Theodore "Ted" Evelyn Mosby
Josh Radnor as Ted Mosby (2006)
First appearance Pilot
Created by Carter Bays & Craig Thomas
Portrayed by Josh Radnor,
narrated by Bob Saget
Gender Male
Occupation Architect
Family Virginia Mosby (mother)
Alfred Mosby (father)
Heather Mosby(sister)
Stacy (cousin)
7 second cousins (via Stacy)
Jimmy Mosby (cousin)
Caroline Mosby (aunt)
Children a son (in future)
a daughter (in future)

Theodore "Ted" Evelyn Mosby is a fictional character created by Carter Bays and Craig Thomas for the CBS television series How I Met Your Mother, portrayed by Josh Radnor. Ted is the main character; the show revolves around an older Ted Mosby (voiced by an unseen Bob Saget) in 2030, telling his son and daughter the stories of his adult life (one per episode), until he met their mother.

Early Life[]

Ted, the central character of the show, is from Shaker Heights, Ohio (in real life, Josh Radnor grew up in the Columbus, Ohio area), and is a Wesleyan University graduate (in real life Radnor graduated from Kenyon College) and an architect. At Wesleyan he was the college radio program director where he had a radio persona "Dr. X" which claimed to report on key social issues, but was actually a outlet for Ted's personal frustrations. He was seen cheering for the Cleveland Indians when they were playing the Yankees at a baseball game (season 2, episode 1) and he alluded to once being trapped under a fake rock at a mall in Ohio when he was 9 ("Slap Bet"). He also wears a Cleveland Indians T-Shirt in the episode "Sandcastles In The Sand".

Character history[]

Ted is the central character of the show, a professed romantic who is eager to get married and settle down. After his best friend Marshall Eriksen becomes engaged, Ted decides to try and find his soulmate.

Prone to socially questionable romantic gestures, he steals a blue French horn (which is actually a mellophone, and is nicknamed "The Smurf Penis") that was a topic of conversation in his first date with Robin. In a similar vein, he also dresses up as a "hanging chad" every year for Halloween, in the hopes of meeting the "Slutty Pumpkin", a woman dressed as a jack-o'-lantern (complete with strategically placed holes) whom he once met at a Halloween party.

For a time, he dates a baker named Victoria, whom he met at a friend's wedding. She accepts a culinary fellowship in Germany, prompting a long-distance relationship, which does not last, due in large part to his persistent feelings for Robin. His friendship with Robin is threatened when he implies that Victoria broke up with him before he actually did, leading to their making out.

They ultimately reconcile, and shortly after that, Ted makes one last attempt to win her, hiring a string quartet with blue instruments to play in her apartment while he makes his appeal. She cannot give him a definite answer, but, after she is stuck at her apartment due to an unpredicted storm (that Ted had danced for), she decides to pursue her feelings for him upon his return to her. After nearly a year together, they break up, and Ted no longer sees Robin as "The One," but doesn't reveal the identity of his future wife. Robin, however, does act as an "Aunt" figure of sorts to his future children.

For a while Ted claimed to be "vomit-free since '93," meaning he had not vomited for any reason since 1993. However, in the episode "Game Night", he reveals that this is not true, and that he vomited on Robin's door mat. He knows American Sign Language, and has a strong tendency to correct everything that people around him say.

It is revealed in "No Tomorrow" that at a St. Patrick's Day party he and Barney attended, his future wife was also present and he may have inadvertedly met her there. Once he returns to the room of the party the morning after, he picks up a yellow umbrella which can be seen blowing in the wind in the season promo. Also, he becomes the second main character to actually own a car (a blue Toyota Camry Hybrid) after getting a raise at his job in 'The Chain of Screaming'. By the end of the episode, Ted decides to get rid of the car to help Marshall with his income trouble.

In "The Goat", Ted tells Barney that he no longer wants to be friends after Barney breaks the 'bro code' by sleeping with Robin. The two eventually reconcile in the third-season finale "Miracles", after both were in accidents (Ted in a taxi crash, Barney being run over by a bus on the way to visit Ted in the hospital). At the end of season 3, it is also revealed that by Ted's 31st birthday, Robin will be living in the apartment.

At the end of "Miracles" Ted proposes to Stella. Stella accepts, and while Ted is still quite in love with her, he realizes at the beginning of Season 4 that he doesn't know that much about her. On the day of their wedding, Ted invites Tony, Stella's ex and the father of her daughter, to make sure her daughter Lucy attends the wedding and also to show her that inviting an ex to their wedding was perfectly alright (Ted had invited Robin to their wedding prior.) In the end Stella goes back to Tony, leaving Ted devastated. He hides from her and was about to confront her until he saw how happy a family Stella, Tony and Lucy made. He ultimately reconciled himself to his failed wedding when he slept with a pretty girl with a horrible attitude in "The Naked Man".

He is currently living with Robin, as he had an extra bedroom and she was in need of a place to stay (referenced in "Not a Father's Day"); they eventually attempted a friends-with-benefits scenario that Ted ended when he discovered Barney's feelings for Robin. Ted was also recently hired to design a new Goliath National Bank building. However, Goliath National Bank fired Ted and ended this project due to budget constraints.

