How I Met Your Mother "The Over-Correction" Review: Trapped in the Closet

How I Met Your Mother S08E10: "The Over-Correction"

Unlike the title character in A Weekend with Bernie, How I Met Your Mother isn’t dead after all. Yes, there've been times this season when it sure seemed like the writers were moving around a dead body, trying to trick us into believing it was alive; the series is no stranger to donning sunglasses and pretending to dance just it can collect its ratings and go home. But the past couple episodes have proven that HIMYM not only still has some life left in it, but that the show also still has a few tricks up its sleeve.

Some of HIMYM's best episodes have been the ones that dealt in misdirection. As an audience, we would become invested in one storyline while failing to notice that the show was working on something else. In the Season 4 episode "Shelter Island," we got so caught up Ted trying to convince Stella that Robin should be at their wedding that we failed to notice that Stella was really warning Ted that she didn’t want her ex-husband there out of fear that they’d rekindle their relationship... which is exactly what we realized had happened the second we saw Robin watching Stella and Tony on the ferry together. The Season 6 episode "Bad News" pulled us into a storyline about Marshall worrying that he was the reason he and Lily couldn’t conceive, while HIMYM hid a countdown that ticked away the moments until it was revealed that Marshall’s dad, Marvin, had passed away.

I have a hunch that "The Over-Correction" was one of these episodes. HIMYM was busy trying to hold our attention with one hand by concealing Robin, Ted, and Lily in various parts of Barney’s house, showing off the many humorous ways Barney hides his books, while the entire time hoping we weren’t paying attention to what the other hand was doing.

After Barney and Patrice continued to date, with Barney even showing up at Worldwide News to—gasp!—take Patrice out lunch, Robin became suspicious of Barney, telling the rest of the gang that she believed this was either Barney crying out for help or Barney trying to win her over one last time. While her friends told her that this was Barney over-correcting—going from being engaged to Quinn, a stripper he couldn’t trust, to Patrice, a very kind woman he could talk to about anything—Robin couldn’t drop the idea that there was something else going on. Seeing as how Robin promised her friends that she wouldn’t do anything drastic, I guess that breaking into Barney’s apartment with a drill isn’t drastic.

Once in Barney’s apartment, Robin began searching for his Playbook, the key to showing Patrice that Barney wasn’t the nice guy she believed him to be. Through Robin’s search, we discovered that Barney hides his copy of The Bro Code under a samurai sword and his copy of David Lee Roth’s biography behind a print in his kitchen. Robin’s search was interrupted when Barney arrived home, sending Robin to hide in his bedroom closet. With Ted’s help, Barney was coaxed out of the apartment (thanks to the lie that Hugh Hefner was in the lobby), and Robin returned to her search, finding the Playbook in a compartment opened by pushing Barney’s Stormtrooper. No, that’s not a euphemism for some Star Wars sex move—Barney’s life-sized Stormtrooper was actually the trigger to reveal this certain hiding spot.

With Ted’s Hefner ruse proving false, a disappointed Barney returned to his apartment, causing Robin to jump back into the closet. At first, Ted refused to distract Barney again so Robin could escape, but Ted reconsidered after Robin informed him that she'd found Ted's red cowboy boots in the very closet Robin was hiding in. In turned out that while Ted thought their friend Stewart had borrowed and kept them, Stewart had actually given them back to Barney, who in turn held onto them in hopes of proving that a guy could get laid while wearing red cowboy boots. Robin's probably not-idle threats against Ted’s beloved boots lured Ted back into the apartment, but when Barney showed up, Ted ducked into the kitchen closet. With both Ted and Robin trapped in separate closets, Robin decided to call the one person she knew could get them out: Lily.

Unfortunately for them, Lily was already in Barney’s apartment, hiding in the bathroom. Overwhelmed by the lack of privacy in her own apartment, Lily had started sneaking into Barney’s apartment to pump breast milk and catch up on Barney’s Real Housewives recordings—even the reunion episodes. Lily joined Robin in the bedroom closet, where she tried to convince Robin to get rid of the Playbook. Robin took Lily’s advice in her own way, dumping the Playbook on Barney’s bed where Patrice would find it.

To both Robin and Lily’s surprise, Barney didn’t try to lie his way out of his Playbook confrontation with Patrice, instead telling her everything about it while admitting that he was trying to change and become a better person. Patrice stormed out of the bedroom, and Barney followed her to the porch, where they had a heated discussion. Robin and Lily scurried out of Barney’s bedroom and joined Ted in the kitchen closet. When Barney and Patrice returned to the kitchen, Barney did something surprising—he tossed his precious Playbook into the garbage and set the whole thing on fire. He and Patrice reconciled, then left the apartment to explain to Barney’s superintendent why the smoke alarm had gone off.

