The sitcom’s nine-season run had many ups and downs while maintaining the mystery of the Mother’s identity. In my opinion, the series crested in its fourth season. However, they continued to deliver some excellent How I Met Your Mother best episodes through the fifth and sixth seasons, but the series started losing momentum in the later seasons.
Starring Josh Radnor as Ted Mosby, Jason Segel as Marshall Eriksen, Cobie Smulders as Robin Scherbatsky, Alyson Hannigan as Lily Aldrin, and Neil Patrick Harris as Barney Stinson, How I Met Your Mother finished in 2014 after a controversial finale.
20 Best Episodes In How I Met Your Mother
Premiering in 2005, How I Met Your Mother took over from Friends as the go-to sitcom about youthful New Yorkers navigating life and love in the city.
Hopeless romantic Ted (Josh Radnor) is looking for his soulmate, and the series is framed as a seemingly endless story that a more seasoned Ted is telling his kids about how he met their Mother. However, the sh
bou is watching Ted, perhaps drunk Ted, and the so-called “future-Tedd” version. While we don’t realize who the Mother (Cristin Milioti) is until the final season, we get to watch the many entertaining escapades of Ted and his friends throughout nine years.
Despite its polarizing finale, How I Met Your Mother made us chuckle for almost ten years and cemented its position in the social lexicon. We think these episodes are the most memorable of the series. Here are the twenty best episodes of How I Met Your Mother:
20. Girls Versus Suits (Season 5, Episode 12)
The show’s 100th episode celebrates the milestone. It gives us more clues about the Mother than any other recent memory. Ted starts dating Cindy (Rachel Bilson), who won’t stop complaining about her flatmate.
This flatmate is the Mother, and Ted learns that his future wife plays bass guitar and creates paintings of robots playing sports.
Ted discovers he has much in common with this mystery woman,n yet only gets a glimpse of her foot. He also accidentally leaves his yellow umbrella at her apartment, which is essential for their meeting.
Meanwhile, Barney is facing a difficult choice. He has his eye on the new hot bartender at Maclaren’s, yet she despises men who wear suits. So she gives him an ultimatum: their claims.
Barney launches into a giant musical number about how he could never give up his precious cases for a woman. However, despite claiming “nothing suits me like a suit,” he changes his mind and hooks up with Hee.
19. The Playbook (Season 5, Episode 8)
Loveable miscreant Barney Stinson became a fan favorite with ridiculous catchphrases and womanizing antics. Barney will take extraordinary measures to pick up women, so it’s no surprise he has a book brimming with these outlandish schemes. The playbook concept is disgusting, but given that the plays have names like “The Lorenzo von Matterhorn,” it’s also hilarious.
As she ended up in a relationship with Robin, Barney was prepping to explore all opportunities again and broke out the playbook again. Furthermore, we see his plays in action as he explains them to his friends, ending every scenario with a wink to the viewers.
He sits in a bar wearing a scuba suit and preparing his best to complete his play to become a Scura Driver,” Lily warns the girl he is targeting.
Surprisingly, Barney admits that he’s taking his separation from Robin quite hard, causing the girl to feel frustrated with him and give him an opportunity. Thiss moment of vulnerability was just another scam and part of the more extensive play. You need to provide it, Barney; he thinks these things through.
18. Three Days Of Snow (Season 4, Episode 13)
A giant snowstorm hits NYC, delaying Lily’s flight back from Seattle. As a result, she and Marshall are considering letting go of their charming little traditions like calling each other at lunchtime, kissing on New Year’s Eve, and meeting each other at the airport. Even though Marshall wasn’t planning on picking Lily up from the airport this time, he decided to go.
At Maclaren’s, the bartender leaves Ted and Barney accountable for the vacant bar while they wait for their dates. However, their dates are marching band members, bringing the entire crowd along.
The guys seize the opportunity to fulfill their Cocktail-inspired dreams of running a bar, which they rename Puzzles (“People will be like, ‘For what reason is it called Puzzles?’ That’s the puzzle!”).
When the bartender returns, they move the party back to their apartment. The grateful musicians assist Marshall with surprising Lily at the airport by playing “Days of Yore.”
17. Something Borrowed (Season 2, Episode 21)
It’s Marshall and Lily’s wedding day, and everything is going wrong. Lily’s ex shows up with an end goal to win her back, a groomsman tackles the photographic artist, and the harp player is giving birth. To exacerbate the situation, Marshall unwittingly gets frosted tips in his hair and shaves his head in a moment of panic.
