Ever since How I Met Your Mother began in 2005, audiences have been patiently waiting to find out who will ultimately become Ted’s wife. But now that the series has been renewed for one more season, the question has now become when. Could the mother be revealed sooner than anyone expected? Perhaps in the season 8 finale?

While speaking with TV Guide about the upcoming final season, series co-creator Craig Thomas brought up how How I Met Your Mother season 9 would be noticeably different than the previous seasons. And this “difference” is where there potential mother clue lies.

Here’s what Thomas had to say:

“You’re never going to mistake a Season 9 episode from one of the previous eight.”

Now, this very brief statement could very well mean anything, from a change to the actual episodic look to the way each episode and/or story arc is formatted. However, since long-running series very rarely adjust aspects of the show that audiences have become familiar with (which could turn some longtime viewers off), the one way you’ll absolutely never mistake an episode of season 9 from one of the previous seasons would be to add something very distinct to the series. Like, say, the mother. But there’s more than just a single line from the show’s creator that indicates a potential mother could appear in the season 8 finale.

For the past few seasons, Ted’s pre-marital adventures continue to inch closer and closer to the revealing the moment that he actually meets his future wife and mother of his children. In the season 8 premiere, however, the series burned through all its (sometimes) logical storytelling delays, as the mother is revealed in Barney’s future to be mere feet away from him, with yellow umbrella in tow. This is the very same future that has been used to bookend the premieres and finales for season 6 and 7. But again, there’s more.

Putting the need to finally deliver on the Barney’s future wedding after three years aside, How I Met Your Mother season 8 was developed with a “Plan A” and a “Plan B,” in case the series wasn’t renewed and/or the cast decided not to return. If the series was supposed to end this year, “Plan B” would require the reveal of the mother at Barney’s wedding sometime in season 8. In order for this to occur, “Plan A” would need to be able to seamlessly transition into “Plan B” if the current season turned out to be the last.

Considering the entire cast (namely Jason Segal) just warmed to the idea of returning for How I Met Your Mother season 9 in December 2012, when production on episode 17 (of 24) had already been completed, steps had to have been taken to make sure that the seven remaining episodes of season 8 could fall in to either “Plan A” or “Plan B.” No matter which plan was actually followed, a mother would eventually be required.

But now that How I Met Your Mother has an entire ninth season to appropriately bring an end to Ted’s tale, producers can step away from simply revealing the mother and actually allow audiences to get to know her. After all, this mystery woman has always been the missing member of the group. In order for audiences to actually warm to her, they’ll need to spend time with the character.

If, by chance, the mother appears in the season 8 finale, revealing herself and uttering but a few words (or not), it would leave audiences with an extremely strong cliffhanger going into season 9. During the break between season 8 and 9, producers would be able to work on perfecting the mother role, helping to make sure that audiences as well as the cast will actually believe she fits in with Ted’s group. If, however, the mother reveal is left until the season 9 premiere, audiences will have to meet and instantly accept this person – which means that audiences have but seven days to completely accept her for the important character she’s supposed to be. The latter is not nearly accommodating enough for today’s modern (read: picky) viewers.

While we’ll have to wait and see exactly when the mother actually reveals herself, fans of the series can rest easy in knowing that the moment they’ve been waiting seven years for is finally happening. After that, the only thing you can do is hope that you’ll like her as much as Ted says you’re supposed to.

Let’s just hope that turns out to be true.

How I Met Your Mother airs @8pm on CBS

Source: TV Guide