Wednesday, March 7, 2012

HIMYM 7.15: "The Burning Beekeeper"

“Every 30 seconds there’s another crisis that needs to be dealt with, and I have to deal with it. Oh God, this is parenthood, isn’t it?”

“The Burning Beekeeper” was an episode that definitely played with structure. In fact, it seems like the writers said “let’s tell a story room by room instead of chronologically” and then figured out the rest later. That being said, it was interesting to see the structure switched up, and I thought that the way the episode was framed was rather creative. It was kind of fun to watch as random moments from earlier segments of the episode finally made sense when we saw what action took place in another room. While plot was somewhat sacrificed for structure, the episode did have some good moments. Barney was hilarious, as always, as were Ted and Robin fighting over Robin’s combative attitude and Ted’s wimpiness. We also got to see Lily have her first freak out over immanent parenthood. That particular moment was interesting to see, because Lily usually has it all together. Overall, this was a fun, although not stellar, episode.

The episode opens with Marshall and Lily eating breakfast with Lily’s dad, Mickey. Lily informs her dad that she’s throwing a housewarming party. Because Marshall has been so busy with work, Lily has put a great deal of effort into planning the party on her own, and she really, really doesn’t want her dad to ruin it. The chances of Mickey not ruining the part seem slim, especially once he informs Marshall and Lily that he has started raising bees in the basement. For his new artisanal honey business. Which can’t possibly end well. I loved how “lawyer” Marshall got in this particular scene. Lily’s going on about the work she put into the party and her fears of it being ruined, but Marshall puts a halt to things when Mickey mentions the bees to find out just where exactly Mickey is conducting this new business.

As the party starts, Saget!Ted informs us that it only took five minutes for the party to be completely ruined and he’s going to take it room by room to explain just how, exactly, things went horribly wrong. We start with the living room. Garrison Kootz, Marshall’s boss, informs Marshall that they’ll be going back to work in 45 minutes. Marshall is upset about this because he thought he would have the whole evening off. To avoid a bigger confrontation, Lily quickly tells Kootz that she bought vegan spring rolls just for him, and they’re in the next room. Some wine is definitely necessary to keep this party calm, so Lily gets Mickey to put on his beekeeper suit and go down the basement to get some. Unfortunately for Kootz, the vegan spring rolls are gone by the time he gets to them, and he’s convinced Ted is the culprit. They get into a huge (but rather hilarious) argument over it.

All of a sudden, a scream can be heard from the kitchen, and Barney quickly pops his head through the doorway to assure the party guests that everything is okay. Lily quickly breaks up Ted and Kootz’s fight by directing Kootz to veggies and hummus in the next room. Meanwhile, Barney is troubled, and he tells Robin it’s because he loves his penis. Robin, understandably, isn’t thrilled with this line of conversation, and Barney goes upstairs. Robin tries to eat a piece of the gouda that’s been brought out to the living room, but Lily takes the cheese away and stomps on it so nobody can eat it. Lily then declares the party ruined. But that of course, means things have to get even worse. A man runs through the room in a flaming beekeeper’s suit.

We next move to the dining room. We first learn that it was Barney who finished off the vegan spring rolls, not ted. He’s eating them as he chats up a cougar neighbor of Marshall and Lily’s. We later learn her name is Geraldine. Geraldine tells Barney to meet her upstairs in the guest room in two minutes, and Barney happily agrees. When Koots stops by looking for spring rolls, Barney tells Kootz that Ted ate all of them. This explains the fight from the living room sequence. Lily shoves Barney into the kitchen before he can cause more trouble, then she has a conversation with Marshall about how he’s upset about having to go back to work that evening. After Lily leaves for the kitchen, Marshall talks to Robin about the dilemma. He wants Robin to yell at him to warm him up for the screaming he’s sure to receive from Kootz. Robin doesn’t take this well, and she (half through tears) insists that she usually keeps her cool. Marshall contradicts her with a really funny bit about how Girl Scouts make Robin angry.

Mickey announces to the folks in the dining room that his bees have escaped their enclosure. Lily starts freaking out because this is yet another crisis piling on top of other crises, and she has realized that parenthood is probably much the same. She sort-of manages to convince herself that maybe she’s not cut out to be a mother. Meanwhile, Marshall returns to the dining room and tells Ted that he and Kootz came to an understanding about his going back to work that night. Before Marshall can elaborate further, the man in the flaming beekeeper suit runs through. I think I probably still thought that was Mickey at this point in the episode.

Our final room in this adventure is the kitchen, and everything really comes together finally. We first learn why Ted and Robin have been fighting. Apparently Robin got into a fight with an old lady at the bakery on their way to the party. Ted thinks Robin is too aggressive, and Robin is frustrated that Ted never stands up for himself. Barney tells Mickey that bees don’t like the smell of kerosene, and Mickey rushes off to douse his beekeeper suit in the stuff. This explains how the beekeeper suit became flammable. Lily drops the gouda on the kitchen floor, and mice get to it. The scream we heard earlier in the episode was Lily’s reaction to seeing mice. Marshall tells Kootz he’s quitting his job, and he leaves the room. Marshall made some comments about Kootz not having an outside life, and Kootz decides that maybe he should have a hobby. Mickey, of course, suggests beekeeping, which leads Kootz to put on the beekeeper suit. As he’s about to head down the basement, the oven timer goes off. Kootz opens the oven and promptly bursts into flames.

The experience of being a flaming projectile leaves Kootz feeling more alive than ever, and he tells Marshall that he doesn’t have to go back to the office that night after all. In exchange, Marshall agrees to return to work on Monday. The ruining of the party isn’t completely finished now that Kootz is no longer on fire, though. He realizes that he left the basement door open, and the upstairs of the house is now overrun with bees. Barney and Geraldine are up in the guest room, so they didn’t see or hear the commotion. Geraldine is being crazy clingy, so Barney tries to leave. He hears the bees out in the hall and second guesses his plan, but then Geraldine starts talking about going to a cat wedding, and Barney leaves the room anyway. The episode closes on his screams, and Neil Patrick Harris screaming is never not funny.

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