Despite everything she saw while trapped in Barney’s apartment, Robin couldn’t drop the idea that Barney and Patrice were up to something, insisting that they hold an intervention for Barney. When Robin showed up for that intervention, she found that Lily, Marshall, and Ted had turned the tables, staging an intervention for Robin instead.

So what was the other HIMYM hand up to during this episode? I don’t think Robin’s crazy. I think Barney and Patrice are working on what will turn into Barney’s last big push for Robin. I’m not saying I don’t believe that Barney and Patrice could ever be a couple—I’m just saying that I don’t think that’s what we’re seeing. Oh, it’s what HIMYM wants us to believe, but here’s the episode’s big tell: The closed-door porch discussion between Barney and Patrice. HIMYM isn’t a show that pushes stuff out of earshot without reason. There’s always a “more about that later” attached. While we were busy watching Ted, Robin, and Lily duck into Barney’s kitchen closet, Barney and Patrice were talking about something important on his porch.

If you ask me, Barney knew that Robin was in his apartment. I don’t believe for a second that Barney wouldn’t notice that someone used a drill to get break in, or that a guy who often videotapes his bedroom doesn’t have cameras set up in other rooms. When he burned the Playbook, he wasn’t putting on a show for Patrice—he was doing it for Robin. If Barney does have a secret plan, and that secret plan works, he won’t need the Playbook anymore.

While everyone else was hiding in Barney’s apartment, Marshall was dealing with some serious issues of his own. His mother had come to town, and despite Lily’s best efforts, was staying at their apartment. Before her ordeal at Barney’s, Lily had been Marshall’s mom’s sounding board on the topic of the Widow Eriksen getting back into the dating world. Lily completely endorsed the idea, but she probably wouldn’t have if she'd known who Judy would turn to. Yes, Marshall’s mom hooked up with Lily’s dad. And, yes, Marshall saw it happen. Thanks to an enlightened speech by Barney, Marshall, and Lily realized that their single parents should be with each other if it made them happy... no matter how repulsed they were by the idea.



NOTES & QUOTES


– How does “Borrowny” stack up to “Swarley” on the list of greatest Barney nicknames?

– I’m surprised Ted didn’t put a “PROPERTY OF TED MOSBY” label on his red cowboy boots. Maybe he got the boots after Barney borrowed the labelmaker.

– Someone needs to make a montage of Robin yelling at Patrice. We can add “Can’t you do anything right, Patrice?” and “Why won’t you let me help you, Patrice?” to the growing list.

– Watching Ted date an imprisoned woman as his over-correction would have been a thousand times more interesting than watching him spend time with Victoria this season. How did they meet? Are you allowed to give blue French horns to girls in prison? Did he tell her he loved her over one of those prison phones? So many questions...

– Marshall attempting to make his fish humor edgy: “Flounder? I barely know her!”

– While the potato chip/mayonnaise salad that Marshall’s mom made was disgusting, I’m highly intrigued by the idea of gummy bear pancakes.

– Robin trying to tell Patrice about Barney’s darker side: “Barney is not who you think he is... He has a book of plays he uses to trick women into sleeping with him.” Patrice: “Oh, no way. Barney's my honey bear.” Robin: “Actually, uh, one of his plays is called The Honey Bear. He dresses up like Winnie the Pooh, and the next thing you know, his head is stuck in your pot.”

– Nice to know that Judy’s idea of a sophisticated man is Mickey wearing a “Vote for Ted” hoodie with no pants on.

– Robin trying to lure Ted back into Barney’s apartment: “What if I told you I was looking at your red cowboy boots right now?” Ted: “Describe them.” Robin: “They’re red, and they’re cowboy boots.” Ted: “That’s them!”

– Marshall rebuffing Mickey’s attempt to get him out of the closet: “It’s not going to work, Mickey. My bladder is as big as your betrayal.”

– Barney and Patrice both have "Shot Through the Heart" as the first song on their "Get Psyched" mixes. Even if they’re not really dating, they should at least be friends. Keep Not Moby away from both of them.

– Barney on Mickey and Judy hooking up: “Respect to Mickey since your mom’s a piece—she’s no Ted’s mom, but she’s a piece.”

– Lily revealing that the intervention was for Robin: “Sweetie sit down.” Robin: “Uh, only the person getting the intervention sits down...” Marshall, Lily, and Ted: "Yeahhhh... ” Robin: “Oh. Please tell me this is about my drinking.” [Lily hands her a scotch.] Robin: “Dammit.”

