This extremely hyped finale of How I Met Your Mother answers the burning questions of the past season while putting to rest (literally) the story of the Arcadian. The theme of this episode is all about putting aside the past and embracing the new because as Barney puts it “new is always better”. As the fate of the Arcadian is now decided, it is only up to Ted and Barney to decide who is going to push the fateful button that will blow this plot point to smithereens. In the midst of this debate, Ted impulsively decides he wants to get back with Zoey (obviously the biggest mistake ever). Robin and Barney make it their mission to find him and stop him from making this colossal step backwards in his life, instead of moving forward like we all know he should.
Meanwhile, Marshall is having trouble living the unemployed life and cannot find a single environmental law firm that will take him. Lily decides to make him feel better by getting them both his favorite soup from his favorite sketchy soup place. The result: they both got food poisoning and “volcano from both ends”…or so they thought. While Lily was home puking her guts out, Marshall got a call from an amazing environmental firm that wanted an interview that afternoon. He tries to reschedule because of his impending food poisoning, but to no avail. He gets an interview but ends up having to run out screaming because he thinks he’s going to vomit. He goes home to sleep it off and it turns out he didn’t have food poisoning at all and neither did Lily. Instead, she reveals that she is pregnant!
Back with the other half of the friend group, Barney decides that Ted should be the one to push the button to destroy the Arcadian, which seems to give him perfect closure for both his hotel woes and his relationship with Zoey. In addition, Robin and Barney come to terms with their breakup…albeit a little late in the game. Through Ted’s situation with Zoey, they seem to telepathically realize that they should not get back together because they should be moving forward instead of clinging to the past. The world seemed to realize that this was a big step because right then Barney ran into Nora, the seemingly perfect girl that he let slip through his fingers earlier in the season. He asks her out for coffee and for a second chance, but as we simultaneously feel amazingly proud of Barney, we see the look on Robin’s face as she realizes that she is not ready to be done with Barney and not ready to let go of the past.
Finally as promised from the first episode of this season, we see another glimpse of the future wedding, in which Ted is the best man….to Barney! Although we don’t see anymore of the wedding than the groom, it confirms what this whole season has arguably been about, which is Barney’s transition from boy to man, from sleazebag to human. After being reunited with his father and meeting Nora, the girl of his dreams, we finally see Barney growing up and “accepting the challenge” of settling down. However, the questions on everyone’s minds are: Is his bride-to-be Nora or Robin? And although the mother is supposedly at this wedding, are we honestly really any closer to finding out who she is? Considering How I Met Your Mother got renewed for another two seasons, it might take a while for these questions to be answered.
Pretty much the last five minutes were a non-stop stream of highlights. Robin realizing she still has feelings for Barney. Barney growing up and asking Nora out. Lily being pregnant. The Arcadian blown to smithereens. The future glimpse of Barney getting married. There was so much good packed into such a short time, I was on complete happiness overload.
Lily sounding like a Velociraptor when she barfs.
The end of Zoey once and for all, and Ted FINALLY realizing that he really has to move forward instead of constantly getting back together with the nearest ex-girlfriend he can find. Hopefully, he will stay single for a while (it’ll probably last two episodes).
“O.K., I dated both of you, and neither of you are good at finding and/or pushing the button” — Robin, trying to resolve Ted and Barney’s debate.
“Ever since the Trader Joe’s opened up, Brooklyn is so…whatever.” — Random Brooklyn man, giving directions to Barney and Robin.