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How I Met Your Mother S09E09: "Platonish"


Flashback episodes are a normal part of the TV landscape, used to fill in important backstories that've somehow affected someone or something in present time. How I Met Your Mother is technically an entire series built out of flashbacks, given that Ted is relating all of the stories we're seeing to his two children in the year 2030, but the series itself doesn't necessarily use flashbacks the way most series use them. HIMYM has made a name for itself in the way it jumps through time, sometimes flashing back for a joke punchline, sometimes flashing forward to hint at something to come that will inevitably be mishandled (the goat) or that will shape the rest of the series (Barney and Robin's wedding). The series jumps around a lot, but it's not all that common for the series to have entire episodes that take place in the past as "Platonish" did tonight. 

The episode, which fell in the series timeline sometime between the Season 8 episodes "Splitsville" and "The Stamp Tramp," according to co-creator Carter Bays, flashed back to just before Barney proposed to Robin, when Ted's relationship with her was being questioned by Marshall during a Harlem Globetrotters game against the Washington Generals. Of course, Ted and Marshall were the only two fans of the Washington Generals in attendance, and in between yelling at the team, the referees, and the coach, Marshall attempted to convince Ted that he and Robin were not platonic friends, but only 20 minutes away from getting back together at any given time. It was an odd episode setup, one which completely confused me for most of the episode, until the moment came when Barney hit on the Mother in a drugstore as part of one of his silly "Challenge Accepted!" bits. 


"Platonish" had several reasons for being framed this way. It showed viewers how Barney met the Mother and why he decided to make the bold move to concoct The Robin and win her back. The Season 8 episode "The Final Page" both explained Barney's extravagant plan to propose, and the outcome of the play, but we never knew what pushed him to do it in the first place. There had been hints dropped here and there about his lingering feelings for Robin, but Barney was also thisclose to marrying Quinn not that long before he proposed to Robin. And until tonight, the writers never really explained what happened for Barney to decide to make his move. 

Most of us probably wrote it off thinking we'd never find out what changed for Barney, but tonight we learned that it was the Mother who pushed him to right his wrongs, to fix the problems in his life, to win back the woman he let get away all those seasons ago. The fact that the Mother is the reason Barney and Robin are where they are is remarkably fun, and possibly gives us a hint as to why she is at the wedding in the first place. But despite knowing all of this, she's still just a mysterious stranger Barney met in a drugstore when picking up samosas and diapers for Robin and Lily, and she's still just a friendly face on the train who shared her cookies with Lily on the way to Farhampton. 


Everything we know about the Mother—including that she had a boyfriend six months ago, but that she didn't think he was the One—we know from Lily and Barney's encounters, the two scenes in which she's interacted with Ted (in "Coming Back" and last week's "The Lighthouse" when he proposed), and the few tidbits Rachel Bilson's Cindy blurted out about her so long ago (and of course whatever Ted's mentioned over the last 8 seasons during his story to his kids). It's nice to see that we're learning a bit more about the Mother, and it's nice to see that she's been influential in the overall storyline of the series as well. I sincerely hope that Barney runs into her again and that she becomes his personal life coach, because so far she's done a really great job.

But that's not the only reason "Platonish" was set in the past. It also provided some background for Ted's impending move to Chicago. He'd received a phone call from his former boss, Hammond Druthers—once again played by Bryan Cranston in what I believe is his first on-screen post-Breaking Bad role—and I applaud the writers for refraining from making any Walter White references. Cranston was hilarious as he begged Ted to move to Chicago to join his firm, and now we know why Ted is ready to pack up his belongings and head to the Windy City immediately following the wedding. While he was beaten down by Hammond's insistence and originally told him he'd think about the offer, he ended the episode by declining the job because he finally believed that maybe his relationship with Robin wasn't as over or as platonic as he'd made himself believe. We can now infer that once Robin accepted Barney's proposal of marriage, Ted realized his mistake and most likely called up Druthers and accepted the job offer as a way to escape.


All of these flashbacks were told by Barney as a way to stop Robin from crying in the present timeline after finding out that her mother wasn't going to attend her wedding. And for a series that usually favors the quick time-jumps flashing back and forth between the past, present, and future when telling stories, this full-episode flashback was pretty great. It didn't really move the present story forward, but it allowed the gang to spend some time at MacLaren's, allowed Marshall to interact with Ted, and it introduced another member of the principal cast to Cristin Milioti's Mother, while filling in a lot of blanks. I could probably point out how silly and unbelievable some of Barney's accepted challenges were, but the story came full circle when he met the Mother on his last challenge (which was actually just an errand neither Robin or Lily wanted to do) and we've seen that although Barney is still the Barney we all know and love, his challenges are no longer motivated by wanting to sleep with anything with boobs, but rather by his desire to make Robin happy. And that makes me happy.



