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Season 9, Episode 13: Bass Player Wanted

So Here Comes The Mother… Do we need to say anymore about this episode?

Actually we do because, Ted is moving to Chicago.

But Solo is Here with the Review!

So, that was pretty good!  Certainly a step in the right direction, and hopefully more to come.  It kinda sucks that we have to take a break for a few weeks, but that’s how this stuff goes now with network TV.  I think our next one is in mid-January, but Ross will know that better than me.  Also, if you’re curious about what’s coming next, be sure to check out the Spoilers page.  And if you don’t want any spoilers, for God’s sake DON’T GO TO THE SPOILERS PAGE!  Anyway, let’s get into it.

What Was Good

Cristin’s back!  I honestly really enjoy her character.  She is the breath of fresh air this show needs.  I’m not getting my hopes up that we’ll see a ton more of her, but it’d be really nice if we did.  I’ll discuss her a bit more in “Further Thoughts.”

I’m also glad to see that Marshall is FINALLY back with the gang.  That road trip SUCKED.  I get that Jason’s filming schedule had to be dealt with, but man…what a drag that was.  Although I guess I’m glad that it yielded one moment of growth for Marshall, namely that he’s not just gonna be a pushover anymore and has learned to stand up for himself thanks to the trip with Daphne.  And while I saw it coming a mile away, I really did appreciate how The Mother was the one who picked him up…and messed with him.

It also really felt like the whole gang got some time to shine this episode.  I would’ve liked to see them a bit better integrated, but the story didn’t feel like several separate stories with unconnected people the way it has in recent episodes.  They all felt like they got equal screen time instead of, say, shunting Lily into the background to be mopey or whathaveyou.   Personally, I think the gang works best AS a gang, not as isolated players, and that’s been a real weakness of the first half of the season.  Let’s hope that comes to an end, now that they’re all back together.

Connected to that, it felt like the balance was much better struck this week in terms of “slapstick” vs. “substance.”  I really, really, REALLY hope this balance continues.  My tolerance for slapstick has been dramatically diminished, but it can be built back up by mixing in doses of substance as we move forward.  Like Ted’s confession to Barney about moving to Chicago.  That felt…real.  We need more of that mixed in WITH the hardy-har-har humor.

Lastly, ok, I’ll admit it: I thought it was cute how Ted played the role of the Mighty Fist of Karma in this, and created yet another connection with the Mother (unbeknownst to him).  Let’s hope this is the first step towards Ted not being such a sad sack.  More on that later, though.

What Was Not As Good

On the flip side, I do think that as cute as it was, the karmic retribution was a little…I dunno…canned.  I mean, I’ve seen some seriously serendipitous relationships develop, but man…this one between Ted and the Mother is enough to make you get religion.

I also was NOT a fan of “Thank you, Linus” reappearing.  That catchphrase was mildly entertaining at the start of the season, but I hope we’ve seen the last of it.  Hopefully Ted’s punch sealed that deal.

Lastly, I’m of mixed opinion on Darren.  The guy who played him was perfectly obnoxious, so a tip of the hat to him for his acting, and to the writers for writing a guy who so richly deserved a black eye.  But I can’t help but wish they’d used some other plot device to expose all of these secrets.  I suppose anything they came up with would’ve been canned, though, and it is reasonable that at least one person at most weddings will be a miserable sonofabitch who just wants to ruin everyone’s fun.  Yeah.  I’m glad he got punched.

Further Thoughts

So, this episode — for the first time in a while — actually got the ol’ speculative juices flowin’ again.  Let’s start with the Mother.  Right now, I’d say the Mother seems like a blend of Lily, Marshall, and Ted…so far.  What I’ll be really curious to see is how she compares to and gets along with Robin.  I can’t help but think that she will be very much the anti-Robin, which, frankly, is exactly what Ted needs.

It’s no secret that I’ve long felt that Robin is WRONG for Ted.  They have a lot in common, and much to connect them, but in the end, Ted would be miserable with someone like her.  He can’t see beyond her, though, and that’s a huge problem for him.  But you’ve seen me speculate on all of that before, so I won’t belabor the point.

