This week's How I Met Your Mother continued the theme of adding little in the way of progressive story whilst remaining thoroughly unfunny. "The Perfect Cocktail" essentially revolves around the guy's stance on the demolition of The Arcadian, whilst the girls talk about the the varying reactions that the group members have to alcohol in all its forms.
When Marshall is rejected in an interview for an environmental law firm job, he takes to helping Zoey protect The Arcadian from destruction. Barney, angered by this betrayal, begins an all out war between himself and Marshall of escalating pranks. Meanwhile, Robin and Lilly have to deal with a girl at the bar who wants to steal their seating booth. After they're all kicked out of the bar, the girls begin their drinking revelations when trying to decide which alcoholic beverage to give to the guys to get them to reconcile.There is essentially a series of cut in scenes for several minutes in which we get to see the varying reactions of everyone to their vices, providing the only real funny moments in the episode (Ted beat-boxing was particularly entertaining). Ted and Zoey then head off for a romantic getaway when, breaking their rule about not talking about it, Ted snaps and demands a resolution to The Arcadian problem once and for all. Taking Zoey to the run down hotel and proposing a challenge; that if she can last one night in the infested hell-hole, he will join her fight to save it; Ted learns the real reason behind his girlfriend's ambition to save the building. Having lived in the hotel many years before, Zoey wants to hold on to that part of her childhood by keeping the building standing. When exchanging I love you's, the couple are then interrupted by a throwback all the way to season one of the show; the Cockamouse. A fairly neat addition to the episode for a long time fan of the show, but a random one at that. Ultimately, even though they leave before the night is through, Ted joins with Zoey whilst Barney and Marshall continue their feud after an alcohol fueled evening.
As I said before, "The Perfect Cocktail" was essentially just an episode for episode's sake. Whilst, yes, there was some form of progression with Ted siding with Zoey's cause after all this time, the backwards step that Marshall has taken in basically remaining unemployed made the episode just a bit redundant in the long-term arc of the show. It was fine for twenty minutes of mindless viewing, but nothing more than that.