Cobie Smulders, <EM>How I Met Your Mother</EM> Cobie Smulders, How I Met Your Mother

Tonight at 8:30 pm/ET, as CBS' How I Met Your Mother returns for its sophomore season, the fates of two couples loom. Are Robin and Ted now officially lovers? And will Marshall get back with ex-fiancée Lily? TVGuide.com got cozy with Cobie Smulders to seek out the scoop.

TVGuide.com: Guess who I just got off the phone with? James freakin' Tupper.
Cobie Smulders: Really?

TVGuide.com: I was interviewing him about Men in Trees, and we got to talking about his appearance on How I Met Your Mother (as Robin's New Year's Eve date). I said I was going to be talking to you next, and he said, "Tell Cobie I say hi!"
Smulders: Tell him I say hi back! You know, I love that about our show. We had another girl who was on our show, Beth Lacke, and now she's on [Fox's] Happy Hour.

TVGuide.com: And there's Jon Bernthal (the "Purple Elephant" episode), who's now on CBS' The Class.
Smulders: I know, I know! I dig being the show that helps get talent recognized.

TVGuide.com: Complete this sentence: "Prior to How I Met Your Mother, people best knew me as... "
Smulders: An aspiring marine biologist.

TVGuide.com: What?!
Smulders: "What?!" Did I just blow your mind, Matt? Did I? It's true, that's what I wanted to do.

TVGuide.com: You and George Costanza.
Smulders: Yeah, I was very set on going to school and becoming a marine biologist. But it's a very heavy workload, and I didnt really feel like going to school, so I decided to do acting. I love both things very much, but I feel that acting is a little more fulfilling just because a lot of marine biology is studying, research and lab time. Acting is a bit more fun.

TVGuide.com: Know what the two have in common, Cobie? Swimming. With. Sharks.
Smulders: You're very right.

TVGuide.com: Hey, did you get any action when you guested on The L Word?
Smulders: Hell, yeah! I made out with one of the girls.

TVGuide.com: "One of the girls." You can't even remember her name.
Smulders: It was literally three years ago! But no, I did like six episodes, and I got to kiss a girl.

TVGuide.com: How has the year since Mother debuted been for you?
Smulders: It's been rad. We wrapped and began hiatus in March, and we had like five months off, so I traveled a little bit, I did a play, I bought a house.... I have the greatest job on the planet because not only is it a great job but you also have this amazing schedule where you're only working about seven months a year.

TVGuide.com: Josh Radnor told us that now that Ted and Robin have hooked up, we can look forward to lots of sex. Or at least implied sex.
Smulders: Yeah, well, thats what you do when you're in a relationship these days, I hear. Thats the word on the street.

TVGuide.com: But then Ted starts to realize that this relationship isnt what he really wanted after all? Something like that?
Smulders: It's a tricky relationship, because they're such different people. The end is somewhat inevitable, however long thats going to take. Josh and I always have this conversation about how people are like, "Why are they even together?"

TVGuide.com: Since, as we know, Ted ultimately marries someone else.
Smulders: Exactly. But in life, you date someone and you're totally different people and you know it isnt going to work, yet you still try it. And what you learn from that relationship you carry onto the next. So I love that the writers did that. I feel it's so realistic. Instead of us teasing the audience for four years, we're going to try it out.

TVGuide.com: What other changes can we expect for Robin this season? Making her more about her career, now that she's lead anchor of her local newscast?
Smulders: We're actually going into Ted's career right now....

TVGuide.com: What the hell is Ted's career? Architect?
Smulders: Architect, exactly. We're all like, "We have never seen you at work." [Laughs]

TVGuide.com: He just designs really small buildings, so it doesnt take up much of his time.
Smulders: Yeah, he works from home a lot, and has a lot of time to go to the bar and drink. But we're focusing on that now. For Robin, it's about seeing her in this relationship, seeing what happens since she's so afraid of intimacy. It makes for some very funny writing.

TVGuide.com: Is Lily welcomed back into the fold, or seen as some sort of "defector"?
Smulders: [Laughs] There's definitely a transition, but yeah, she comes back, and we welcome her with open arms.

TVGuide.com: I was reading somewhere  oh yeah, it was in TV Guide  that they're bringing on Barney's brother, who's just like Barney but gay. They should totally have Neil Patrick Harris do a dual role.
Smulders: That would be cool!

TVGuide.com: What's the closest you've ever had to a bar hangout like Mother's McClaren's?
Smulders: In the past, there was a bar right near my house called Never Mind, which I would go to all the time. And I also went to this other place called... oh my god, I can't remember. I even worked there for like a month.

TVGuide.com: OK, quick, before we go, spell Robin's last name!
Smulders: Scherbatsky.

TVGuide.com: Not pronounce it, spell it.
Smulders:
S-c-h-e-r-b-a-t-s-k-y.

TVGuide.com: Well done.
Smulders: Did I get it right?! Woo-hoo! What did I win?

TVGuide.com: I'll end the interview and let you go. Thats your prize.

Send your comments on this Q&A to: online_insider@tvguide.com.