The thing is, Robin has been SUCH a huge figure in Ted’s life up until now that I wonder how this woman who is so far pretty drastically different from her will be able to relate to her in a way that they actually connect.  Will they be rivals initially, or will they get along right out of the gate?  I can’t help but think that there’ll be some initial friction, just because, well, it’s Robin.

And that’s the thing about this character — she gives the show room to grow!  We need more of her!  LOTS more.  Although I suppose it’d be increasingly difficult to figure out how to integrate her into the story more, without having her run into Ted.  Like, to the point where it’d be absurd and we’d all just end up yelling “JUST MEET ALREADY!!!”  That’s why I’d really like to see more of her and Ted in the future.  And on that note, I have to reiterate that, while it’s great to see her before they meet and all the cute little coinkydinks that bring them together, we need to see them together.  We need to see why Ted and she work as a couple by watching them work as a couple.  I really, really hope the writers do a lot more by way of flashes forward in that regard.

One of the other central storylines that, I think, has been largely abandoned for a while is Ted’s journey.  Remember that at the start of this tale, Ted told his kids that this wasn’t just the story of how they literally met, but rather the story of how he became the man he needed to be to meet her.  We’ve seen some of that with Ted deciding to move to Chicago.  I can’t help but think that this episode showed a bit more of that Ted shining through, first in his act of grand larceny for Barney, and second in his decking of Darren.  Old wussie, douchey Ted wouldn’t have done that.  He would have, instead, paid the check for his obnoxious date’s obnoxious parents.  He would have quoted Dante in the original Italian, and gotten a fart joke for his troubles.  He would have thrown a punch, and then Darren would’ve decked him.

Now, I don’t think that Ted is necessarily becoming more of a man because he became violent and broke the law this episode, although I can see where one might get that sense.  No, I think Ted is becoming more of a man because he chose a path of action, instead of one of passivity, and did so with full understanding of the consequences.  He knows he might end up in jail if he steals the liquor (and side note — did HE steal the liquor or did Lily steal the liquor?  Or did they BOTH steal liquor and there’s still one bottle of Glen MacKenna floating around in Lily’s room?).  He knows Darren might beat the crap out of him if he hits him.  But he does this stuff anyway, in spite of the risks.

I think that’s a BIG part of what Ted needs to become to meet the Mother.  He needs to be able to evaluate a situation realistically, make a call about how to deal with it, and then…make a choice.  That’s not been something he’s proven particularly good at.  He’s had moments, but so many of them have been driven by flights of fancy rather than an understanding of reality.  He’s taken action, but it’s often been with a sort of childish inability to acknowledge the risks involved while relying on an “I’m sure everything will turn out fine” attitude.  Or they’ve been driven by a desire to avoid hardship, rather than to go for what he wants in spite of that hardship, if that makes sense.

By way of example, consider his engagement to Stella.  I’d argue that’s absolutely avoiding hardship because he gets to “skip to the end” with her by stepping into someone else’s life, as Robin aptly put it.  Even his laser-like focus on Robin could fall into this category, because it’s him avoiding confronting the world and letting go of the notion that this “perfect” girl could be with him and maybe that means he won’t find the perfect girl after all.  Ted’s avoided all of that stuff, even in his choices.  But maybe things are turning around now, and maybe the decision to move and that punch are among the first steps.

Speaking of Chicago, Ted’s admission to Barney seems like a weight off his shoulders.  I wonder when he’ll let that drop for Robin and Lily, and what the impact will be there?  I expect that Marshall will tell Lily in a future episode, and that once they decide to stay in New York (or at least once Marshall does?  I suppose Lily could go to Rome on her own for a year…), they’ll try to convince Ted to stay for it.  Hell, maybe even Robin will try to convince him and he’ll finally come clean with her and that’ll be how he chooses to move on already.  Anyway, just more speculation.

