How I Met Your Mother

Season 3 Episode 16

Sandcastles in the Sand

Aired Monday 8:00 PM Apr 21, 2008 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (24)

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out of 10
483 votes
  • A teenage Canadian pop star's return (spoilers)

    Yes she is back. And that's not the biggest part of this episode. More on that later. Robin's old boyfriend comes back and you only find out that he has aged quite a bit, kind of like Bill from King of the Hill. James Van Deer Beek does a great job of playing Robin's old flame. He does it in a way that is not overly douchey. It's funny how Robin doesn't see the flaws in Simon while her friends do. It kind of reminds me of earlier episode when Ted met Blah Blah. The situation with Robin and Simon was the start of something you would later see in the series. When Simon announces that he was in another video with Robin, Barney's reaction was great. I was also excited.

    Barney fails to find the video of Robin Sparkle's Sandcastles in the Sand to only find out that Robin actually has it. If the episode actually ended on her video it would good enough but to see what happened was something you didn't expect but something that if you watched the episodes closely it was slowly built up.
  • Robin's old high school friend is back in town, bringing back some painful memories.

    At first this episode didn't seem so great, I thought it was going to be as mediocre as the last episode. But it actually developed in to something eventful by the end. We learn that when Robin was a Canadian pop star, she made another video other than "Let's Go To The Mall". The music video was called "Sandcastles in the Sand" That video contained her ex-boyfriend who dumped her in a van, and broke her heart after going out for a whole Canadian summer (a week and a half). She tries to be the "winner", she clearly is the winner, but when she sees him again, it's like she is in high school again, and she adores him only to get heartbroken the same exact way. In a van. Meanwhile Lilly's old friend also comes to see her, and we learn that Lilly acts a bit different too. That was probably the funniest plot device: Lilly & her friend. So at this point, you think "Oh a mediocre funny filler" but wait right there! Barney comes back to the bar to find Robin crying. He consoles her and Robin agrees to show him the tape, "Sandcastles in the Sand" They end up laughing and just having a good time, until they end up making out and the episode ends. Very unexpected, the last time we saw a hint of this couple happening was season 1, episode 14, and that was a long time ago. So the epsiode ends leaving us all in shock, boosting up the rating scale from a 6 to an 8. The only thing I'm upset about is that these two people are supposed to be Ted's friend. Robin is his ex-girlfriend. And Barney is one of his good friends. I don't understand why they would do this to Ted. I guess I have to wait till the next episode to find out. Mediocre episode, amazing cliffhanger.
  • One of the show's best. And not just for shipper reasons =)

    In my mind this is definitely one of the best episodes this show has ever produced. It's funny all the way through, all storylines are good and it's got several very memorable moments.

    James van der Beek's guest spot was funny, and the thing with Simon having gone lame and Robin not noticing it felt fresh. And it gave us one of my favorite conversations in the show's run, namely the parent/teen discussion between Robin, Marshall and Lily. That scene could easily have felt boring and like it's been done before, but they made it work through some good acting and by the last line which really made the whole thing work in my eyes. Lily and Michelle were great fun and they managed to save that storyline from "yeah, seen it a dozen times" to feeling original when it turned out Michelle was also suffering from "revertigo" and was well aware of it.

    And then of course there's Barney and Robin... I was only a casual viewer until recently, only watching the show if it happened to be on, so I had maybe seen seven or eight episodes over the course of four years. And still I cheered when Barney and Robin got together. Didn't take more than an episode or two to know these two make a really good match. And it was great seeing a softer side of Barney before they hooked up.

