It’s a year of difficult decisions for the gang. Designing Goliath National Bank’s headquarters puts Ted at odds with activist Zoey (Jennifer Morrison), with whom he’s falling in love, even though she’s married to ”The Captain” (Kyle MacLachlan, above). Once she’s divorced, the pair get together, but their bliss is short-lived when Ted chooses the building over the girl. Barney discovers the man he thought was his uncle Jerry (John Lithgow) is actually his father, and the two begin a tentative relationship. Barney matures further as he realizes he wants a girlfriend, in the form of Nora (Nazanin Boniadi), not just a hookup. Robin’s new job at World Wide News with former cohost Sandy Rivers (Hannigan’s real-life husband, Alexis Denisof) keeps her busy, but she’s secretly longing for Barney. Lily and Marshall struggle with fertility issues before learning that Marshall’s dad has unexpectedly passed away. Things end on a happier note when Lily discovers she’s pregnant, and Marshall quits his job as a corporate lawyer. Even more shocking? In the finale, viewers find out it’s Barney’s wedding we’ve been flash-forwarding to all season.
Best Episode: ”Last Words” The show’s darkest outing was also one of its best. When Marshall’s dad dies, his friends head to Minnesota, doing everything they can to make him — and viewers — laugh. Marshall becomes obsessed with the fact that he didn’t have a moving final conversation with his father, but a found voicemail gives him closure — and the rest of the gang the impetus to reach out to their own dads. And with that, HIMYM shows how deftly it can match slapstick with a hit to the heart.