So, suffice to say, I think this was a solid episode and I hope we see more of it.  I can handle a little…ahem…SLAPstick humor in the next couple episodes (heh), but I’m also hoping it’ll be leavened with some substance.  Guess we’ll see after the break!

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70 Comments (Add Yours)

  1. I won’t say vintage HIMYM … but very very good. Darren was annoying but he served a purpose and it was wrapped up by the end. Mother was awesome. Great way to finish the year

  2. Sorry for the fangirl rant but…

    This episode had EVERYTHING!

    Lots of The Mother!

    The Mother meeting Marshall!

    Marshall giving The Mother advice!

    Lily giving The Mother advice!

    The Mother knitting a hat for baby Marvin!

    Ted punching a guy The Mother hates!

    The Mother buying Ted a drink!

    Ted and Barney’s sweet moments after finding out about the move to Chicago.

    Poignant Lily, Marshall, and Marvin reunion.

    Poignant Lily and Robin friendship.

    Sweet, relatable, not overly-angry Lily!

    JUST…MY FEELS, MY FEELS, MY FEELS!!!

    Okay, I’m done. Proceed. :D

  3. Long time viewer first time poster. Just want to start off saying that I love what you guys do here. I look forward after every episode to reading what everyone has say and of course the reviews. Top notch reviews Solo. A tip of the hat to you sir. I cannot forget about Ross. You do a wonderful job with the upkeep of the site and all the input you have is duly noted. Another tip to you. Sorry about all that, just felt that these guys deserve their recognition. Anyway to the episode….. I do not want to get to far in to it till after the review, but I will have to agree with Ross’s A+ review.

  4. laaavhed it!! and to think i almost forgot there was an episode tonight!!
    wish me luck guys, taking the New York State Bar in Feb and in the midst of bar prep…this show keeps me going.

    loved it. and ahh…that punch! and the chemistry between the crew…lovedddd it

    • @ Hiba, Okay So you are a Female Marshall… Congrats. So Do you Lawyers really partly like they did on HIMYM No Tomorrow?

      We will be thinking about you as you study for that big exam!

      @Justin, Welcome to the writers section of the blog. Glad you are enjoying the site. I need to Post the Review sometime this morning. But I did really enjoy the entire episode. It actually flowed better than I expected last night.

      Editing my post here because the review is up and I wanted to make a comment about the last Paragraph. Just read the first and last ones so far. The decisions the writers have to make will be big ones come January. They have already switched the first two episodes orders around twice now. So the way they have it should flow fine. I like it better this way. Just wait to see. We should have a good couple of Episodes right away in January.

      Like Solo we do not know exactly if the mother will be in all the episodes for the rest of the season. I hope so. She will be in a few like last night so that is good news. I wanted to say now that she is at the Inn… will she be staying the night. If so that will be interesting. I doubt she will be in the bar that much based on previous episodes. So if Ted and the gang hang out in the “New Season 9 Bar” they will not see her. Ted will probably just be going in the bar area while the mother is coming down the stairs etc. That could be a running joke.

      I have enjoyed all the guest stars but they seemed like filler for the absent Jason Segel. Now with Marshall back I want the group together to be the theme for the last few Episodes. This leads me to my last point. We are in the final stretch of the show now. Sad and Excited at the same time. It is time for this story to close and yet I want to know more about their future lives.

    • Good luck on the NY bar. I HATE reading New York laws. It’s like reading feudal documents. The NY legislature has apparently never heard of a paragraph break.

    • Gee, isn’t the world overlawyered more than enough already?

  5. Ok I liked how they teased us about the mother’s perfection and then reminded us that she and Lily really bonded.

    Man is it good to have Marshall back with the group.

    But, Ted’s only been in one fight eh? even more reasons to hate the fight episode now.

    I’m worried about two characters doing Thank You Linus (I know I’m probably in the minority on that one).

    After a long weekend of having to perform 4 times, I’m glad I was able to enjoy the episode, but I think maybe it was built up too much for me.

