Follow Monsters of Television on Twitter

Wednesday, 22 of September of 2021

Tag » How I Met Your Mother

How I Met Your Mother – “Challenge Accepted”


Back in 2005, the same year that How I Met Your Mother began, I had another blog, this one devoted to popular culture in general. That blog never took off very much (lack of dedication from all those involved), and it faded away. I did, however, write about HIMYM. I called it “high-concept (for a sitcom), funny, and surprisingly sweet” but concluded the bit with this thought: “It’s that sense of pre-destination that ruins the show. It can’t run but for two or three seasons at the very most.”

What the hell happened? Where did it all go wrong? How does a show that I came to love, one that reach delirious heights of romance and humor, with sophistication and wit, end its sixth season with, well, whatever the hell this is? Read more »

Podcast 14: “FOX Hurts Nick’s Feelings”

“I bet that was the first time Human Target has ever trended on Twitter … those seven people were really upset about it.”

Where’s podcast 13, you ask? Well, think of it like how buildings don’t have thirteenth floors because it’s bad luck. That should distract you from the real reason: Nick got lazy and didn’t cut the last recording. When the Monsters of Television album drops, I’ll make Podcast 13 (and all the others resigned to a similar fate) the secret track for you.

Another secret track on that album? Some of the stuff that was left on the cutting room floor for this podcast. So much to talk about and so little time to do it in. FOX hacked its schedule to shreds this week, canceling just about everything, even putting House on notice for a final season. We stare down the barrel of the upfronts and tell you about what we’ll miss, what we’re looking forward to, and what we’re already cringing about. We also talk a lot of television from the past week, mostly the usual suspects. So go ahead and indulge yourself with this week’s podcast. Learn something. And try to forget about ol’ scary number thirteen.

Running time: 72 minutes

  • FOX Bloodbath
    • Chicago Code: 0:00:22
    • Breaking In:0:04:33
  • Chuck: 0:10:02
  • Wonder Woman: 0:11:42
  • Charlie’s Angels: 0:12:58
  • FOX Bloodbath – Sepinwall Post: 0:15:24
  • NBC PIckups: 0:17:32
  • Are You There Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea: 0:18:19
  • Ashton Kutcher and Two and a Half Men: 0:19:15
  • S#*! My Dad Says Cancelled: 0:22:10
  • ABC Pickups: 0:22:28
  • Damon Wayans, Jr and Happy Endings: 0:26:11
  • CW Renewals: 0:27:49
  • Smallville: 0:28:15
  • Ringer: 0:31:06
  • Gossip Girl: 0:33:25
  • Game of Thrones: 0:40:20
  • The Office: 0:53:40
  • Community: 0:55:41
  • This Week’s Finales: 1:08:10

How I Met Your Mother – “Landmarks”

New York is never finished, Theodore.

Barney as the architect of the Arcadian

This actually worked for me. Too little too late, but it worked.

But I’m nearly there, show.

If “Landmarks” does anything, it just serves as a reminder of every single frustration I’ve had with the show this season. Which, really, when I’m considering abandoning the show entirely, is not a good thing to have happen. Next week’s finale has got to be, well, awesome, really, to keep me on board.

But one good thing did come out of “Landmarks”: The poorly plotted and emotionally dead Ted and Zoey relationship is finally over.  At last.

Read more »

How I Met Your Mother – “The Perfect Cocktail”

He reaches a kind of sad clarity.”

I’m trying to be more optimistic as opposed to angry and ranty about HIMYM. I mean, I have to pace myself for the last two episodes of the season, otherwise I’ll have no more negative words left to write. But it’s really hard when, well, the show doesn’t try and endear itself to me.

I mean, certainly, there are things I should have liked and things I did like in the episode. But, as a whole, “The Perfect Cocktail” was nothing close to perfect. In fact, I feel like the show poured gin and whisky down my throat, but didn’t bother with the daiquiris to make me feel better about myself. Nor did it give me a martini to inappropriately hit on a friend. Read more »

Podcast 12 – “Nick Hates Love”

“Because I will Tritter tangent forever.”

After a brief hiatus (has it been two months already?), we have a brand new podcast. We talk about all kinds of stuff like the NBC Thursday Night lineup (natch), our varied interest in Game of Thrones, the return of Thirteen to House (and why she’s important even if people hate her character), and all veritable sundry of other items. It’s really pretty good. You should get on that. Also, notice how Nick hates it when anyone gets together on a show. Does he hate love? Is he a robot? Who are we to say? It’s half the fun. Enjoy our sing-song voices.

