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Genius Foreshadowing In 'How I Met Your Mother' That You Totally Missed 

Jonathan H. Kantor
Updated April 12, 2019 146.1k views 15 items

If you've ever sat down to watch How I Met Your Mother, you know the show was all about foreshadowing, callbacks, and clues related to the mother's identity. HIMYM foreshadowing was done so well, Ted himself could teach a class on the various HIMYM clues woven throughout all the running jokes in the series, which have led to fan theories and speculation across all nine seasons.

While the show had plenty of cameos, the mother's identity remained unknown until Season 9 (if you don't count the last scene in Season 8's final episode) despite plenty of hints along the way. You may think you were paying attention, but odds are you may have missed some of the show's foreshadowing.

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Every Song Had A Meaning
Every Song Had A Meaning... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Genius Foreshadowing In 'How I Met Your Mother' That You Totally Missed
Photo: CBS

When Ted finally sees Tracy for the first time in the final episode, "Last Forever," the song "The Funeral" by Band of Horses is playing in the background. Many fans have pointed out how the song's title and meaning foretold Tracy's eventual death.

While it might sound like a reach in any other series, for HIMYM, it's par for the course. 

Season 2 Foreshadowed The Ending
Season 2 Foreshadowed Th... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Genius Foreshadowing In 'How I Met Your Mother' That You Totally Missed
Photo: CBS

In a scene from the Season 2 episode, "Something Blue," eagle-eyed fans noticed a foreshadowing of the final episode. Ted and Robin are dancing together while Barney is sitting in the foreground of the shot and holding a baby.

Maybe this child was Barney's newborn nephew, and the dancing couple was not an item at the time. However, this is essentially how things played out at the very end: Barney has his daughter, and the two lovebirds - Ted and Robin - finally get back together.

Ted Revealed The Mother's Name In The Very Beginning
Ted Revealed The Mother'... is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Genius Foreshadowing In 'How I Met Your Mother' That You Totally Missed
Photo:  CBS

While Ted tells his kids the story of how he met their mother, it begins with him messing with them... sort of. In the Season 1 episode, "Belly Full of Turkey," Ted says he met a stripper named Amber. After shaking hands with Ted, she tells him her real name is Tracy.

Ted then concludes his story about meeting his kids' mother by saying, "And that, kids, is the true story of how I met your mother," but he's, of course, messing with them. As it turned out, their mother's real name was Tracy, and Ted revealed it right there in the very beginning!

La Vie En Rose
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Music plays a big role in HIMYM, and one of the most poignant songs in the series was "La Vie en Rose." During the Season 7 episode, "The Best Man," Ted and Robin are talking about their relationship. Then Robin says, "If you have chemistry, you only need one other thing: timing. But timing is a b*tch." All the while, "La Vie en Rose" is playing in the scene's background.

Years later, Ted hears Tracy's voice for the first time when she plays the same song on her ukulele. Ted recalls this moment to his children:

Kids, I must've heard your mom's rendition of "La Vie en Rose" a million times over the years, every night when she tucked you in, for instance. But that performance, that first night I ever heard her sing, that one will always be my favorite.