NOTES

– Some of Barney's challenges: Get a woman's number while only speaking dolphin, pick up a woman while wearing a trash bag and without using the letter E (he got surprisingly good at that), and pick up the woman waiting for Ryan Gosling after convincing her he was Ryan Gosling after plastic surgery. 

– “Check your voicemail, I think you’ve missed some calls!” —Ted, to the referee during the Globetrotters game

– “I need you to take a year, a full year, and just be celibate. You know I’m right.” Robin, to the woman who gave Barney her number after he talked to her like a dolphin

– Can the Mother be my life coach, too?

thekaitling:list:himym-how-do-you-feel-about-platonish/

 

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 3/31/2014

Season 9 : Episode 24

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So nice to be away from that damn wedding for a change. That alone makes this the best episode of the season.
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“I need you to take a year, a full year, and just be celibate. You know I’m right.”

The best part.

Overall I'm enjoying this season.
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asian kid "yelling" was the best part of this episode
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Credit where credit is due: they took their sweet sweet time, but season 9 finally delivered an all-around great episode after the season premiere. So where are all these characters (matured but still entertaining Barney, conflicted but not entirey laughable Ted, scheming but not always about sex Lily, actually present Marshall, human-(and woman)-like Robin) in the NOW? I'd really like to have them back. (And the Mother too. She's still awesome, and far too good to only show up for 2-3 minutes every four weeks or so.)

Oh, and an additional shout-out to the ONE WHO CALLS! Great job series, now try not to relapse next week.
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Regarding what you said about why the mother will be at the wedding, remember that Cindy recommended her band to Ted last season when the DJ fell through. So she's there to be the bass player.
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My version of how Robin met the mother: We've seen already Robin's getting cold feet about the wedding, so maybe the mother accidentally goes into her room in an attempt to avoid some creepy dude that's been hitting on her and finally convinces Robin to marry Barney.

My version of how Marshall met the mother: After eating a restaurant with Daphney right before getting to the Farhampton Inn, Marshall goes to the bathroom and Daphne tells him she'll meet him in the car. Marshall asumes Daphney will take marvin to the car and they both leave Marvin at the restaurant. The mother finds Marvin and takes him care of him until Marshall comes back for him.

My version of how Ted met the mother: Robin and Barney both introduce him with a "Haaaaaaave you met Ted?" right before she plays at the wedding. The hit it off after chatting for a while and then she goes on stage. That's when we see the one shot we've seen of Ted looking at her at the bar. Before the wedding finishes, he goes to the train station to leave to Chicago before his friends find out. He feels bad not saying goodbye to his friends and regrets not being able to talk to The Mother again. That is until he sees her at the same train station just moments later and she convinces him to go back to the wedding and stay in NY.
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Ted meets Mother in Trains station :)
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I think this gives us a hint of how well the mother will fit in the gang...
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So nobody figured out the terrific reference with the dolphin challenge and the joke about touching his blowhole?
Neil Patrick Harris voices the arch enemy of the titular penguins in Nickelodeon's Penguins of Madagascar. He is named Dr. Blowhole... And he's a dolphin...
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I don't understand why there are so many people complaining about Ted pining over Robin or how they are making the whole season about the wedding... come on, haven't they noticed that the wedding is just an excuse to explain a lot of what happened in the past so we can get to the wedding??
are we not watching the same show???
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If the mother will actually be at the wedding I expect a "have you met Ted?" introduction.
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Srsly people. What happened to this show. Are they gonna drag this wedding the entire season? Crappy..
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Yes. It's been repeatedly said that the entire final season takes place during the wedding weekend!! Not crappy at all. Still one of the best shows ever.
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Well ok, thanks for the info. I still think that is kinda crappy :)
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I can NOT wait for the final Slap Bet slaps. I need more slaps! They can't leave Barney's face unslapped when there are slaps to be had!
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It is obvious that everyone in the gang will meet the mother before Ted does. So we can just sit and wait for Robins interaction with her.
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Okay, the Mother is in the wedding band. Remember how there was the argument in an episode over whether to have a DJ or a band? Barney and Robin picked the DJ, and he fell through at the last minute. Ted, on the subway, bumped into his old girlfriend, with her new girlfriend and a baby, and she said that her roommate was in a band and suddenly had a cancellation for that weekend. This roommate was already established to be the Mother.
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If memory serves me correctly, and I have seen it a few times, Barney and Robin picked a band. Teddy Westside wanted a DJ. In fact he made the comment of how would you like Kool and the Gang to play at your wedding where Robin was like yes and then he rattled of 5 or 6 other bands. When he was asked how he could do this, he said. "Easy, hire a DJ" where Robin said no, get off it already. The reason he hired the mothers band is because the other band canceled and he bumped into the mothers ex roomate on the train and told her this, where she stated, "my ex roomate is a bass player in the best wedding band in the tri state area. I do have one question though. If she is playing in the band, why did she leave to get to Farhampton 2 days before the wedding and where is she staying? And if she was to do this, wouldn't the rest of the band have also come a bit early? I mean seriously? The Hamptons are one the most expensive places in the country. She would have to be spending more even in a dumpy hotel in that kind of area being represented. More then she would ever make playing a wedding gig with a full band.
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Its like everyone's forgotten that episode or something...
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Is anyone refuting this..?
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A few more notes:

-the return of the "general/major/captain" joke between Ted & Robin. Love those!
-Ted speaking for the audience when he kept asking Marshal "Why are we still talking about this?"
-The mother is AWESOME!
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I wonder if we'll ever know how & why she was in that St. Patrick's party (in season 3, right?). Because Ted & the yellow umbrella & his lost phone(!!)
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I have heard that a few eps will be from her perspective, and I hope that this is one of them.
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Can we please move on from the Ted being obsessed with Robin part of this story. My god I have never seen such a pitiful character in tv history. The time that they have wasted on this series on Ted pinning for Robin is just mind numbing. You would think that a grown man knowing that she is going to marry someone else would finally concede that it's not gonna happen between them.
At least we got to see Marshall interact face to face with the others, they have really put a crappy story line on him this year.
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I agree that Ted should have stopped obsessing over Robin a few seasons ago and yes, he is a pitiful tv character! Until mid of this episode I was annoyed with the writers that they still have the nerve to keep playing with the idea thatTed might end up with Robin after all, even though this is not going to happen! But, this episode was not about that. It was about filling the gaps and backing up the foundation of the current story.
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This episode was amazing!! And Bryan Cranston is the freakin man. And the mother was awesome! And the globetrotters game and Marshall!!
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I love how Marshall and Ted root for The Generals, even though they haven't won a game in 40 years.
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"refraining from making any Walter White references"? Haven't you noticed the changing tones, the bone-chilling yet empty threats, the megalomania?! That was Walter/Heisenberg talking to Ted!
Did you watch BB before?
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To be fair, the character of druthers did that a bit too.
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Yes, I have watched Breaking Bad. But I was actually referring to direct references to the show, because if you didn't watch Breaking Bad, you wouldn't have thought anything about his change in tone.
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i havent watched bb and i had no idea bout that "reference" so yeah, u r rt
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Agreed
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This episode was probably great, but I guess the show is just not doing it for me anymore...

I mean, the Ted - Robin thing again, the come back of the challenge accepted (which is always nice but it's like they try to make an episode on everything that worked in the past... come up with some new things, damn it!), the mother looking more like a *** to me (thinking to know everything on everybody and talking with that condescendant way, hiding the arrogant intention),...
Just not doing it for me anymore.
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I didn't like the condescending "I think you're just unhappy but now I will tell you that everything is going to be OK so you can have a life altering experience" thing either, BUT this was being said TO the man who has done everything horrible possible to seduce women, including earlier that night. I think he seems like a much bigger *** in this episode, and the women who did give him their numbers seem like total morons. A guy "speaking" Dolphin. Where is the text equivalent of facepalm when we need it.
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I've been the guy trying to defend this show for this "somewhat uninteresting" season.

And I've been waiting for the kind of episode that will blow me away. This wasn't it. It's not that this wasn't a good episode, it's just that it wasn't HIMYM in its glory days. The only reason this episode wasn't as bad as the previous ones is because we got to see the bar, and the apartments, and hear Barney's "Challenge accepted!" as he ran off with a big smile on his (and our) face.