    I was sort of hoping that Darren could have been a catalyst in Luis and the mother breaking up instead of another new created and solved conflict.

    • I agree with you re: “Thank you, Linus.” Although, I think that the Mother will likely NOT be doing that, given that she ended up happy at the end of the episode. Also, Lily may stop that, now that Marshall’s here. Hopefully we’ve seen the last of that catchphrase.

      On my end…I’m done building up episodes. I actually have very low expectations for the show at this point. Too much of the first half of the season has been frustrating and disappointing, so now I’m just kind of “Whatever” about it all. As a result, episodes like this are pretty good, rather than an exercise in “But why didn’t they…?!”

      • Yes my A+ was based on Season 7,8, and 9. This was a good episode for a season 1-2-3 and an A all around. It covered everyone and was good for continuing the story. I was just so very glad the road trip was over.

        The Mother picking up Marshall in the Aldrin Justice VAN brought so much together. We had driving gloves and a superstitious Big Fudge Marshall afraid of all people his best friends future wife. Now that was good comedy mixed with some serious stuff about Marshall and Lily decisions.

        Ted was used in a good way. Even with Ted not being the main story the Mother made it a Ted Mother Moment. Hope we get more of that when it is not actually a Ted and Mother Future or Past Episode main story. Barney and Robin both had roles but as more background.

        I also liked how they used the guest as a opener for the Lily Robin and Barney Ted stories. Solo you may have said all this already. Guess I need to take a moment and finish reading your review.

        • Good point on how Barney and Robin not being the center of attention (at least in terms of the characters in the gang) this time made for a welcome change of pace. I don’t know about anyone else, but I was getting tired of the Barney & Robin Show.

          That said, I do think Robin had a legitimate point with Lily when she said “Why is it all about you? You’ve been completely preoccupied on my wedding weekend!” I think that the dynamic of the first half of the weekend was just kinda toxic as a whole. Everyone was pissed or depressed or whatever. Hopefully, once Marshall and Lily settle their differences, we can start having fun again and seeing more positive and upbeat episodes.

      • gosh Solo, don’t give up. As obnoxiously positive as I am, I like that you’re so hard on the show. Gives me something to look forward to.

  6. This was the third bottle of Glen McKenna destroyed. I’m fuzzy on some of the details so I might get something wrong but I think this is what happened:

    The first was the original one they had bought and Lily and Robin broke and tried to recreate with household products.

    Lily felt bad and replaced that bottle and has been leading us to believe she stole it. And considering her past and that Ted is shown doing what she said, I believe that she stole it. Ted broke that same bottle when Barney said that he saw Ted and Robin at the carousel.

    Ted steals the third bottle to prove to Barney he’d go to jail for him. and Darren causes Ted to break it.

    My friends and I get together a couple times a year for a “scotch club” where we put in like $15 each and buy a couple of bottles to taste and drink previous left over bottles from earlier times. After a long hiatus we met last Thursday and the most expensive bottle we had was $85. I can’t imagine what $600 scotch would taste like, but it must be awesome.

    Oh and Superfreakanomics? Genius.

    • I’ve had The Macallan 18, and it was delightful. I tend to go for single malts, myself. If you can find it still, and there’s one in your area, Total Wine carries this bottle of Scotch in a black box that’s a Glenrothes 1992. It is, literally, a Scotch that’s old enough to order its own Scotch. Very, very smooth, and reasonably priced at around $80-90.

      $600 Scotch, though…I kinda think that’d be past the point of diminishing returns.

      Anyway, as for the bottles, my recollection was this:

      Ted brought the first bottle, which he dropped when Barney confronted him, which was the same bottle that Lily and Robin destroyed and then faked.

      Then Barney and James have a different bottle (origin unexplained) which they intend to drink on the patio, but drop an destroy when they see their parents making out.

      Finally, we have the bottle that Ted stole. I may be misremembering what Lily originally said. I thought she said she HAD a bottle of the Scotch, but I think she said she knew WHERE to get the bottle, and was exhorting Ted to go steal it, which he later does.

