Beyond crafting compelling stories, building realistic characters and keeping audiences entertained for years on end, there is one thing that sitcoms pride themselves on executing to perfection: Hiding actress' pregnancies. Throughout television history, comedy series have mastered the art of obscuring the (sometimes live) audience's vantage point of baby bumps. Stars like Lucille Ball, Phylicia Rashad, Julia Louis-Drefyus and Debra Messing all underwent the process of overcoming what is called in some circles the Fertile Hurdle, the Gestation Complication, or the Accouchement Denouncement. And now, the task one again falls upon How I Met Your Mother star Alyson Hannigan.
Fans of the CBS series know that Hannigan's character Lily has been pregnant with her first baby throughout the current seventh season. Convenient timing, considering the fact that the actress herself is also expecting a child. However, those up to date know that –spoiler!– Lily is set to give birth on the upcoming episode, which will air on Monday, May 7 at 8 PM ET/PT. This means that viewers will see a still-pregnant Hannigan (who was showing during Season 4, the same time as co-star Cobie Smulders) in scenes on HIMYM after the Eriksen baby makes its way into the world. As the folks behind HIMYM scramble to, once again, come up with ways to keep Hannigan's body hidden from the camera that don't include basketballs or guitars or turkeys or giant purses, we have a few suggestions for the Mommy masquerade:
Barney's Stormtrooper Suit: The suit has recently been used by Barney and his new girlfriend Quinn for some romantic role playing, so Lily might want to wash it first.
The Comically Large Bottle of Champagne: Only for props, not for consumption.
Any One of Lily's Dad's Elaborate Board Games: They're usually architectural monstrosities, so they'd prove useful in hiding anyone who stood behind them. Not much fun or safe, though.
The Mystery Pineapple: We still don't know where that damn pineapple came from.
The Phone Booth: Either the life-sized original or the miniature set piece will do just fine.
A Gazola's Pizza: One pie of the deep dish pizza that sparked the lifelong friendship between Ted and Marshall is large enough to engulf an entire maternity ward.
The Goat: It's about time he returned to exact his revenge.
The Mother: It would be an interesting way to finally introduce her...
What other How I Met Your Mother staples might come in handy for this round of Hide the Baby? (Patent pending by Aldrin Games!)