This post contains MAJOR SPOILERS for all aired episodes of How I Met Your Mother, including last night’s SERIES FINALE, “Last Forever,” Parts 1 and 2. Enjoy!
All good things come to an end, and so, after nine years, does How I Met Your Mother. Love or hate the ending, this is a finale fans are going to be talking about for quite some time.
Our final episode opens in the past, with our gang of five in their booth at MacLaren’s, only a few months after Robin moved from Canada to New York, where she doesn’t even have any friends. Yes she does have friends, Lily insists. She has them. When Robin goes to the bar to get the next round, Lily warns Barney and Ted that Robin is her new best friend, and the only way either of them are ever going to bang her is if they marry her.
We already know one of them did, and the scene flashes forward to Barney and Robin’s wedding reception. Ted locks eyes across the crowded dance floor with the band’s bass player, the eventually-to-be Mrs. Mosby. Barney calls out to her, asking if she remembers the pep talk she gave him to go get the woman he loves. He did, he declares, and Ted decides he has to leave for Chicago right away.
Lily demands that they take the emotional farewell outside. Ted tells Robin it’s been a major pleasure (salute) and Lily is too emotional to say her goodbye; Ted should talk to Marshall next, which he does before placing a finger on Lily’s forehead for an ET farewell. Barney and Ted decide to exchange one super infinity five to take care of all the high fives they can’t give each other in person anymore. Of course they end up infinity five-ing too hard and both hurt their hands. The gang goes their separate ways, Ted ending up on that bench in the rain, one iconic yellow umbrella only a few scant feet away. With a bit of prompting from the older woman sitting next to him, he gathers his nerve and says hello.
The very next day, Marshall and Lily go to a Ted-less MacLaren’s, only to find Ted ensconced in their booth. Isn’t he going to Chicago? Nope. He met a girl, and proceeds to call and ask her out right then and there, in defiance of the three day rule. Marshall fears Ted is setting himself up for heartbreak yet again, but Lily sees that this one is different, and in a flashforward to 2015, she’s right. Ted is about to blow all his money on a big fancy wedding at a castle in France.
Ted shouldn’t make out that check yet, as the not-yet-Mrs.-Mosby arrives to tell him they can’t get married in September, as she won’t fit in the dress. She’s pregnant. That’s not the only upheaval, as Robin and Barney are going through another rough patch after their trip to Argentina. Robin has been travelling constantly for work, which doesn’t sit well with Barney. He can’t even blog when she drags him off to some place with no wifi. Robin and Barney confess to the gang that they have divorced, but that doesn’t have to change anything; they’ll always be there for the big moments.
The flashforwards come fast and furious from here. Ted and Not-Yet-Mrs.-Mosby welcome both daughter Penny and son Luke before they marry. Marshall returns to corporate law, and he and Lily decide to give up the apartment so they can move to a larger place when they welcome baby number three. Barney tops his perfect week with a perfect month, banging thirty one women in thirty one days, and conceives a child with woman number thirty one. Robin remains scarce. Barney meets his newborn daughter and vows to give her everything he has and is, for his whole life.
Returning home after the birth of Barney’s daughter, Ted asks his fiancée for her ring back and re-proposes. They’ll be married that Thursday. For this, the seldom-seen Robin reappears, congratulates new father Barney, who isn’t interested in her anymore, and poses for a group shot with Ted’s new bride.
Present-day Ted rhapsodizes about the long and convoluted road that led him to the mother of his children, and how glad he was for all of it, how he got to love her through the ups and downs and all the speedbumps of life, even when she got sick. Oh yes, they went there. After a cute moment where Ted finally reveals the name of his late wife, Tracy, he tells the kids the story is over, but Penny says it isn’t.
The whole point, Penny insists, wasn’t to tell them how he met Tracy, but that he’s still hung up on Aunt Robin, and wants their permission to ask her out, as Tracy has been dead for six years. Ted being Ted, does not make the call, but knows what he has to do. Blue French horn in hand, he stands below Robin’s window as she and her dogs look down at him and smile.
Anna C. Bowling considers writing historical romance the best way to travel through time and make the voices in her head pay rent. She welcomes visitors to her blog, Typing with Wet Nails and to follow her at Twitter.