TV: ‘How I Met Your Mother’ returns to “something old”

By Meryl Gottlieb|| @buzzlightmeryl
How I Met Your Mother airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on CBS
Rating: 4/5


How I Met Your Mother is ending its eighth season on a series of strong notes. In tonight’s episode, “Something Old,” great emotional moments were mixed in with hilarious ones, and everyone shined.

In 1994, Robin’s dad (Ray Wise) took Robin (Cobie Smulders) to New York for the first time. With a bowl cut and boys clothes, the history of their relationship is clearly shown… and it is hilarious. Before she leaves, Robin buries a locket in the ground, promising her older self that it would be her “something old” on her wedding day.

In the present day, Robin asks her father to help her find it, but he blows her off to play laser tag with Barney (Neil Patrick Harris), the son he has always wanted.

Throughout the episode, they merely flash to Robin Sr. and Barney playing laser tag with kids and becoming way too intense about the game. While these moments were funny, it was a reliable kind of funny. Everyone knows that NPH is amazing as Barney, and everyone loves a throwback to his ridiculous season one personality. It’s a formula the writers oftentimes are too reliant on when trying to fill up time.

Of course, it’s going to be hilarious to see NPH yell at children as he prepares them for a laser tag war. NPH is simply amazing, so he can make any scene work.

Marshall (Jason Segel) and Lily (Alyson Hannigan) are trying to pack for Italy, but they cannot decide what to keep and what to throw out. They call in an expert: Ted (Josh Radnor), whose entrance in this episode was amazing. I love nerdy Ted because nerdy Ted is the best and the funniest.

Ted claims to be a packing expert after traveling through Spain with everything he needed crammed into a fanny pack. Excuse me, hands-free belt satchel. He has good methods with his “have you used it in a year” rule, forcing Marshall and Lily to throw out King Kong outfits, where Marshall was the woman and Lily was the ape of course.

Except, he begins telling them to keep items they actually don’t want, like an old beat-up red beanbag chair and a karaoke machine.

apartment bean bagWe come to realize that he is keeping things that have sentimental value for all three of them. The beanbag was the first thing the trio bought when they were out of college. He is afraid their friendship won’t last the “one year” rule while they are away.

And here, friends, is why I love Ted. He worries about the things we all worry about but don’t always vocalize. If you are graduating high school or leaving college for summer vacation, sometimes you have to wonder if things will be the same when everyone isn’t together.

It’s finely a very plausible storyline that was written extremely well, mixing both hilarious comedic moments and very raw emotional scenes. HIMYM this is why I love you.

Robin is having trouble finding the locket, so she calls to ask for help. When she calls Barney, he asks if it is important, for he is busy playing laser tag, and she responds, “Nah, it’s stupid,” though clearly she is upset.

The same scenario happens with Ted, for he is about to go into a meeting, but when she has the same response, he knows something is wrong and goes to help her.

While trying to find the locket, Robin admits she believes the locket is an omen about her and Barney’s marriage. She has a lot of fears about marrying him: that he is as emotionally unavailable as her father and that they are not ready to marry each other. But, if she finds the locket, then it’s meant to be.

When she finds the locket, she is relieved, until she opens it and finds that the locket is gone. To add insult to injury, it begins to rain.

hand hold 1Ted tries to convince her that it is not a bad omen, that it is stupid to put so much faith into an object: “A locket may just be a locket and a chair may just be a chair.” He tells her they don’t need signs from the universe because we know, deep down, what we want.

Robin grabs hold of Ted’s hand, and the two look at each other as the camera pans out.

Now before you go on a tirade about how stupid it is for the writers to go back to the Ted/ Robin storyline, think about the facts. We know, since the very first episode, that Ted does not end up with Robin so stop freaking out. We know, from this season, that Ted will not date anyone else until he meets The Mother. We can safely assume that Ted was probably the first person Robin was ever really in love with and who knew her better than anyone, so it’s no shocker that she feels safe and comfortable with him.

I love Barney and Robin together. However, I never disliked Robin and Ted. Their chemistry was, and still is, amazing. They were a great couple who just wanted different things.

I am so excited for the season finale. I know it is going to be amazing. Let’s hope The Mother will be revealed and that the Barney-Robin wedding situation is all cleared up. My prediction? Barney and Robin probably don’t get married… yet. I’m thinking it may get postponed until season nine. I’m also hoping the whole Italy thing doesn’t work out either. I can’t imagine the whole gang not be together for the last season; unless they fast-forward a year… Oh man, I cannot wait!!


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