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Urban HIMYMs: “Little Boys” — Paging Tenzing Norgay Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Posted by Yostal in Gen X&Y, How I Met Your Mother, Television, Things too long to read, TV, TV shows, Urban HIMYMs, Yostal.
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Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to my season’s worth of recaps for How I Met Your Mother. Welcome, once more, to Urban HIMYMs.

Before I start my recap for this week, I do want to mention that if you aren’t checking out the “How It Really Happened” on CBS Innertube, you really should be. Not pure genius, but good for one nice additional laugh per week, and they do a nice job of getting things that Ted might not know about in telling the story.

Speaking of which, I do need to know, did anyone else’s parents not go into the kind of elaborate and graphic detail as to how they met? Or do we just presume that by the Year 2030, sexual mores and standards will be so loose in American life that these semi-risque tales will seem somewhat quaint, like sipping sodas at the malt shop? Probably shouldn’t think about it too much…


And away we go…
It was Saturday Night in NYC and the young metropolitan set is out on the town doing fun things, the gang is doing fun things at home, mostly counting Marshall catching things in his mouth. You know, Ted’s from Ohio, and we’ve never seen them watching college football. Seriously, Ted’s from Ohio. It’s 2005, 2006, and 2007, and we’ve never seen Ted watching college football. They have laws there about this kind of thing. This is starting to piss me off a little. We know they like the NFL, but you’re telling me that a Midwestern boy like Ted wouldn’t like college football? And with fellow alums Lily and Marshall, they wouldn’t know where their NYC alumni bar was? And failing that, Marshall’s from Minnesota, even if the Gophers are the Gophers, he’s going to care. I’m just saying (as a man who has been to the last seven Michigan games over the last seven weeks. I’m clearly projecting. Similarly, I’d have issues about Marshall not liking hockey, college or otherwise, but we know the rest of the country just likes to pretend it doesn’t exist so we’ll let that one slide.)

Lily wants to set Robin up, but we see Ted’s litany of set-ups, with the argument that the good qualities always have the leave outs. You know, I’ve never been setup, so I wouldn’t know. Wait, this could be because I’m all buts…

This guy’s flaw would be that be that he has a kid, and Ted claims it as a dealbreaker, pointing out that even as a kid, Robin hated kids, leading to a great flashback, and a wonderful Highlights magazine reference. Robin points out that she has no problem meeting a guy with a kid. There’s also a great Barney rejoinder to a Robin line which to me is another tally mark in the Robin and Barney end up dating at some point file.

Robin then asks what he “but” is, in their respective heads: Ted says “Afraid of commitment”, Lily says “Gun Nut”, Barney says “Canadian” with more than a bit of mild disgust, and Marshall says “Didn’t like Field of Dreams“, which, I have to admit, would be close to a deal breaker for me, before all telling Robin she is great as is, no buts.

Barney has now come up with the ultimate icebreaker, it involves an eyepatch, cobras in Central Park, and a baby. Ted asks what the eye patches are for, and Barney says “We got bit”. Ted asks “On the eye?” followed by “Both of us?” Ted’s incredulity is nice, but Barney is still winning the day, sort of.

Robin says she had a good time on the date, but she is confused because she claimed she “couldn’t wait” to meet the kid, and, makes a mildly funny cougar joke, and then asks why this guy has to take full custody, and then realizes getting full custody is winning and is horrified that she didn’t realize that. Robin’s horror and mild disgust with herself is nice.

Ted and Barney are shooting back and forth as to who has more game. Wait, a litany of “Game” references and nothing about the G-Unit rapper?

So now Ted, Barney, and Marshall are sorting out what good game is, and but Marshall claims that he has the best game of the three because he is married and that’s winning the game after all, a notion which Ted and Barney immediately scoff at. Marshall’s rejoinder ends with the word “brah” and Barney slams, to the ground, in the choke hold. For this alone, Barney is my new hero. There’s a wonderful reference to 1994 dating rituals, and Barney is still rolling that he statistically more game.

To determine whom has the most game, Barney and Ted challenge each other to a date-lympiad. Barney suggests a 26 event, 11 week neutral site face off, Ted says “pick a girl, first one to seal the deal wins”. Barney runs a ground rules fake, Ted bites, and Marshall’s litany of lack of game makes all of us sad. That said, Marshall’s lines look like genius to me, so I can’t compare. Barney gets slapped and comes back claiming the contest is over as he had forgotten he had already slept with her a year ago. Ted claims this will allow him to take his sweet time, but Marshall’s note that the judge is leaving springs Ted into action.

Robin tries to fake it on the kid front, but she just can’t do it. OK, Geoff raises a good point and I agree, Robin needs something else to do besides go out on dates. Can’t she and Lily hang out? Doesn’t Robin have a job, one that she’s really into? Seriously, this needs to branch out.

After agreeing to take things slow, and not, Robin is freaking out because “It’s here”. So, in trying to help out, she’s making cereal for the kid, and there’s a discussion, and people, it is cereal first, then milk. There are no questions on this. This leads to some bonding.