    • Fourth per my count.
      1 Robin
      2 Ted
      3 Barney
      4 Ted

      • Yeah, Ross is right. I think there are four.

        1. The one Ted brought that Lily and Robin broke.

        2. The replacement that Ted dropped that Lily gave him (Which is how she knew about store security). I thought she said it was the last bottle, though?

        3. The bottle Barney broke.

        4. The bottle Darren broke.

    • Come to Sweeden. I promise, a 600$ bottle here tastes just like a 85$ bottle there.
      (which is why I hope i can hire the Serial Killer, once s/he is done with HIMYM, for some serious weeding out in our parliament)

      • So what is the cost of a round trip from NY to Vasteras?

        And The Ted Hurt Hand tweet is correct.

        Craig Thomas @HimymCraig

        For sharp-eyed #HIMYM viewers: Remember how Ted’s hand is bandaged on that Farhampton train platform? Now you know why… #BassPlayerWanted

        • I’d also like to clarify that we don’t consider that a “spoiler” since the episode aired already. We may not know when Ted puts on the bandage, but now we know what the root cause is/will be. Maybe he takes the bandage off for some reason in between the next couple episodes and the train platform, then puts it back on. Maybe they don’t have anyone who can effectively put on a bandage at the wedding. Who knows.

        • I dunno, but the flight is NOT included in the $600. (Hell, now I have to check up on where Västerås is also. Ah, that’s right, I passed through it last time I wdrove to Stockholm. If you ever go there, holler and we’ll knock back a few together, no $600 variety though)

  7. I’m really taking umbrage at “Old wussie, douchey Ted … would have quoted Dante in the original Italian” There’s nothing wussie or douchey about Dante. Especially not The Divine Comedy.
    Lasciate ogni speranza, avvocato ch’entrate!
    Just sayin’.
    The song in the beginning sounded awfully familiar, a pastiche? If so, on what?
    I’m surprised that no-one mentioned the damaged hand until the proffessor brought it up.
    correct me if I’m wrong, but the broken scotch bottles all were 30 years old, but the double Ted got from YM was 35 years, right?
    Otherwise, a good enjoyable episode, keep ‘em coming. (“Thank you C&B”)
    And I hope Darell falls victim to the Serial Killer.

  8. Even though I feel like an idiot because of my spelling, I’ll continue.

    Upon the second watch:
    Additional callbacks: Lily’s crush on Robin, telepathic conversations, “That’s the dream” (Ted in Slap Bet [Canada in June, that’s the dream], Robin saying a hot guy telling you when you can pee being the dream in Mosbius Designs, are there more examples?),

    the mother’s driving gloves, Ted telling Barney he’s too liberal with a catchphrase (legendary was the last one I think when he was trying to make every night legendary because Quinn was stripping), pausing a fight, Gazzolas, and Marshpillow.

    Stretches: Marshall remembering different last words or first words (I love you from his father and skunk junk from Marvin), Karma, villain in the story (the captain and zoey), Robin getting excited by a fight.

    Not really a callback, but the mother having paid enough attention to Lily to know Marshall would hate that she thought he was from Wisconsin was a nice touch.

    Are they drinking Warmpiss beers when Darren is talking to Lily and Robin? I tried to get a good look, but I’m not an HD guy so I couldn’t be sure. I don’t think so, but it would have been awesome if it was.

    Hasn’t Ted committed grand larceny before? A french horn (if functional) definitely costs more than $600.

    Man did the mother’s eyes really pop in the dark van, wonder if she was using whatever product Ted was before he ran the naked man on that awful human being (Vicky I think?)?

    Douchemonkey will probably make it into the rotation of words I use from the show.

    Parrot Top was a good one liner, I wonder if you can get any more Traction out of that? We’ve seen Lily dressed as a parrot and Marshall loves props…

    But most importantly, holy crap, BUSINESS SCHOOL. How the bleep did I miss that? Huge clue as to why she would be in Econ 305. She was working on an MBA and didn’t have an economics background. It doesn’t really narrow down her age except it makes living with Cindy make more sense since they are both graduate students.

