The eighth and possibly final season premiere of the CBS comedy “How I Met Your Mother” didn’t waste any time grabbing its viewers by the heartstrings on Monday night.
In the matter of one episode, the audience is shown a view of the still unknown wife-to-be of main character Ted (Josh Radnor) from the neck down and sparked suspicions that Robin (Cobie Smulders) and Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) have doubts about their wedding.
The episode featured Thomas Lennon in a cameo role as Victoria’s fiancée, Klaus. Though his part in the episode is brief, he manages to slip in a few minutes of nicely executed jokes in a thick German accent while in conversation with Ted. His slapstick performance is typical of Lennon’s acting style and he was a nice surprise to viewers in this premiere. A conversation between Ted and Klaus may give some affirmation to Ted’s relationship with Victoria (Ashley Williams). But, then again, it is fairly clear that they do not wind up together.
The episode starts with Ted sitting on a bench at a train station in a place called Farhampton wearing a tuxedo and looking somewhat distraught. It appears to be following Robin and Barney’s wedding and judging by Ted’s mood, one could venture to guess that he has broken up with Victoria.
The writers of the show have given a number of hints that Victoria is not the mother of Ted’s children. In the show’s history, the narrator (future Ted, as voiced by Bob Saget) has said it’s the story about how he met their mother, and Ted and Victoria met in the first season.
After countless hints and subtle suggestions from Ted as a narrator, we finally know for sure that he meets his wife at the Farhampton train station. In the final moments of the premiere, we return to the same opening scene with Ted sitting on the bench, where a woman gets out of a cab, grabs her guitar out of the trunk and is seen (with her head covered) under a yellow umbrella.
The guitar and umbrella are nods to things Ted has said about his wife from the show’s beginnings. He has alluded to the fact that his ideal woman plays bass guitar and explained that he found the mother’s yellow umbrella after a Saint Patrick’s Day party at a club.
But Ted’s future isn’t the only teasing that the writers did in the season premiere.
Arguably the biggest surprise in the season seven finale was that a wedding was taking place, most likely between Barney and Robin as they are shown in separate rooms at a church in a tuxedo and wedding dress respectively. The premiere suggests hesitation in both characters, and it is yet to be seen if they actually tie the knot.
While most of the information behind Barney and Quinn’s break-up has been said, there is still some explanation to be made about Robin’s relationship with another man named Nick. Writers brought back the romantic dynamic between Barney and Robin, an unlikely couple at first glance, perhaps because they wound up working well together. The writing of the show makes it seem inevitable that they will be married, of course leaving Ted as the last member of the group to find love.
Where does the show go from here?
As mentioned before, it would not be a surprise that Ted and Victoria end their relationship the night of Barney and Robin’s wedding. The writers have also alluded to the idea that Ted meets his future wife at his friends’ wedding.
So who is the mother? That’s the question everyone wants to know.
One of the more logical theories is Barney’s half-sister, Carly.
The first time the show talked about Carly was in season six when Barney meets his father. His father explains that Carly is in college. This would match up with the clue that said the mother was in the economics class that Ted mistakenly taught in his first day as a professor. Also, the more obvious connection is that Carly would be at Barney’s wedding since they are related, which is the setting where Ted meets his future wife.
It’s one theory of many, but it appears to be a logical ending to a helpless romantic’s search for love.
Stephen Sellner can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and followed on Twitter @Stephen_Sellner. Ellie Rulon-Miller can be reached at email@example.com.