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Season 9, Episode 16: How Your Mother Met Me

We are at the All IMPORTANT 200th Episode of HIMYM S9 E16.

“How Your Mother Met Me” — On the 200th episode, The Mother recounts how she met Ted and what she’s been up to for the past eight years, on the final season of HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER, Monday, Jan. 27 (8:00-8:30 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Rachel Bilson returns as Cindy.

“You know what comes After the ONE… The Next ONE.

————————————–

And Here is the Review of HYMMM by SOLO

Wow!  That was a hell of an episode!  Easily one of the best this season.  Without further ado…

What Was Good

LOTS.

First, Cristin Milioti played her role terrifically.  It really felt like she just blended right into the world.  I loved how easily she played the different sides of the Mother, from quirky, to guarded, to warm, to wounded.  Folks, I’m gonna call it right now: this is an actress to keep your eye on.  She’s going places.  I doubt she’ll be an A-list film actress, but that probably cuts in favor of her retaining her acting chops.

Second, I loved how much we found out about her, especially the revelation of so many of the questions we’ve had.  You knew that was coming, but it was still very nice to see.  I think the episode did a damn fine job at explaining why she’s such a good fit for Ted.  I’ll get more into that later, but briefly, I felt like the writers did a fantastic job of making her both a real character, and someone that the audience could say “Of COURSE she’s right for Ted.”

Third, I got a kick out of how they integrated her into the existing story and footage.  Like, the mix-up at MacLarens vs. MacLarens, the “architecture” class and how she dashed out, the Girls vs. Suits episode, etc.

Fourth, I loved the appearance of Naked Man.  Well, the partial appearance (thank God…).  In an episode full of coincidences and such, I felt like they handled his connection to the Mother exceptionally well.  It was nice to see that he wasn’t a TOTAL loser, either, and actually had interests outside of being naked.  And hey, 2 out of 3 times, folks.  2 out of 3 times.

Fifth, I don’t know if anyone recalled it or noticed it, but I really REALLY liked how they handled Louis’ character.  In The Time Travelers, it really seemed like he would be your standard douchy dudebro.  I mean, the guy is Lou Ferrigno’s son.  He’s literally Lou Ferrigno, Jr.  Mini-Hulk, if you will.  So, he can certainly look the part of a douchy dudebro.  But instead, they just played him as a generally sweet guy who was simply…not the right guy for the Mother.  I think the story with him is going to make the meeting and subsequent relationship with Ted that much more meaningful.  But what I loved about it was the subtle way that Ted’s memory in the Time Travelers so telegraphs that he’s a jackass.  Like, you can hear Ted saying “Pfft… Louis .”  What I love about this is how Ted’s own attitudes bleed into his telling of the stories.  Obviously, he’s the “hero” in his tale, and Louis is a heel, but in the Mother’s story, Louis is…just a guy who loved her but wasn’t right.  You’ve gotta figure that Ted’s only ever seen pictures of the Mother and Louis together and never actually met the guy, so it stands to reason that Ted would only have his preconceived notions of what Louis would be like.

Lastly, La Vie en Rose …oof.  Wow.  Carter Bays warned the audience to have some tissues ready for that scene, and man, he didn’t lie.  But they also sold it well with her backstory and her plaintive begging to Max to let her move on.  Still, nothing like a little Edith Piaf to get the waterworks going.

What Was Not As Good

I really only have three complaints about how they handled this episode.  First, I kinda felt like it was a little…hmm…too easy that the Mother basically never dated in the last 8 years with the exception of Louis.  While I don’t expect her to date around to the extent that Ted did, I figured she’d have just been more of a serial monogamist, dating one guy after another for a couple years at a time.  I understand why they did it this way (which I’ll get to in a few), but it still seemed…I dunno…just…too easy.

Second, I was bummed that (A) the Mother didn’t narrate this, and (B), there were no discussions of the future.  I was really, really hoping that this episode would be told by the Mother as a flashback, or by the Mother interrupting Ted talking to the kids, or something like that.  Ah well.

Lastly, it is CRIMINAL that the show creators have screwed around as long as they have with this season, only to save Cristin Milioti for the second half of the season.  I mean, what a waste of talent to NOT use her more this season!  Criminal, I say!

Further Thoughts

So, we got a lot of info in this episode.  We’ve definitively ruled out the girl from “Milk,” so I have to admit I was wrong on that one.  Kinda glad about that, though, since that would’ve seemed perhaps a bit easy.  We also saw the reason why a woman this incredible is single at 29 and hasn’t been snapped up yet.  Answer: she really, really wasn’t ready.   Understandably so.  We also got to see her perspective for several episodes, etc.  All very cool.

What I’d like to focus on, though, is the whole backstory with Max and the Mother not being ready to date for the bulk of the show’s run.  I’ve already explained how this seemed “too easy” to me.  But I can see the other side of it as well.  I think it ends up being kind of nice and poetic that the Mother and Ted both show up to the train station a little broken, having “given away” someone they held on to loving for a long time, and how loving an “idea” or “memory” of someone can hold you back in life.  It’s a nice bit of symmetry to me.

I also want to address this whole “The Mother is Dead” nonsense.  I’m sorry, but…no.  This crap popped up around the time of The Time Travelers episode, and it has refused to die since then.  I think it has come up because people are trying to anticipate disappointment, and in so doing, lessen its impact.  They want the show to end well, but they know the writers could screw with folks.  But here’s why I just do not buy it:

First, Ted frequently refers to the Mother in the present-tense.  Now, in and of itself, this wouldn’t necessarily be telling because people can refer to lost relatives and loved ones in the present tense when they aren’t yet used to referring to them in the past tense.  HOWEVER…

Second, the kids are BORED at the start of the story.  In the Pilot, Luke asks “Are we being punished for something?”  Penny says “Is this going to take a while?”  They act positively bored, and Ted is too upbeat as he starts to tell the story.  This also is repeated in their attitudes in later episodes, like Purple Giraffe and Where Were We?

So, what can we deduce from this?  Well, its elementary, really.

If the Mother were long dead, Ted would not be referring to her in the present tense as he has frequently throughout the series.  And if she were recently dead, the kids would be far more distraught and far less “Ugh, whatever, Dad” about hearing the story.  They’d be sad, and probably more interested.

A few other housekeeping bits to touch on re: wacky theories.

1.  Ted is not dead.  For God’s sake, people, he interacts DIRECTLY with the children.  It’s not a pre-recorded story.  Nix that idea.

2.  Robin is not dead.  Man, you guys are morbid .  Robin isn’t dead either because when Ted says at the end of the pilot that that was how he met their Aunt Robin, they act annoyed, again, not wistful or sad or weirded out.  Aunt Robin is still a factor in their lives.

3.  Someone on one of the other blogs out there pointed out that the music playing in the background when Ted goes to speak to the Mother in the fake flashback in The Time Travelers is the same music that plays when she’s speaking to Max in this episode.  The suggestion, therefore, is that this is a musical cue in the show that is about the person to whom the character is speaking being dead.  I suggest a much simpler explanation.  The song in question is by John Swihart, and is titled….waiiiiit for iiiiiiit….”You’re All Alone.”  You can listen to it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KU8HiNPiGZc.  Have tissues handy if you do.  Trust me.  Anyway, here’s what I think: this is simply a song about feeling lost and alone in a particular moment.  Adrift, directionless, unmoored in life.  It plays in the moment when Ted is at his lowest point in life, 45 days before he meets the Mother.  It plays, arguably, at one of the lowest moments in the Mother’s life.  She knows she’s about to break a guy’s heart because he’s wrong for her, and she’s also letting go of the one thing that’s been a constant in her life up until then — her memory of her ex and how that’s kept her from moving forward.  So, rather than being a song “about death” or whatever, I think it’s a song about desperately wanting to move forward, but being stuck, alone, at a crossroads in your life.  Ted’s alone in The Time Travelers.  The Mother’s alone after she rejects Louis’ proposal.  Moreover, they’re both so very, very close to meeting each other and finding what they want.  That, I think, is the musical connection.

Honestly, I just think it would be a massive betrayal by the writers if they ended up with the Mother being dead at the end of the story.  I don’t think it’d be something that people would forgive, or treat as “daring,” but rather as a cheap shot done for shock value.  And it would be.  Let’s be clear on that.  But more to the point, I think that there’s just too much that telegraphs that this is a happy, upbeat story, not one with a “bittersweet because SHE’S DEAD” ending.

Anyway, on to cheerier subjects.  I’m looking forward to next week although — and I don’t know if this happened to anyone else — when they said “Next week on How I Met Your Mother” and then immediately cut to a preview of what was going to be on Two Broke Girls that night.  Weird.  I’m hoping we continue to see more of the Mother.  Let’s hope the show keeps moving in this direction.