    • i totally did NOT notice the Business School. this episode really WAS a gem.

    • The beer was not Wharmpess but should have been!

      Other call backs:
      -Marshall’s belief in -Bigfoot (various episodes)
      -Bigfoot quitting smoking “Last Cigarette Ever”
      -Man versus machine “Subway Wars”
      -The “pause” feature “Come On”
      -Slap-bet (various)
      -Ted dropping the bottle scotch was very similar to his dropping ketchup bottle “Oh Honey”
      -lots of purple colors
      -tricycle as threesome reference “The Third Wheel”
      -getting picked up stranded by a white van “Milk”
      -Cleveland and Staten Island references
      -Gazzola’s Pizza “Duel Citizenship”
      -Marsh-pillow
      -Aldrin justice
      -Glen McKenna (fake booze used in previous episodes)
      -Barney’s public urination “Belly Full of Turkey”

  9. When this show first started, I told myself no matter what I’ll like the mother. If a man can sit down and tell a story to his kids for 9 years about a woman he must really love her. But now I can honestly say I love her. It’s not that I didn’t before but now it’s 120%. She’s amazing and I’m slightly annoyed that she’s in this disappointing season. But again she gives this season a breath of fresh air.

    I do think one of the reason she is so much better then teds past loves is because we are seeing her as herself completely. All of teds past girlfriends we met through Ted. We are meeting and getting to know her through his friends first. I like that.

    Also the mother saying she’s going to return the car and get it washed reminded me of Ted.

    I’m interested in seeing how the mother and robin get along.

    Finally, I liked lily and robins fight about lily being preoccupied during the wedding.

  10. Did I miss something? Why is the Mother driving back to Farhampton?She went there by train to be play at the wedding, found out she was going to get the boot by Darren, left, then what? She was driving in the same direction as Marshall was walking…and it’s Darren’s van, right? So did she use it to drive herself home when she quit the band? That still begs the question: why is she headed back to Farhampton? Not to confront Darren, because Marshall gave her that idea. I’m so confused!

  11. PS Solo, you mentioned how you think the Mother is a blend of Lily, Marshall, and Ted. Have you noticed that, physically, she seems like a blend if Robin and Lily? Robin’s hair colour and Lily’s doe eyes? To me, it’s an uncanny mix of the two.

    • yea i think we mentioned that at the end of last season that she looks so much like the girls. Which I think is kooky and cool.

    • Yeah, but she’s got her own qualities, too. In general, I think the Mother is a blend of both very familiar elements, and unique elements, as well as elements Ted has wanted in theory but hasn’t experienced in person. It’s a great mix, really. Physically, emotionally, stylistically, etc.

  12. Btw. Was I the only one that actually expected to see the tricycle belt?

    Totally dis-related to this episode, a discontinuity thought triggered a couple of episodes back, but I think I forgot to mention it at that time: no-one in the gang is native New Yorker, right? I just remembered Ted going on the roll about New York vs New Jersey when he and Barney pretended being visitors and picked up two chicks to show them New York.
    Any thoughts about that?

  13. Lilly and Barney are from New York, born and raised.
    Ted, Marshal, and Robin, are transplants from other places. Ted Just went on the rant because he loves New York that much. Also, the episode ‘Subway Wars’ explains how those who aren’t born in New York, become New Yorkers.

    • Lily, I think, is a New Yorker, but we don’t know if she’s from the 5 boroughs. Barney is from Staten Island, which is one of the 5 boroughs, but which even people in the Bronx thing isn’t “real” New York, but whatever. Manhattanites don’t think Bronx dwellers are “real” New Yorkers, and I’m sure people within Manhattan think that this or that area doesn’t count or whathaveyou.

      But yeah, those two are from New York. Ted’s lived there for 10-12 years, I think, basically since he moved in after college with Marshall and Lily.

