The ending of How I Met Your Mother was hinted at with a huge clue in the very first season of the hit US sitcom.
Starting in 2005, the series followed Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor) who, in the year 2030, recounts to his son and daughter the events that led him to meet their mother.
It’s revealed before the end of the show that the mother of Ted’s children is a character named Tracy McConnell (Cristin Milioti), who it is explained died in 2024.
The big twist comes with the reveal that Ted ends up with his friend and former love, Robin Scherbatsky (Cobie Smulders) – a conclusion that ScreenRant highlights was teased in the sitcom’s debut season.
In the pilot episode, Ted is shown telling Robin he loves her on their first date. She breaks things off, but then the two have an on-off relationship throughout the show. Fans were resigned to the fact the pair would remain friends, despite it being quite clear they were destined to end up together. It was only through Tracy’s death that Ted and Robin rekindled their relationship, this time seemingly for good.
A book featured in the first season’s penultimate episode, “Milk”, mirrored events of the show. The episode sees Ted being told by a dating service that they’d found his perfect match – a woman who plays bass guitar whose favourite novel is Gabriel García Márquez’s 1985 novel Love in the Time of Cholera. He eventually turns the date down because he’s pining for Robin.
The plot of that book teased exactly how things would end for these characters. Love in the Time of Cholera follows young couple Florentino and Fermina who break up when Fermina falls for another man. They marry and remain happy right up until his tragic death. Decades later, Fermina is reunited with Florentino and rekindle their romance – much like Ted and Robin do at the end of How I Met Your Mother.
The clues were there the whole time.