. Barney Stinson, an egotistical womanizer who's played brilliantly by Neil Patrick Harris, has quickly become my favorite. I also can't help but love Marshall and Lily (played by Jason Segel and Alyson Hannigan), an engaged couple who have been together for nine years at the start of the show.
Marshall and Lily's relationship is presented very realistically. It's not perfect, but it's healthy, and their love for each other is never in question. They don't just love each other, but they genuinely like
being around each other. They have fun together, even while doing mundane things, and when they tease each other it's in good humor. And they manage all of that without ever making me want to gag! In many ways, they actually remind me a lot of Adam and myself. I feel like I can relate to them, which is rare for me. There aren't many couples in entertainment media that I can relate to. The only other one I can I think of off the top of my head is Jim and Pam from The Office
. The Office
is full of awkward and non-sequitur humor, but Jim and Pam still manage to be down-to-earth and realistic, not to mention incredibly cute.
It's nice to see normal, functional relationships in TV and movies. Sure, Marshall & Lily and Jim & Pam go through rough spots like any couple, but ultimately they're happy and healthy and realistic. I'm not saying that I want all TV shows and movies to revolve around happy couples, but as someone who's part of a happy couple myself, it's good to have one to relate to every now and then. It's a nice change of pace from shows in which the husband and wife constantly berate each other or shows with on-again-off-again couples who are always cheating, fighting, and breaking up.