For a season finale–especially one with so much hype and anticipation–Monday’s “How I Met Your Mother” was moving curiously slowly. So slowly, in fact, that it became obvious something major was going to happen in the final scene.
Yes, in the twenty minutes prior, we learned that Ted was fleeing to Chicago to escape his lingering love for Robin (but would stick around to present her missing locket, one that Lily hid after a drunk and lovelorn Robin dug it up years prior, as a wedding gift). Robin and Barney were as happy as ever as they wrapped up their wedding plans. Marshall, a week away from his move to Italy with Lily, learned that his application for a judgeship in New York City had been confirmed.
But given that this final eighth season arc was supposed to be building to the long-hyped wedding between Barney and Robin, one that has now been teased across multiple seasons, things were moving without a sense of urgency. And it was by design.
Because while “How I Met” did not advance to the nuptials, it gave viewers something far juicier into which to sink their teeth. It finally put a face to the mythical “Mother.”
We still do not know her name or much about her character–beyond the anecdotes Future Ted has shared and the fact that she’ll play bass in the wedding band, carries the yellow umbrella and roomed with Cindy (Rachel Bilson)–but we finally saw her face as she, with the umbrella in hand, purchased her train ticket to the wedding’s location in Farhampton.
She was only officially listed as “The Girl With the Yellow Umbrella” in the credits, but given “How I Met”‘s style of storytelling, there is no reason to doubt that she is “The Mother” and Ted’s Future Wife. (Update: CBS has been promoting the hashtag #wemetthemother, confirming that this is not a planned bait-and-switch. Milioti will play “The Mother”)
Milioti, who starred in the Broadway adaptation of “Once,” has appeared in TV roles on “30 Rock,” “3 Lbs” and “The Sopranos.”
Presently unclear is how she will fit into the storytelling model for the ninth and final season, which will reportedly be unconventional.