Seriously, the moment we saw Robin, Ted and Lily at the bar, maannn the whole show just changed. It became HIMYM again. Seriously, it just makes you smile seeing the gang drinking beer at that bar again because the hotel-scenes at Farhampton are just...not HIMYM. They would be good scenes if they weren't gonna be in 24 episodes.

Still, a decent episode.
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Overall I thought it was a good episode, mostly because of the second half. It was really fun to see Barney run into the Mother (and to know that he was actually the first one to meet her) and try to hit on her, but I especially loved the fact that because of her, Barney decided to make one final play for Robin. I love that she was the reason Barney decided to stop playing games and be with the woman he loves. She gave him just the push he needed, and I can't wait until Barney sees her again at the wedding. I already loved the Mother but this just made me love her more.

I am a little tired of the show continually bringing up the Ted/Robin relationship, but I know that in order to truly settle it we have to witness a little more of the heartbreak that Ted went through when Robin and Barney got engaged. In all honesty Ted should be over Robin, especially after she explicitly told him she DID NOT LOVE HIM, but some people can't fully move on until they have no choice. And until Robin and Barney are officially married, Ted can't move on. I know Marshall was telling Ted to go after Robin because he wanted to win the $5 bet with Lily, but I feel like that was the worst advice to give to someone that YOU KNOW, has already had a hard time letting go. Ted seemed like he was trying to move past his feelings for Robin, but as soon as Marshall told him he was only 20 minutes away from getting that happiness with her, I knew he would revert back. Realistically, if any of us were friends with Ted we would have bashed him in the head a looooonnnggg time ago and told him to "GET THE F#%& OVER IT!"
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His friends have repeatedly bashed him in the head to move on lol. Marshal also said he needed that 5 bucks
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I'm guessing since the gang will meet te mother before ted, we'll have another episode showing robin meeting the mother (who doesn't go see a wedding band before they hire them) and this will probably be robin saying she isn't sure if it'll even happen and the mother will help her through it.
And then I think Marshall will 'misplace' Marvin, where Marvin will be found in the band's equipment and the mother will find him and also then tell marshall that taking teh judge position was the right thing but not telling lily was the bad thing.
When Robin goes to throw the bouquet, Lily will scare everyone away except for the mother and she will fall backwards into Ted. Then the last thing you will hear is the mother saying to the kids 'And thats how I met your Father'.
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That was my though (below) as well! (not the exact details) but I thought that when Marshall finally meets the mother, he is done pushing Robin and Ted and realizes that he just met the girl for Ted.
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It would also be good if they find that her ex left his girlfriend for her, and that the girl he dumped was Robin's friend from the first episode. This meant that the reason robin met the gang was because of the mother, and the mother only met ted because robin had met/married barney.
Also, I hope the talk with barney and the mother also made her realise she had to dump her current boyfriend, so barney is the reason ted and the mother can be together.
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Wow, you're good. Way better foresight than the writers! I hope this happens now. Because that story with Robin and that crying woman was soooo random and if it didn't have a "deeper meaning" it was such a waste of time.

I wish she (Mother) would just meet Ted instead of all this HIGHLY unlikely stuff before.... but what can you do. At least running into Robin, Marshall and Lily at the wedding or wedding-related trains could happen, but randomly meeting Barney in NYC.... Nooooo...... I know the show isn't about realism, but... really.
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I liked the episode. Barney's challenges were stupid but fun and the mother was awesome. :D
I like that they mention old stuff (Marshall's funk band) or show old characters again (Druthers).
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Final Episode..... Barney says to the Mother at the wedding.....have you met Ted.....?
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Maybe he says it to her and Ted has walked away. After all, he meets her at the train station.
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Ok, I'm going to start with the best parts about this episode.
I love Bryan Cranston. His acting was great. I sometimes heard a bit of Walter White when he tried persuade Ted, but heck, I don't mind :)
I liked the fact that the mother was present and that she had something to do with Barney's proposal, even though the way she set him straight was a bit weird.
Also, I'm glad we got to see the pub again. I miss that setting.
Now on to the things I wasn't too fond of...
I'm so over the whole Robin and Ted thing. Come on writers, we get it, he really loved her but this storyline should've been closed by now if you don't want us to feel bad about Robin marrying Barney instead of Ted.
I'm also over the whole wedding thing. Now don't get me wrong, I love Barney and Robin together, I rooted for them in previous seasons. I know that this season is about their wedding because it's also when Ted meets the mother and whatnot. But the conclusion of every episode this season has been: Robin and Barney have both grown and are now the perfect couple and should get married. I think we get the picture.
And again, if the Ted-Robin thing had been closed by now you wouldn't have to convince us in the same way over and over that Robin belongs with Barney.
I hope that the next episodes won't go the same way. Just my opinion.
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The part with Barney and the mother was great but bringing back Ted's obsession with Robin made the episode annoying at times.By the way I loved the return of Bryan Cranston as Ted's boss.


