“How I Met Your Mother” Recap: How I Met Everyone Else

Posted by Mike

Last week I complained about the decline in the physical appearance of the show’s central cast. Well, I’m happy to report that at least Robin and Ted cleaned up nicely for this episode and actually looked like the Robin and Ted we know and love. Lily still has bad bangs, but it seems a little unreasonable to complain about something like that when an episode is as good as this week’s show. So let’s get on with the recap.

As Future Ted tells his kids the story of yet another one of his girlfriends, he can’t recall the particular girl’s name, so throughout the episode everyone — including the girl herself — refers to her as “Blah Blah.” It seems Ted met Blah Blah online — a fact of which she is not proud, so she makes Ted agree to tell everyone that they met at a cooking class. This is the first sign that she might be a little crazy. You see, Barney has a theory that any woman you meet online must be crazy, a hooker or a dude. With those as the only three options, Ted should consider himself lucky if Blah Blah is just a little off.

Just how crazy Blah Blah is, however, remains to be seen. So Barney explains — with a visual aid not unlike John Madden’s telestrator — the hot/crazy scale, which states that a girl is allowed to be crazy as long as she is equally hot. If her amount of crazy outweighs her amount of hotness, she’ll venture below the Vickie Mendoza diagonal (a nice Mendoza Line reference for baseball fans).

After Blah Blah tells the fake story of how she and Ted met, Marshall and Lily share their story, which has been honed to perfection over the years to unfailingly elicit “aws.” This begins a trend during the episode, as we learn how everyone in the gang met everyone else. Next up is the flashback to Ted and Marshall’s first meeting, which features the Guided by Voices song “I Am a Scientist” oddly juxtaposed with Ted’s Cinderella (the hair band, not the princess) t-shirt.

Then Blah Blah wants to hear how Robin and Barney met and became a couple, and Robin corrects by saying no a total of 16 times (which only makes me believe johnnysweeptheleg’s theory from last week even more). Upon finding out that Robin is single, Blah Blah is openly hostile toward her — and that’s before she realizes that Robin and Ted dated for a year. After that little discovery, Blah Blah quickly moves to the wrong side of the hot/crazy scale. But she’s still hot, which keeps her from descending into the Shelly Gillespie zone — named after one of Barney’s exes who gained 20 pounds and tried to kill him with a brick.

After an amusing flashback to Barney and Ted’s first meeting in the McLaren’s men’s room, a bombshell is dropped. The next flashback reveals that, in college, Ted and Lily flirted and made out at a freshmen orientation party the night before Lily met Marshall — which means, that when Lily showed up at Marshall’s dorm room for the first time, she had actually been looking for Ted. Ted never told Marshall because he thought it would devastate his best friend, but for some reason he decides to share the real story with his crazy girlfriend. Blah Blah threatens to tell everyone if Ted doesn’t do so first, which prompts him to pull Lily aside to discuss the episode. Lily remembers things differently. She claims she didn’t make out with Ted, but rather with some guy who would become known only as Too Much Tongue Guy. Ted, in turn, calls her Unreasonably Small Mouth Opening Girl, which seems to spark something and Lily lets out a string of 12 nos — not as impressive as Robin’s 16, but still funny.

In the end, Ted and Blah Blah break up over the events of the evening, and we find out that not only did they meet online, it was in a chat room for World of Warcraft, an online role-playing game in which Ted was playing the role of a hot girl — thus proving Barney’s initial crazy-hooker-dude theory. Barney pronounces Too Much Tongue Guy and Unreasonably Small Mouth Opening Girl to be the worst superheroes ever. And everyone assumes Ted made out with Lily — until a 2020 college reunion proves otherwise.

For the first time this season, How I Met Your Mother made full use of the entire ensemble, with all five characters interacting rather than splitting up into separate subplots. This is what made us love the show in the first place. Let’s hope they keep it up. As always, here’s what else we liked:

Other highlights

The substitution of sandwich-eating for pot-smoking as a means to clean up Future Ted’s story to his children; “I need me some strange”; Robin being hot again.

Best Barneyism

Broda, as in “Think of me as Yoda — only, instead of being little and green, I wear suits and I’m awesome. I’m your bro. I’m Broda.”