The last episode reveals what happens to Ted and the gang in 17 years and confirms some of fans' speculations.
"It's come full circle," Cobie Smulders said of "How I Met Your Mother" series finale on "Late Show With David Letterman" after the episode aired earlier on Monday night, March 31. Indeed, the last episode revisits the pilot in the last scene, which may please some fans and may disappoint others.
The episode finally reveals how Ted met the mother, [SPOILER ALERT!] whose name is Tracy McConnell. The one-hour outing also shows what happens to the five main characters in the past 17 years.
After meeting the mother, Ted cancels his plans to move to Chicago. They only get married after having two children, while Barney and Robin get divorced after three years of marriage. Lily and Marshall have a third child.
The final episode also confirms fans' speculation that the mother died when Ted tells the story to his children in 2030. "And that, kids, is how I met your mother," the older Ted says. "That isn't the story of how you met our mother," says his daughter, played by Lyndsy Fonseca. "This is a story about how you're totally in love with Aunt Robin, and you're thinking about asking her out and you want to know if we're OK with it."
Ted indeed winds up with someone he's pursuing from the start. He shows up outside Robin's apartment with a blue French horn which was first featured in the series pilot.
Executive producer Carter Bays realized that the ending might disappoint some viewers, saying earlier this month, "Not everyone is going to like it, but that was never the guarantee anyway."
Bays and co-creator Craig Thomas left one question in the series finale which will only be answered when the DVD arrives. "I know a nagging question from the show might be released as a DVD extra and I did shoot it," Josh Radnor, who plays Ted, coyly said.
Thomas also said last summer, "There may be a few mysteries you think you've seen the last of, but there might be a little something later. Without giving too much away, we toyed around with creating a little video to be released sometime after the series finale to sort of pay off one last little thing."