OH THANKS TO CORINA WE HAVE A NICE NEW TIMELINE

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94 Comments (Add Yours)

  1. ahum, are we gonna be seeing YM in the econ class. Me thinks there’s been some digital wizardry going on.
    Anyway, I’m gonna be hanging on piratebay tonight so I can catch up with you in a few hours hopefully.
    (And maybe, blissful thought, we see YM crossing paths with the Serial Killer also)

    • The Episode will be over in 7 hours from now. It is 1:30 Easter or 12:30 Central Time US right now. So it will start 8 Eastern 7 Central. Not sure if Mountain Time is Delayed but should be delayed on West Coast.

      I did not want to put up all the clips because it would give to much away. There are basically 5 one two three minute videos out of tonights episode.

      We should get some answers to questions from years ago. As I keep saying it is sad in a way to be getting the answers.

      • That’s like 1/3 to 1/2 of the episode! That’s insane! I do not, for the life of me, understand why shows do this. Why would you show so much of your big episode before it actually airs in its entirety?

        • That is why I keep saying I feel like I have already watched the episode before it even airs on tv. And considering that some of the episodes have not met my smell/taste test, I have been quietly unhappy. But again that is my fault for looking.

          After this season I will not do that with another SitCom.

          But I laughed at each one of the clips for this Episode.

          • For some of the unsatisfying episodes, I doubt going in cold would’ve made it any more palatable, except perhaps for the fact that one redeeming joke might’ve made you laugh with surprise when watched live, whereas if you’d already seen it, there’d be nothing left to appreciate.

            • That is why I have so look forward to the comment section this year to keep me sane. I really enjoyed hearing from all the new contributors and the older ones from the past few years.

              Basically after this we have 8 nights of shows and that makes me sad. But this ride needs to end and we are going to get some more good info tonight.

              With all this good weather we are having most everyone should be home tonight ready to watch a good episode. My TV is above the fireplace so that I can stay warm tonight.

  2. I’ll try to get a recap written up in the morning for folks. I’m hoping this episode will not disappoint in the meantime, and that we’ll continue the upward swing begun with last episode and Bass Player Wanted prior to that.

  3. SPOILERS AHEAD!

    I may have a new favorite episode!

    Where to START?!

    SO MANY THINGS!

    First of all, I think we just got our answer on why it took two years for Ted and The Mother to get engaged. Not only did it take her forever to get over Max (understandably), but she had JUST broken up with Louis the night before they met. I get it now.

    Also, I just realized that I can no longer say “Oh my god, they missed each other so many times. I wish they had met then. All that time wasted!” Because…not only was Ted not ready, she wasn’t ready. She wasn’t yet ready to move on from Max, and that’s why she had to wait in order to meet him and fall in love all over again. *tears*

    I’M SO TORN! If Max hadn’t died they probably would’ve stayed together forever, and she wouldn’t have met Ted, but I can’t be HAPPY that he DIED! Not cool! HOW SHOULD I FEEL?!

    AND HER AGE, TOO! So she’s officially about six years younger than Ted. So…no Match Girl. :P Bummer.

    Cindy had a crush on her! I knew it! Okay, I saw someone else say it first, but I totally agreed with it and am so happy they confirmed it! It all makes so much sense now! ;)

    SERIAL KILLER! Girl, you’re such a jokester.

    They made a joke about “Bump Girl!” The Shellfish pun! She thought SHE was in the wrong room (how cute)! She knew Mitch, and that’s why he says “2 out of 3 times!” We got to see her robot paintings and make breakfast foods sing show tunes! Her band form, and her best friend who’s like a female Barney (and has slept with Barney), and her relationship with Louis, and her grieving process, and her SINGING! AND TED HEARD! I’M CRYING!

    It was just so damn GOOD! THAT is how you make a 200th episode!

    Can’t process much else right now. LOVED IT ALL! Will talk more later! Gonna tumblr it up and see other people’s thoughts, and can’t wait for the review/comments!

  4. I am gonna be very short about this. I got chills. Tears in my eyes. And I seldom tear up at shows nowadays… I started the episode, looking at the first seconds and I thought… Oh god, they’re gonna spoil an episode on introducing some spinoff-characters… But KABLAMMO, there she was. The Mother.

    I love her. Every filler-episode, every mistake, every single moment that wasn’t optimal for the past few seasons has been made up completely by this one episode. Again. Tears to my eyes. If this one isn’t gonna win an emmy, I don’t know what will.

  5. Okay, as I copypasted that short comment on the Be Awesome Instead-blog and expanded it there with my very own view on the show, I will copypaste that expansion to here again. xD Just bear with me, I’m Dutch and it’s 4:13am in the morning (yeah, I wasn’t even sure the new episode would already be available for Holland just yet, if you know what I mean… But it was. So wow.)

    LOOK OUT. SPOILERGALORE FOR THE 200TH EPISODE.

    Sorry gang, I’m gonna go and reply to the newest ep now, as that’s the one I just saw and there is no new blogpost on it yet and I, for once, have the urge to share my thoughts on the show. The 200th, yes. First I will copypaste the comment I made at ted-mosby.com as that pretty much seals the deal in short.

    I am gonna be very short about this. I got chills. Tears in my eyes. And I seldom tear up at shows nowadays… I started the episode, looking at the first seconds and I thought… Oh god, they’re gonna spoil an episode on introducing some spinoff-characters… But KABLAMMO, there she was. The Mother.

    I love her. Every filler-episode, every mistake, every single moment that wasn’t optimal for the past few seasons has been made up completely by this one episode. Again. Tears to my eyes. If this one isn’t gonna win an emmy, I don’t know what will.

    —–

    Time for a longer version.

    After that first moment where the mother is sitting in ‘the other MacLaren’ it all raced by so freaking fast. A completely new intro (as I imagined it had to have, brilliant), but then immediate drama, the part where HIMYM has been critically acclaimed for; turning comedy into a serious dramatic show within seconds. It was so sad to see the mother all heartbroken over her deceased boyfriend, Max (again, only three letters; is it true that guys with names containing just 3 letters are nice guys?). Sooo out of sorrow the mother stops dating, goes to the St. Patricksday-party and takes the yellow umbrella with her (again: brilliant way to FINALLY ONCE AND FOR ALL KICK OUT THE ‘BUMPGIRL’ THEORY! I’m so enthusiastic right now, it’s 3:43am in the morning over here right now (Netherlands) and even I’m shouting out loud ‘A gentlemans agreemant! HAZAAH!’ randomly. Anyway, carry on…), where she bumps into NakedMan-MITCH (what a callback!) whom she actually knows from a orchestra-camp (“This one time, at bandcamp…”). Anyway, Mitch goes ack to her place so she can help him with a small kind offer (she’s gonna play the Chello I believe?) and… He pulls the Naked guy on her. And yes, she’s the third one (Two out of three). It sort of feels so weird that it’s ááááll so coincidental now but it gives it some perfect sense as well. ‘The perfect lovestory in reverse’, remember.

    …I’m gonna stop right there as I’m rambling on as a wild fanboy. The finale of this episode is most touching and I can honestly say that this 200th episode is one of the best 200th episodes I’ve ever, ever seen of a show on TV. Ever. If you’re a long-running show or even sitcom at that, it’s already a task to get to the 200th episode-mark. But to actually make it one damn hell of a legen, wait 9 seasons for it, DARY episode… Now that feels like KABLAM, a immediate lottery ticket with a jackpot.

    Callbacks:
    - Mitch / The naked maaaaan!
    - The genie-play
    - Save the Arcadian, when meeting up with Louis
    - Louis
    - Cindy!
    - The “Why is a pub called Puzzles? That’s the puzzle!”-mystery :D
    - That awful Darren-guy

    Legendary Lines:
    - “The love of your life could be on that dancefloor, waiting for you to bump into him. If you’re not there he’s just gonna bump into someone else!”
    - (When the mother sees Mitch pulling The Naked Man) “This is my thing. -That most certainly is your thing, now cover your thing up!”
    - (After telling her lifestory up sofar to Cindy) “So that’s how I got here. -I meant, how did you get here from the subway station?”
    - “Plus what are the chances that we’re BOTH SERIAL KILLERS.”

    Moments of awesomeness:
    - The almost ‘Up’-ish sad opening of this episode. Pure drama.
    - Seeing every bit of Ted almost meeting the mother from the other perspective, with big props to the setdesigners and continuity-editors!
    - Mother laughing about the Shellfish joke
    - Mother runs out of the economics class, thinking she’s in the wrong place (thanks to Ted)
    - Cindy kissing the mother ^^
    - Mother asking for advice at Max after she’s being proposed to by Louis…
    - La vie en Rose, a legendary solemn ukulele-rendition by the mother
    - Not only that: also the complete final 5 minutes of this episode
    - Not only that: this episode was óne big moment of awesomeness. With the shot swifting to Ted behind the wall being one of the most touching things on the show in years.

    ReReturn:
    - Ted goes back inside his bedroom and… Wait, where did drunk Barney go?

    —-
    I’m so sorry if I’m actually taking the words out of someone else’s mouth but… I’m moved.

  6. SERIAL KILLER! Girl, you’re such a jokester.

    No, Athena, you don’t get it. They obviously we’re in cahoots and collaborated in knocking off Max.