With the bride and man of the hour in distress, the group meets up outside, and Ted suggests that the couple get married twice. They can have the small open-air wedding they had initially wanted before going through the big disastrous ceremony.
Barney, who got ordained for the occasion, officiates while holding back tears. Lily and Marshall trade delightful vows that list why they love one another. The simple, intimate wedding is considerably more fitting for the couple. An extraordinary sitcom wedding should be exciting and sweet; this episode impeccably pulls it off.
16. Swarley (Season 2, Episode 7)
This episode gets its title from Barney’s misspelled name on a coffee mug. This irregular little thing becomes a joke throughout the episode, as the posse continually refers to Barney as Swarley, and he gets increasingly upset.
Still single after breaking up with Lily, Marshall asks out the barista who composed Barney’s name wrong. Ted and Barney caution him that this girl has an “insane eye.s
” which is a bad sign. Lily and Marshall are an incredible couple, so seeing him dating someone else is weird. Lily also has an issue with it, as she interrupts his date to stop him from kissing another woman.
She runs away, embarrassed. However, Marshall follows her and tells her she has “crazier eyes than anyone I have ever met.” Missing one another, they kiss. It’s a relief to see them finally back together; fortunately, they remain a stable couple until the show’s end.
15. Spoiler Alert (Season 3, Episode 8)
One of the keys to any successful, long-lasting friendship is learning not to bring up certain aspects of a friend’s life or behavior, lest it unearths latent tension.
This standard is tested in the Season 3 episode “Spoiler Alert,” as the presence of Ted’s new girlfriend,d Cathy, leads the group to address each other’s annoying habits. Furthermore, once a genie-like that is out of the jug, it isn’t easy to return it.
“Spoiler Alert” instills a lot of friction between its center cast, with relatively low stakes and a lot of comedic gold to be mined from it. As fun n as it is to see the group cooperate, the opportunity to see them make fun of one another is capitalized here.
Seeing the ensemble inevitably work their direction back together is a much more prominent satisfaction as a testament to their enduring friendship.
14. Bad News (Season 6, Episode 13)
If there was ever an episode of “How I Met Your Mother” practically begging for a rewatch, it’s the Season 6 episode “Bad News.”
As Marshall and Lily address fertility troubles while trying to conceive a child together, numbers start appearing behind the scenes, counting down throughout the episode. While the overarching premise of the attack would suggest this has to do with several troubles conceiving, the commencement ends with a shocking misfortune for Marshall.
Bad news often comes out of nowhere, and that’s what the episode reflects, yet it reminds audiences that human stakes influence everything — as outlandish as the show can occasionally become. Also, Robin was seen squaring off against her old nemesis.s
Sandy Rivers was at work while Barney’s doppelganger was discovered. However, the episode’s center gimmick can be a bit distracting, but “Bad News” generally rises above it to deliver a particularly memorable twist for the show.
13. Mary the Paralegal (Season 1, Episode 19)
Barney is a person that the others, and by extension, the audience, are never quite sure how much they should treat seriously. Always one to utilize guile and wanton manipulation to get what he wants — or to play an intricate gag — Barney consistently keeps everyone around him on their toes.
This duplicitous side of Barney provides most of the hilarity and narrative tension in the Season 1 episode “Mary the Paralegal.”
Invited to an honor feast for Robin after she wins a prestigious honor at work, Ted finds himself deprived of a date after breaking things off with his serious girlfriend, Victoria. Barney sets Ted with a date for the occasion, yet it’s muddled if the woman in question is a sex laborer or a collaborator of Barney’s.
This leads to an entire episode of Ted and his friends debating whether his date is all she appears to be, with many distractions and clues heightening the exciting mystery.
12. Ted Mosby: Architect (Season 2, Episode 4)
Disagreements are a characteristic outgrowth of any long-lasting relationship, and although Ted and Robin seemed like the ideal few, they finally have their first big fight right off the bat in Season 2. The episode “Ted Mosby: Architect” features a tense moment between the couple over their work concerns. Hiss leads Barney to assist Ted with realizing that women think architects are cool and sexy, leading him to look outside his relationship.
For Ted’s faults, we intuitively know that he all’s not the sort to undermine Robin, yet the episode demonstrates how much they’ve developed as a couple. “Ted Mosby: Architect” also helps keep audiences guessing — despite us knowing Ted’s better nature, there are a lot of clues that he could become unfaithful in the episode-spanning mystery.
As an audience, we need to see Ted and Robin thrive, and this episode puts that notion to the test with its exploration of relationship growing pains.
