How I Met Your Mother

Season 4 Episode 6

Happily Ever After

Aired Monday 8:00 PM Nov 03, 2008 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
352 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

A chance sighting of Stella leads to the gang contemplating ways in which they'd handle an unwanted encounter with a person from their past.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • ouch ted

    Few things hurt worse than getting dumped. "Happily Ever After" shows Ted going through the stages of grief, with particular emphasis on anger and acceptance. It's always difficult to let an ex who breaks up with you move on. You want to make them hurt as much as you do and often the only way we can do so is to lash out in anger. We see a little of this with Ted's imaginary confrontation with Stella at the end of the episode. But really this is more about accepting what happens after a breakup and the reasons why, whether noble or not. The episode is something of a balancing act keeping it on the side of both Ted and Stella as to who exactly is in the right after the breakup. As viewers we feel strongly that Stella should get some sort of comeuppance after her wedding day walk out of Ted. While she does so because she is still in love with her ex and wants to reunite her family, its difficult not to feel some revulsion towards her in the way that she leaves Ted. Not talking to Ted in person afterwards, especially, feels very cruel on the part of Stella especially because Ted is such a good guy in the show. It leaves a lot of questions as to why exactly Stella was even a character on the show. We were made to empathize with and like her only for her to break the heart of the shows protagonist? How much sense does that make? The fact that there is no real confrontation between her and Ted after this episode makes it feel like Stella escaped unscathed and Ted, undeservingly, takes he brunt of all the hurt and rejection. The episode is great but ouch.moreless
  • Bittersweet

    This episode of How I Met Your Mother is chock full of gags as usual. What always catches me by surprise is how it uses the same gags and still has me fooled. The most common one is when the episode makes us believe that Ted is going to finally find his balls and take charge, and then it reveals to us that was just what he would ideally say if he had balls. In reality he ends up chickening out as always.

    Overall this was a great way of ending the arc with Stella, with a punchline mixed in with some philosophy. And the episode itself, again chockfull with gags and set ups. The "confronting those you're most uncomfortable with" was a great way of showing some backstory of the gang and incrementally fleshes their characters out even more.

    In the end though I find every episode of How I Met Your Mother to being less and less funnier, this no exception. There's a marked dropped off of humor from season 1 and 2.moreless
  • Everyone's Fear, except Marshall Eriksen

    This episode starts with Ted Mosby being unusually happy and he claimed that he has already moved on despite it was just 24 hours of Stella Zinman breaking out with him. His expression such as being calm, and dancing inside the Mac Laren's Pub was one of his weird behaviour, which everyone could not generally accept. The story continues with Ted Mosby fearing of running into Stella, causing him creating a map of red region, being the probable places which he might meet Stella. After Lily Aldrin recommending Tapas Grill, which is not inside the red zone, Ted and his pals went there, however Stella was there taking food away. Here comes the story of everyone's fear except Marshall. Ted was fear of Stella, to the extent of him hiding below the table. Below the table, Lily remembered she accused the boy siting on her right farting in her ninth grade, and her classmates called him Gasser instead of Michael Sasser. Then, comes the funny part where Barney Stinson, talked to the prison lady, and turned into another girl inside the prison, which lead to a fight between the two ladies. There is another fear for Robin Scherbatsky, which her dad treated her as if she is a guy in her childhood. Overall, this episode was great, where all of the main characters hid under the table.moreless
  • After the marriage

    After such an emotional episode, I am glad a more funnier episode was done while still not mocking what happened. At the start and end of the episode both songs are very good. I thought it was funny how this episode picked up from the ending to Ted back at the bar when you think that this was good time has passed when it was only 24 hours. This was sort of like the end of season 3 when you think it's something serious but actually funny. It turns out that Ted is scared of confronting Stella when he makes a map of the places he can go without running into Stella. Ted is doing something that I think I would do if I were in the same situation. All of the stories of everyone's fear (but not Marshall) were all funny. I do wish there would've been a story of Marshall's fear. Eventually Ted comes up with the courage to confront Stella. He tells her off only to have it be something else when he walks away and lets go of the fear. This is a great way of doing this and very good way to end the episode.moreless
  • Ted makes a map of all the places that are safe and all the places to avoid Stella.

    "Happily Ever After" is a much more entertaining episode than the last episode of How I Met Your Mother. I love how Ted acts unusually happy about his break-up with Stella. I love how the gang is angry at Ted for being happy. I love how Ted makes a map of places to avoid Stella. I love how they go to a restaurant that Lily's friend recommended but that friend ends up being Stella. I love how Stella walks in and they all hide under the table. It was so cute how Lily shared the story of farting in ninth grade and blaming the boy beside her. I love how Barney shares his story about chatting with one prison inmate, then talking to another, making the other one jealous, and the inmates gets into this huge fight. It was so sad how Robin shared that her father wanted a boy, so he raised Robin as if she was a boy. I love how Ted finally lets his anger out and he's about to confront Ted, but he sees how Tony is with his daughter, and Ted just can't yell at Stella. I give this episode a 9.5/10.moreless
Max Prado

Max Prado

Michael Sasser

Guest Star

Meegan Godfrey

Meegan Godfrey


Guest Star

Michael Bolten

Michael Bolten


Guest Star

Bob Saget

Bob Saget

Voice of Ted, 2030

Recurring Role

Sarah Chalke

Sarah Chalke

Stella Zinman

Recurring Role

Darcy Rose Byrnes

Darcy Rose Byrnes


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • When Robin is having her flashback, she is clearly dressed as a boy, but in "Memories", the last episode of the third season, when she has a flashback to tell her dog's miracle history, she must be the same age, and she is dressed with a very girlie style, and has long hair.

