The show’s Eighth Season finale opens on the eve of Robin (Cobie Smulders) and Barney’s (Neil Patrick Harris) wedding as the pair decide to break-up an annoying couple (Keegan Michael Key, Casey Wilson) at a restaurant after they steal Robin and Barney’s table. Meanwhile, Marshall’s (Jason Segel) takes an emergency trip back home to Minnesota with baby Marvin after his mother (Suzie Plakson) learns Marshall and Lily (Alyson Hannigan) are moving to Rome for a year and no one bothered to tell her.
While showing off his job renovating the house, Ted (Josh Radnor) breaks the news to Lily that he plans on selling his dream home and moving to Chicago as he doesn’t want to be around the woman he believes is the love of his life once she marries one of his best friends. Marshall gets his own news that his judgeship has been approved that makes him question his decision to move to Rome with Lily and Marvin.
Originally planned as the series’ finale you can tell events have been stretched to lead into next season’s premiere in the Fall. The Robin/Barney story reminds us of how much these two characters belong together but the mean-spirited humor doesn’t quite work, even with the pseudo happy ending. Ted’s heart-to-heart with Lily foreshadows the last step to break-up the cluster of friends as well as another heart-breaking disappointment for him as he finds the perfect gift for Robin’s wedding.
It’s the show’s final scene, however, that finally introduces a character who has been teased for eight full seasons as the future Mrs. Mosby (Cristin Milioti) heads in the direction of Barney’s wedding as well, with yellow umbrella in hand (in a final montage set to The Shins‘ “Simple Song“). The scene works well, even if it introduces the character without, you know, introducing the character (which is a pretty dick move when you think about it). I would doubt Milioti was creator’s first choice for the role (she wasn’t even acting when the show began) and would be interested to see how long ago she was chosen. The reveal of the actress, but nothing substantial about the character, will certainly give fans something to discuss over the summer, but until we get the first scene between Miloit and Radnor we won’t really know how good their chemistry on-screen is and if the show waited too long to finally reveal the true love of Ted’s life.