Romantic Interests[]

  • Molly - Portrayed in a flashback, Ted loses his virginity at 17 to Molly, who said that she loved him, although she didn't. After having sex with Ted, Molly borrowed $20 from him and never called him again.
  • Karen - Previously never seen on screen, Karen is Ted's girlfriend from high school into his freshman year at Wesleyan. He leaves her a tearful message and sends her an "electronic mail" after making out with someone else at a party (presumed to be Lily until "How I Met Everyone Else") and goes home to visit her for the holidays. She breaks up with him during that time, though Ted tries to convince Marshall that the split was mutual ("Arrivederci, Fiero"). Played by Laura Prepon
  • Trudy - Ted met Trudy in the episode "The Pineapple Incident" when Barney told Ted to stop overthinking and to overdrink. Ted then drank a round of shots and forgot what happened that night until he woke up in the morning next to Trudy and a pineapple. Trudy had just split up with her boyfriend and wanted to do something stupid so Ted said "Do me". Ted gets Trudy's number and rings her and tell her to come on over to his apartment. He wakes up in the morning not knowing who she is and tells Robin to come on over as he had been leaving her some weird messages on her phone whilst inebriated. He then proceeds to prove to Robin that he is over her and tells Trudy to come out but she left through the fire escape. He meets up again with Trudy in "Third Wheel" where the show implies that he might have had a three-way with Trudy and her former sorority sister. Played by Danica McKellar.
  • Natalie - Ted was in a long-term relationship with Natalie in the past (takes place before first season). Ted decided that she wasn't the one and decided to break up with her. The day he broke up with her coincidentally turned out to be her birthday. To make the situation worse, Ted broke up with her through a message left on her answering machine, a message which was heard by a group of Natalie's friends who were waiting at her house to throw her a surprise party. In 2005, Ted decided to give Natalie another try and began dating her again for a few weeks, only to decide that she still "isn't the one". Ted breaks up with her again on what happened to be her birthday. Natalie then horribly beats him up in front of the whole restaurant they were in, using Krav Maga. Played by Anne Dudek
  • Victoria - Ted met Victoria at the wedding of his friends Claudia and Stewart. As a way to keep the night "untarnished" they both promise not to reveal their last names to each other; Ted only knew her as "Victoria, the girl with snowflakes on her shoes." After a perfect night together, Ted returned home, and later became determined to find out who Victoria is. He found out via Claudia, the bride of the wedding, that the wedding cake was made by the Buttercup Bakery - "Buttercup" being an alias Victoria initially used. Ted went to the bakery that night and finds Victoria working there. She looked up, saw him, responded "oh; thank God", and their relationship began. Two months after dating, Victoria left the job for a two-year culinary fellowship in Germany. This educational experience led to the downfall of her and Ted's relationship. They attempted to continue their relationship long-distance, only for it to end when Ted cheated on her with Robin, an incident which also nearly ended the friendship between Robin and Ted. Played by Ashley Williams.
  • Robin - Ted and Robin meet and go on a date on the first episode, but after Ted professes his love for her at the end of the night she breaks up with him, saying that they're completely wrong for each other because he wants marriage and she doesn't. They later get together in the final episode of Season 1 and break up during the events of the third-to-last episode of the Season 2. However, due to Marshall and Lily's wedding, they do not tell anyone and only reveal the breakup to Barney at the reception in the episode "Something Blue" (season finale). They remain friends and as of the events of "Not a Father's Day" are living together. During the events of "Benefits" Robin and Ted begin sleeping together as a means to stop themselves arguing. Ted, however decides to end this after he finds out the Barney has feelings for her.
  • Stella - Stella is a doctor who Ted meets when he is trying to get his tattoo removed. He likes her, but when he asks her out she immediately says no, under the pretense that she can't date patients. He later finds out that she has a daughter named Lucy, which is why she can't have another "special person" in her life. It is revealed during the episode "The Chain of Screaming" that Ted and Stella are still dating and she attends his surprise 30th birthday party on his roof. In the episode "Rebound Bro", Stella told Ted that she had not had sex in five years; their relationship faltered temporarily when he told this to his friends, but afterward they made up. Stella then introduced Ted to her daughter, and then later they had sex. Ted proposed to her in "Miracles" and in "Do I Know You?" it is revealed that she accepted. However, during the episode "Shelter Island", when she is supposed to be marrying Ted, she ends up running off with Tony, her ex-boyfriend and father of Lucy. Stella is later seen living in Tony's apartment with Lucy. It is heavily implied in "Shelter Island" that Stella is not "The One". Played by Sarah Chalke.
  • "Bla-bla" - "Bla-bla" and Ted met on the internet via World of Warcraft. They very quickly break up partly because "Bla-bla" (Ted forgot her actual name) was below the "Vicky Mendoza Diagonal" on the Hot-Crazy Scale.
  • '"Unreasonably-Small-Mouth-Opening-Girl (Alexa Leskys)'" - Made out with Ted at a Freshmen mixer before he met Lily. Ted suspected this to be Lily but was later discovered to be Alexa Leskys at their 20th college reunion.

Ted as Unreliable Narrator[]

There are multiple instances throughout the show where Ted proves to be an unreliable narrator. In the Slapsgiving episode, Ted mistakenly recounts the first slap as having taken place in the bar when, in fact, the first official slap occurred in the apartment. In the episode Drumroll, Please, Ted claims to always check off the bringing a guest box but it is later revealed that he did not check off the box. As well, Ted recounts how Blauman quits GNB after his cousins internet firm has its IPO, but then Blauman appears again in later episodes. Most of these instances can be blamed on poor memory, from the story being recounted over 20 years later, or as an aggressive subconscious act.

External links[]

  • Ted Mosby is a Jerk - website set up by one of Barney Stinson's one-night stands after Barney gave "Ted" as his fake name in the episode Ted Mosby: Architect
  • DOCTOR X - website of Ted's radio personality at Wesleyan University introduced in the episode The Possimpible.

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