11. Come On (Season 1, Episode 22)
The beginning of How I Met Your Mother is quite mushy, and there is no better way to express that mushiness than Ted trying to make it rain for Robin. The first season finale took Ted and Robin’s relationship to a higher level yet gave us shock at the type of Marshall and Lily’s separation.
10. Benefits (Season 4, Episode 12)
However, Ted and Robin broke up toward the finish of “How I Met Your Mother” Season 2, and the lingering attraction between them was investigated partially through Season 4 in the episode “Benefits.” With Ted and Robin living together again, under the presumption that they were to keep things platonic, tensions begin to arise.
The two roommates then realized that they could resolve virtually any disagreements by having sex without any surprises.
“Benefits” not just continues to capitalize on the profound chemistry between Ted and Robin, which further informs their longstanding romantic tension, yet underscores how much Barney cherishes Robin.
This is a lie despite the regularly suave Barney insisting he was not jealous of his ex hooking up with Ted. This revelation provides a necessary vulnerability to Barney and foreshadows his romance with Robinissunfinishedd.
9. Intervention (Season 4, Episode 4)
Some of the best episodes of “How I Met Your Mother” involve the pack revisiting their history together, and the Season 4 episode “Intervention” is an extraordinary showcase for this. As Marshall and Lily plan to pass on their longtime apartment to start their own home as a married couple, Robin is prepared to move to Japan.
This leads Marshall and Ted to discuss who should pay for their apartment’s security deposit, reminiscing about the harm done to the unit during their tenure living there.
This trip down the memory path involves the group recalling moments when they staged interventions for one another. In apparent “How I Met Your Mother” fashion, these include interventions to stop relatively silly concerns, from Lily constantly using British pronunciation to Barney’s magic tricks.
However, toward the finish of this, genuine concerns between the characters are raised, reminding audiences just how much they are invested in the pack.9. Farhampton (Season 8, Episode 1)
“How I Met Your Mother” Season 8 is a season of second thoughts and romantic anxiety, all powered by a sound measure of catastrophe, and that is readily evident right from its season premiere.
“Farhampton” telegraphs the matrimonial premise that will make up the central part of Season 9 while offering Ted a second opportunity at one of the extraordinary loves that he assumed he lost for good years prior: Victoria.
While Ted had disastrously bungled his romance with Victoria in a failed bid to woo Robin in Season 1, his ex resurfaces to rekindle their relationship. The Season 8 premiere involves Victoria dealing with the consequences of leaving her fiancé at the raised area, with guest star Thomas Lennon hilariously portraying her jilted German darling Klaus.
As Ted and Victoria face Klaus, Barney celebrates his engagement with his girlfriend Quinn, a relationship audiences know is doomed to fail — thus adding intrigue.
8. Game Night (Season 1, Episode 15)
Speaking of epic bombshell discoveries, what we discovered about Barney in Season 1 is ostensibly significantly more unbelievable.
Instead, a simple game of “Marshgammon” turns into a night of groundbreaking reveals around one another, including Barney’s past as a meek, virginal hippie whose dreams of going to the Peace Corps with then-girlfriend Shannon (Katie Walder, were crushed when she left him for a douche businessman.
Another important HIMYM lesson is how dramatically our personalities can change over the long run. “Game Night” spells this out dazzlingly entertainingly by tracing Barney’s evolution from an entirely different person to an Armani-clad commitment-phobe.
7. Slapsgiving (Season 3, Episode 9)
In this season 3, episode 9, Lily and Marshall are hosting their first Thanksgiving. Lily is preparing dinner, and Marshall is preparing to deliver the third slap of his slap bet with Barney. He mercilessly taunts Barney and even creates a website with a timer counting down to the moment of the slap.
Meanwhile, Ted and Robin are still dealing with the repercussions of their separation. They balance out together with the rest of the gathering. However, they feel abnormal when it’s just both of them.
They decide they shouldn’t be friends any longer, yet an inside joke between them resurfaces during dinner, and they realize that perhaps there is potential for their friendship.
Although Lilyshutst down the slap commencement because it’s ruining dinner, she lets Marshall slap Barney without a moment to spare. Then, with Barney reeling in pain, the pack gathers around the piano while Marshall plays a song he composed for the occasion titled “You Just Got Slapped.” Best Slaps giving ever.
6. The Pineapple Incident (Season 1, Episode 10)
This show likes to play with time, similar to a Rashomon-style episode. In this, the characters are trying to piece together a night of plastered shenanigans, for example, after taking 5 “Red Dragon” shots. Ted wakes up with a woman in his bed, a pineapple on his nightstand, and no memory of the prior night.