    Did I see the Love Solutions manager in the beginning when she came out of the taxi, or was it just someone similar?

    It’s past 4 a.m. (which is probably why I’m so foggy I’m shamelessly regressing to a.m./p.m.) here and I need to get some shut-eye so I’ll just toss of a shorty:

    I still don’t connect with YM. Sorry, but she’s just not resonating emotionally with me. But that said, I’m not particularly adverse to her either. And I did like the set-up of the episode and I do appreciate the sad undercurrent. I think it’s a finely crafted episode.

    (And in the name of honesty, I didn’t get that Max croaked in the beginning until it was spelled out that he had died. I thought it was a mirror of Ted breaking up with Natalie on her birthday.)

    Anyway, a very special episode, and so very fitting to be the 200th one.

    And I had it running a second time in the background now while commenting, and it actually have a heavier emotional impact the second time through.

    I only hope they stay on the path of the two last episodes now ’til the very end.

  7. Novel ahead! =) You have been warned! I have not felt this inspired by HIMYM in a very long time…

    My goodness, what a beautiful and refreshing episode. Seriously, it was one of my favorite episodes of the series. Cristin did an amazing job and her song at the end gave me chills. It perfectly captured what both Ted and YM are going through the night before they met- sadness with a hint of hope and beauty. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O5TIV6-xIFY I cannot wait until these two get together. I know now more than ever why fate brought them together. Be warned, I wrote these things right after I watched the episode twice so some thoughts may be complete rambling!

    So I know someone will do this better but with a second watch, I tried to compare all their timelines from this episode with the screen shots from the episodes they were referencing i.e. “No tomorrow”, “Definitions”, “Now we’re even”. In doing this, I noticed a few things and wanted to comment on certain elements of the episode.

    1. They retaped Josh and NPH on the night Ted met Robin but did a good job matching clothes. I liked how they showed the friend in the wrong bar! And I love that we now know the mother’s age. Lastly- wow, it broke my heart seeing her get the phone call about Max and opening her gift. I cannot imagine what someone in her position would feel like. I’m glad things work out for her in the end though! I agree with Athena that this perfectly explains why it takes so long for the engagement. I really wish we get to see some of her process with falling in love with Ted and finally closing the door on Max. Maybe they help each other move on from the past, even if at this point, they are both over their exes. It is one thing to say I am ready to move on and another to actually take those steps. Clearly, meeting each other makes them better versions of themselves than they have ever been and helps them once and for all look forward instead of back.

    2. Why did it say April 2008 when St. Patty’s day is in March? Did I miss something here? Speaking of that connection- I love how they did the cut to the bump girl after YM and her roomie talk. Many fans thought that bump was not just random and hypothesized she might be the mother. Also, I do not believe we saw Barney give that pick up line in “No Tomorrow”; however, if you go to his blog archives from that episode, you’ll see a similar pick up line mentioned! Lastly, I love the reference to Mitch, the naked man, and that that is how he gets his 2 out of 3 line. Too funny!

    3. Did they retape the green dress bit? And I love that they ran past each other. Ted really wasn’t ready to meet her then. Ahh I cannot wait until we get to see them together in present day.

    4. I love the call back to one of Barney’s plays from the playbook i.e. YM’s friend with the genie play! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meL5rSO1q0c

    5. Dolf- are they reading your comments about the SK? Haha

    6. I love the scenes in Econ 305! And that she runs when she thinks he is in the wrong class. I went back to the episode “Definitions” when Ted messes up the classroom and they did not show him running into a girl.. that being said, they did show him running across campus with the sign in his hand. I really appreciated how meticulous they were with showing just how many times they crossed each other’s paths. The costume dept also did a great job!!! The other thing I thoroughly enjoyed with this scene was that she laughed at the shellfish joke! It did make me look up the episode “double date” where Ted tells the shellfish joke to Jen and then narrator Ted says that YM laughed at it on the first date. This means she knows the joke, but laughs again for Ted when they go on their date. I think that is a beautiful thing.

    Other things of note: I loved that we got to see YM’s paintings and her English muffin opera. It also really made me smile that we heard her describe a bunch of things in her room that Ted would LOVE including her Renee-a- ssance (hehe that she pronounces it like Ted!) and that Cindy fell for her for the reasons Ted will eventually. I thought that it was super cute that Cindy falling for her is what sets Cindy on the path to meet her wife, which in turns lead to YM being hired as the bass player. My goodness CB and CT must have had a field day writing in all these connections.. ahh fate, you are beautiful thing! Ok my next question is, why do you think Barney is drinking more? I thought he said he was completely happy with marrying Robin. And where did he go?

    Finally, I will end with this: This episode left me feeling both happy and sad, in a beautiful nostalgic peaceful way. I commend the creators and writers on this 200th episode. The episode had moments where I laughed out loud i.e. “Your balls are on my couch” and many moments where I was brought to tears. For instance, my heart ached when she played Le vie en rose. The entire episode built up to the end and left me feeling inspired and looking forward to the rest of the series. You could feel YM’s emotion talking to Max and letting him go. I thought a lot about how it mirrors Ted story with Robin.
    I walked away from this episode reflecting on my own story of how I met my husband and how fate did play a role. I’ve never thought about it that way until today- how you can be so sad one day, and be so ready to move on but you are unable to. Then, one day, things just fall into place. This episode does an amazing job of reminding us that life can be hard but to always have hope.. you never know, the person who is going to change your life forever may just be on the other side of the wall waiting for you too.

    • point 5. The thought has actually occurred to me too. There’s been enough mentions and allusions to Serial Killers that I sometime feel it’s almost a bit too much of a coincidence. But, I guess most long-runners in the sitcom world do have mentions of Serial Killers in them, so it is not something particularly unique to HIMYM.
      But then again, as I’ve uncovered and informed the world, to the chagrin of the writers, about the dark and terrible secret of the Serial Killer they’ve been meaning to spring on us all the time, everybody whose following the discussions here are bound to notice any mentions of Serial Killers in the show.

  8. finally finally FINALLYYYYYYYYY…I’ve a single tear running down my cheek as I comment .. (it took me over an hour to get through this episode as my internet was being super crap but i STILL loved it) brilliant job

  9. I wish I was into it as much as you all were. Don’t get me wrong, it was a good episode; it just didn’t meet my expectations.

    I’m glad they showed moments of near misses between Ted and the mother, but did they have to be retconned ones? I mean, I know that technically adding her to any scene where they haven’t said she was before was a retcon, but I don’t remember a gal in the pilot running past Ted and Barney, I don’t remember anyone walking between Barney and Lily when Ted walks in with the green dress.

    I was so happy when she gave an alternate explanation of why she knew Mitch, and then was sad when he pulled the Naked Man on her. Thankfully it didn’t work, but it still made me sad. I love callbacks, but as I’ve said before, I feel like they are doing them just to show the fans they can, and aren’t picking meaningful ones.

    Somehow Barney met the mother’s roommate again after No Tomorrow (where this episode implies that she turned him down) and fell for the “Barney’s junk grants wishes?”

    I did like how Cindy fell for the mother too, but it seemed way too quick. I’m not sure how else they could have showed it though.

    I was super disappointed we didn’t get a clear explanation of the mother being in the classroom. She’s there to get a degree in economics, but was it her bachelors or a masters? She may not have gone to college when she was younger given the epic romance she had with Max. She’s 6 years younger than him, and I’m glad she missed the worst of his behavior in Econ 305, but this flashback left me wanting more information.

    The mother getting that naming the bar puzzles is the puzzle, but technically Ted and Barney called Ted’s apartment Puzzles, MacLarens was not Puzzles. And to wit, I thought Ted said the mother wasn’t the kind of person who hung out in bars all the time. Tonight she certainly seemed to.

    I think my favorite part was when Cindy told her that Ted was into her and she was excited, even if she couldn’t admit it to herself then. Millotti is killing it in her scenes. At least Ted’s flail won’t hurt her at the next Renaissance Faire.

    I could have done without the What the damn hell and shattering glasses in your hand callbacks.

    And now we know that she was not staying at the hotel at first. There are great tidbits to the episode, I want to love it; I just don’t right now.

    Ted billed this as the greatest love story of all time, but right now I’m seeing two people who aren’t over their past lovers hours before they meet. Is that really the kind of thing I have to look forward to?

    I’ll leave it at that for now. I wish I wasn’t feeling as down about it as I am. Maybe I’ll like it more in the morning.

    • I disagree. She was saying good bye to Max for the last time. She was finally letting him go.

      And we will see Ted do that again at the train station AGAIN.

      Also you did see the book she was reading in April 2008!

        • Two years after Max died she was reading about “The Worlds End” and Kate I liked your thoughts. Sorry it got stuck in a filter overnight so I released it this morning. But without reading it I was thinking the same thing.

          My Life was empty before I met my Wife. I was at school dating around and wham one day it hit me she may be the right fit for me. So I asked her out.

          We had crossed paths but never spoken for months. Then one day I relayed a message to her. Then I realized she was an okay person. One moment I was alone… dating around. The Next I found her and went she may be the one.

