[Spoilers for Monday night’s How I Met Your Mother]
So it turns out, Lily does know how to keep a secret.
We’re in the final stretch of episodes before we have to say goodbye to How I Met Your Mother for good, and tonight’s installment did a great job of reminding fans exactly the combo of sweetness, smarts, and laughs we’ll be missing once the show goes off the air for good. From the top!
After a hokey beginning that showed Robin’s mother on the plane (channeling Kristen Wiig in Bridesmaids), Robin and her mom got to talking about Barney. Turns out, he’s got a lot in common with Robin’s father (Kevin, apparently you called it a few seasons ago!), which of course made Robin nervous, considering her parents’ marriage was such a disaster.
Meanwhile, Marshall, Ted, Barney, Ranjit, and Billy Zabka (!) were discussing Marshall’s recent knowledge that he was going to become a judge…but he was feeling weird that it came at the expense of Lily’s dream to move to Italy. Marshall pointed out they had had a big fight about it, Lily stormed out, and when she came back she was totally different about everything. Billy Zabka then added he saw Lily at the drugstore early that morning…and the license plate for the car she got into said “AHOY!!!” The Captain returns!
The guys decide that what will make this better is if Marshall goes to The Captain’s house real quick and punches him in the face — or, as Barney explained it to Robin over the phone, “teach some guys some manners.” Cut to a chipper Captain at home, singing to his staff. (I can’t be the only one who thought we were going to get a partial musical episode…it’s practically the only thing the show hasn’t done!) Alas, the singing stopped when the Captain opened the door…and was immediately punched in the face by Marshall.
When he came to, he assured Marshall nothing inappropriate was going on between Lily and himself. In fact, he was engaged…to Becky, a.k.a. the welcome return of “Boats Boats Boats!” girl (Laura Bell Bundy). Or, as Barney helpfully told the room, the girl Ted had knocked “boots boots boots” with. Marshall challenged the Captain to a duel (the best day of Barney’s life), noting he’d “pretended to have a duel with actual swords twice.” The Captain countered that he’d been part of an Olympic fencing team. Before Marshall could regret his decision — and sport some cuts in all the wedding photos — Ted had an announcement: He’d just solved a mystery. Mosbyyyy Boysssss!
Ted announced Lily had a secret…and he knew what it was. Naturally, Ted dragged out the drama for as long as possible, teasing — via flashbacks to various points this season — Lily saying she could keep a secret, chewing gum, making excuses to get away from the group, etc. Ted concludes Lily had been smoking, and in the Captain’s bathroom they’ll find a Daisy plant with a cigarette butt in it.
The logic made sense, but I — like I’m sure many viewers — thought that it couldn’t possibly be just that. And, of course, the real secret turned out to be what many fans probably instantly suspected: Lily’s pregnant, and there was a positive pregnancy test in the Daisy plant at The Captain’s. The guys rush back to the Inn, where Lily confirmed the news: “I told you guys I could keep a secret.”
But the bombshells weren’t over yet: After hearing this, Marshall informed her they were going to Rome. “We’re going to do your dream, because you’ve already given me mine,” he tearfully explained. Which was very sweet and may have made me tear up a little right alongside them. Bonus: In a conflict where both of them can’t get exactly what they want, it was nice to see the show bucking sitcom/general society stereotypes and making it Lily’s dream the couple went with. And, as we saw from the episode’s ending tag, everything works out just dandy for all of the Erickson-Aldrins a year in the future: Marshall, Lily, Marvin, Marshall’s mom, and Lily’s dad are all happily in Rome… along with their new baby girl, Daisy (and a ton of Funyuns).
Final note: Barney finally met Robin’s mom and gave her a big hug, which caused Robin’s mom to declare, “Oh, he’s a hugger. Nothing like your father.” Which in turn caused Robin to relax, and have a final conversation with her mom on the patio outside the hotel room (as their room was currently occupied with a quickly naked Lily and Marshall). Robin’s mom explained there are all kinds of marriages, and the trick is finding someone who is there for you, someone you can really depend on, and then you’re fine. “Do you have someone like that?” she asked. Robin thinks for a few seconds, and then replied, “I do.”
– Robin was talking about Barney and not “good friend” Ted, right?!?!
-No Mother mention this week, so fans can continue to freak out about what last week’s episode meant for the Mother’s fate.
-If we’re pitching spinoffs, I’d watch a musical one of The Captain and Becky (she sings!)
-Saltine Cracker Challenge
-The return of “Thank you, Linus!” (But now we know why Lily hasn’t been super-drunk all season!)
-“This is gonna be unbearable.” -Marshall, someone who has clearly listened to a Mosby Boys walkthrough before
What did you think of tonight’s installment? And what are you hoping gets wrapped up in the final few episodes?