Friday, April 23, 2010

HIMYM 5.20: "Home Wreckers"

“Kids…there was no guitar.”


This week’s HIMYM didn’t have a whole lot of laughs for me, but I at least appreciated that it attempted to have heart. As cheesy as some “Ted gets frustrated that he doesn’t have the future he wants” episodes can be, they usually all have heart, at least. Ted is really all heart, sometimes to his detriment. This episode featured probably the craziest thing Ted’s done yet in his search for his ideal life, and thankfully, his craziness didn’t hurt anyone but himself this time. There’s a Barney and Robin sub plot, too, and while the stupidity of it kind of irritated me, the chemistry is still undeniable. I also liked what good friends the rest of the gang are to Ted. He’s going through a bit of a crisis, and they’re there for him all the way.

The event that sets off Ted’s craziness in this particular episode is that his mom’s about to get remarried. She’s getting married to the Mayor of Sunnydale…er…a hippie who never quite made it out of the 60’s named Clint. Clint is pretty hilarious, mostly because he often says inappropriate thins about Ted’s mom and it makes Ted squirm. It’s not Clint’s lack of filter that bothers Ted, though, it’s more the fact that Ted’s mom will have been married twice before he is married even once.

Ted is pretty much a downer at the wedding. He’s inundated by wedding guests asking him when his wedding is. Then Clint starts to sing. It’s a song about Ted’s mom, and it’s fairly explicit. And Ted, naturally, is mortified beyond belief. He can’t take it anymore, and he leaves the reception before he was supposed to give the toast. The reception is also the beginning of the rather silly Robin and Barney plot. Barney at his gleeful ADHD (seriously…the character said he was once diagnosed) best was zipping around the reception telling everyone he could find that Robin cried at the end of Clint’s song. It got a few laughs from the other characters (and me) at first, but it did get kind of old quick.

Following his fleeing from the reception, Ted was off the radar for 72 hours. It’s at that point when the rest of the gang meets at MacLaren’s and Lily sort of nonchalantly thinks that’s kind of weird. Seriously? You haven’t heard from one of your best friends in 72 hours, and you’re just starting to be maybe a tiny, minuscule bit concerned? Anyway, Ted finally reappears just after Lily voices her sort-of concern. He’s made a big decision in the time he’s been gone. He had been depressed and searching his favorite real estate auction website (Ted thinks we all have one) when he came upon his dream house.

Ted didn’t stick to just fantasizing, though. He actually bought the sucker. He happily takes the rest of the gang out to see the house. Since this is a sitcom, the place is an absolute wreck. Everything is falling apart, and the gang is greeted by the sound of vermin scampering. To top it all off, Ted has waited until after purchasing the house to actually have an inspector look at it. The inspector has a ridiculously huge laundry list of problems with the house, but Ted doesn’t really care. Lily seems to be the most anti-house. Ted tries to defend himself by asking what would have happened if someone had warned Marshall about all Lily’s problems and Marshall wasn’t willing to take a chance on her. That little snippet was pretty funny, actually.

In an attempt to get everyone to lay off ted, Marshall comes up with a new game for the gang to play. It’s called “Drunk or Kid.” Basically, Every time someone says Ted makes a stupid decision, Marshall tells a story about a stupid thing he himself once did, and everybody has to guess whether or not he was drunk or a kid when it happened. The stupidity ranged from microwaving bottle rockets (drunk) to driving the wrong way down the highway (kid). It is always amusing to see young Marshall. It’s also amusing to see that drunk Marshall really isn’t any different.

While the inspection is going on, the “crying at Clint’s song” drama continues. Robin understandably is fed up with Barney still harping on her crying, and she tells the gang the truth. Barney was actually the one crying, and he offered Robin $500 if she’d take the rap. Barney later tries to twist it around, saying that he offered to let Robin off the hook out of the kindness of his heart, but he always takes his stories one step too far to be believable. That scene where fantasy Robin tells fantasy Barney that she shouldn’t have let him get away was pretty darn hot, though. Such wasted potential. I still haven’t really gotten over it…as much as one “can’t get over” something TV related, that is. Which is naturally a little farther down the spectrum of things that are important in life. Oh, the reason Barney was crying was because he secretly loves Ted’s mom. I know. Ew.

Anyway, now that my Barney and Robin rant of the week (which I didn’t really intend, but hey, I just finished a kind of crazy week of work and I’d like to be sleeping, but I’m writing, so indulge me), on with the story. It takes the inspector falling through the floor from the second floor down to the first floor to make Ted sort of have an epiphany that maybe buying this house wasn’t the best idea. Lily gives him some small amount of comfort. At least he can take a sledgehammer to this particular bad decision. There’s a somehow silly and heartwarming at the same times montage of the gang each taking the sledgehammer to a wall in Ted’s new house. Following that bit of fun, Ted runs off again and is not heard from (again) for 72 hours.

This time, however, Ted went to visit his mom and Clint. He thought he owed it to them to give them his toast. They’re both completely high, and I don’t think they’re entirely sure whether Ted is even really there or not, but they seem to appreciate the gesture. Ted returns to his house to see Marshall barbecuing on the back porch. Because Marshall knows Ted, and he knows that now Ted has this dream of making this house his not-yet-existent family’s house, he’s all in. Ted has always been one to want to fast forward to the ending, and this is the one part of that ending he can control. Indeed the closing narration by Saget!Ted informs us that this house is the house that Ted’s poor horribly bored now children (they’ve been listening to this story for almost five years now!) grew up in.

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