'How I Met Your Mother' Sneak Peeks Spark More Theories About About Finale — VIDEOS

How I Met Your Mother comes to an end tonight with a special one hour episode, but first they're teasing the hell out of us while they still can. Josh Radnor said "it's probably the most far reaching finale in terms of years it covers. We go from 2005 to 2030 or 2035. It’s a 30-year voyage all over time and space with these characters.” CBS has confirmed this with two HIMYM finale sneak peeks showing us both a flashback and a flash forward. Like a good little fan, I have analyzed the crap out of them to see if they can provide any more information about Monday's big Ted + Mother meeting reveal and their life beyond.

The first clip is primarily a flashback to a scene after the gang first meets Robin and decides to officially make her apart of the group. Lily warns Ted and Barney that no one is allowed to sleep with her unless they marry her. Of course Barney bows out immediately after hearing the word "marry," then the clip flashes forward to Barney dancing with Robin at their wedding. (Aww, look at that, he married her so now he gets Lily's approval to bang her!) This heart warming moment is a little less so when you realize that Ted slept with her and didn't marry her and broke Lily's rule, but he receives no retribution for this.

So what does this clip reveal to us about the finale episode? Maybe it will show us that Ted never actually was with Robin at all? The misty-eyed fondness the threesome has while watching Robin and Barney dance is strangely uninterrupted by Lily coming to the realization that Ted disobeyed her, and doling out one of her famous "You son of a bitch!" lines, so maybe the big reveal in tonight's episode is that Ted fabricated a lot of his relationship with Robin, and in real life they were only ever just friends. Crazy yes, but this is How I Met Your Mother, they're known for crazy. You can watch the clip below:

The second sneak preview is a flash forward to after Ted has already moved in with the Mother, presumably into the house Ted bought seasons ago. The whole gang is there for a housewarming and Marshall remarks that he can't believe the Mother let Ted hang his jousting lance from the renaissance festival on the wall. The mother laughs awkwardly in a way you can tell it's actually her lance, not Ted's. We also learn that Marshall hates his job (he's back in corporate law) though he's trying to be positive about it.

This short clip gives us the most to work with ahead of the finale. Starting with the fact that this is clearly some ways down the road as Lily is not pregnant (meaning she probably already had her daughter) and the couple is back from Italy since Marshall has a new job. Also it shows us married-Barney has either gone mute, or is so happy he doesn't need to make fun of his friends anymore because he totally didn't mock Ted for his renaissance lance, and didn't mock Marshall for pronouncing it "ren-ay-sance." It would be kind of sad to see Barney let go of his quick-wit, but maybe it was time for him to grow up a little? But most importantly, this scene shows us that the group doesn't actually know that much about the Mother.

For Marshall to assume that the lance was Ted's shows us that the group doesn't know how similarly nerdy the Mother is. Additionally, she's somehow unwilling to come clean about that fact, and Ted just shoots her a knowing look, but doesn't divulge her secret either. This flash forward takes place at least a year later since Lily and Marshall are back from Italy, but it seems the group hasn't gotten to know her much over that year. Somehow I doubt this is just because of the distance. A happily-in-love Ted would no doubt bore his friends to death even over the phone about every little detail, much as he's been known to do about architecture. So what's with the gap in knowledge? Here's my theory:

Ted and the Mother aren't together anymore, but have a child (what looks like various toys/children's books can be seen in the clip) so they're putting on a brave face in front of Lily and Marshall because they're the reigning champs of love and Ted doesn't want to be shown up. And two: he doesn't want to scare Barney and Robin by breaking up and repeating the loss of faith in marriage Barney had after his brother separated from his own husband. Something about the whole situation seems fishy, (Ted's not even wearing a wedding ring) which leads me to believe that Ted and the Mother are co-parenting, but not cohabiting. Watch the clip below and see if you agree.

In any case, in a few hours we'll know the truth which will be a welcome presence in my life where I have now apparently taken to dissecting minute long clips as though they hold all the answers to the world.

Image: CBS; Tumblr/himym-simon