    Oh, and "Sandcastles in the Sand"... Except for me wondering where the heck you'd make sandcastles if NOT in the sand, I thought it was really funny.
  • robin sparkles is backk.

    not only does robin go to the mall but she goes to the beach. her new video was pretty cool. this episode was very funny. with robins ex and how she tried to impress him. but she ended up making him seem so good and her really boring compared to him. even barney tried to help. the whole thing with lilly and er friend michelle was hilarious. the wayy she was all talking normal one second, and when lilly put on the song she went right back to high school, literally. i just really loved this episode. one of the best, and bringing back robin sparkles didnt hurt much though.
  • Amazing last 7 seconds

    okay...soo When an old flame from a Robin Sparkles love ballad video comes back into her life, Robin turns into the head over heels 16 year-old girl she was the first time around. While the gang tries to help Robin see what a loser the guy has become, Robin has a hard time letting go of her past crush. But when he breaks up with her again, it’s Barney who finally helps her to realize how awesome of a person she has become. And in a shocking moment between them, Barney and Robin sleep together.btw: looking forword to episode 18 :(
  • Amazing last 5 minutes

    The last 5 minutes of this episode were great! Throughout the episode we see a lot of character development but it is in the final two scences where this development really takes place. It is a great dialogue between Barney and Robin. Barney shows his sensitive side without compromising his 'amazing' attitude and his sense of humor. And that kiss I never saw it coming. Well, I kinda thought it could happen but I didn't see it as a plausible possiblity, it was more of a wild dream. Now I'm looking forward for next episode, what will Ted think about it? I guess thats the theme of the discussion about 'the bro code'.
  • *Awesomes*

    I think I am in the majority when I say that this episode was one of the best ever for HIMYM.

    Robin has always been my least favourite character - selfish, rude and downright plastic at times. However, this episode showed a warmer side to her, and her being close to Barney capped it all off.

    Elsewhere, Lilly has a highschool friend come over and she acts like an insane black chick (her friend does the same around her, but is very articulate otherwise).

    We get to see the awesome song "Sandcastles in the Sand" by our favourite Canadian pop sensation. Cannot wait for more!
  • Robin and Barney get toghther...finaly!

    Sandcastles in the Sand was all in all a great episode of How I met your Mother that shows why it should never be canceled. I loved the idea of a follow up to "Lets go to the Mall" even though I felt the song wasn't as good as it could have been.

    Barney and Robin make a perfect couple and it is going to be great to see how their characters are developed even though it looks like from the up-coming episodes that they won't become a permanent couple.

    The episode itself had some great funny moments including the very first laugh of the whole show that set the scene for what was to come. It was a great idea to bring back people from Robin and Lily's past.

    Overall this was a great episode but it still annoys me that we are no closer to finding out who the mother is!!!
  • Chandler+Monica=Barney+Robin? Well, maybe, maybe not, but this episode was great.

    It's hard not to comapre HIMYM with Friends. While HIMYM is actually better(characters, story, storytelling, writing are a notch up from the Friends standards) the main concept of the show is identical. A buddy-sitcom, very few locations, lots of relationship issues/complications. I can't say that Robin and Barney kissing really surprised me. However, it's definitely a turning point. Maybe it won't be further explored this season, but I'm sure that eventually Barney and Robin will end up together. However, is that really a good thing?

    Barney's main charm would be lost. I know, character development and all, but it's a sitcom. Since there are no dramatic storylines, it would feel unneccessery, and possibly it'd mean an end of a truly awesome character. But that was just 30 seconds of the episode, so it's not a big deal, the episode itself was superb. I don't think it needs telling why. Robin's videoclip, James Van Der Breek(sp?)'s guest starring performance, the canadian jokes... and the list goes on. A series classic.
  • "I'm Awesome"

    Now i loved this show its funny witty and something we will never get out of a show again.
    One nit pick i have they have to let go of the stereotyping of canada some is clever and some are smart but in this episode there going a little tad to far. The character playing in the show to be from Ottawa well he was trying to sound like one and i live in canada and the only people who sound like that are people living in new found land aka Newfies!
    But besides this people will get another great glance at Robyn sparkles and a little good night kiss from Robyn and Barny which will in the future make up a good episode.
    This episode will not give you more info in the mother its more based on Robyn's pass which i kinda find funny. I remember the 90s well and when i see the clips of Robyn sparkle i cant help to bow my head and wish to forget those times of are era!
    All and all it has what we love a good half hour of laughter.
  • Long Lost Love

    I know i'm in the minority, but I just didn't laugh out loud like I have at other episodes of How I Met Your Mother.