          I went from I will eventually find the one but for now I am okay dating around to here she is.

          It can be that simple. We have seen the Mother check out Ted multiple times now. We have seen Ted check her out at the reception. Still something is going to trigger Ted going over to her at the Train Station. I do not know what that is yet. It will probably be the last few moments of the series?

  10. Ok, so, am I crazy or did the mother have a necklace with her name on it? Not sure I read it right… And I do not want to spoil the surprise for anyone if I saw it right… But if this is it, it´s kinda perfect!

    Other than that, the episode was the perfect définition of awsome, there was everything I so love about himym in there! And yes, I had lost may be just a little bit of faith in the writers ability to nail it out of the park… Never been more glad to be wrong!

    I just want to Watch it again, it was so eventfull That I think I missed a few Stuff throwout the teers…

    • I think the necklace said love, but I will be pleasantly surprised if her name is in fact Leia! Don’t get me wrong, it would be a little too perfect, but hey it is a sitcom after all- I would find it really cute!

  11. Was she was wearing a necklace that said Leiah?

  12. ok…i’m lifting the ban on posting just this once (i’ve still been reading).
    my thoughts.
    Ok, if you haven’t made it through the episode, stop reading. If you have, please continue:

    Obviously I loved the episode.
    - The dead boyfriend part caught me completely off guard…wonderfully done. Puts her on the same “I’m not ready for love because of Robin” time table as Ted.
    - Love that the pilot episode was a big day for the mother as well (her 21st bday)
    - All the “just-missed”. The Wrong McLarens. The Bump girl reference at the St Patty’s Day party.
    - Wow the redheaded friend is smoking hot!
    - Mitch Naked Man…just phenomenal how she was the 3 in the “2 out of 3” concept (although I saw this coming)
    - The Economics class was great, you could see she had a Love at First Sight moment with Professor Mosby. And when cindy talked to her in the bedroom and mentioned him, she had the same reaction (as she also did when he ran by her on campus)
    - On Tap at the other McLaren’s Pub…Marvin’s Hard Cider
    - When she’s loading the van when she met Luis (the Hulk’s son), the Save the Arcadian signs on the wall in the alley
    - She had a Rose on her sweater in the Econ Class. Goes with all the flower references…Lily, Buttercup, Heather (Ted’s sister), Dapne (black lady who rode with Marshall) and Daisy is the name of an upcoming episode. Speculation is Daisy might be her name…I don’t buy it. (and the song she sang was Levi-an Rose)
    - She laughed at the “Shellfish” joke, which was eluded to in an earlier season.
    - The calligraphy set in her room…perfect.
    - The breakfast food singing was hilarious…another call back.
    - The Green Dress scene with Ted, Barney and Lily. The Mom was there
    - “Puzzles” is the name of the bar.…this may have been the best part…hilarious!
    - Genie whose penis grants wishes…The Playbook!
    - The picture of when Luis and The Mother start dating, Robin is in the background.
    - The Scene where she asked the dead bf Max to let her go…that was touching.
    - Curtis, the front desk clerk at the Inn, purposely put her in the room next to Ted, because they were both alone. Nice work random character!
    - And she gets the one room left because Robin’s mother never checked in…how fitting it is that she gets next to Ted because of a fundamental flaw in Robin’s life.
    - The song she played was haunting and beautiful…as a Dad who sang to his bay, I get how sweet this is.
    - She is wearing a necklace, some think it says “Leia” as in Luke n Leia from star wars and that is her name. I think the necklace just says “Love”…but I could be wrong.

    So out of all this fun and emotion…we still have 2 questions.

    What is her name, and now we have WHERE is she from (Mitch made mention that they were not from NY). To me it’s either Cleveland (Ted’s hometown) or San Francisco (Michelle Tanner’s hometown)

    Top 5 episode in HIMYM history. Had everything a true fan wanted, and amazed they packed it all into 22 minutes…including a musical interlude which really gave a soft touch to end it.

  13. I need some Help with this Necklace…

    Does it say Love

    It starts with an L no question

    Help Please

  14. Also, has anyone thought about the fact that the reason Ted is looking so wistfully at the mother while she is playing at the reception is because he has already heard her voice? She must recognize him too since she definitely had remembered him when Cindy mentioned him. She will probably also realize he is the one who punched Darren… I predict that something will come up that will prevent them from officially meeting at the reception and then low and behold, fate steps in one last time. Ted is reading his book at the train station and looks up to see the mother, yellow umbrella and all. She will smile at him and say, “I never thanked you for punching that guy” or “nice book, its my favorite and really helped me during a difficult time”. Then, Ted will respond with some poetic statement or dorky comment and will mention the yellow umbrella. They will board the train together and start getting to know each other.. Then, it will switch to the much awaited final scene that was taped years ago.

  15. Sorry, one more comment: Carter Bays addresses the St. Patty’s April 2008 mix up on his twitter..

    “Pretty sure that in 2008 St. Patty’s Day was in April. Yeah I’m right about this. Don’t look it up. I’m right. (CASUALLY BACKS OUT THE DOOR)”

    At least he can admit he messed up!

    • Good to see. I wonder when they’ll address the baby/proposal timeline issues…

      • haha I knew someone was going to jump on this! I agree they need to address the timeline, but I don’t necessarily agree that it is an issue. I have faith they will tell an amazing story that will answer all our questions. I do not intend to rehash the debate on whether or not they are covering their butts or it was purposeful.. or at least, if people start re-discussing this, I will probably not participate. I realized this year (and it is the main reason I do not comment as much) is that when I start nitpicking, I do not enjoy the show. Therefore, this year I am trying a new approach. I have no expectations on how this show should end and I understand that although I am a fan and I hope they are writing to make fans like me happy, they know best. I am in no position to say what should or should not happen because I am not the writer of the story. From now on, I am just on this ride at their will. I have faith they will not disappoint me. I will end with this- I think the creators would have admitted they messed up with the proposal year. Case in point- the above tweet.

        • I think it’s a sound attitude. I’m also taking the back seat and just follow along for the ride. Then when the ride is over it might be fun to start hashing out all the details. To bad though, that the HIMYM fan community will wither away once we reached the final destination.

          • I don’t know that it’ll wither away, as much as it just won’t have as much to talk about, like the ongoing speculation about how this or that theory could be the case or whathaveyou.

            That said, I don’t think I’m going to connect to another sitcom the way I have with this one. Other shows are funny, but they lack the heart and the ongoing story to really be “appointment TV” for me.

            In a way, I’m also glad to close the book on the show (with a happy ending, of course), and move on. It’s been a good ride, but all the best stories have an end to them. I really dislike the trend of answering “and then what happened?” in popular culture. Nothing more happened. The story ended.

            • Well, I’m pretty sure this is a one-time experience for me. I can’t imagine ever getting this invested in another series, comedy, drama or whatever. I’m quite active on other forums (I took over a political blog with about a dozen writers just some weeks ago), so I’ve got my hands full without digging myself into tv series. But I sure will miss the HIMYM community. It’s fun, it’s relaxing and stimulating all at the same time. And nowadays I don’t really have any social contact any longer with people outside of my own ethnicity/nationality.

    • they didn’t mess up … St. Patty’s day was in April in 2008 … http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/irish_bishops_move_st._patricks_day_2008_over_conflict_with_holy_week/ .

      If there is a mess up it would have been at the original airing of “No Tomorrow” if narrator said said the party was in March ’08.

  16. I read an interesting article/interview that commented on HIMYM’s use of Cristin during the final season. Solo, I agree that not using her earlier was CRIMINAL as you had mentioned.

    I do not think this is a spoiler so I wanted to include something that Bays said in this interview: “We didn’t know for sure how much we wanted to use her, but we knew we needed her ‘on call’ as it were. So we made her a regular. In hindsight, it took making the first half of the season to realise we weren’t using her enough, but I think these last nine episodes correct that error nicely”.

    Makes me hopeful moving forward!

  17. I just rewatched it and am watching it a third time now! It just gets better and better!

    I completely agree that I love how Louis was not made out to be a bad guy or a douche. I never thought that he was, even after “The Time Travelers.” I mean, at that time I was like, “He could be, but I see no evidence of it either way.” That was just Ted saying that if he had really said all that to The Mother while she was still dating this guy then he probably would’ve gotten socked. Most guys would do that, really. lol But yes, I love that he just wasn’t right for her, but still a nice guy. It just wasn’t love. And I sorta felt bad for him when she said no. I definitely wanted her to be with Ted forever and ever, but still, getting turned down like that hurts, no matter what. Poor guy. Embarrassing…

    No, they did call MacLaren’s “Puzzles” in “Three Days of Snow.” It was only for that one night, but it wasn’t a mistake. ;)

    Her singing at the end is going to be my new lullaby! Starting now! Even if its 10:30 in the morning!