  14. So I guess it is Just Robin and Ted who have yet to meet the Mother in the current time line. I thought this season would be harder to follow back and forth.

    That brings me to my next point. Barney was the first one to officially meet the mother. Now the Mother knows Ted from Econ class and her old roommate Cindy.

    One thing I have learned is that the writers have given the mother a very good memory. Bad news for Current Ted and Future married Ted. A wife with a great memory is bad news guys. Well for some guys.

    So we know the where and when on both of the Robin and Ted meetings with the mother. Spoiler news is all over the Net. But I have kept it mainly off the spoiler page and definitely off the Episode Review Pages.

    If you have not read the spoilers on Robin meeting the mother tell me how would you like to see them say hello to each other for the first time? In the Present like Lily and Marshall or in the Past like Barney?

  15. I told ya guys, all we needed was wait a little bit longer for a great episode to be shown!)

  16. Oh, by the way. For a second there, after Ted said “Wait!” I really thought he would give Barney the locket instead of that bottle.

    • Good Point, I thought the same thing. Here comes more drama. But instead we get a knock out punch that made me pause. Did Ted, again Ted just punch some guy so hard he hit the floor. I mean don’t mess with depressed Ted. Don’t mess with Ted unleashed. I guess he is ready to move to Chicago and start a new life as a Mixed Martial Arts Fighter or something.

      • Right, this is Ted who cried “My spectacles!” when “fighting” in the car with Marshall. Ted who claims to have only been in one fight in his life. Ted who got punched by a kid while trying to explain friendship bracelets at camp. Ted who got beat up by a girl goat. I could probably go on.

        But this is also the same Ted who sword fights with Marshall. The Ted who punches Barney in the junk. Ted who hits Bilson with a chair in the ETR. Ted who stupidly punches Doug the bartender in the face.

        You can build a pedigree either way…

  17. My thoughts on the episode aside, what is this Serial Killer y’all keep mentioning? Have I missed something?

    Also, can we review our slaps? Barney’s “fourth slap” outcry doesn’t seem canon to me, but I have a very hazy memory of the last 2.5 seasons.

    • Dolf has us convinced that there is a SK yet to be revealed on the show and that it will be the big twist.

      It is not the fourth slap.

      1. Marshall slaps Barney when Robin lies and tells Ted she is married. Even though it was the first slap, it doesn’t count because it was ruled premature and Marshall was penalized for it. Barney slaps him 3 times (I think, I just remember Marshall crying “You’re gonna cry.”

      2. Barney slaps Marshall after the intro to Robin Sparkle’s Let’s Go to the Mall video. This was ruled premature and for punishment, Marshall is awarded either 10 slaps right now, or 5 slaps to be doled out at any time. Barney chooses 5 and Marshall uses the first that night.

      3. The second slap occurs during Barney’s one man show. Marshall says, “That’s 2.”

      4. The third slap is Thanksgiving, er Slapsgiving. Marshall had a computer countdown and composed You Just Got Slapped for the occasion. That’s 3 (for the punishment).

      5. Slapsgving 2. After offering it to everyone else and then telling Barney there will be no slap, he slaps him. That’s 4.

      6. In order to take the Ducky Tie off, Barney agrees to add 3 slaps to the remaining one. Barney agrees and Marshall uses two slaps immediately.

      7. See 6.

      We have two left. Popular speculation is that one will be used to get Barney down the aisle (but who knows whether that will happen). I’m spoiler free but given how 2 slaps have occurred during Thanksgiving, it wouldn’t surprise me if they try and jam in another Slapsgiving somehow (though it will have to be a flashback or flashforward and I would find it forced.

      • Right, but in Bass Player Wanted, Barney says, “Oh god it’s the fourth slap.”

        If he had 4 AFTER Ducky Tie, and we’ve seen two, how is this the fourth? It leads me to believe, much like the Robin-telling-Barney-she-can’t-have-kids thing, that we’ve missed the third slap and it will be shown in flashback.