– Mickey describing his relationship with Judy: “We’re family... with benefits.”

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"If you ask me, Barney knew that Robin was in his apartment. I don't believe for a second that Barney wouldn't notice that someone used a drill to get break in, or that a guy who often videotapes his bedroom doesn't have cameras set up in other rooms. When he burned the Playbook, he wasn't putting on a show for Patrice—he was doing it for Robin. If Barney does have a secret plan, and that secret plan works, he won't need the Playbook anymore."

"I think Barney and Patrice are working on what will turn into Barney's last big push for Robin"

WOW, you were right!

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WHERE'S THAT MONTAGE? I NEED IIIIIIIIT!
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great review, thanks and great episode!
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Weekend at Bernie's, Bill! Can't you do anything right, Bill!?!

Well, I guess the rest of your review was pretty good.
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Family with benefits kinda made me think of incest which kinda freaked me out.
Swarley is the best Barney nickname of all time. Borrowney wasn't bad but come on it can't beat Swarley.
I loved that they had the same first song on their "Get Pysched" mixes. I agree they should at least be friends. Wait! What if somehow she does get to join the group? As like Barneys BFF that helps him score Robin and she works with Robin. She could be the goody-goody this group of people need. The moral compass to remind them, "Hey maybe not a good idea."
I loved that Barney was like, "She's a piece. I mean she's no Ted's mom but she's a piece." That was great! Ted's Mom and Barney - the greatest romance there never was.
P.S. I want someone on YouTube to make a Robin yelling at Patrice montage. We need to make that happen.
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I gotta agree, I think barney has something under his sleeve remember the episode when he and Quinn fake broke up just to screw around with ted, lily, marshall and robin how he knew what they were all gonna do and how everything was gonna play out, well this could be one of those same barney schemes and it all probably began with when he told robin hes gonna stop trying, he knew about robin's lobster story and knew she would wanna try and get him back, also wasn't it convenient that he kept just missing robin in the apartment, like he knew where she was the whole time...though I could be completely wrong haha
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I'm new to the series but been catching up on netflix. Is it possible the Mother could be Barney's sister (from his father)? She is mentioned -not presented- in the 'Leyendaddy' ep as a college student. The Mother was in Ted's econ class and he meets Her the day of Barney and Robin's wedding.
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Could be, he always calls Barney "Uncle Barney" when talking to his kids, it was always assumed it was an honorarium but it could be that he's literally their Uncle.
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This episode was so much better than most of the others this season. I liked how they brought back the red cowboy boots (and why Barney had them) and stewart and the intervention thing. I didn't like the Marshall and Lily's parents storyline... I suspected it was going to happen right in the beginning, when Lily said that the house was going to be crowded, but I didn't want to believe it. But I did like the closet storyline.
Sigh. I used to want Barney and Robin to get together, but thats sort of faded away. And even though I don't think Barney and Patrice are actually dating (because we know what Barney is going to marry Robin) a part of me really wants them to get together. And the Robin yelling at Patrice used to be really funny, but it's getting old... XP
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Barney scheming to get Robin is such a cheap ploy, if that's the route they go down then it says Barney hasn't changed and really isn't ready for Robin - they've already broken up over who they were, so if they're going to be together again they can't just do the same thing. Barney had a taste of a life more than what he had been, alone in who he was, and lost that so it seems like if he's not chasing something more then he's a hollow shell of a character and neither he nor Robin are worth watching on this show anymore, they become one-note cardboard cutouts who stopped being people seasons ago. I don't think that's what this show is after, I don't think Barney is looking to spend the rest of his life with Patrice but I don't buy that it's just a cheap scheme and I surely don't see the Patrice character going along with that.

Anyway, this was a fun episode and survived not moving the main story along unlike most episodes this season. Marshall's mom and Lily's dad was ugly only in that they let loose the full skeeviness of Chris Elliott.
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though patrice would do ANYTHING that involved helping robin so that could be her reason to be in on it haha
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I have been hard on the show this season, but the last couple episodes have been very funny and the plot hasn't totally sucked. That's really all I ask of my comedies, so keep it up HIMYM
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Great Review!
I was thinking the same thing, but I wasn't really sure... Maybe Barney is ploting with Patrice a way to propose to Robin? I don't know I'm really bad with theories.
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What would be funny, if Patrice and Barney were in the long-con since way back. That perhaps he got Patrice that gig (or they just met a couple of seasons ago) as part of a con to get Robin to realize her feelings or something.