    I agree that I was disappointed that she wasn’t narrating the episode. I was really REALLY looking forward to that, but what we got was fine, and it was touching hearing Ted say that her singing then was his favorite time hearing it. But I would’ve liked it if it was her talking to the kids, or talking to them with Ted as we speculated/were led to believe.

    On the whole “The Mother is dead” theory, I agree that it isn’t true, and I don’t want it to be. I thought it might be true back before this season, before we got to know her as a character, and I was iffy on if I wanted it or not. Back when “The Mother” wasn’t really a character but an “idea.” Back when she was sort of this “symbol” of Ted finding true love or “The One.” She didn’t have a face or much of a personality for us to identify with, we just knew that she was the love of Ted’s life, his wife, mother of his children. So back when I thought she might be dead in the future. But now that she’s been cast and we’ve gotten to know her personally, she’s not just an idea but she’s this amazing girl played by this amazing actress who we’re falling for just as much as Ted…no. They wouldn’t kill her off. They wouldn’t do THIS much with her only to kill her off. That theory needs to DIE.

    But I didn’t know that he had ever referred to her in the present tense. Are you sure about that? Anybody have examples? I really don’t remember that, but it is a long series, so its very possible I’ve missed it. Either way, I’m pretty sure they’re alive and are going to give this the happiest ending possible.

    Also, that theory didn’t just start after “The Time Travelers.” Its been around practically since the start of the series. It just became even more popular after “The Time Travelers.” ;)

    And I didn’t find the callbacks to be forced, really. They could’ve so easily been forced and stupid, but they each served a purpose, whether it was Mitch encouraging her to move forward and go to school, or just adding to her character and her views on things. They all made sense to me and were extremely clever.

    *rewatches again and again and again…*

    • My mom used to try to sing me Edith Piaf tunes at bedtime when I was a really little kid. I made her stop because they were too sad.

      I actually can’t think of specific instances when he’s talked about the Mother in exactly present-tense terms, but there are opportunities for him to have talked about her in the past-tense where he didn’t. Most notably is Girls vs. Suits. But he also talks about their mom’s story about their first meeting and the yellow umbrella — not in the past tense.

      Some have latched on to the fact that she SANG them La Vie En Rose, implying that she doesn’t sing it to them anymore. Well, duh. Of course she doesn’t. Do you know any teenagers who get a bedtime song from their folks? I don’t. Do your folks randomly sing you tunes for no other reason? Mine sure don’t.

      To me, the more telling point, though, is the kids’ behavior. It just…would be SO tonally wrong if they were listening to a story (for the first time, I might add) about how their Dad met their Mom, and they’re just like “Ugh, whatever, Dad. This is boring and I have to go to the bathroom.”

      I just don’t buy that the Mother is dead. I get why people say it, but I just think they’re trying to preemptively be disappointed, so the actual disappointment if it happens won’t sting as much. I expect we’ll get some bittersweet moments at the end of the show, but if anything, I expect it’d be that Robin and Barney get divorced, but remain civil, as they realize that marriage was never really for them. But they still bang on occasion. Or maybe Robin feels wistful that she could never have kids, particularly after she sees how happy Ted and the Mother are with Luke and Penny. Or, I dunno, something like that. I just really doubt they’ll kill the freakin’ Mother off.

      But I may wait for spoilers before I watch the episode, just to be sure. If they do that, I don’t want to see it.

      • You know, this show confounds me sometimes. On the one hand, in some instances I think the duality shown last night between Ted’s and the Mother’s lives is “too much, too cute, too perfect.” For example, why do the Mother’s 21st birthday and Max’s death have to coincide with both Lily and Marshall’s engagement AND Ted’s meeting Robin? There were, I believe, 364 other nights in 2005 (!). It’s just too much coincidence, too much “couple of destiny”, and it makes me agree with those who feel that we’re in for a Happily Ever After Ending. Which, if done right, would be just fine with me.

        And yet….there has definitely been a mournful, if not elegaic, tone to the latter seasons that makes me pause. Episodes like last night”s “How Your Mother Met Me,” last week’s “Unpause,” the episodes surrounding Marshall’s father’s death, and most especially “Time Travelers” have interjected at the very least a note of realism and fatalism that reminds us that life can sock us in the gut at any moment. It was definitely there during Ted’s final monologue in “Time Travelers”….we did not imagine it. ( If the creators and writers were not satisfied with the acting choices Josh Radnor made in that speech, it would have been easy to reshoot it. I do believe it was a deliberate choice on everyone’s part. Whether they were foreshadowing something or simply misdirecting us, I don’t know.) And Narrator Ted has always seemed to me somewhat melancholy, although that could just be nostalgia for his youth. All of that leads me to think that we may be in for a somewhat sorrowful or even tragic ending. Someone may be dead or dying, and that would not shock me, even though, as many have said, that would go against standard sitcom norms.

        “How I Met Your Mother” is not, however, a standard sitcom. We have known the basic outcome of the series from the very start. Ted is going to meet the Mother of his children and tell them his story in 2030. We know where and how the series is going to end. (As opposed to say, “Friends,” which many have compared with HIMYM; that story was not confined by Time. The writers of “Friends” could have chosen to end their story in the present day, or at any time in the future. They also were not particularly constrained by plot points. While many predicted, correctly, that Ross and Rachel would wind up together, we weren’t told that from the beginning. They could easily have gone the other way and broken them up a la Cheers and Sam and Diane.) What we don’t know is whether that ending, in the context of the entire story, will be happy, sad or in-between. I don’t believe the creators and writers have been playing “hide the ball” with the facts leading to the ending; however, the significance may be in what they have not yet chosen to reveal.

        We’ve already been told by NPH, among others, that the ending is “complicated” and the creators have strongly implied that there is a message or moral in the end game. The thought occurs to me that the particular structure in HIMYM may enable them to “split the baby,” as it were. We already know that there will be a somewhat conventional Happy Ending in 2013 -2022 or so. We’ve seen Ted up to that point tell us that he is married, has two kids, and is very happy. What we don’t know is whether the “second ending,” in 2030, will be just as happy, and we will find the Gang content with their marriages and lives, still friendly, but with the Mother incorporated into the group. Or whether the Gang, and by extension the audience, might be in for a somewhat poignant ending or even a sad one, and that everything is not going to turn out perfectly or even close to perfect.

        I strongly suspect that something will occur in the 2020′s that will leave our gang wounded in some way. It doesn’t have to be the leap that many are making – the Mother dead or dying or Ted dying. It could, and if it were done well, I would be OK with that. But it could be something less dramatic, such as an accident, an illness, a divorce, etc. ( I wouldn’t bet against Marshall and Lily breaking up over art-judgeship, and nothing I’ve seen suggests to me that Barney and Robin are built for the long term. I’ve even seen it suggested that the Mother and Ted are breaking up. Unfortunately, any of those scenarios are completely realistic given the divorce rate in this country.).Whatever it is, as long as it’s done well, I can live with it. The message will be that our protagonists are somewhat broken but, as Ernest Hemingway said, are “strong in the broken places.” I can think of a lot worse endings for a TV show, even a sitcom, than that.

        • Great Post. Aside from death I think the most shocking thing would be Marshall & Lily breaking up. It has never really been alluded to during the show, but that would definitely shake fans up.

        • Well, there’s certainly been speculations about YM being dead, but I can’t recall anyone really bringing up the possibility of any of the others being dead or dying. What does mainly weigh against that is the kids attitude and reactions. I think it’s clear from the series that the kids know the other four in the gang. They’ve met them and are sufficiently close to them so that they would be affected by a death of anyone of them. However, there’s of course the possibility that the rumored shocker might be someone’s death, or all of them even, say in a traffic accident. But the kids doesn’t know it yet.
          Or the death or sufficiently in the past of the kids that they are not any longer emotionally affected. But that does seem less likely.
          Not impossible though. And say that Robin and Barney has broken up a while back, and it turns out that Marshal is dead (maybe by the hand of the Serial Killer), and maybe he has been dead for a while (when is the last date that we know for sure that he is still alive).
          Might the shocker be that the whole story ends with Ted announcing to the kids that Barney is getting married to Lily.
          Or, the story actually beginning with Ted meeting Robin, maybe the end chocker is that Robin’s croaked (once again a death brought to you by a Serial Killer near you).
          Or maybe there’s a Swiftian ending. Some chef nearby have come with a modest proposal to Ted, so he has sold the kids to be made into ragu.

  18. If I remember right it says in the wikipedia entry for the show that the whole thing is based on how one of the creators met his wife. As I understand it, it means that at least the beginning and ending has a grounding in reality and that sort of does go against the idea that YM would be dead.

    • Also, how pissed would you be if your mom just died and your dad is telling you the story including all the chicks he banged on the way? I mean, yes, as it stands its a little TMI, but to do it after their mother just died would be very distateful!

      I agree Athena- this theory should go die!

  19. Completely random- I remember that one time they showed what the wall behind the television in Lily and Marshall’s apartment looked like. I have no idea what episode this was in and I believe it was before I DVRed all the episodes so I cannot go back and look. Does anyone know what episode this is or have the screenshot somewhere?