    • In "Slutty Pumpkin" Robin told Ted that she's never played any team sports. However, in this episode we can see she played ice hockey in a team via flashbacks.

  • QUOTES (11)

    • Barney: What I had with Becca was the perfect relationship. She was only allowed legally to call me once a week. If she ever got clingy, the armed guards stopped her. And I never had to pay for dinner. Well, that's not true. I pay taxes. But then I guess we all pay for dinner.

    • Marshall: There she is! Go get her, buddy!
      Robin: Go get rid of your demons!
      Barney: My leg is asleep!

    • Marshall: What are you going to say?
      Ted: I'm gonna say, "I'm sorry things didn't work out." (everyone groans) She'll tell me her side, and I'm gonna listen. Probably should have done more of that before.
      Barney: Excuse me driver, could you drive us into the nearest lamp post? Everyone buckle up. Not you, Ted.

    • Robin: Who's Becca DeLucci?
      Barney: She's a girl who lives upstate I used to visit now and again.
      Ted: Where exactly upstate, Barney?
      Barney: Bedford Hills Federal Penitentiary.

    • Barney: Ted, I am a person who, let's just face it, there are a lot of people I don't want to see. People of the chicks-I've-banged persuasion. But if any of them were to walk in here, I would stand up, look them right in the eye, some of them for the very first time.
      Ted: Really? You wouldn't hide from anyone? Not even Becca DeLucci?
      Barney: You son of a bitch!

    • Marshall: (about Stella) She's placing an order to go.
      Ted: Did she seem happy? Did she say anything about me? I don't care. I've moved on. Where are those almonds?
      Barney: Gee, where would Ted's nuts be? My guess is in the vice in Stella's garage.

    • Barney: (comes in with two girls) Hey, kiddo.
      Ted: Barney, I'm fine. This isn't necessary, it's actually kind of weird. No offense, ladies.
      Barney: I did not realize you'd be home. Ladies, to the stairwell!

    • Ted: It's funny, looking back on it now. I was so sure Stella was the one. And when she left me, I was so devastated. But you guys got me through it, and now the painful part's over, I've come out the other side a little bit stronger. You know, I hardly even think about her anymore. That's what time does, I guess.
      Lily: Ted, the wedding was yesterday.

    • Ted: Okay, guys, follow my lead. (gets under the table)
      Marshall: What do we do?
      Lily: Is he serious?
      Barney: I'm not getting under this table. (sees a table of hot girls) I'd get under that table.

    • (Ted imagines confronting Stella)
      Ted: You picked the wrong guy.
      Stella: Ted?
      Ted: You picked the wrong guy. You made a really, really, really bad choice. What were you thinking? That guy? Are you kidding me? Have you learned nothing in the last eight years? You're just gonna regret this. You know that, right? You are going to regret this, and now there is nothing you can do about it because it's too late. All you can do now is go up there and start your crappy, disappointing life that will never be nearly as happy as the one you could have had with me. Good-bye.
      Stella: Ted, wait.
      Ted: Look, Stella, I am not here to win you back. I am here because I need to know that you know you made the biggest mistake of your life.
      Stella: I know.

    • Ted: (pointing to a map of New York City) Red areas, places to avoid. White areas are safe. Blue is water.
      Lily: That is just ridiculous!
      Robin: Well, water is blue.

  • NOTES (3)

    • The German episode title is "Unter dem Tisch", meaning "Under the Table". The French title is "Ils vécurent très heureux ... sans enfants", meaning "They Lived Very Happily... Without Children". The Italian title is "E vissero felici e contenti", an exact translation.

    • International Airdates: Germany: December 12, 2009 on ProSieben; United Kingdom: January 21, 2010 on E4; Czech Republic: November 1, 2010 on Prima COOL

    • Music: "All The World (I Tell Myself)" by Correatown (Opening Scenes - Flashbacks to Ted and Stella's wedding day); "Better" by Regina Spektor (episode closing)


    • In Robin's flashback when her father (Eric Braeden) catches her making out with her hockey teammate, the cheesy organ followed by the dramatic overacting and piano background music is deliberate soap opera satire, playing on Braeden having played Victor Newman on The Young and the Restless for years.

    • Marshall tells Ted, "Stella hated Star Wars! She lied to you. Search your feelings, Ted. You know it to be true." In Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, when Darth Vader tells Luke that he is Luke's father and Luke denies it, Vader then tells him "search your feelings, Luke. You know it to be true."