    It was a clever story line following Robin and her old love and how he's turned out to be a schmo. I've seen it happen and it it too funny. But I digress. Good grief, they really put her up to be a horrible singer. Let's see...I guess Lilly and Barney are the only ones not to be hooked up (until now perhaps) because we know Ted will eventually meet his wife. Gosh I hope next week's is funnier.
  • What was that!?!?! I want to watch the next episode so much!!

    WHAT?? Barney and Robin?? I'm so shocked!!
    Not that's a bad thing, I liked it! While they were watching the tape I thought 'Maybe Barney and Robin could stay together, he doesn't wanna marry neither goes she!' and than that kiss!! What a surprise!!
    I read the summary of the next episode, and says about a bro code between Ted and Barney. I don't know if I got it right but maybe it's about that thing: You can date your friend's ex-girlfriend! It could be!! Ohh I just watched the episode, I'm so excited!!

    I love Robin Sparkles! She is so funny! And Lily and Marshall did sounded like parents! hahahaha
    And that Simon guy is awful!! How could this all powerful Robin we see today with a guy like him!!
    The revertigo theory it's right! I've already seen cases of this!!
    Michelle and Lily are funny! I didnt imagine Lily like a gheto girl! She must have a street-dancer past! I have one, although I wasnt a good dancer! hahaha
    Looking foward for the next episode people!!
  • Dawson Leery alert!! One of the best episodes of the season!! This show better not be cancelled! I heard a rumor and it better not be true!

    Sandcastles in the Sand was the perfect follow up video to At The Mall. Laughed til I cried. I was very excited to see James Van der Beek show up as Robin's former love interest. They were very good together. The part where the group made fun of Canada for a while was pretty funny and Lily's friend, Michelle, was especially funny because it brought out a side of Lily that was side-splitting humor. There was a rumor that HIMYM was going to be cancelled after this season, but I think if it continues to be a successful ratings grabber, the execs at CBS would be stupid to give up this gem of a show!
  • The reason that i am not watching GREEK next monday

    omfg i can't believe it robin and barney nooooooooo although it was kinda cool robin and arney are the two most outgoing characters in the show and a combination of them both his going to intrigue me and help the show win it's viewers back from GREEK i wasn't sure which to watch next Monday but now i'm positive. however, i am interested to know how ted reacts to the situation because seeing barney just accidentally pick up a girl he was in love with. I have a feeling this will invoke some hard feeling s between the wingman and the guy who needs help picking up chicks GO HIMYM
  • A laugh riot.

    I thought that this episode was too funny. I laughed the whole way through and just couldn't stop. I loved how Robin explained how she and Simon spent all summer together and then Barney's "Tell me more, tell me more. Like did he have a car?" was just about the best part in the episode. Ted and Marshall's whole revertigo was just awesome, cause how many of us actually do it, and be honest with yourself cause you know you do it. I just about loved Barney's expression when he finally sees Lily and Michelle together, I just about died. I find it totally awesome that James van der Beek was really cute and then he totally let himself go. Usually writers will make situations like that turn out with the guy totally hot, but not this show. They just totally made him ugly. Also, Lily and Marshall acting as parents and Ted and Robin as the kids was really funny. I have mixed feelings about the end, but I don't think anything is really going to come from it, at least I hope not.

    Loved Robin's video of Sandcastles in the Sand. Laughed the whole way through. It was that awesome.
  • Robin's second single is discovered.

    It's no secret that How I Met Your Mother has been producing lackluster episodes since the strike, but this was a disgrace to a once decent show.

    HIMYM has established its niche as the worst show on CBS' Monday comedy lineup for sometime now, but this episode did not even look like it had any thought put into.

    Marshall and Barney who usually provide the sole laughs of the show, added absolute nothing to help a plotline going nowhere.