  20. I am shocked that you all don’t remember the 2008 St. Pat double drink nights. You are all a bunch of whimps sitting at home. It was a lot of fun going out That year. The only other time in recent years 1940 that the Catholics moved the bing drinkers holiday.

    Second Point Read up on both of these Books Worlds End and Love in the Time of Cholera. The producers used those books for a reason Ted and the Mother (Loni). My I miss that show Solo.

    This site will stay up for at least one year from This May. It is a pre-paid hosted site.

  21. I have reluctant to post more on here because I’m in the tiny minority on this episode, but here goes.

    I woke up this morning and even reading stuff online about the show, I’ve realized something has changed; I’m starting to disconnecting from the show. This is good because it is ending soon, but it isn’t affecting me the way I thought it would. Or maybe the sadness has really just kicked in.

    And I know this will seem trivial or even unfair to people, but why should I care if the creative talent behind the creation of the show and its characters, as well as the people paid to make the show don’t care? I mean they can’t even get the month that St. Patrick’s Day is in right when they do a flashback now. Some of the characters are wearing green, and the Mother’s room mate even says the name of the holiday. Dozens of people saw this and couldn’t even be bothered to look at a calendar to see when the holiday was or even when the episode they were referencing aired (funny enough, I started typing out error instead of air there, which basically sums up the state of continuity these days on the show).

    • No, I understand where you’re coming from. I agree that the show’s first half has been extremely disappointing when taken as a whole. Individual moments were good, but the first half of the season was largely a waste of time, and was poorly structured.

      But I also think that you have to kind of want to enjoy the show, too, if you’re going to get anything out of these episodes. Towards that end, I can totally understand if you’ve just moved past that point and you’re now fining yourself more just focusing on the problems than being able to enjoy the show. I’ve been at the precipice for that state of mind, and it took the last two episodes plus Bass Player Wanted to bring me back. But I also recognize that may not be enough for some people who are deeply frustrated.

      What I’d suggest is this: take a break from watching week-to-week. I find that the show is generally most enjoyable in large blocks. Second, accept the reality of the situation. It’s frustrating that they wasted so much potential, but what’s done is done at this point. There’s no way to change what’s happened, but you may still be able to enjoy what’s coming. But if you hit a point where you can’t, then…don’t. Seriously. Life’s too short to spend it pissed at a television show, and I should know, having wasted plenty of time being pissed at other shows!

    • Hey if you want some good news send me a message I can help cheer you up a bit. Not much of a spoiler more of a general one.

      And all of us fans. We want the show to end to see the best of Ted and the Mother together.

      But that is also the last of the new information. So we want it to go slowly at the same time.

      Very Confusing place that I was at with another SitCom from a few years back.

      My personal suggestion is to fill the Monday time slot with either another show (even in a tape from another night) or better still with some real friends. Make that time a fun time.

    • I do think that I tend to look for inconsistencies or problems now Solo. I really wanted to watch last night’s episode and be like “This was awesome! Imagine a whole season as awesome as this!” But in reality, many of the same things that have bugged me about this season bugged me last night. I sort of blame work for this. When you’re writing a dissertation you tend to over analyze everything.

      I will give it another watch though, because it was late when I got home and watched it.

      Ross, I sing in a choir and we rehearse on Mondays nights. We just started up again this year last night, so I was having a good time. We even go out for a drink afterward usually, so it is like having our own McLarens. So I still have something to look forward to on Mondays, but I remember getting excited when we left the bar because it meant I got to go home and watch HIMYM on my VCR (you read that right).

      I’m so glad though that people are still feeling the magic, I really want to be there too. Maybe I need a kick in the pants like the mother and Ted.

      • Episode viewership is up 5% from last year. These last three Episodes are from the time period that we started heavily complaining. So for the final 9 half hours/8 Episodes we are going to get more of this.

        Not every episode will be as filled with so much excitement as this one. Not every episode will reveal as much. But we should have steady progress and story wrap up until the End.

        That is as much as I can say outside of the Spoiler Page.

  22. Best episode so far. Amazing. I was wow-ed for the whole episode.

  23. Dolf asked how far into the future we know the gang is alive. I did some research and all of this is from previously aired episodes, so I don’t think it contains spoilers, but if you don’t want the refresher, you’ve been warned

    In order of reveal (I think, unless I missed something)

    Season 3.2 We’re Not From Here: Ted says on November 1, 2029 Marshall opens Lily’s death folder and Lily busts him. Ted says he kept his promise to not open the folder for 22 years of marriage and it is clear from the stuff in his office that Marshall is a judge, so it renders this whole Rome thing irrelevant. Marshall eventually becomes a judge and Lily and Marshall are alive and haven’t divorced at least up until that point.

    Season 3.5 How I Met Everyone Else: At their 20th reunion in 2020 it opens with Ted showing Alexa Leskeys something in his wallet (I assume now it is pictures of Penny and Luke). Later Ted, Lily, and Marshall are eating a sandwich and Ted asks “where’s my wife?” and they all laugh. Granted they are wasted, but I still think it lends credence to the fact that the mother is still alive in 2020, but I do grant that it is circumstantial evidence.

    Season 5.11 Last Cigarette we learn when everyone’s last cigarette was. Robin’s was in June 2013 and Barney’s was March 2017 (now I wonder was his last cigarette to celebrate Luke’s birth, but we don’t know when in 2017 he was born). So at this point we know that Robin and Barney are at least alive until 2013 (which is only weeks after the wedding) and 2017.

    Season 6.20 The Exploding Meatball Sub: The final tag says 10 years later and shows Barney punking the group to get Marshall to eat the sub. 10 years later would be 2021 so we know that Barney and Robin are still alive then.

    Season 8.16 Bad Crazy: Lily and Robin have a series of flash forwards and the final one says 17 years later. That would be 2030, so we know Robin and Lily are still alive the year Ted tells the story.

    So to summarize, Ted: still alive; Lily and Robin: alive in 2030, exact status at the time of telling the story unknown, Marshall: alive through Nov. 1, 2029, exact status at the time of telling the story unknown; Barney: alive in 2021, exact status at the time of telling the story unknown.

    • Thank you very much! Well, that kind of pretty much puts the final nail in the coffin of the theory that the surprise ending would be that Barney would be banging Widow Lily. If SK has gotten anyone it would most likely be Barney that theoretically could’ve been being 6 ft under for almost 10 year at the story telling. Which then do open for the possibility of Marshal, having developed a craving for manatees, is banging Widow Robin.
      Maybe the rest of the gang have are covering up their deep canibalistic secret of having gone over board after the exploding meatball sub, that they conspired together and took revenge on Barney by making ragu of him?

  24. Ok, nobody is dead, and Robin and Ted are not getting together.

    Honestly, I think the “The Mother is dead!!” theorists are probably also Ted/Robin “shippers” who just so badly want them to end up together but don’t understand that they ARE NOT RIGHT FOR EACH OTHER. For that, however, I blame the series itself for continually having Ted get absorbed in being with Robin, and Robin’s own vacillations. But I think it’s clear that Robin may want the “safe” bet that Ted represents…but doesn’t want Ted. The thing with the Mother being dead is that it clears the path for Ted and Robin to get together, which is what the shippers want at any cost. The rest of what fuels this theory is otherwise-free-floating anxiety about the end of the show somehow being disappointing.

    But thematically, it just doesn’t “fit” with the rest of the show for the Mother to be dead. The story has been about finding love and ending up with the person you know you belong with, all while you grow up. Remember Klaus’ speech on the train platform? Do we REALLY think that the show writers would include that kind of speech only to later be like “HAHA! The Mother is dead! So Ted found love and then she DIED!!! SUCKERS!!!!” I don’t. For all the disappointments they’ve thrown at us over the course of the show, I just don’t see them doing that.

    In all honesty, what I think is more likely is that Barney and Robin are getting a divorce or are already divorced, IF we have some kind of monkeywrench thrown in. The tone of Ted’s voice at the start of the show and throughout most of the show has been pretty nostalgic but upbeat, too. He’s proud of the story he and the Mother have. The kids are bored, not melancholy, and not humoring their broken-hearted father.

    Lily and Marshall are also not divorced. I’d have to double-check, but I’ll bet Lily is wearing a wedding ring in the 2030 flash-forward with Robin. HOWEVER….Robin is not wearing a ring.

    So, if we’re gonna make predictions for gut-punches and why Ted is telling the kids this story, I think it’s as follows.

    He’s telling the kids the story then and there because Barney and Robin are divorcing after years of a tumultuous relationship. They love each other, but they couldn’t make a marriage work. This explains ALL the flashes forward where Robin isn’t wearing a ring. It also explains why Ted is telling the kids the story of how he and the Mother met. Doing that does three things:

    1. It gives the kids a sense of how strong the bond is between Ted and the Mother, because it’s clear Ted so appreciates the Mother that he would never, ever leave her. Seeing a couple that has been together for the entire kids’ lives getting divorced is probably a little scary. Not to the degree it would be for little kids, but scary nonetheless.