As, I know Barney admitted a while back (at least to the audience) that he had real feelings. I just don't recall if that was before or after we met Patrice.
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yes , the only possible outcome for the Barney - Patrice storyline is that those two are plotting a way in order that Barney gets Robin back , but not just for one last night together , but for the rest of their lives
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Nice episode funny and bringing a lot of stuff for later (but i don't know what yet!)
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Remember when this show was about how Ted meets the mother of his children? It's kind of sad he is now the b character in his own stories.
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next week episodes (2 part) is called 'the final page'... could be hinting at the final page of the playbook used to get Robin. we know Robin and Barney end up together shows been hinting at it (and showing us) for over a year now. Also i think the series has gone down hill these last 2 seasons.
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"There's always a "more about that later" attached" and that's exactly why I love this show so much. The narrative is fantastic and the characters are so belieavable is ridiculous. Sometimes I think: "they don't exist", but every single episode seems to convince me that they do, that somewhere in NY, Lily, Marshall, Ted, Barney and Robin are drinking and just chatting, Marvin on Lily's lap... Anyway, I know, I have issues lol. This was such an incredible episode, and, I laughed A LOT! I've missed this. Quotes like "Bon Jovi standing next to a Slippery when wet sign" and moments like Lily and Robin's hiding in the closet were fantastic. And yes, I do think Barney knows it, and put on a show for Robin. It makes sense, come on, Patrice is more in love with Robin than Barney.

CAN'T YOU DO ANYTHING PATRICE? (ps.: they use this joke a lot. It. Is. Always. Funny).
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that;s a good point, it;d be hard to imagine barney wouldn't notice them all in his apartment
and i have to say, gummy bear pancakes are delicious
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I kind of really want Barney to marry Patrice now...
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Damnit it ! Stop smothering me Patrice. You scratched THE leather? AHH ! Can you do anything right Patrice? hahahahah.. You hang up, no. You hang up. Hang up you little BITCH! hahah.. This episode was excellent. I couldn't agree more with this entire article! Last couple of episodes gave me faith in this show once again... and last night's episode was Legend.. wait for it.. MERRY!
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C'mon! No mention of Ted saying Jon Bon Jovi was at the lobby standing right beside a "Slippery when wet" sign? THAT WAS HILARIOUS!
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Yes! Totally agree with your theory! While watching, I kept thinking Barney had left a clue to Robin during his speech towards the end of the episode. He even looked at her while saying "Sometimes you go for someone you'd never expect, but that doesn't make it wrong. Doesn't everyone deserve to be happy?"AND THE PURSE! No way he could not have noticed that after Robin left it along his path. Maybe this is what Patrice and Barney really discussed outside on the balcony leading to his next action of burning The Playbook. Hmm, sneaky, sneaky.
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I admit that your theory hadn't occurred to me, but I like it. I hope you're right, because I honestly have disagreed with your opinion that the last two episodes of HIMYM have been redemptive. I don't feel like there's enough going on to move the story forward on the surface, and I'm just not laughing as much as I'd like. Given the likely dearth of remaining episodes, I really hope that either you're right that something else is going on or that things get moving more obviously before the break.
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I never read a review of yours before, sir. I loved it and you surprised me with some observations about the episode which is nothing less than impressive to me! Right next to Price and Cory right away ;)
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Is it actually allowed for lily and Marshall's parents to date? They'd technically be cousins if they got married right?
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They'd be step-siblings. I think it only breaks like, Biblical laws, not real ones.
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No, if their parents got married it would make Lily and Marshall step-siblings.
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Well ok, step siblings. Thats still kinda weird right?
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It's super weird. But not all that uncommon in TV shows. In one episode of Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Will's mom and his fiance Lisa's dad get married when Will and Lisa decide to postpone their wedding cause they aren't quite ready, and their parents decide not to "waste" the wedding. Will and Lisa understandably freak out just like Lily and Marshall do, but it doesn't stop their parents from tying the knot.
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Seriously .. who cares what they were talking about on the balcony?? This show has become so bad, that they've made me dislike Robin, who used to be one of my favourites. I mean .. the way she keeps treating Patrice - what a bitch!!!
The way they imply that someone as big as Patrice, could never be in a relationship with Barney makes me nauseous.
If they had any decency, they would make Patrice and Barney end up together ... if only that was the real mis-direction.
PS To the writer of this article - when reviewing an episode, you know you don't have to repeat exactly what happened in the episode. We've all watched it!
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Robin was and always will be my favorite! <3
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She was also my favourite .. but now she's become a caricature of her former self ... and a bitch with 3 capital B's to boot.
So sad.
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Dude, chill.