    The story also proved that the writer had no basic understanding of the hero's journey, or how to produce an episode of television. The protagonist should not make fun of someone, only to win in the end. The moral of this episode was that you can have fun at others' expenses (Simon) and nothing bad will happen to you.

    Instead of attempting to create new storylines and memorable moments, they are insistent on bringing back events from past episodes and ruining their legacy (Marshall's place of employment, Robin's song).

    Are you kidding me How I Met Your Mother?
  • Great laughs and scenes, but bad twist ending.

    I'd like to first start of by saying I love this show with all my heart, it's definitely the best show on television. However, this episode did have a bad ending twist. I loved the plots, the reverto thing Marshall came up with, and then lily and ted acting that out. I also loved the scene where Marshall and lily are parents, and then Marshall screams at ted at the end. However, the ending is almost ruined the show. Barney cannot settle down, especially this early. We are going to miss a lot of good Barney plots now, and, it's going to turn into some drama like one tree hill or something. I don't like where season 3 is taking this show.
  • A hilarious episode with a huge "O MY GOD!" moment at the end.

    This episode was probably one of the greatest of the season. First, the whole revertigo theme was really funny! I loved Lily and her friend, that was priceless! She is just a regular gangsta that one. Second, Robin and Simon were hilarious! Simon was a great actor, and I loved how Robin was still attracted to him even though he was a total bum. The Canada jokes were hilarious, but being a Canadian, the only thing that I didn't like was how they got 16 year old Robin and Simon to talk in Scottish accents, because Canadians don't speak like the Scottish! And finally, my FAVOURITE part of the episode was when Robin and Barney hooked up! It was so cute how Barney consoled Robin in the pub, at first I was like aw they are such cute friends, but when they hooked up, i was like YAY! I am happy because even though I was realllly shocked, it will open up so many storylines, and I have always felt that the two of them are meant to be!
    All in all, a fantastic episode. It is ones like these that should definitely be the cause of the renewal for season four.
  • Robin's ex-boyfriend from Canada comes to visit her, and she acts like she's 16 again. Marshall's diagnosis of 'revertigo' seems to ring true for all for Lily and Ted. Also, Barney pursues Robin's second video clip.

    The writing was back to its usual sharpness with this slightly disjointed episode. For months now there has been speculation regarding Robin and Barney...and it finally came to fruition this week right at the end. I don't know if those 'hints' were carefully inserted in previous episodes this season, but the writers eventually got where forum members of this site were predicted.

    Before I talk about THAT, let's consider James Van Der Beek's turn as Simon, the loser from Canada that Robin used to date. His exaggerated accent, combined with 'tasteful' wardrobe choices and his sense of self-importance made for an entertaining turn. The accent sounded almost Scottish just to think of it. A solid cameo but still nothing compared to Sarah Chalke's performance as Stella the other week. The effects of 'revertigo' were amusingly displayed by Robin, but to a better extent by Lily and Ted when their respective 'pasts' came back to visit them. Lily's 'act like I'm black' impression was pretty funny to see, and it was made funnier by the fact that her friend Michelle acts completely normal without Lily around.

    The subplot regarding Robin Sparkles' second video clip was already communicated in the title and also pre-episode speculation on fan sites. Barney predictably tries to find it, but in the end he only sees the video through Robin's generosity. Note Barney comforting Robin after she gets dumped by Simon for a second time, just like he does with Claudia in season one. He seems to be a professional at it. The innuendo leading up to watching the video was constructed really badly on purpose, so we knew what was coming next, but THAT kiss at the end sets off another chain of events to be followed in the story.

    So now we have two things to follow now - the mother and the story of Barney and Robin. Watching the episode for a second time, the storyline concerning Simon and 'revertigo' seemed to pale in comparison to the last scene. It didn't really fit that well, and Robin inviting Barney back to her place was all too convenient.

    All in all, an important episode in the story line, but the plot line didn't flow all that well. But it was full of awesome one-liners throughout, and great comic turns (Michelle studying behavioural psychology). Funny enough for new comers to enjoy and pure gold for those of us who have been following every second religiously.
  • Oh My God! That was fantastic!

