How I Met Your Mother

Season 7 Episode 12

Symphony of Illumination

Aired Monday 8:00 PM Dec 05, 2011 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
349 votes

By Users

Episode Summary


Robin receives bad news and tries to hide it from the gang. Marshall hopes to make his home's Christmas decorations the best in the neighborhood.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • An emotional rollercoaster

    This episode twists and turns, punching you in the face much like Robin does to Barney at the start in a frankly hilarious scene. From there, things quickly switch tone as not only does Robin find out she's not pregnant, but that she can't have kids. However, with the episode set on the premise of her talking to her kids, telling them Barney's the father, you assume 1) Robin does find a way to have kids and 2) Her and Barney will end up together. The episode then proceeds to flip both these notions on their head. Ted is determined to be Robin's rock and the ending where he just holds her, not needing to know what is troubling her is both heart-breaking and reminds me that Ted and Robin are honestly the best couple in this show, even if it is just as friends. Lily and Marshall clearly love each other, but you rarely see it portrayed with the rawness of the others as its established early on that they're clearly perfect for each other. But the kicker of this episode is the moment when you realise Robin isn't talking to her future kids. They don't exist in any way, shape or form. There is no happy ending for Robin, Barney and their little family and this brings us crashing down to earth with an almighty thud.moreless
  • Wow - definitely one of the best episodes of th e season. (Spoilers ahead.)

    Well, this was a interesting episode for sure.

    Firstly, Marshall stuck on the roof was just hilarious! Everything that happened there was awesome! So many laughs and such a great sotryline!!!

    Robin's pole vaulting story was EPIC!!! 'Meet a nice guy, get married, vault some poles' - one of my favourite quotes of the episode! So hilarious!!!

    But the episode was also really sad too, ewith Robin finding out about not being able to have chidlren. That is really sad and even though she never wanted them, she's still upset.

    Can't wait for the next episode! I wonder what is next in store for us! :)moreless
  • They transplanted 'Lost' to Manhattan Island

    What got me hooked on this show was the episode where Ted dated the girl he dated seven years earlier and I have kept with it ever since, but with every week I am closer to jumping off the bandwagon.

    This season has been trying for me and this episode is another example. These characters are becoming such caricatures of themselves just to keep fan interest. They went from people I would hang out with to now people I would run away from. This show has become such a mindf**k and for no good reason. It shakes around so much, eventually the cap off the bottle will explode, the ratings points will spray onto the floor of oblivion and the HIMYM bottle will finally be recycled.

    Robin addressing her 'kids' seemed plausible, then they could have been adopted, then they disappear, which to me, while innovative, just insults the audience with the most familiar story telling style of the series. Perhaps we have finally seen a major plot in the history of the series, just for it to be a lesser one with a familiar gimmick to twist the viewer just for the sake of twisting. Even the very last syllable of dialogue was a mind bender.

    And who didn't see the kid double crossing Marshall from the first second. That's what the last 10 years of TV have been about, let's all laugh as someone gets screwed over, isn't it funny when it's not us being the victim. Our house is destroyed, well I guess he tricked me. That sure taught me a lesson.

    What would be perfect is the first scene of the following episode being Marshall closing the door after identifying the kid to the police and them dragging him away in handcuffs. I know we're never going back to Cosby style programming but when it's that predictable I always normally hit the forward button because it's not entertaining writing to me.

    Of course, another 21st century writing staple is how horrible it is to be a parent, like Barney's insane friend. Teenagers are always pricks, toddlers never listen, and babies puke all over the place. Maybe I should have worn a condom that night after all. It would have been fine in this episode if every other show didn't do it also. That's also a big part of what made The Middle impossible for me to watch after 30 seconds of the first episode, that and every episode preview that's in an ABC commercial block. Sorry Patricia Heaton.

    HIMYM will have to fish or cut bait soon on these long term plans to keep me watching. This will be the only show in TV history where you won't know it was the series finale until the actual finale because no one at the network wants to play the hand with the mother card in it in regards to promotion. Plus who would want to be with Ted after how he's lost his mind since the beginning of this season.

    Innovation in season two has become silliness this year, please tone them down CBS. No one in real life or normal TV life would react to Robin`s real news like she knew her friends would. If this show had any other name it would have been like the American version of Coupling, the UK import, and lasted just as long, which I believe was a month.

  • It begins happy, then twists around to punch you in the heart. [Spoilers]

    Well, I was basically jumping for joy when I thought Barney and Robin were going to get married and have 2 kids. Robin decking Barney in the face was absolutely hilarious! It was NOT cool that the pregnancy would have been a product of cheating, but I just wanted Barney & Robin happy together --it's not looking like it will be that way, but who knows. People who are against Barney/Robin may be happy about this episode, but I was pretty bummed out when their fake kids disappeared and she cheerlessly said "I'm glad you guys aren't real". It's heart-breaking that Robin will never have kids, but I suppose she never wanted them.

    Seeing Marshall attempt to decorate the house while getting mad at the Scott kid was a pretty funny storyline; his "angry father" faces were hilarious.

    It seems the show is setting up for everyone to move on: Lily and Marshall with their baby and new home, Barney and Ted eventually get married, and Robin becomes a journalist/world-traveler/business-women/bull-fighter (haha!). This is the direction they are leading us, but there's bound to be unexpected twists and turns along the way. We shall see! (:

    The episode was very well done and had some very funny moments, but it did punch me in the heart a little.moreless
  • I was really looking forward to this episode.

    I was so unbelievably excited the first few minutes, and kinda pissed at the end. It all just felt very unnecessary, but the episode was great. It had me hooked right from the start, and I felt so many things through the episode.

    I think that this was good. Everyone was expecting Robin and Barney to marry each other and have babies, and now we know that that's not going to happen. It really makes you want to watch what happens next.

    This was one of the best episodes of the season, but I have some thoughts about Barney. He was way to excited about the baby-thing. If Robin had told him that 6 months ago, he would've freaked out. I just think that the changing of his personality is going to fast and is a little bit much. Otherwise, I love the new Barney! The show needed a change, and this is for the better.moreless
Vicki Lewis

Vicki Lewis

Dr. Sonya

Guest Star

Chase Ellison

Chase Ellison


Guest Star

Todd Grinnell

Todd Grinnell

Insane Duane

Guest Star

Bob Saget

Bob Saget

Voice of Ted, 2030

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (1)

    • Robin: So kids, I settled in for Christmas alone. I appreciated that Ted wanted to cheer me up, but honestly, it wasn't necessary. So I can't have kids. Big deal, this way, there's no one to hold me back in life, no one to keep me from traveling when I wanna travel, no one getting in the way of my career. If you wanna know the truth of it, I'm glad you guys aren't real. Real glad.

  • NOTES (1)

    • International Airdates: United Kingdom: January 26, 2012 on E4; Czech Republic: August 27, 2012 on Prima COOL; Germany: October 10, 2012 on ProSieben


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