    2. It gives Ted the opportunity to highlight how Barney and Robin were never entirely “right” for each other in the long run.

    3. It allows Ted to talk to the kids about the things they’ll likely encounter as they grow up, the highs and lows, the friendships and relationships they’ll have, and to give them some advice to hold on to hope that they’ll find something good, but that even if they don’t, they’ll still be ok. And that, in the end, is evidenced by how he and all of his friends turned out: Marshall and Lily were still together, Ted and the Mother were still together, and Robin and Barney weren’t together but were happy and healthy nonetheless.

    If I’m making predictions, that’s what I’m going with. Not “And then everyone died, and you kids aren’t even real because I’m dying in a mental institution and hallucinating this whole thing.”

    • I hope you’re scenario is false. I think no-one in his right mind that’s been following the discussions here over a longer time period will seriously consider the Mother Dead and/or Ted and Robin getting each other. The whole set-up just disproves it, as has been pointed out again and again (not that it’s a sit come and has to end up-beat bla bla bla, but mainly that the internal logic with the story-telling, the kids attitude etc. doesn’t jive for that).

      Well, Robin and Barney might get divorced. I hope not. And I’m pretty sure that a RoBarn divorce is NOT the big wrench thrown into the works, the WOW! or the GULP! that we’ve been more or less promised will meet us at the end. Just simply because Robin and Barney getting divorced is neither Wow nor Gulp. It’s kind of expected and predicted. So I hope they actually make it and do have a happy live together.

      There is supposed to be a moment of impact at the end. I do not think a break-up or a divorce would make that. A death, but not of the Mother, might achieve that. However, from what we’ve gathered, the kids are supposedly having a shock reaction. If it’s a death it would have to be recent, otherwise the kids would already have known about it. So, it could be one or more of the 4 others.

      But, I’m very hard pressed to come up with a plausible explanation to that sort of ending/surprise moment that would serve any purpose in the framework and setting of the story. It does kind of violate the premises of the whole show and everything we’ve been told.

      One main point is that the surprise twist when it comes must be something that the viewers of the show will immediately grasp, and can make sense of. It has to one way or another be relate-able to and make sense out everything that’s been told, all the way back to the pilot. I do have difficult to re-conciliate that with the just mentioned requisites of grasp-ability and sensibleness.

      I can imagine though a real shock twister that would meet the requisites and not go against the grain of the show. It would have to be built up carefully and be flawlessly executed in order for the audience to not see the surprise coming. (Think Shyamalan’s “The Sixth Sense” or “Signs”.) And that shocker might go something along these lines (and not, this is not another weirdo theory meant to jolt peoples comfortable box of expectations, this one is seriously meant):

      Ted: Kids, I’ve now told you the story of how I met your mother. I want you to know that ours is a real love story, and I love you with all my heart kids, but I do owe you the full truth. I and your mother longed to have you kids, and you are our happiness that we cherish more than life itself. But we found out I’m infertile. I’m not your father. Barney is.

      • Not likely considering Robin cannot have kids. It would be weird if Ted also could not have kids.

        I was at first disappointed that more people are not talking about this Episode etc. But we are getting closer to all the reveals. Not as much to speculate about.

        It seems like such a great episode to discuss. I was worried that it just did not resonate with the audience?

        But this Cannon should resonate… https://twitter.com/HimymCraig/status/428582566291984384/photo/1

        • Well, to stretch it a little bit. Maybe even that Ted was fibbing about Robin being infertile, as a way leading up to the revelation, “you know kids, I wasn’t honest when I told you about Robin not being able to have kids, it was actually me/YM/us”, and it turns out that the kids are the kids of Barney and YM (not necessarily involving banging, Barney could, as Ted’s best friend, have consented to be a sperm donor), or the kids are kids of Ted and Robin (Robin acting as hostess due to YM being infertile), or the kids are actually Barney and Robins but have been adopted (and in this case Barney having been killed early on – whether by the hand of the Serial Killer, in an accident or by health issues – could actually make sense.
          I’m not saying that this is the case, or believing it, but considering that we’ve been alerted about that there is a shock reaction coming, the most plausible thing I can think of that does actually make sense, is that it is something that is deeply important to the family as a unit, and the one thing I can think of is the parentage of the kids. There might be other things that fit the bill, but I can’t think of any.
          I wanna stress, although I think it’s clear from what I’ve already said, that none of the scenarios I’ve been painting involves any treachery or cheating, on the contrary. The surprise according to my model would be an unexpected and maybe somewhat disturbing and truth, at least initially, as it reveals that the kids perception of their own identity is built upon a lie. But as the truth actually settles with them, they would (hopefully) see that they are born out of not only Ted’s and YM’s love, but also out of the love from Robin/Barney.

          (Now, I’m kind of been painting with Robin and Barney here, it just feels most right to me. But … well, I don’t necessarily count out Marshall or Lily being a key player in a scenario of this type.)

          • Rubbish. The kids are obviously replicants, and all their memories are fakes. Ted told them this entire story to gauge their emotional responses and make sure they’re replicants before “retiring” them. THAT’S the big surprise.

            Actually, I’m not even sure we are supposed to get a big surprise in the first place. Has this been confirmed somewhere? Or is it just speculation that they’ll obviously throw in a surprise?

            • For the sake of discussion I am not going to deny that there is any major new revelations coming in the last few episodes.

              We do know that Ted is telling this story to his kids at this moment for a reason.

              Beyond that speculate away.

            • Has it not been stated that the end scene with the kids was recorded already in the beginning of the series and that it includes a shock reaction from the kids? And that the end has been settled from the very beginning?
              It’s my understanding based of what I’ve seen mentioned at several occasions that there will be a twist at the end. But of course, I might have bought disinformation, and if so, obviously my speculations won’t even be worth the ink on the screen.

              Last, but not least, the correct term is ‘android’, not replicant. (I like Blade Runner almost as much the book it was based on, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, but I do have an issue with Ridley Scott perverting the language with “replicants”)

              • Since you bring up the kids. That scene you are talking about is important only to a few individuals. Not me. It is not like icing on a cake.

                I am more interested in the Train station at Farhampton. Finally seeing the rest of that scene will be the end for me. Now as of Last Monday nights Episode HYMMM I have a much better understanding of this entire show.

                The Mothers perspective was missing and now that we have it… Well Solo will put it in better words than I can. But we need one more episode next week to hopefully clear things up.

                I am enjoying the progress to this PUZZLE of a show. Did you all notice that we did not get a count down for the first time this season. This show was a continuation from last week with no time change.

        • If anyone else is like me, maybe people are hesitant to read the blog (and then discuss) right now for fear of spoiling the end. I don’t even mean by accidentally dropping a spoiler in this spoiler-free section. I’m worried someone will guess the twists and final plots correctly, and, having read them here already, they won’t be nearly as exciting/satisfying as they would have been had I not previously read them here! ….and yet I keep reading…

          • Yes a valid point . You see everyone is catching up but still we have some exciting good surprise episodes a head. One more then a two week spam of repeat episodes to refresh your memory a bit. So do we have some more big reveals to look forward tooooooooo

  25. Nice episode. Personally, I think they reached their pick with episode 23 of season 8 and when Time Travelers came out, that episode was a real emotional roller-coster. To me, the problem with this one is that they packed everything in 22 minutes. Like I’ve said before, 9 episodes are not enough to make you fall in love with the character, you’ve been waiting for so long. No, just because she laughs at Ted’s jokes and collects coins doesn’t convince me she’s the one. It’s too cheap. Right now they’re building up a female version of Ted and although I thought she looked super cute mimicking that douche who stole her band it doesn’t work like that. People need more time to sympathize characters and Ted’s loose remarks we’ve had for 8 seasons don’t make me feel she’s always been there with us.
    haha, another hope for Ted and Robin shippers, though I’m sure Barney just ran away to spend more time with Robin. Although… A few bummers beside the major one I’ve described above:
    1) I really hoped Robin was the first one to meet the Mother, back then, the first night she met Ted in MacLarens
    2) the Mother’s speech at the end of the episode felt… too hasty? No, guys, you don’t do that and mention a guy’s balls on someone’s couch in one episode. Too vulgar. A scene like that requires a full-fledged episode, preferably the Mother’s version of Time Travelers
    4) Would be realistic if Robin and Barney divorced. After all, the whole series is based on the life long treasure of destiny. Though, I don’t see that coming since these two give people like us who are iloveyouvirgins and crazymotherfuckers hope that maybe we will meet someone who are just as crazy
    5) Lily and Marshall, the most realistic scenario, but I thought they were shown together even when Marshall went bald, haha

    P.S thanks for posting that song, I’ve been looking for it for ages!

  26. I think Barney has left to convince Robin’s mom to come to the wedding. Remember, he flew to California to convince Lily to come home. He’s a romantic dude at his man-w*#$& core.

  27. Corina, another HIMYM collaborator and guest host on Ted-Mosby.com has been working for a while on a new Post. I just wanted to let you all know it was completed last night. She did a great job.