    Wow, this episode was great. I am going to have to watch it many, many times. The whole "Revertigo" sub-plot was hilarious, James Van Der Beek was freakin awesome, and I just loved the video. Is it sad that I can't stop the chorus going round and round in my head?

    I have been hoping that Barney and Robin get it on, and it was done brilliantly. If the writers keep it going, we could see amazing transformations in Robin and Barney, as they would make one pretty strong team together. It will be very interesting to see how a relationship would affect Barney, and if I were a script-writer I would not be able to stay away from exploring that. It would be both funny and satisfying to see him use his awesomeness for good instead of evil ;) The mirror line was a classic.

    Anyhows, cheers to the team for another fantastic episode of the best show on the box!
  • An old love from Robin's past resurfaces and turns her into a spineless teenager, but with Barney's help she gets over Simon. Marshall convinces the group of a condition that causes people to revert to how they were when they were close.

    A very interesting look into Robin's past, the self-assertive, go getting, tough as nails woman was once a doting teenager in love with Simon, a "Northern Canadian" I loved that concept who broke her heart for a girl with a pool that would have only been good for about 10 days out of the year. The concept though is true, there are some strong independent women out there who have that one guy that they just lose all empowerment that their predecessor's fought for over the years.

    The most important thing was the ending, after speculating for months and several no's, Barney and Robin succumb to their passions. What does this mean for them, for the group, for Ted? Is this real reason that she is "Aunt Robin"?

    The second was the video, it was very classy, and hey Tiffany was in it, and Alan Thicke, and it was the reason Robin Sparkles never made it in America. I really enjoyed exploring this side of Robin and her hilarious past in Canada. One more plus to Lily's friend Michelle, that was a great storyline that was a very true concept.
  • Robin deals with the return of an old love interest

    One word....Awesome! Colbie Smulders is amazingly versatile when it comes to acting like a complete douch. A lot of Canadian references but just to let everyone know, we do know the world is bigger than Alberta to Ontario and plus we do not sound Swedish (unless you are from Sweden and move to Canada, which happens a lot). Loved the whole Barney and Robin mix but how long with they stretch that out to. Can Barney be tamed and if he can, can Robin be the one to do it? Anyone else finding Barney getting hotter because I am finding he is?
  • We find our friends ogling Robin's boobies and making lame Canada jokes. But when an old flame of Robin's walks in, everything changes. Maybe Robin isn't so strong as she pretends to be...


    A fantastic ep with insight into so many of the characters. I mean, I love Ted, but sometimes the best stories are those that don't focus on him. I loved seeing a new video of Robin Sparkles and seeing her being vulnerable and Barney being nice. And of course, the major reveal at the end left me gobsmacked. As Robin once put it, I never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never, never expected them to hook up. This is gonna be so juicy.

    Also, loved the idea of "revertigo". Though I haven't experienced it myself (to my knowledge), I definitely know people who have had that experience. And I love it whenever there's a shoutout to my alma mater!
  • Robin's old boyfriend from when she was 16 from Canada comes to town, and Barney looks for Robyn's secret music tape.

    I think this is one of the most funniest episodes this season. I think Robyn's and Simon's accents were so funny. At first, I thought, this is not what us Canadians sound like, we don't sound British. Then I thought some more and was like, I guess we do sound like that. The most funniest thing that I like is Cobie Smulders who plays Robin Scherbatsky is actually Canadian. I thought that it was funny when Barney mentioned that she went to Degrassi. That was so funny. And Robin mentioning how long are summers are was the best. The next most hilarious thing is how everyone acts with people from their past. Lily was so funny with her friend Michelle. The way the talked and act, it was hilarious. It was even more funny when Lily left and her friend Michelle started talking normal. The music video at the end of episode was funny and I like that she sings about the province I'm from which is Ontario. Robin and Barney kissing at the end makes me wonder what's going to happen in the next episode.