The 10 Biggest ‘How I Met Your Mother’ Plot Holes, According to Reddit

With plenty of laughs and even romance, sitcoms are endlessly rewatchable. Thanks to their episodic structure, they are meant to be watched and rewatched for comfort whenever viewers like.



Similarly, every die-hard fan must have watched How I Met Your Mother over a thousand times. From Barney’s (Neil Patrick Harris) quirky pick-up tactics to know-it-all Ted’s (Josh Radnor) quest for true love, the show is a warm embrace fans love to curl up against. While rewatching the series, fans pointed out some irregularities and plot holes in their favorite show. Here’s a rundown of what users on Reddit believe to be some of the most glaring continuity errors on the show.

10 Robin and Team Sports

Robin Jersey 2x1

The creator of the thread chimes in with the first plot hole they notice. The user Nearby-Print-6832 rightly points out how Robin (Cobie Smulders) says she hates team sports and never played them in the first season. However, later on, while emphasizing how her father always wanted a boy, she says she used to play hockey with her team in school.

RELATED: Ranking Each ‘How I Met Your Mother’ Thanksgiving Episode, According to IMDb

The latter seasons show Robin being a tom-boyish girl who plays hockey and doesn’t care about her appearance. This seems like an obvious plot hole that the show’s creators forgot about.

9 Marshall Never Fights

Barney Gets Slapped HIMYM

Marshall (Jason Segel) has been quite an enigma about his life in Minnesota and with his family. There have been a few errors with his backstory, the most obvious and running one being his reluctance to fight and brawl. We see him roughhousing with his brothers at home when their parents are away, but at the same time, he gets afraid to fight Doug and another guy later on.

User Sixeyedcaveman points out, “He was also acting so relieved that he didn‘t have to go up against the guy while hugging him and saying “I‘ve never been in a fight before” (plus the answer: “You don’t say”) that this certainly is a continuity error (as opposed to something that can be explained away with semantics).”

8 Ted’s Sister

Barney, Ted, and Woman 2x1

User Foxy_locksy1704 is bothered by the lack of Heather’s mention in the show after Ted co-signs her lease for a house in NYC. Heather is Ted’s only sibling and younger sister, who he loves very much, albeit annoyed by her carefree and unserious attitude. Moreover, Ted mentions Heather’s husband being a sandals guy in the previous seasons, whereas later, when Heather moves to NYC, she appears to be single and untethered.

RELATED: Ranking Every ‘How I Met Your Mother’ Christmas Episode, According to IMDb

“One that always bothered me was Ted’s sister. He co-signs for her apartment, and she moves to New York, but she is never seen or mentioned again as far as I recall,” the user says. Other Redditors agree, as Heather is mentioned at Clint and Virginia’s wedding but not seen on-screen.

7 Barney’s Fake Son

Barney and his fake wife and son

To keep his mother happy on her supposed deathbed, Barney hires an actress and a child actor to play the part of his wife and kid. He shows his mother that he is settled and happy with his family. However, a very glaring error that many fans must have noticed immediately was that the child actor he hires is Ted’s cousin’s sister’s son from an episode in the second season.

User Aaronbrown325 says, “I’m not sure this counts as bad continuity per se, but it was always jarring to me that Zachary Gordon played Stacy’s son in ‘How Lily Stole Christmas’ then later played Barney’s fake son in ‘The Stinsons.’” Some users feel like a mental glass has been shattered after this revelation.

6 Alex Trebek and Robin

Alex Trebek on How I Met Your Mother

As a beloved pop singer, Robin lived a frivolous and fun life in Canada. Her song “Let’s Go to the Mall” became a huge hit; everyone knew her as Robin Sparkles. The documentary showing how Robin Sparkles became Robin Daggers shows how she got caught up in stalking a famous fan.

The irregularity in this incident is Alex Trebek not recognizing Robin when she auditions for the show Million Dollars Head or Tails. In the documentary, Trebek is a huge fan of Robin Sparkles and appears to be there when she loses her mind, but he does not recognize Robin in her audition. User wien-tang-clan got irked over this instance while AnnTheresse and others agreed.

5 Lucy’s Age

Sarah Chalke in How I Met Your Mother
Image via CBS

Stella is one of Ted’s most serious girlfriends as they get engaged and close to marriage. The bones of contention between the couple are plenty from their will to invite exes to they can’t decide on a place of residence. However, in the fights and arguments, Redditors pointed out how Lucy, Stella’s daughter, goes down in age.

User FlamingHotPanda1 says, “S04E04 – Ted and Marshall mention that Lucy (Stella’s daughter) is 7 y/o, but in the previous season (S03E13) Stella says her daughter is 8 y/o. She went down in age.” Other users claim this could have been an honest mistake on the character’s part, as Lily (Alyson Hannigan) and Marshall were not that close to Stella, but it still seems pretty inconsistent.

4 Barney’s Womanizing

Game Night: How I Met Your Mother, Neil Patrick Harris
Image via CBS

Like Marshall, Barney’s story is inconsistent before he meets Ted and the gang. For starters, nobody knows what he does for a living until the day he gets married to Robin, which becomes a running gag in the show. On top of that, his reason for becoming a womanizer and sleeping with so many women is also different in two instances.

It seems like user The_homeBaker has rewatched the show multiple times to be able to articulate this irregularity so aptly. They said, “It shows that Barney turned into a corporate guy because his first gf was stolen by one, but in later seasons when he gets his 200th sex partner, he says he’s been getting girls for a long time because of his grade school bully saying he slept with 100. And when Marshall did the math, he said for Barney’s 16 years of having sex but Barney didn’t lose his virginity until he was 23, and they weren’t even over 30 yet.”

3 Marcus’s Marriage

Marcus HIMYM

The status of Marshall’s brother Marcus’s relationship and family seems to shift every time he goes to Minnesota. While in the first season, Marcus appears to have a wife and kids, they are not mentioned until Marshall calls him to be the godfather to Marvin. Even when Marshall stays in Minnesota after his father’s death, Marcus is still portrayed as staying with his parents.

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The same is pointed out by Redditors cyainanotherlifebro and Tb0neguy as this plot hole bothers them too. Other users argue that Marcus must have stayed back just like Marshall did, but no mention of his family or their appearance at the funeral is fishy.

2 Robin’s Girlfriends and Her Move to New York

Cobie Smulders in How I Met Your Mother
Image via CBS

In the show’s pilot episode, Robin is seen with a herd of girlfriends at the bar when Ted approaches her. However, in various instances, Robin mentions how she never got along with women and never had too many girlfriends. The bigger issue is the date when Robin moved to New York and how she could make so many girlfriends in such a short period of time, given her aversion to girlfriends and everything girly.

Redditor Croaker715 brings other users’ attention to this: “In ‘The Purple Giraffe’, Robin says she moved to New York in April, then they all go to the bar, and she plays ‘Have You Met Ted?’ Later, in ‘The Last Forever’, we see the same night in September 2005, Lily asks Robin when she moved to New York, and she says two months ago.”

1 Barney and Bad Pictures

Barney Stinson wearing his signature suit

One thing that makes Barney so legendary is how he is incapable of looking bad in a picture. The creators even made a full episode centered around this trope. However, in the episode where Lily and Barney figure out his mystery stalker, Lily clicks a hilarious picture where Barney is being beaten up. Moreover, even in the show’s intro sequence, Barney can be seen drunk and out of sorts in two images.

User Styx_Dragon comments, “My favorite part of this one is his drunken pictures in the opening of the same episode. The intro itself debunking him.”

KEEP READING: ‘How I Met Your Mother:’ 9 Times Ted was Worse than Barney

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