In honor of the 15th anniversary of the Emmy Award-winning sitcom How I Met Your Mother, Nameclouds is going back to 2005 to see how the main characters of the hit show influenced baby names in the years to come.
The main character and narrator, Ted tells the story of his journey to find “The One,” but how many parents found the name “Ted” to be the perfect fit? Unfortunately, Ted doesn’t seem to have been a keeper. While the name “Ted” has been on the decline, the longer name “Theodore” has seen significant gains, starting a few years after the show aired. In fact: Theodore was the 36th most popular boy name in 2019, making it the most popular boy name from the show!
Maybe it is due to the sarcastic playboy characteristics of Ted’s self-proclaimed best friend Barney, but this name struck out. In fact, the name “Barney” (and its derivatives) has been out with expecting parents since 1994, and the show wasn’t able to give it a second chance. While Neil Patrick Harris has enjoyed massive success since HIMYM, it wasn’t enough to put his character’s name back on the map. Maybe Barney was not so legendary after all!
Robin is another name that didn’t fly very high despite the success of the show. While it was reasonably popular in the 80’s, it had been trending downward for decades, and by the time the show premiered, the name “Robin” had lost much appeal. Despite the dynamic and brassy character from the show, her name never regained its appeal.
The name “Lily” was already on an upward trend when HIMYM aired. So whether its writers took advantage of the trendy name or not, the trajectory of this timeless girl’s name continued. At its peak in 2011, the name “Lily” was #15 on the top baby name list! While it has started to trend downward in recent years, Lily is still holding strong as the 34th most popular girl name in 2019, making her the most loved name from the series.
As the loveable and goofy best friend, Marshall is as dependable as his Minnesota roots. The name itself has remained consistent over the years and received a boost in popularity after the show aired. If you don’t count the long version of Ted, Theodore, the name “Marshall” was the only one from the group of characters to gain popularity due to HIMYM.
While some characters may have influenced baby names more than others, HIMYM remains a classic sitcom that will influence comedies for decades to come.