It has seemed like forever since we’ve had a new episode of How I Met Your Mother. (Truth bomb: It’s been a little less than a month.) But the show finally returned tonight with an episode that was silly, very sweet, and delivered yet another sliver of mother mythology! [So, obviously, don't read on if you don't want to know what went on in the episode!]
In the episode, Ted was having a tough time dealing with Robin and Barney’s engagement — even though we saw him “let her go” for the hundredth time back in December. But what can I say? This is Ted. Ted is always okay with everything until he realizes he’s not and then it eats him up inside. Oh, Ted.
Anyway, Ted masked all his pain by being overly eager to plan Robin’s wedding, which, in HIMYM land, will take place on May 25, 2013. He’d picked her colors (cream and lilac), a location (“that little church on Long Island where Victoria almost got married”), and had a binder of cake choices. Lily was one angry would-have-been-wedding-planner, and her inner beast really came out when she discovered that Ted wanted them to get a DJ instead of a band. (I was with Ted on that one.) Needless to say, the battle got heated. But later, Lily discovered that Ted’s issues with the wedding went far beyond musical choices.
In a really lovely scene, Lily took Ted to the roof to talk honestly about Robin and Barney’s engagement. It was a safe zone, she claimed. When Ted still resisted, she came forward with a confession of her own: She sometimes wished she wasn’t a mom.
As we all know, it was a long, hard road to motherhood for Lily, so this statement — made after a series of tough weeks with constipated baby Marvin — certainly came from a place of exhaustion that only parents know. Never for a moment could we believe that Lily meant anything bad by the statement. It was simply a raw and honest moment from an tired mom, and it was exactly the kind of emotional moment I’d hoped would come from Lily and Marshall’s journey into parenthood. (In fact, it was the best “parent moment” since the episode where they were picking a guardian.)
Inspired by Lily’s bravery, Ted also made an admission, “Robin shouldn’t be with Barney. She should be with me.”
They stood for a while in the cloud of truth but arrived at a conclusion: She was a mother. Period. And Ted had to stand aside and let Robin and Barney “get a band.”
Meanwhile, Barney had to talk to a vampire in the daylight. Or, as Robin likes to call him, dad.
After failing to properly ask Robin’s father for her hand in marriage, Barney had to face the music, which normally would have been a terrifying thing. But he was pleased to learn that Robin’s dad had taken a turn for the “cool”! He wore Hawaiian shirts, had a Facebook, and even knew about the existence of memes. However, Scherbatsky Sr.’s cool streak was shortlived. He was unimpressed by the blond spaghetti, and denied Barney his permission.
Barney tried to remedy the situation the best he could — he dyed his hair brown, almost shot a bunny — but nothing worked. And later, Robin and her dad had a mini blow-up that nearly derailed their relationship for good. (He’d failed to mention marrying his girlfriend, Carol. And no, Mr. Scherbatsky, it’s not enough that you mentioned it on Facebook!)
He came around eventually, of course, and they mended things. But the whole incident reassured Robin in a big way. “[My dad] has never apologized to me in his life, but Barney made it happen. He must really love me,” she told Ted. “He’d be crazy not to,” Ted replied. “I’m really happy for you guys…but I still think you should get a DJ.”
They didn’t. They got a band. But as a flashforward showed us, the band was as unreliable as Ted had predicted and cancelled last minute. Luckily, he ran into someone on the train who could help: Rachel Bilson’s Cindy. Cindy’s former roommate, as it turns out, was a bass player for the best wedding band in the tristate area. And they were free.
As future Ted put it: “Lucky doesn’t even begin to describe it — because if Robin and Barney would have taken my advice and hired a stupid DJ, I never would have met your mother.”
Burning questions: What did you think of the episode? Did Barney look good as a brunette? Do you want to see Ted’s blouse? Did Rachel Bilson’s appearance have you yelling “Holy Confetti!”? (Also, she has a baby with Kaylee DeFer?) Should Lily and Angela from Bones get together and start an art club for moms?