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This was a great episode! I mean, I haven't laughed this hard at an episode of HIMYM since last season's the Ash tray episode. Why? Because this week HIMYM went back to basics - the gang was at McLaren's, Barney still did funny challenges (my fav one was the one without having to use an E), Marshall and Ted were having a good quality bro time, so were Lily and Robin, the old apartment, Hammond Druthers, Major jokes...and of coarse the scenes with the mother! A++++++++!
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OK, this may sound strange and is probably wrong since I'm a guy...

But I'm willing to give the girl that gave Dolphin-Barney her number a pass.

She probably figured what was going on: the guy was either trying to be creative, was in some sort of bet, or crazy. Being handsome, clean, confident, and in a suit she probably played the odds of "crazy" as rather small and rolled the dice.

So depending on how you look at it: skanky and desperate... OR acknowledging the guy's confidence and creativity. She was cute, so had probably heard all of the cliche pick-up lines / methods before; this was different.
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I had the same thought, but I think the writers just figured she was so desperate for any male interaction that she gave her # to a guy speaking dolphin
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In reading the review, it dawns on me that I don't like the Mother in this one, she's a plot contrivance with no justification - she has no past, no connection to the protagonist, is seen as a lesser-than (a woman, in this case) and yet she somehow has all the insight in the world, all the understanding and the right words needed to save the day without doing an ounce of work to get there.

Also, how exactly can Barney be telling Robin and Lily about a conversation between Ted and Marshall that he wasn't there for? They need to start color-coding these flashbacks to explain who is telling what story to whom.
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The story combination worked... Old-Ted was describing to his kids what Barney told him and Old-Ted decided to layer what HE was doing at that moment (at the 'game) because his conversation with Marshall actually flowed well with Barney's conclusion.

It's like, as a father you're telling your kids a mis-adventure your dead wife (their dead mother) had on Valentines day which culminated in her realizing she didn't just want to date you and she wanted to MARRY you one day. But she was embarassed so she didn't tell you about the misadventure for weeks/months. Meanwhile you decide to layer YOUR story about that SAME Valentines day because that was the day you were trying to visit her parents to ask for her hand in marriage and had deep conversations with your friend and her father. It's all related.
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But that's not how people would tell it, they wouldn't tell a story about another person telling a story and intertwine with their own side-story within the context of another's storytelling.
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Ted has never been a reliable narrator and this is definitely not the first time Future Ted has done something like this. I don't know that you can actually be upset by it.
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I wasn't upset by it, I was annoyed by the stupidity of them rooting for the Washington Generals, and by the cheapness of having the Mother magically know the exact right thing to say with zero background on the matter. I don't think you can chalk it up to narrator bias though on this series, usually Ted is clearer when he's telling a story from multiple perspectives.
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Best episode of the season for me. This is what I expected to see when they announced this one-weekend concept. Reminded me of some old episodes
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Watch the remainder of the series without mentioning how bad this season is and how good show used to be?

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I'm growing to like the Mother
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I didnt like this episode... I love to see the gang outside the weadding, I´m so tired of the weadding weekend thing... but I didnt like that the mother is the one who talk to Barney about Robin... it´s so "deux ex machina" I love Barney and Robin´s couple, I have always do, but I can´t stand that a anonymous and know-it-all woman is the one that made them be together... the mother lost a lot of points for me this week.
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An anonymous person didn't make them be together, she just helped Barney to realize what he already knew.
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Didn't Barney's Dad do that in Hopeless? Seems to negate that scene
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I think Barney's dad just helped him to see that he wasn't really happy living the crazy lifestyle. The mother helped him see WHO he wanted the better lifestyle with.
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the globetrotter game was awesome..

a couple episodes ago I said we needed ore clips with the Mother and had a troll pop up telling me they hadn't met yet, she wasn't going to be on, "Deal wit it" (wonder where that guy went and how happy HE is right about now? two episodes in a row!)

