Episode Reviews

Symphony of Illumination

Symphony of Illumination is another “non funny” episode of How I Met Your Mother that instead plays on the very real emotions of Robin’s heart to bring a very compelling and powerful episode similar to last year’s “Last Words.”

Following up on last week’s revelation that Robin might be pregnant, we find that in fact, she isn’t. But the worse idea that she actually cannot have children is devastating, as it would be for anyone. It’s not quite the magnitude of the tragedy of Marshal’s father’s death, but it is still a heavy personal tragedy in itself for Robin, despite the idea that she never wanted kids to begin with. The idea that you can never have kids, and you have no choice, is a heavy burden.

Much of the episode actually takes place as a narrative of Robin to her imaginary children that will never be as she talks about how she met their father, Barney. It’s a sobering self narrative that talks of some of the internal emotional turmoil going on inside of Robins head as she attempts to process the idea that she will never have children, the highpoint of which shows itself as Robin attempts to justify to herself that it is better this way. She may tell herself that it is ok that she’ll never have these imaginary children, but deep down, it’s quite obvious that the heartache will linger for her entire life.

Other Observations

  • The side story of Marshal putting together a Christmas display is pretty much a throwaway.
  • Robin and Barney’s kids look like them, and his son wears a suit.
  • Robin again enjoys a cigar and scotch.
  • Oh’Cana’dorable
  • Lily never connects the dots on the “pole vaulter” thing. Ted says Robin never became a pole vaulter, but says in in a way he implied that he knows what she really meant.
  • You can never stop me from cheering you up. it’s a fact of life.
  • “Aw damit, that thing is cute as crap. Screw you baby!”
  • Scott enjoys a sandwich in Marshall’s house.
  • Things the gang would do to help Robin
    • Ted would overreact to help her
    • Lily would implode
    • Marshal would ask questions
    • Barney would try to make her laugh.
  • “I wouldn’t go to cleavland for $125 million over 6 years.” – Zing!
  • Viking helmet on baby Jesus.
  • Marshall’s arms are called “Mannheim” and “Steamroller”
  • According to the HIMYM Production crew, it took 2 days to setup the final AC/DC Highway to Hell light show.


  • Barney’s reactions to Robin’s pregnancy news
    • Are you sure you’re not getting fat?
    • Looks like nobody told your boobs.
  • One scotch for me, one ice tea on the rocks for mommy! Oops, i think i gave you the wrong one.”

By Kien Tran

Based in Dallas, Texas, Kien Tran is an avid television enthusiast. After spending hundreds of hours wasting away on a couch, he decided to actually do something creative with his hobby and created this very blog.

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