Ted asks his friends what occurred and finds out his wild night included falling off a table. He is singing Karaok and Set on fire by Barney (Neil Patrick Harris). He is inebriated, dialing Robin (Cobie Smulders) multiple times.
Ted thinks the woman in his bed is Robin from the information he gathers. He meets a girl named Trudy at the bar. Ted made an effort to stop overthinking. However, it wound up making things more complicated.
The source for the mysterious pineapple never came out. However, a deleted scene from a season 9 episode. It shows Ted finally remembering how he stole the fruit from The Captain’s doorstep.
5. How Your Mother Met Me (Season 9, Episode 16)
Presently, we should discuss some genuine shock, huh? We finally met “The Mother,” at last uncovered to be named Tracy McConnell. (Palm Springs star Cristin Milioti), in the Season 8 finale and saw glimpses of her relationship with Ted.
All through Season 9, yet never truly got to know her personally until Episode 200: “How Your Mother Met Me,” It follows the series’ complete timeline according to her perspective.
While on an excursion to overcome the injury of her boyfriend’s sudden demise on her 21st birthday. Tracy helps Mitch discover the Naked Man’s two-out-of-three success rate. It is unofficially becoming acquainted with Ted in his thought process was his architecture course and more classic callbacks.
Putting an ideal cap on the generally moving story is her tender ukulele rendition of “La Vie En Rose” on the prior night of Barney and Robin’s wedding, uninformed that Ted can hear from the room nearby.
4. The Naked Man (Season 4, Episode 9)
Season 4 saw Ted at his lowest after ex-fiancée Stella left him at the modify. Yet what assisted him with coming out and about was a seduction technique. The inventor Mitch (Adam Paul) calls the Naked Man. After the move works for Mitch on Robin, the rest of the group puts it’s ensured a “two-out-of-three” success rate on the test.
There is not a lot to gain from this particularly uncivilized episode. Except that trying the Naked Man, all things considered, would most likely end how it does for Barney.
However, there is a lot of endearing humor amid its raunchiness, from the pack listing various reasons to have intercourse to Ted and Barney trading their variations of the titular move via telephone.
3. Ten Sessions (Season 3, Episode 13)
At an appointment to eliminate his butterfly tramp stamp, Ted clicks with his dermatologist Stella (Sarah Chalke). She’s not permitted to date patients. So Ted says he’ll ask her out after the ten sessions it takes to dispose of the tattoo. Stella warns him that she’ll say no.
However, he keeps trying to impress her. During this time, her receptionist Abby (Britney Spears), develops a crush on Ted, yet he’s oblivious.
Marshall makes an appointment with Stella and finds out she likes Ted. Be that as it may, she still declines when Ted asks her out after the last session.
He learns she lacks the opportunity to date because she has a little girl. So he surprises her by taking her on a two-minute date during her mid-day break, a speedy dinner, and a movie.
2. Drumroll, Please (Season 1, Episode 13)
Speaking of chance meetings, Season 1 almost convinced us that “The Mother” was Victoria (Ashley Williams). Ted spends a romantic evening at Stu and Claudia’s wedding reception. He has no intention of meeting again until he becomes obsessed with her.
The breathtaking romantic tale of our lives sometimes. It includes one brief yet great experience with another that doesn’t have to last anymore.
While Ted and Victoriaindeedy start an ill-fated romance in the episode, “Drumroll, Please.” It refers to the lead-in before a kiss – a magnificent meditation on those cherished moments’ end.
1. Slap Bet (Season 2, Episode 9)
This classic episode introduces two running jokes that continue until the end of the series. Robin’s pop star adjusts their inner self Robin Sparkles and the slap bet between Marshall and Barney.
Robin hates malls and will not explain why leading the group to consider her secrets. Marshall thought Robin married in a shopping center. On the other side, Barney thinks she’s into pornography. They make a bet that whoever is right gets to slap the other.
In the long run, the reality emerges when Barney uncovers a video from Robin’s past. Automatically assuming it’s pornography, he slaps Marshall. But, unfortunately, it’s the gloriously cheesy music video for the song “We Should Go to the Mall” from Robin’s days.
The excellent satire of 80s music videos features Robin dancing in a jean coat and flying with a robot.
This unexpected and hilarious uncover means that Barney was off-base. Marshall gets to slap him five times whenever he wants. He immediately doles out the first slap and saves the others for future episodes.