  18. Just an FYI the next new episode is set for January 13 and will run solid to the one hour finale March 31 per the website TV Line. So gear up for post Olympic post NCAA football Non stop HIMYM final run!

    Next weeks HIMYM has the mother in it…. A rerun of Coming Back.

    • First time commentator…long time reader excellent blog guys, loving how into this show you people are. Nobody in the UK bothers about this great show, which is a shame.

      This is great news only 2 weeks break for the remaining 11 episodes :) Good news for us viewers, not that the tv company here in England have even started showing Season 9 yet, luckily I have this thing called the internet!

      So is this the schedule we are looking at?

      Jan 13 Ep 14
      Jan 20 Ep 15
      Jan 27 Ep 16
      Feb 3 Ep 17
      Feb 10 No Episode
      Feb 17 No Episode
      Feb 24 Ep 18
      Mar 3 Ep 19
      Mar 10 Ep 20
      Mar 17 Ep 21
      Mar 24 Ep 22
      Mar 31 Ep 23
      Mar 31 Ep 24

      • Yes as of now that is correct. Thank you for not posting Episode Titles. We appreciate that very much. If you do a wiki web search for season 9 HIMYM that usually will give you spoilers but show the proposed schedule.

        That Second Episode of the New Year is going to be over the top. The 200th of a series is a big one and lots of reveals during that show.

        If you are a fan of HIMYM do not miss it.

      • Looks that way, yeah.

        VERY interesting that the finale will not coincide with any sweeps period the way it usually does. Anyone followed the ratings? Has the show been slipping?

        • Rough figures I found have 9m viewers on average for the first 8 seasons.

          A few Season 9 ratings:-

          Season Premiere – 9.91m
          Last Time in New York – 7.73m
          Knight Vision – 7.87m
          No Questions Asked – 7.63m
          Mom & Dad – 8.08m
          The Rehearsal Dinner – 7.91m
          Bass Player Wanted – 7.71m

          • I’m not surprised. It’s still doing decent numbers, but it’s not pulling in the kind of numbers it did before, so best not to use it for sweeps.

            • HIMYM is the second Best Sit Com on CBS behind The Big Bang Theory Still. So CBS does not have a need to end the show early. What they do need is to test market shows for the Fall now.

              They just don’t write them the way the audience wants I guess. I do not have a replacement show for HIMYM, on any network.

              • Nor I. Ending this show will close a chapter in my life, of sorts. Also, I’ll likely go back to my previous “no sitcoms” policy. Unless someone points me to a sitcom with an ongoing narrative and some heart.

                • i agree, I actually just finished watching the show FRIENDS (yes for the first time) and it actually made me so sad when the last episode ended. I had tears in my eyes. I watched all 10 episodes in about a 6-7 months and I was so sad when it ended.
                  HIMYM will be like that for me, but worse because i love it so much more and relate to the characters, but now I feel like I’m lose my 2 favorite loves at almost the same time :(

                  • I never got into the show Friends. I tried. SO they had 10 Seasons. I knew the show was around for a while.

                    • It was a good show, particularly when it started. It also had the sort of ongoing story dynamic (kinda) in the first and second season, what with the whole “will they/won’t they” thing with Ross and Rachel. By the end, though, I kinda felt like it had overstayed its welcome. I still enjoyed it, but they should’ve gone out on a high note.

                      This is actually kind of an issue with American TV. Shows just go on indefinitely until they die in the ratings and are abruptly canceled, or until they start dying and they write a hastily-thrown-together finale that’s kind of unsatisfying. I can count on one hand the number of TV shows that aren’t just “mystery/monster/joke-of-the-week” shows which have ended in a satisfying manner.

                      By contrast, shows I’ve watched from the UK are often either broken into coherent, stand-alone seasons, or tell a complete story in two to three seasons and then END. That’s IT. The story is over. You get a beginning, a middle, and an end. And when you ask “But then what happened,” the answer is “NOTHING happened. The story ended.”

  • The Mother