15 Things You Never Noticed In ‘How I Met Your Mother’

How I Met Your Mother weaved its way into the hearts of fans during its 2005-2014 series run, and now through the power of Netflix. The show, told in the point of view of an architect, Ted Mosby, tells the story of how he met the mother of his children. Framed in 2030 with most of the episodes shown in a sort of flashback mode, How I Met Your Mother follows Ted and his friends around Manhattan as they go through all sorts of crazy adventures. The show’s eccentric sense of humor and ongoing mystery-esque plot gained it a cult following, and rave reviews. The mother of his children wasn’t revealed until late into the series, leaving plenty of room for hidden Easter eggs and foreshadowing. Caution: Spoilers Ahead!

Tracy


In season one, episode nine, Ted is talking to his children about his encounter with a stripper, who introduced herself as Tracy. During the scene, he throws in “And that, kids, is the true story of how I met your mother” as a joke to trick them into thinking he met their mother when she was a stripper. Then, many seasons later, it was revealed that the mother’s name was indeed Tracy. Though it was never confirmed whether the Tracy from season one was supposed to portray the later revealed mother, some self-proclaimed detectives of the fandom think that may be the case. Though, when we meet the actual mother character, her occupational background appears to be more music oriented. But dancing revolves music, right?

Countdown


Quite possibly one of the saddest episodes in HIMYM is episode 13 in the sixth season. This was the emotional episode in which Marshall’s dad has a heart attack and dies. This episode, although sad, is also one that’s filled with the most Easter eggs. Throughout the episode, a series of numbers ranging from 50 to 1 are seen on objects or presented by the characters indirectly. When the countdown finally reaches down to 1, Lily reveals to Marshall what happened to his dad. Throughout the episode, fans thought that the countdown would lead up to Lily announcing that she was pregnant. Unfortunately, fans were utterly heartbroken when that was far away from what it was leading up to. Another not so widely known fact about this episode is that Jason Segel, the actor who plays Marshall, didn’t know what Lily’s announcement would be until they were filming.

Conan O’Hidden

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It’s not uncommon for famous people—from authors to models—to make cameos on popular TV shows. So it makes sense that one of the most talked about Easter eggs in HIMYM is Conan O’Brian’s blink-and-you-miss-it cameo. HIMYM co-creator, Carter Bays, later said that Conan just wanted to be an extra on the show, which is why his part was so small. When talking about it on his show, Conan threw in that he won the spot at a charity auction, by outbidding himself for the prize of getting to be on the show. If only our small town silent auction had prizes like that! I guess we’ll jus keep bidding away on ceramic bowls and snack baskets. Don’t get me wrong, I love food, but appearing as an extra on a TV show is WAY better than a snack basket. #SorryNotSorry.

Rose


This musical Easter egg was revealed when Ted was talking to his kids and recalling how he’s heard their mother playing the song “La Vie en Rose” a million times over the years. He then added, “That first night I ever heard her sing, that one will always be my favorite.” And, obviously, this sent super fans into a tizzy. The first time the song was played on the show was in the first season, when Ted and Robin share a New Year’s kiss. Right as they kiss, the song “La Vie en Rose” starts playing in the background. The song itself has a lot of significance in the show, summing up Ted’s experience viewing the world through rose-colored glasses. A lot of us have the same problem that Ted did, so the song resonates with viewers as well.

Theme Song


The intro song for HIMYM, hummed by millions, is taken from the end of a song by a band called The Solids. While the song has been heard by millions of viewers, not many of them know that two of the show’s writers/producers/co-creators are actually IN the band that sings the theme song! Our guys, Carter Bays and Craig Thomas are way more involved than fans even realize. While the group hasn’t put out any new music since the early 2000s, “Hey Beautiful” is still heard by HIMYM viewers around the world—even over 10 years after it was written. HIMYM has had its fair share of iconic songs. Most notably in the show’s musical numbers, including one in which the quintet performed theme song as a band.

The Pub


Maclaren’s Pub is easily one of the most recognizable settings from How I Met Your Mother. We watched Ted and his group of friends episode after episode cram into a booth and talk about their lives. There was even a baby in tow at one point. Even outside of their conversations, it seemed like something was always going on at the pub itself. This fan favorite place was named after one of the show’s associate producer, Carl Maclaren. There’s even a bartender at the pub named Carl, bringing the Easter egg full circle. The inspiration for the pub’s appearance was McGee’s Pub in NYC. In response to the show, McGee’s started hosting HIMYM viewings and even introduced menu items inspired by the show, like a ‘Slapsgiving Mini Pizza.’

Save It For A Rainy Day

Kenny Chesney - Save It for a Rainy Day (Audio) - YouTube
The infamous Barney and Marshall slap bet started when Barney lost a bet to Marshall. Lily, the official slap bet officiator, gave Barney an option. He could either be slapped by Marshall 10 times in a row or five times whenever Marshall decided he wanted to. Barney choice the latter. Marshall later acquires more free slaps, and says that he’ll just “…save those bad boys, y’know, for a rainy day.” The final slap came at Barney and Robin’s wedding as the ceremony was about to begin, when Barney was having a panic attack. Marshall used his final slap to snap him out of it of the attack, and low and behold it was raining outside. Following the slap, the wedding ceremony went off without a hitch.