LOVED seeing Druthers and while I'm also happy they didn't make any Walter White references which just would have seemed weird given the call, I wouldn't have minded the Heisenberg hat hanging on a coatrack in the background.. a subtle, NOT in your face nod to Walter White.

Loved the episode just because we got to see McLarens again, and the apartment.. all the familiar settings that they did away with for an entire season at the wedding. (Not to mention seeing Marshall interacting with someone other than Daphne.)
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Haha, who cares if they haven't met yet!? They still haven't met but we get to see her! Yay!
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I know! just from her brief scenes she's already one of the best characters on the show and her flash forwards with Ted have been awesome. not sure why anyone would want to stifle that for... what? more "love triangle" with Ted Barney and Robin? or.. Maybe more road tripping with Marshall and Daphne? Oh I know.. how about more Lily with this seasons catch phrase "Thank you Linus"

We've invested years in this show and from the looks of it, they'll wind it up with him meeting her and stop there. so to get some sort of payoff, these flash forwards are needed just so we get to see they have amazing chemistry and it makes the whole journey worthwhile.
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Exactly how I feel! I am THRILLED that the show will end with them meeting. I just LOVE the flashforwards and even flashbacks on the show to show US how great she is and how she will fit in the whole group, even to the point of encouraging Barney to grow up and love someone! How great!
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I liked this episode but I could've done without the whole Ted & Robin not being platonic thing as its been beaten to death by now and we know it doesn't matter anyway. Barney's challenges were so funny especially the one where he had to pick up a woman wearing a bin bag and he couldn't use the letter e and I loved how he managed to find a woman with so many e's in her name. Loved the mother being in the episode and helping Barney out now I wanna see Robin & Marshall meeting her. I'll admit that Ted's line about the ref missing some calls was brilliant. All in all a better episode with minor complaints.
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Totally agree about Ted and Robin, this story should've been buried seasons ago.
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I'm just gonna drop this here: best of the season (hopefully only so far).
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The part with the Mother was ridicolous. Yeah, of course someone tries to hit on you and you go all Dr. Phil with him, being very right in every statement, to boot! As I said, ludicrous.

And Ted and Robin angsty NONrelationship? AGAIN? Seriosuly?

Thank goodness Barney was there, being awesome as usual.

And Bryan Cranston?! A M A Z I N G.
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I got a good chuckle at Ted and Marshall taking the Globetrotters game seriously with their cheers and yells. It's the kind of thing I would love to watch at a real game, or even take part in just for the heck of it.

"The Mother's" speech to Barney was actually quite touching; the episode ended with Barney acknowledging her but saying he had no idea who she was... so I'm looking forward to his reaction when he eventually sees her again.

Robin's dialog with the Dolphin-loving girl was also a blast, particularly when the girl accepted that Robin was right.
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Last week episode and this one made me remember why I like this show so much. It was quite funny, and also emotional.
As much as I love Ted, God, I enjoyed when his ilusions about Robin fall to pieces. That storyline go old in season 4, now is just annoying to see him pinning for his bestfriend's fiance.
I love Barney's challenges and most of all I loved his interaction with the mother, I'm glad she was the one that made him realized that he was just trying to fill the void that Robin left in him, and that if he wanted to changed his life he had to do something huge to get her back.
It was good to see Marshall with Ted, I really missed him with the rest of the gang, but I hate his insistence with the whole Ted/Robin thing. I know he's Ted's friend, but I hate that he thinks that Ted isn't with Robin just because he's not brave enough to go for her, Marshall forgets that Robin has a voice here too, and as she said in Season 7 she doesn't love Ted, but Marshall prefer to ignore that. In order fot two people to be together, both people must want to, Marshall forgets that.
Wow, this was too long.
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Oh! I'm not surprised by Bryan Cranston's comedy skills. I was a huge fan of Malcolm in the Middle, so much that for me was really hard to take him seriously as Walter White, he was Hal, Malcolm's dad for a long time.
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I enjoyed this episode. It was nice to see the mother in situations where we really see her interact with people, especially "our" people.Like I thought in the Pilot, I think by seeing her interact with all of Ted's friends, it will help us see how they can be beautiful together. I'm looking forward to a Marshall meeting (well, that and him not driving) because Marshall being the last one who thought that Robin and Ted could be together, I think HIM meeting the mother will change his mind and make him see that SHE is the one for Ted. At least I really hope that they are thinking that far ahead.