Ted is dating Stacey, the girl from the bet, and finds that he really likes her. She does yoga, she places bass in a reggae band. she uses my usual send off of “Later Gator” (I still blame you Sarah!) Marshall is desperately pointing out that he has game, and even brings the numbers, and brings a “wait for it” and even gets “lawyered” in, and Ted and Barney don’t mind, because they claim it only counts as once. They’re not letting Marshall have this one? Doesn’t Marshall have to finish 3L at Columbia? Don’t these people have jobs?

Barney then tries psyche Ted out by pointing out that he’s going where Barney has already been before, and it comes down to Ted not wanting Barney cooties, and well, yeah. You know, I tried this during college, and it wasn’t even my best friend, and while I didn’t get anywhere, there was a HELL of a lot of paperwork to get through to date the girl that your friend had broken up with. Strangely, I’m still good friends with the girl, while have pretty much lost touch with the guy. I never did actually date her. I would have loved to. I would still date her in a heartbeat, if you know, she lived on this continent.

Robin discovers through Lily’s job (OK, so there’s something on the career front) that the kid may already been deeply committed to him. Kids art, when you still don’t know that construction paper is not always the best drawing surface for fine detail.

A side note from the commercial: So, Sara Gilbert last week, Laurie Metcalf this week…Is EVERYONE from Roseanne going to guest star on The Big Bang Theory? Will there be an awkward episode where it’s Lecy Goranson in acts 1 and 3 but Sarah Chalke in act 2? (Wait, I would watch that.)

And we’re back and we’re still on the fact that Robin has discovered that the kid is crazy about her. Lily calls Robin out on being afraid of commitment, and even the guys call her on it. So now she has to breakup with both the dad and the kid, but she resolves to do it, because it’s the right thing to do.

Over at Stacey’s place, a miniature, Lollipop guild sounding Barney is haunting Ted’s ability to get on some game with Stacey, and really, it’s more than just a little creepy, especially with its use of Grieg.

Robin goes over to dump Doug, the six year old, and I have to say I really enjoyed that Robin slams the kid’s poem for not rhyming. It’s just so in character with her not getting kids. Just before she starts to dump him, she realizes the kid has never been dumped before so she succeeds in using every breakup cliché in the book. It is only then that Robin learns that SHE is not the new mommy, it’s Brooke, the gal who is there for her date with George. Robin gets really upset with the kid for not liking her better, and while it’s funny, it’s just more sad than anything.

Back at the bar, Ted eventually dumps Stacey because all he can envision is Barney, makes a great line about an anarchist British 1990s one-hit wonder, and proceeds to learn that Barney played the ultimate game, using every bit of data that Ted inadvertently fed him to get in the door with Stacey. Ted calls him a sociopath (especially because Barney threw away his yoga mat), but Barney just has ultimate game, and uses French, the word “bitches” and the double hand crotch point to make his point. Though a little over the top, I have longed to be able to do that at some point in my life and have it not be a set-up or ironic. Barney being Barney is even better than Manny being Manny.

Robin being dumped by the six year old would be bad, but we learn that eventually Robin got over her issues with kids and became an effective “aunt” to Ted’s kids, which I guess is nice. Are we to presume from this that Robin never got married, because of a distinct lack of an Uncle _______ in those pictures? Or again, are we reading too much into it?

So a month later, we learn that Barney has fallen victim to taking it slow, and a miniature Ted gets his hallucinatory revenge.

Overall, I’m not “wow” with this episode. It felt like trying to show that Robin and Ted are moving on is nice, but there’s just nothing that stands out. Even a couple of the lines that were supposed to be funny just fell really flat. I don’t like to be critical of a show I really enjoy and in knowing how hard it is to write comedy, but please, I’m starting to feel like one of Ted’s kids listening to the story, I just want to know when their mother is going to show up.

I’d like to thank my pal Geoff (aka The Bad One) for his witty and insightful comments as I worked on this.

So, that’s all I have for this week’s edition of Urban HIMYMs. With that, this is Yostal reminding you to just chill, ‘til the next episode.



1. Stijl Council - Wednesday, October 17, 2007

“Speaking of which, I do need to know, did anyone else’s parents not go into the kind of elaborate and graphic detail as to how they met? Or do we just presume that by the Year 2030, sexual mores and standards will be so loose in American life that these semi-risque tales will seem somewhat quaint, like sipping sodas at the malt shop? Probably shouldn’t think about it too much…”

Y’see, Scout, when a man and a woman love each other very much, and one of them is drunk, and the other one is also drunk……

Sorry. Carry on.

2. DougOLis - Thursday, October 18, 2007

I thought most of Marshall’s throw-away lines were the best parts of the episode. Resurrecting the Field of Dreams thing again, “brah” (I didnt know their were bros outside of socal), him hitting on a dude in the bathroom (somewhat timely, at least in TV production times probably, without being too obvious. maybe it’s a Minnesota thing), copping a feel at the “just say no concert,” him responding “which song” about said British band above, and dropping a “lawyered.”

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