Ties Are Cool

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Barney is wearing a tie in almost every single time he appears on How I Met Your Mother. And at one point there’s even an entire plot-line around a certain duck tie. Along with that, his Christmas tree is shown being decorated with festive colored ties instead of the generic type of Christmas ornaments you would expect. So it’s really no surprise when he even donned a tie to go to a rave in season four. Okay, so it was a necklace tie falling over a fishnet shirt, but still—it’s a tie. Throughout the episode, Ted and Barney challenge each other to do things they are too old or too young to do. The rave is the final straw for Barney, while he is drugged out and forced to accept the reality that he is growing older.

Space Teens

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Robin’s old show, “Space Teens,” clearly didn’t have a big budget for special effects. Because upon closer examination, it’s clear that what is supposed to be a space ship is actually a curling stone… However, a badly designed space ship isn’t the only cringe-worthy aspect of the show. According to How I Met Your Mother Wikia, “‘Space Teens’ was a Canadian kid’s show starring, Robin Sparkles, Jessica Glitter, and Alan Thicke. It was about two average teenagers (Robin and Jessica) who solved crimes in space using math. Alan Thicke acted as their guide, assisting them throughout their adventures.” The kid’s show was brought up in the series when Barney found a DVD of it. Barney insists on watching it, leading to a very embarrassed Robin reflecting on teenage years.

Are You My Mother?

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The biggest plot twist in the entirety of How I Met Your Mother occurred in the series finale. It revealed that six years prior to Ted telling the story to his children, the mother of his children died from an undisclosed illness. Though the revelation was a bombshell to most viewers, some saw it coming. One of the reasons they saw it coming was because of a season seven Easter egg, in which the grave next to Marshall’s dad’s grave was labeled “Mother.” The same people who caught this egg also interpreted a season eight moment where Ted tells Tracy that even if he met her 10 minutes earlier, it would still be worth it because it would be 10 more minutes he got to spend with her. Which is also a subtle hint that she would die young. #MindBlown.

Wishbone

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Zoey enters How I Met Your Mother as Ted’s former enemy-turned-friend, and soon turned girlfriend. Though she wasn’t very well liked by fans, the Easter egg she provided was enough to make them not completely hate her. In one episode, Zoey is seen wearing the same wishbone necklace that Lily sports in a season one, episode six. It can be assumed that she got the necklace from the same website that Lily and Marshall set up to sell some things to earn money to fix the floor in their apartment. It was mentioned previously, that Zoey purchased Lily’s paintings online before. Zoey and Ted ended up breaking things off not long after their relationship began, so it appears the superstition around the wishbone didn’t do much for her.

4:20

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Urban legend says 4:20 is a slang term for smoking the green stuff. Which is why every 20th of April people tend to be more out of it than usual (if they smoke, that is). This little legend came to be from a small group of high schoolers in the late 70s. It happened to be their designated time to go and get buzzed. Hmm, well now we know!
Nowadays, however, it’s used as a meme and as a serious term in weed culture. But in How I Met Your Mother, it just happened to be the time whenever the wall clock in Lily and Marshall’s apartment was shown. Weed wasn’t a huge topic in How I Met Your Mother, but Marshall and Ted did get high together in one episode. It was never disputed whether or not the time in their apartment was always 4:20, or if they just owned a broken clock. But it became a running joke throughout the show—recognized and laughed at by fans around the world.

Nessie

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The episode “We’re Not From Here” in season three offered a glimpse into Marshall’s future—one where he apparently captured the Loch Ness Monster, dubbed “Nessie” for short. Marshall’s paranoid obsession with such monsters was established in an earlier episode, in which Marshall and Lily attempt to catch a strange creature in their apartment, which they called a “cockamouse.” Robin then compares the “cockamouse” to the Loch Ness Monster to poke fun at Marshall. It is shown in later episodes that Lily and Marshall went to Scotland on their honeymoon just to hunt for Nessie. The legend of the Loch Ness Monster originated in May of 1933 and is still spread around the world to this day. Though indisputable proof of such a creature existing in Earth’s water has yet to be found.

In The Background

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One of the most talked about Easter eggs in How I Met Your Mother is the journey of a certain couple. We never learn these people’s names, and they don’t have any real significance to the plot, but they are still loved by audiences far and wide simply because of how their story is told. Canada jokes are common among the main friend group of the show. While some of the best Canada jokes of the series were told, the couple in the background went from simply talking, to getting engaged, to making a baby, to celebrating their kid’s graduation, to one of them mourning the loss of the other—all in one scene! This Easter egg is comical on the surface, but is also a somewhat sad reminder of how fast life goes by.

Kids These Days

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Before his How I Met Your Mother gig, Neil Patrick Harris was a child actor on the TV show Doogie Howser, M.D. In an episode tiled “The Stinsons,” in season four, we were introduced to Barney’s fake family. In the episode, Barney complains that the child acting as his son is a pathetic actor and child actors were much better in the ’80s. To most fans, this was taken as a compliment to his past self as Dr. Doogie Howser, considering the show started in the late ’80s.
Harris was in a number of things as child actor in the late ’80s, including the Golden Globe nominated film Clara’s Heart and a popular children’s fantasy show called Purple People Eater. His first acting job as an adult was in 1995’s Animal Room, though his character was a teenager.

 

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