    So while you wait for the Next Episode review… take a look at what she has found Corina Writes.

    If you click on my name Ross in the comment section on her site it will take you back to the Ted-Mosby.com home page. So easy way back.

    • Wow Corina did some great work on that stuff. I hope I’m not the reason she’s not posting over here anymore.

      • No, I frequently talk with her a few times a week. She has been very busy lately. She did do a great job researching. Corina would be great say as a writer/researcher on any show in the LA area.

        Sure would like to get her a job with a good company. If anyone from any of those networks needs some help they should send her a message.

        So, Proff. Did you think of anything else that could be a goof on the show that was not covered by her original post?/

        • I left a list of little things there, but I did forget to include something form this last episode that didn’t make sense to me.

          I’m not sure how Cindy just moved to the area (and became room mates with the mother) and in the same year was already a doctoral candidate and was working on her dissertation. As a doctoral candidate myself, the timing doesn’t make sense to me at all.

          But the big one I was trying to talk about over there was the time line in Lucky Penny. I thought there was a problem, but looking at the HIMYM wiki, it looks like all the flashbacks took place in April of 2006. Lily would have been with Marshall then, so maybe there is no problem. I just remember writing at one point that the time line of it didn’t make sense to me, but for the life of me I can’t figure out why.

      • Lol why would you be the reason I wasn’t commenting? It’s all good! I’ve honestly been pretty uninspired this season and not too interested in taking time to talk about the show. But some of the old sparkle is back for me so I’m back in the game :)

        • Of I’m just a worrier and I hadn’t seen you much at all since our little debate. Basically I just need to stop Tedding out.

        • Well, I for one am glad you’re back (and glad to be inspired to write, myself)! The list of discrepancies is pretty solid. Some, I think, can be explained away, but some are pretty clearly screwups like the one-toothbrush issue. Some we can probably also blame on Ted being an unreliable narrator.

          I’ve often wondered why Season 4 ended up being the “best year” of Ted’s life, given all the crap he went through. I never understood that line at the end of The Leap. I mean, yeah, all those things had to happen to get Ted to the teaching job…but I still don’t get why THAT year was the best year instead of, say, the year he actually MET the Mother, which was FOUR YEARS after that year?

          Anyway, I sympathize with the notion of just not being that inspired. Most of the first half of the season, and Slapsgiving 3 just…didn’t leave me with much to say. But it seems like we’re (hopefully) back on track at this point, and starting to deal with the meaningful stuff — in a fun way — again. Hopefully, this continues and we’ll all have more to talk about.

        • Impressive list you made. But I think you got some oof the episodes wrong. I think you said Taste of Liberty was S01E15 or some such, as far as I recall it was one of the very first (and worst) episodes of the show. and i thought some more thing that felt like they’ve gotten the numbers mixed up. (But I didn’t make any notes.)
          Anyway, an impressive list.
          And I noted, after the heated discussion about the proposal two years ahead, that, well, with the back story of YM and her loss, I can actually buy the proposal delay.

          • It seems the replacement show for HIMYM friendswithbetterlives.tv would actually fit this show as a title. IT seems to me after looking back through this series that this group of friends likes to trash talk each other a little.

            Ted has been the brunt of a lot of abuse from his friends. I know they all care about each other. But take for example what Ted and Robin did to Barney…

            1) The Guy is drunk and needs help.
            2) Instead of taking him to sleep it off. His Best friend and soon to be wife take advantage of him (not that he would not do the same).
            3) Marshall is attempting to use alcohol to keep from fighting with his wife/Sex. Well the second one works for me.
            4) Marshall and Lily do a lot of guilting each other into… Oh wait they are Married that is okay. Scratch this one.

            This group is a little co dependent on each other to make decisions is what I am saying. So the new show friendswithbetterlives.tv may be a good replacement show after all.

  28. Anyone check out Bays & Thomas Reddit Ask Me Anything today?

    I was curious but I figured I’d get spoiled, so I didn’t, but I’m wondering whether they shared any non spoiler info about previous episodes, etc.

    • Didn’t have time, but I’d be curious to see whether they addressed questions on why they were so hell-bent on having the first half of the season be pointless, wacky hijinks and guest-star-of-the-week type stuff.

      Also, I’d like to see them address the whole “For God’s sake NOBODY IS DEAD!!!” thing.

    • For Those brave souls here is the link. THE LINK IS FULL OF SPOILERS

      http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1wwql1/we_are_carter_bays_and_craig_thomas_creators_and/

      May contain some spoilers for Tonights Episode and Hints of the End of the Season

      But Let Me inert this quote from towards the end for everyone to read first and sorry for not using quotes doing this fast as I can…

      There’s a few little mistakes in the 200th episode that we’re going to fix for future airings. The “couple of years” thing is being changed, and the St. Patrick’s Day in April thing… man… that one was all me. Total blind spot. The fact that St. Patricks day is in March and not April was, if I may borrow the HIMYM term, my chameleon.

      I will give you some examples quotes:

      Between seasons five and six. Season six was when we really locked in on what the endgame would be.

      How were you originally going to end it in Season 8 if there was no Season 9?

      Is there ANY sort of twist that exists at the end?

      Where did you guys come up with the motif of the Yellow Umbrella?

      Do you really utilize what most call “The Color Theory” in the show?

      Is there any deeper meaning to the objects in the background of the kids?

      Will you be filming any scenes with the actors that play the kids at their current ages that are canon?

      How do you guys abide by continuity? Many people are critical of it, which is why I ask.

      As an aspiring filmmaker, how’d you guys come up with the idea and eventually began writing the show in the time-jumping format you did?

      What do you think of what people post on r/himym?

      Can you give some insight on some artists you’ll be using for the soundtrack of future episodes?

      Answers

      unthinkable!

      Yes.

      I don’t know where it came from. Ubmbrellas are romantic I guess?

      I don’t know what the color theory is.

      No, there wasn’t initially. The yellow bus came into play later, but nothing was planned from the start.

      Can’t say.

      We have copious notes, we search scripts for keywords, we have a few writers who have been here from the start and are very smart and have encyclopedic memories. And also sometimes we’ll go on twitter to make sure we’re not contradicting ourselves. Beyond that, we just do our best. As you can imagine, it’s not easy!

      It just kind of happened naturally I think. Our last job had been in animation, writing for American Dad, and before that a very energetically paced single cam show called Oliver Beene. So I think despite the multicam format, our writing brains were already trained that way.

      I have to confess, I don’t read it!

      Well, it’s getting down to the wire here, so we’re trying to squeeze in every band or musician that we love but haven’t yet used on the show. We might be using a Bob Dylan song at a pivotal moment in an upcoming episode. I’m very excited for that one.

      They also said 50/50 on the Pineapple

      .

      I regret that we had the Narrator say he “never” found out about the pineapple. That said, we may have found a clever way around that, and a way to bring back the pineapple. Stay tuned…

      When asked about Favorite HIMYM

      We haven’t shot it yet, but I’m really looking forward to the very last scene.

      We like all theories. It’s really cool knowing people are invested enough to have theories about the show. Obviously we’re not going to comment on it, but we very much appreciate and are grateful for the fact that our show is meriting so much discussion.

      • To answer my own question, which isn’t actually a spoiler:

        - Re: Season 9 being a half-way misfire: They don’t answer directly, but I think they recognize that the audience hasn’t been happy, and….they don’t seem that perturbed by it. I doubt they’d have said “We’re really sorry we screwed up,” though. I think they’re currently very happy with things, happy with their numbers, but probably know that not everyone thought their brilliant idea was as brilliant as they thought it was.

        - Re: The Mother is Dead Theory: They acknowledge that they’re aware of it, and neither confirm nor deny that she’s dead. They know lots of theories (but not the Color Theory, so we can probably stop reading into that), but they don’t confirm any of ‘em until the show’s over.

        They do, however, admit that the “couple of years” where the Mother dated Louis was a mistake, as was the April, 2008 St. Paddy’s Day thing. They’ll fix that for future broadcasts (and probably the DVDs).

        • I don’t see what else they can do besides admit those two are big mistakes. And it was episode 200. Really inexcusable in my opinion.

          But I will say I am looking forward to tonight’s episode, even though I know nothing about it other than the title. I’m hoping we are on the right track and I’m trying to play down my expectations.

          • It will be a good episode. Not great but good. I think it will satisfy some of us and bring some new questions into play for the two week break from new episodes.

            By the Way some of the quotes are Bays some are Thomas and I am not going back to edit them. But here is another one from Carter Bays:

            There’s been an inside joke, I’m not sure how many times it’s been on the show, but it involves the word “guys.” Anytime you see one of our characters say “Guys guys guys,” three times like that, they’re tipping their hat to our amazing Assistant Director Michael Shea (who has directed a few episodes as well). The AD is the person who, among other things, has to get people’s attention on set and keep everyone informed of what’s being shot and how we’re shooting it, and often the way Michael does that is by yelling out, “Guys guys guys!” So if you hear someone say “Guys guys guys,” that’s what that’s about.

  • The Mother