Created by Isaac Aptaker and Elizabeth Berger, Hulu’s sitcom ‘How I Met Your Father’ centers around Sophie, who calls her son in the year 2050 to narrate the story of how she met his father. Sophie’s recollection starts from the turn of events that happen in 2022 and she details the trajectories of her relationships and friendships. Since the narrative structure and title of ‘How I Met Your Father’ bear a striking resemblance to CBS’ classic sitcom ‘How I Met Your Mother,’ the viewers must be wondering whether the former is a sequel to the latter. Let’s find out, shall we?
Is How I Met Your Father a Sequel to How I Met Your Mother?
‘How I Met Your Father’ is a standalone sequel to ‘How I Met Your Mother.’ The sitcom’s premise, an elder Sophie calling her son to narrate her life and the events that led her to meet his father, is inspired by the premise of the latter — protagonist Ted Mosby recollecting his past to narrate to his children the story of how he met their mother. Even though it’s a sequel, the principal characters of ‘How I Met Your Father’ are entirely original and the narrative of the sitcom is not a follow-up of any storyline or character of ‘How I Met Your Mother.’
According to Hilary Duff, who portrays the protagonist Sophie and produces the show, ‘How I Met Your Father’ is conceived as a sitcom that has its own independence. “We are our own show. The original show [‘How I Met Your Mother’] was so amazing and they were so tied into one another, but this is its own show. We’re trying to create something original by stealing a few things from them that worked really well,” she told the press during the virtual Television Critics Association winter press tour.
The connection between both shows was further explained by co-creator Isaac Aptaker during the press tour. “People keep referring to the show as a reboot and it’s not a reboot. This is called a standalone sequel, which means it’s set in the world of the previous show but it’s really its own thing. […] and there are going to be lots of little rewards for people who love the original that I think will satisfy who have never seen How I Met Your Mother and who are madly in love with the show,” Aptaker said.
While the differences are enormous, the sequel is filled with a fair share of references and Easter eggs that allude to the original show. Furthermore, in a May 2021 interview, Hilary Duff also revealed that guest appearances from the original show’s cast are indeed a possibility. Like the original, the sequel is also set in New York City; thus, we may see significant locations of the original show making an appearance in ‘How I Met Your Father.’
Although the storylines of the original and sequel shows are different, there are common themes and parallels in the narrative. The highs and downs in Sophie’s personal life, along with her relationships and friendships, do resemble Ted Mosby’s life. The endearing friendship between Sophie and Valentina (Francia Raisa) doesn’t fail to remind us of Ted and Marshall’s bond.
Furthermore, the connection between Sophie and Jesse can be paralleled with Ted and Robin as well. With several common elements, Hulu’s ‘How I Met Your Father’ does revive the spirit and appeal of ‘How I Met Your Mother.’ Even though fans of the latter may have to settle with an entirely distinct sequel, the nuanced connections are indeed delightful.