“How I Met Your Mother” returned on September 23 with the beginning of the end. But will season nine really achieve “legendary” status? If the first hour, consisting of “The Locket” and “Coming Back,” is any indication, it’s off to a good start.
And not just because Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) says there’s no more “wait for it” about it. He’s found his one in Robin (Cobie Smulders), even if they momentarily think they’re cousins, and even after he learns his brother James (Wayne Brady) is unfortunately going through a divorce.
The “HIMYM” season nine premiere had a little bit of everything fans have come to know and love about the CBS comedy. For one, there was a healthy dose of hijinx. Little baby Marvin thankfully deleted an incriminating “judge” photo of Marshall (Jason Segel) before Lily (Alyson Hannigan) saw it. Or, Lily tackling Ted (Josh Radnor) in the Farhampton Inn and no one batting an eye. Or, Lily ordering a “Kennedy” package of drinks (i.e., when she runs dry, the bartender gives her another one). Or, Barney decorating James’s room with “love is awesome” banners and marzipan men. Or, the plethora of Canuck jokes that lead to Robin and Barney wondering if they’re related.
Okay, that last one was… weird. But other than some minor missteps, “How I Met Your Mother” started off on the right foot, and it’s not hard to see how they’ll spend a whole season on the legendary wedding weekend. There’s lots that needs to go down, namely Marshall telling Lily about his judge job. (Anyone think Lily’s drinking had something to do with their big move to Italy?) And of course Ted still has to “meet” the Mother.
Thankfully, the CBS comedy is incorporating the Mother (Cristin Milioti) in all sorts of way. Lily met the Mother in a wonderful scene on the train, a.k.a. dumpster on wheels, and in doing so, she gave some clues on just how perfect the Mother is for Ted. She too is a “loser” who likes driving gloves and random road trip detours. Over the course of the season, everyone else, but Ted, will meet the Mother too.
But there, hopefully, will also be more moments like the end of the “How I Met Your Mother” "Coming Back" when it flash-forwarded to Future Ted joining the Mother at a table in Farhampton Inn as his “present” self did a crossword puzzle by himself. It’s moments like this where it’s easy to fall in love with the comedy all over again, even with Ted’s sappy lines like, “I made a promise to myself right at this table. When I came back, I'm bringing you.”
Still, it seems like Ted has a ways to go before he’s “ready” for “the one.” After all, that locket is most likely in Ted’s possession, and if he gives it to Robin, it stupidly shows that he’s not quite over Robin, even though it’s clear they’re not meant to be. While the final season “HIMYM” needs a storyline like this one to keep the tension throughout the season, it’s difficult to believe that Ted will go from pining over Robin (still) to meeting the one he’s really meant to be with, all in the course of one weekend.
Thankfully the comedy also has some sweet moments between Barney and Robin. But the showrunners have promised that their long-term “fate” will be revealed too. They seem so strong now, what with Barney’s confidence in them, and here’s hoping beyond hope that his confidence isn’t misplaced.
What did you think of the “How I Met Your Mother” season nine opener?
© Elizabeth SanFilippo 2013
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