“How I Met Your Mother” season nine will be parading out a plethora of returning guest stars this season, and the October 7th episode “Broken Code” was no exception. Both Barney’s (Neil Patrick Harris) tailor Tim Gunn and Barney’s childhood hero Billy Zabka (of “Karate Kid” fame) showed their face around the poker table, but only one seems like he’s going to wreak a bit of havoc on the CBS comedy.
Yet before that happens, there’s some big upheavals to the friendships on “HIMYM.” Lily (Alyson Hannigan) is concerned that Robin (Cobie Smulders) won’t have any lady friends once she moves to Rome, while Barney finally learns the truth about Ted (Josh Radnor): that he still, sometimes, has feelings for Robin.
Despite the heavy topics, the show pulled them off in its usual humorous fashion (and that’s not just referring to Robin -- and Lily -- yelling at Patrice to stay away.) Lily also pulled a play out of Barney’s playbook to get Robin to be “nice” to a fellow lady. When that backfired -- the crying girl didn’t want a hug -- it actually worked out. The girl at the bar liked hockey, and voila! Robin has a new best friend… or at least that’s how Lily imagined it. Psycho Lily came out, proving to Robin that all she needs is her red-headed friend.
The more interesting part of “How I Met Your Mother” “Broken Code” fell to Barney and Ted, whose relationship is getting weird to say the least. When they’re not crying over a broken $600 bottle of scotch, they’re attempting to prove that the other broke Barney’s "Bro Code." Yet, there’s nothing in the book that says there’s anything wrong with a bro sharing a weird moment with a best friend’s fiancee. In one of the more entertaining parts of the night, Marshall (Jason Segel) -- as a lifeless blob Marsh Pillow 2.0 complete with an iPad face -- comes up with a verdict: if Barney and Ted can hold hands without it being weird than it wasn’t weird for Robin and Ted to hold hands.
Naturally, it’s crazy weird on the beach, and not just because it’s somewhat reminiscent of “Weekend at Bernie’s,” what with Marshall and his “pillow” hanging out too. It’s especially weird when they’re holding hands in the pouring rain -- just as Robin and Ted did at the carousel -- and Ted admits he has feelings for Robin. But does it help that he doesn’t want to have feelings? And that he claims he’ll do everything possible to move on?
For Barney apparently it does. This makes this particular “HIMYM” storyline feel a bit brushed over. If Barney has been thinking about the carousel as long as he has, would he really get over Ted’s unrequited feelings that easily? So he says. But there’s still 51 hours to go to the wedding.
Even so, Ted is back to being the best man to Billy Zabka’s dismay. “I’m coming for you Mosby,” Zabka tells Ted, and here’s hoping it leads to one awesome showdown with some karate moves. Because what’s a “How I Met Your Mother” wedding without Ted taking some sort of beating?
What did you think of “Broken Code”? Does Ted’s affection for Robin feel resolved yet, or no?
The CBS comedy airs on Monday nights at 8 p.m. EDT.
© Elizabeth SanFilippo 2013
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