An older version of Ted (Josh Radnor, right) has been telling his children for years about meeting their mother, whose identity will finally be revealed in 'How I Met Your Mother's' final season.
(Photo: Ron P. Jaffe, CBS)
(USA TODAY) One of TV's longest-running questions will be answered next season: Who is the mother in How I Met Your Mother?
CBS and 20th Century Fox Television, which produces the sitcom, today announced HIMYM will return in the fall for a ninth and final season, in which the mother's identity will be revealed. All five regulars - Josh Radnor, Jason Segel, Cobie Smulders, Neil Patrick Harris and Alyson Hannigan - are on board, as are series creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas.
The announcement has been expected, as various contract negotiations for the ninth season had to be concluded.
HIMYM has been a mainstay of CBS' Monday (8 ET/PT) comedy block since its premiere in 2005. With no new comedy hit to replenish that block this season, the future was more secure with the renewal of the eighth-season series.
The show, which has performed well for CBS among advertiser-coveted young adults, enjoyed its highest ratings in its seventh season. This season, the show is averaging 9.8 million viewers and is in the top 20 in young adults.
The series received an Emmy nomination for best comedy in 2009 and won a People's Choice Award for favorite TV comedy in 2012. Harris has been nominated four times for an Emmy for his portrayal of Barney Stinson, and won the People's Choice Award in 2011 and 2012. Hannigan won a People's Choice Award in 2010 for her portrayal of Lily Aldrin.
"Through eight years, How I Met Your Mother has mastered the art of leading-edge comedy, emotional water-cooler moments and pop culture catchphrases," CBS Entertainment president Nina Tassler said in the announcement. "We are excited for Carter, Craig, (executive producer) Pam Fryman and this amazing cast to tell the final chapter and reveal television's most mysterious mother for some of TV's most passionate fans."
"We're thrilled to have the entire and incredibly talented How I Met Your Mother cast back for one final season to bring the show to a proper close," 20th Century Fox Television chairmen Dana Walden and Gary Newman said in a statement.
Bill Keveney, USA TODAY