How I Met Your Mother: “Ring Up”

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Grade: D-

Airdate: 1/21/13

This episode of How I Met Your Mother opened with Ted (Josh Radnor) telling the group he was dating a 20-year-old. And all my hope created by last week’s episode was lost. If the show was consistently bad, I don’t think I would be so disappointed each time a terrible episode comes along. But, knowing that the show can be good and then having an episode like this one just makes me sad.

So, Ted goes on his date with 20-year-old Carly, we weren’t even told her name until the episode was almost over. You know, names aren’t important for character development or anything. Ted tells us that the date was terrible and Carly is an overly weird and stupid version of New York hipsters that probably only exist in movies. That would have been okay if the show didn’t use that model for all 20-year-olds. Also, the “kids” as Ted puts it turn into actual kids at one point.

After that part I was left in a position I commonly find myself in while watching HIMYM: trying to find a reason not to give the episode an F. A musical number about how awesome Robin (Cobie Smulders) is and a bad Lord of the Rings/Hobbit reference is not one of the reasons I was looking for. Marshall (Jason Segel) and Lily (Alyson Hannigan) had there own story line about Lily being attracted to bad boys or in their terms Marshall wearing a leather cuff. Most of that was okay, but it was mixed in with all the terrible and had a slapstick comp out.

Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) is claiming that he is going through one-night-stand withdraw and needs Ted to bang the 20-year-old for him. Barney says he just needs to find something they have in common. Ted realizes Carly likes Star Wars too. The joke about her only liking the new ones did help the grade a bit. Ted said that was close enough and bangs her for Barney.

Ted then shows Barney a picture of Carly and she is his half-sister. Barney has a half-sister? Ted said now of them knew she existed until two years ago, so maybe it was in an episode I can’t remember. Barney realizes that he finds the whole thing immoral and Ted tells him his one-night-stand withdraw is over.

Robin spends most of the episode in her LOTR/Hobbit reference with her engagement ring making her invisible to men. It was a very superficial reference. The show referenced The Hobbit the whole time and has never said anything about the cast liking Lord of the Rings before. So, it was just picking a popular fab and trying to run with not. If LOTR really fit into the show, it would have been like The Big Bang Theory Lord of the Rings episode.

Robin’s problem is pretty much solved by Lily telling her Barney is the only men she needs.

And to think I thought the show had writing ability again. Can it just be over already? D-.

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