I also agree with the below poster, eiram99, who said, The Ted/Robin thing has been an annoyance for me from the pilot, when she's introduced as Aunt Robin. Sure, have the first season with them together, but after that? So irritating. I am in complete agreement here. Maybe it is because she and Stella and Victoria are Ted's only real "loves" in the series. Victoria was clearly over, Stella wouldn't be back, and Robin was the only one left. Maybe Ted just thinks that she's the one BECAUSE he hasn't met the one yet. But if Ted is THIS messed up when he will meet the Mother, won't she call him on his Sh*t like she did Barney?

I like Barney and Robin together. I always have. They have a nice degree of selfishness, but also love each other, and it makes sense why. Robin is more "man" than most women Barney doesn't care about, so they can talk about the things that they both like. But she is also hot, like Barney likes as well. At this point, however, I'm okay if they don't get married. I don't know if they are doing this to make us feel like Ted will break up the wedding, or what. I just think the pining for someone is ANNOYING.
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I really like your theory about Marshal. I'm hoping that's why the writers had him coach Ted so much about Robin too...
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Thanks! Yeah, I am hoping and praying that I am right and that is the reason that Marshall is encouraging one friend to go after another friend's love. I mean, Marshall didn't even put a pin in it after Robinand Barney got engaged, and Marshall doesn't usually come off as douchey.

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Then again, Barney and Robin weren't "together" until he proposed...so I guess Robin was still "fair game" at the time...? Anyway, I hope that Marshal realizes, and helps Ted realize that Robin is not the ONE. Before Ted meets the mother. That would be some serious baggage to get out of the way before the two of them start to date...
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That is true... but even since he has said to not close the book on Robin and Ted. What I'm hoping for is that when Marshall meets the mother (before Ted) he helps Ted see he and Robin aren't right together as well.
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"and possibly gives us a hint as to why she is at the wedding in the first place."

The mother is at the wedding because Ted ran into her old roommate (Rachel Bilson) on the subway and mentioned they needed a band for the reception and she mentioned that her old roommate (the mother) is in a band and so Barney and Robin booked them.
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^^ this ^^
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Bryan Cranston ruled that episode. I know very few actors hat can play comedic parts that well.
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I used to love him on Malcolm in the Middle He was really a hoot on that show, and one of my favorite sitcom characters.

He had a little bit of his humor and mannerisms towards the beginning of Breaking Bad and the occasional episode here-and-there. But he does both great comedy and chilling drama.
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I'm still finding the mother to be a big ball of blank, and I'm waiting for her to do something to actually genuinely warrant the love she gets.

The Ted/Robin thing has been an annoyance for me from the pilot, when she's introduced as Aunt Robin. Sure, have the first season with them together, but after that? So irritating.
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As for the mother, I agree that we really should get getting more scenes with her and some background: presently we just haven't seen her enough to "care" beyond the fact that we've been waiting for X years. But we HAVE seen:
  • Her scenes with Lilly were to confirm that she's a match for Ted: she likes the things he likes, knows the odd facts he knows, etc. And ultimately would get along with Lilly: something Ted's mate NEEDS to do or else she'll break them up :-)
  • Her scene in the lighthouse confirmed that they work well together
  • Her scene with Barney showed us her compassion and that she's a nice person also looking for "the one" but isn't as manic about it as Ted

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Bryan cranston was awesome and so was the mother, those two made me accept this flashback ep
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When Hammond went on a serious and semi-annoyed rant about constantly calling / tweeting / friend'ing / etc. I was expecting the writers to make a joke along the lines of

"Every time you hear that knock at the door, know that I'm... not the one who's knocking because obviously I'm in Chicago. But it COULD be me"
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I believe I just found my favourite episode of the entire series right here.
It collects everything about HIMYM in one simple and entertaining episode.
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The only good thing about this was the "missed calls" joke and Bryan Cranston. Sad.
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I really enjoyed the episode and appreciated the "ha!" moment when Barney when the Mother. I really like her character, it's easy to see why she would be the One for Ted. The challenges were pretty funny too. Good one, writers.
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Barney's Ryan Gosling impression was hilarious! And the rest of the episode was just brilliant. I like that somebody met the Mother outside of the wedding-setting and from what we've known about her so far, her remarks about Barney beind sad felt natural. She immediately knew something was wrong with Lily on the train, too.
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