Neil Patrick Harris, Becki Newton
When Becki Newton wants something, she makes it happen herself.
The Ugly Betty alum and lifelong Neil Patrick Harris admirer has wanted to work with the How I Met Your Mother star for "as long as I can remember," she says. So, six months ago, she met with Mother creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas.
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"I was watching the show and I thought to myself, 'I would love to play a female version of Barney. And more than that, I would love to play off Neil Patrick Harris,'" she tells TVGuide.com. "I think they'd been toying with the idea of a love interest for Barney, so it was a great coincidence that I went in and pitched myself for it. I told them my dream and I'm so grateful that they didn't think I was totally insane! And a few months later, it all came true and now I'm Quinn."
Or is that Karma? As we learned last month, Quinn is not your average Barney conquest, let alone girlfriend. For one, she works as a stripper, Karma, at the Lusty Leopard. Secondly, the blonde spitfire can hang tough — and mess — with Barney, having duped him out of money and played with his lovesick heart before they started anew over an impromptu coffee date. On Monday's episode, Quinn will do what no other Barney love interest has done before: move in with him.
"We're moving quickly! I can say from experience that when you know, you know. I think that even Barney and Quinn are surprised by this development, but they feel pretty confident and really happy together, so why not give it a shot?" Newton says. "They're both on the same page, which is why it's working out so well for them. They complete each other's thoughts pretty easily. I have the feeling that the idea came up at the same time and they both said, 'Sure, let's do it!'"
But not everyone is thrilled with the new living arrangement. After Ted (Josh Radnor) breaks Barney's "broath" (aka a bro oath) and tells the rest of the gang that Quinn is a stripper, they immediately stage what Marshall (Jason Segel) calls a "Quinn-tervention" to break them up. Given how Quinn's manipulated Barney in the past, the group has the right to be concerned, Newton says. But she believes Quinn truly cares for him, and his pals will soon see that they're a "great pairing."
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"They think a fling with a stripper makes sense, but when they all find out that they're becoming more involved, it's a surprising situation," she says. "Underneath [Quinn's] conniving exterior, Barney has gotten to her heart and she has done the same to Barney. They both have a sense of adventure and a sense of fun. They're a perfect match. You might think Quinn, being a stripper, is a con artist, but she's actually a pretty smart stripper/con artist! And you'll see how she really feels about being a stripper. ... [Barney's] been with a lot of strippers before, but none that were this able to keep up with him. It's karma and karma's a bitch!"
Newton is signed up for eight episodes, a selection that could include the season finale, which will flash forward again to Barney's future wedding. After such a serious step forward in their relationship, could Quinn be the future Mrs. Stinson? "I think she's a very good contender," Newton teases. "They have not told me anything. But if I got to wear a wedding dress and marry Neil Patrick Harris — I mean, I would die."
Becki Newton suits up for How I Met Your Mother
While exchanging "I do's" with NPH would be a "childhood dream come true" for Newton, she knows that the Barney-Robin (Cobie Smulders) die-hards might take issue with it. That brings up the question: Is Barney really done with Robin like he says he is, or is Quinn just a rebound? "I think we won't know if he's truly over Robin. Maybe we'll never know. I think he's trying to be over Robin," Newton says. "I don't think either [Barney or Quinn] were looking for anything, and now they're surprised at how it's developed into more than that."
And could Newton's eight-episode arc develop into a longer stay? Possibly, Newton says. But she could have her own show by next season: She's joined Bays and Thomas' Fox comedy pilot The Goodwin Games — a "happy coincidence" that happened after she started shooting Mother.
"I would totally come back if they want me to. I would love to see Quinn and Barney going strong," she says. "And two jobs? That's an excellent problem that I hope I have!"
How I Met Your Mother airs Mondays at 8/7c on CBS.