Patrice might end up as the mother.
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lol .. I am very chilled .. I may have added a few too many exclamation marks. Difficult to show emotion over text :)
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A couple things. First, I don't think they're implying that Patrice couldn't be in a relationship with a guy as good looking and successful as Barney. It's more that Barney has traditionally had values that would conflict with that situation--values they have universally reviled throughout the run of the show. I don't think they need to have Barney end up with Patrice to treat their relationship with respect, and while it's true that Robin treats Patrice badly, maybe Barney is not the only one who needs redemption.

Second, contrary to your baseless assumption, not everyone who reads these reviews watched the episode before doing so, and many people could use a refresher on what happened. Plus, "the writer of this article," whose name (Bill) is above for anyone to see, was recounting the events to make a point, even if it's one with which you don't agree.
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I think if Bill (I was just too lazy to scroll up to check the name :-P) is right (and I suspect he is) and the mis-direction is, in fact, that Patrice is in some way helping Barney get Robin .. in my eyes it would vilify their relationship. Wouldn't that make the audience think: "Oh .. that's why he was with her! Now that explains everything". I know it would irritate me immensely. Then again .. personal opinion. It might not bother anyone else but me.

PS: re. your second point ... what in the world would be the point of reading a review before watching the episode? How can you get a refresher on what happened .. before you watch the episode? I don't get it. But, even if that was the case .. stating the story, fact by fact, wouldn't that spoil the whole episode for these people?
Anyway, I was just suggesting that the best reviews do not need to state line-by-line what happened in the episode, but should rather concentrate on the author's opinion of the episode. I think that's some pretty good constructive criticism .. you don't need to get all defensive about it! :-D And btw .. I do agree with his opinion!
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hmm, I think that when ekwartler said some people use it as a refresher, he/she was referring to the people who read the article 2/3 days later and don't remember it very well.. or maybe that's just me lol, I watched it like 20 min ago and forgot a few things..

Also, I disagree with the Robin being a bitch thing.. I find it hilarious! I seriously laugh when she yells at Patrice, it is supposed to be funny, you might as well enjoy it..
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It's weird as much as I'm a Barney and Robin fan - I really like him with Patrice, even if it is just something he is doing to become a better person I like this twist.
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Did you just say "A Weekend with Bernie"? I always thought the movie was called "Weekend at Bernie's".
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I really liked this episode. It was riveting,funny, new and added to the story line. Hopefully, HIMYM keeps getting better from here.
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I'm sorry but once upon a time this show was about Ted following him on his quest for his future wife. But when did the show shift to making Ted look like a complete tool. More focus on Barney and what seems like his quest for the one. Ted was a very funny, mushy, romantic character. They seem like they laid on the piety party for Ted so much that I see Ted as this poor sap who nothing seems to go right for. Also I do wish we could have seen more time with Victoria. Enjoyed the episode overall.
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As much as I have NOTHING against the show focusing on Barney, I gotta hand it down to you: the show used to be about Ted chasing his beloved one. It was really fun to see Ted's every week flings and their repercussion. I miss this. But still, Barney is fantastic, and I don't think Ted's been treated like a complete tool, he's just been left out.
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Oh don't get me wrong the Barnacle is amazing. But this is the story of Ted its just gotten a little ridiculous that's all.
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This is my main problem with HIMYM over the past couple of seasons. I mean, don't get me wrong, I LOVE Swarley; however, Ted is supposed to be the main character.
Right now, it feels like IF this season is the last one, we're either going to be shown "the mother" during the very last scene or we'll be given very few episodes to "get to know her" before the series ends (unless it's a character we've already seen).
I'm not cool with what could possibly be the last season spending more time on a side-character's quest for love (no matter how awesome he is), when the premise of the show has always been about how Ted met his wife. And though it's been implied that Ted meets his wife at/after Barney and Robin's wedding, I still don't feel like that possibility makes up for all the time and focus that has been put on the Barney/Robin relationship.
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Very Much AGREE! I But I kinda want them to explore Ted and his future wife's relationship. I feel like We are going to see who is wife is have 10 minutes of them together then roll credits. That would very much suck.
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I really didn't care for this episode, but I hold out hope that your theory may be correct. This episode felt incredibly forced, especially with the overuse of repetitive gimmicks (Ted labels, Robin's yelling at Patrice). Time will tell. I love the show, so I really hope you're right and they're actually doing something clever with this situation.
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