There are villains in every story, and some are more obvious than others. Since the show is a comedy, most of the cast is rather tame and doesn’t appear to be that bad on the surface. But whether it’s intentional or not, there are a handful of characters who cause major problems for the people around them.
At first glance, Don didn’t seem like a great guy. Robin felt like she was competing with him during their newscasts, and she wasn’t a fan of his workplace demeanor. Robin begins to see a different side to Don, and the two end updating.
Ironically enough, it was probably one of the healthiest relationships Robin had ever had. Robin turns down a job offer in order to stay with Don, only to find out that he accepted it when they reached out to him next. Robin was heartbroken, and even though people need to follow their dreams, it still felt like a betrayal.
Patrice was a sweet character who wanted nothing more than Robin’s friendship. However, Robin continued to see her as the enemy. There’s not much of a reason why Robin hates Patrice, but she screams at her during every conversation they have.
At one point, Patrice really did become the enemy to fans of Barney and Robin’s relationship, and Robin was so jealous her friends had to give her an intervention. Patrice was actually just helping Barney with his long-term plan to propose to Robin, but it included a lot of lying and manipulation on both Barney and Patrice’s part.
Scooter was Lily’s first real boyfriend and her high-school sweetheart. She broke up with him before she went to college, but Scooter never got over the heartbreak. He was never painted as a bad person, but he was painted as naive.
Scooter showed up at Marshall and Lily’s wedding, planning to object and convince Lily to be with him, instead. Scooter wasn’t a real threat, as Lily was completely in love with Marshall, but he continued to pop up throughout the series begging for Lily to take him back.
Becky didn’t come off as a villain because of how pleasant she was. She gave gifts to her co-workers, made friends with everyone, and was so cheery that people tuned into the news just to watch her. But Becky wasn’t serious about broadcast journalism, and she often made a joke out of the station.
Becky acted so childlike that Ted became uncomfortable after going on a date with her. She continued to push Robin out of the spotlight, even though Robin was taking her career more seriously than anyone.
At first glance, Barney’s fun-loving personality makes it easy to become attached to him. But the show uses his humor to disguise what a bad person he actually is, and portrays all the crimes he commits against women as a joke.
Barney films them during sex without their consent, lies and manipulates them to sleep with them, and once even admitted to selling a woman. In hindsight, Barney is actually a high-key villain, but How I Met Your Mother works hard to hide it.
The relationship between Zoey and Ted was a rollercoaster ride. Zoey was someone to root against when she made it her mission to save the Arcadian and ruin the biggest opportunity of Ted’s life. But Ted and Zoey slowly stopped hating each other and became friends, and it was almost impossible not to like her character.
They fell in love with each other and decided to keep the Arcadian out of their relationship. But there was no real way to separate the two, and when it came down to it, Zoey betrayed Ted by playing a recording of him during a meeting of the Landmark Preservation Commission.
It was obvious from the beginning that Ted and Stella were never going to work in the long run. Their relationship always seemed to be missing something, and their engagement didn’t feel earned. But Ted was completely in love with Stella and was prepared to spend the rest of his life with her.
Not only did Stella leave Ted at the altar and run away with her ex, but she came to Ted and asked him to convince Tony to take her back after Tony breaks up with her. It was a horrible thing to ask of him, but Ted did it anyway.
Robin Scherbatsky Sr.
He may have been Robin’s dad, but Robin Scherbatsky Sr. was not a good person. He always wanted a son and was so disappointed when he got Robin, that he refused to acknowledge that she was a girl.
Robin’s dad forced her to participate in activities she didn’t want to do and becomes infuriated when he catches Robin kissing a boy. Robin still loves her dad, despite everything he’s done for her, and constantly seeks his approval. His manipulation of his own daughter is sickening, and Robin deserved a better father.
Quinn is a character that’s just as easy to love as she is to hate. When she and Barney first met, Barney, fell for her so hard that she was able to con him and take all his money at the strip club. Barney’s friends weren’t a huge fan of Quinn, but she does eventually prove her loyalty.
Most fans were hoping that Barney and Robin would get back together, and Quinn’s presence through a wrench in that. There were plenty of things to like about Quinn, but her earlier behavior made her untrustworthy.
How I Met Your Mother may be about Ted’s journey to find his wife, but he was often his own worst enemy. There’s nothing wrong with a little optimism, but his outlook on life and belief that the universe would make everything fall into place got in his way.
In the end, it did work out as Tracy was the perfect woman for Ted, but Ted wasn’t the only one in the story. He’s done plenty of selfless things, but he’s also hurt those around him on more than one occasion. Ted cheated on Victoria and lied to Robin about it, committed credit card fraud, and even broke up with a girl on her birthday, twice.