How I Met Your Mother – “Hopeless”


So this was an interesting episode in that it is pretty funny but still feels like a bit of a rehash of past episodes (particularly “Okay Awesome” (mentioned in passing) and “The Pineapple Incident”), which is something I’ve tagged the show for before. I’m trying to figure out if the series is doing the rehashing of past seasons purposefully, carrying through with its idea of “new is awesome” this season, or if the show is just getting wheezy as it ages.

Part of me worries that I’m rationalizing my continued commitment to the show (and am now set up for two more seasons! Two! At least!). In that sense, I’m pretty hopeless, aren’t I? I’ve talked about this before, how I, as a viewer, am trapped in an idea of what the show should be, unwilling to let it grow past its previous seasons (and I talk a little bit about those reasons in a forthcoming podcast). Does this limit my enjoyment of the show, or is the show just genuinely not working any longer? Last week, I think, was clearly a case of the latter, but is there an instance where the former is happening?

I can’t say for sure, so let’s talk about this episode a bit while I try and work it out. Read more »

How I Met Your Mother – “The Exploding Meatball Sub”

I don’t think you know what Spain is.”

So that episode felt relatively pointless, and I’m not entirely sure where to begin with how many kinds of frustrating the episode was.

Maybe with the quickly (semi-)resolved Lily is frustrated plot that kind of nearly recycled the season 1 finale (different motivations, but same almost result)? Or Barney’s latent emotional issues? Or with the fact that Zoey is, as we all kind of suspected, a really annoying, overly challenging person, and that Ted is going to come to completely and utterly loathe this woman (except we already knew that from a previous episode).

On the upside, Robin broke up with Scooby.

Read more »

How I Met Your Mother – “A Change of Heart”

“Okay, if you were new in town and just ingested an eighth of sandwich, where would you go?”

Barney is scared to know his heart monitor results.

Scooby-Doo references abound.

I know. You’re all pretty confused because this review totally has a picture. “Where’s Noel?” you cry. “Who is this Philistine? What else does he review? Chuck? What does he know about quality television? He’s not even a GRAD student.”

First of all, calm down. Second, quality television is a very problematic phrase (see, that totally made you feel more comfortable, didn’t it?). Third, we’ll take it slow-like. I’ll try not to let my verbosity interfere with Noel’s succinct style. Also, I could’ve been a pretty awesome grad student if Bazin and Barthes didn’t make me so sleepy.

This week on How I Met Your Mother, we go to the well over and over again.

“A Change of Heart” might have felt very familiar to you because we kind of already did this. Remember when Barney got sick and Robin had to take care of him? Or when Barney fell in love with Robin? Or how Lilly is his only confidante? Yeah, that’s all here again with Nora. It’s like the same thing except not as ill-advised as the first time.

We’re also starting to come out of the shadow of Mr Erikson’s death (though it sparks the whole heart theme) and we get a Barney-dominated episode where instead of cracking wise, NPH gets a chance to flex his deeply-flawed and -damaged character, even if we’ve already seen it before.

Though maybe we shouldn’t look at it like it’s tread territory and look at it like a do-over. Right?

Read more »

How I Met Your Mother – “Desperation Day”

I just kept driving forward, hoping for the best.”

Marshall and Ted play video games

Oh masculinity. Always in crisis.

“Desperation Day” is solid, provides more than a few chuckles (and CBS also gave a last minute Valentine’s Day gift idea), and begins to wrap up the inital impact of Mr. Ericksen’s death. Which in turn helps Ted resolve an issue with Zoey that probably should’ve been drawn out over multiple episodes.

Oh, and Barney hits on women some more while Lily does what we’ve all done at one point or another and pretend that a body pillow is a significant other. You know, the usual stuff. Read more »

How I Met Your Mother – “Oh Honey”

As per us, he bored the pants right on her.”

Unlike the numbers from a few episodes ago that slowly built to a payoff that comes from nowhere, the narrative structuring of playing phone tag allows the episode to do a lot of things, give everyone a bit of screen time, and tell the story in a compelling way. HIMYM is always at its best when it unfurls a narrative in non-linear-ish fashion, and I appreciate it when it succeeds at it (and it is a show about storytelling, after all, so it should be able to tell stories well).

As such, “Oh Honey” is the first episode since “Natural History” (that was way back in November, folks) that I really enjoyed. Even if the ending was a foregone conclusion (and it was), I still got swept up in the episode’s romantic scope and banter. Read more »