A legen — wait for it — dary tribute! How I Met Your Father has introduced its audience to new characters and storylines — but the Hulu series continues to honor its predecessor, How I Met Your Mother.
The OG sitcom, which aired on CBS from 2005 to 2014, followed Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor) and his group of friends in New York City as they attempted to find happiness in their personal and professional lives. In the series, Ted recalled his past to his future son and daughter as a way to explain how he met their mother.
Creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas ultimately did not return for the show’s spinoff How I Met Your Father in 2022. Bays, however, did receive an executive producer credit for the Hulu show.
How I Met Your Father, which was released in January 2022, explores Sophie (Hilary Duff) and her friends’ lives in Manhattan. In this gender-swap version of the story, Future Sophie (Kim Cattrall) recounts to her son the events that led to her meeting his father.
The spinoff show also stars Christopher Lowell, Francia Raisa, Suraj Sharma, Tom Ainsley and Tien Tran.
Since its release, only Smulders has reprised her role as Robin to offer Sophie some advice about her dating life. (In the HIMYM finale, Robin finally married Barney (Harris) but the couple quickly called it quits. The news anchor later reunited with her ex Ted (Radnor) — which left many fans disappointed.)
Although Harris hasn’t returned as Barney yet, he previously showed his support for the series.
“I hope it’s great. I think the structural conceit of that show was very good storytelling,” the Emmy winner exclusively told Us Weekly in September 2021. “[Creators] Carter Bays and Craig Thomas, they came up with a really cool idea that future narrator is telling kids a story about their past. It allows for quick edit cuts. It allows for embellishments within character’s development because it’s a story that he’s telling. It’s not the actual factual things that happened. And so, morals can be heavy handed. There can be left turns that you weren’t expecting. We had a great time filming that show.”
Ahead of HIMYF’s second season premiere, Radnor hinted that he wouldn’t mind making an appearance on the show. “I had a really sweet email exchange with Hilary Duff,” he told Newsweek in January 2023. “We kind of went back and forth about being the ‘I’ on How I Met Your. She has said publicly [that] she would love to have me on, so I wouldn’t turn down an invitation.”
That same month, Duff confirmed another alum filmed scenes for season 2. “I think I might lose my job if I told you who, but we do have a special guest from the original cast coming this season,” she said during an appearance on Good Morning American. “It was a dream come true working with them. I think our dream would have the entire cast come through at some point.”
Scroll down for every time How I Met Your Father paid tribute to How I Met Your Mother: