18
May
2010
How I Met Your Mother: Season 5, Episode 23
The Wedding Bride
Jordan
So far this season of How I met Your Mother the story has stayed frustratingly static. Earlier there was Barney and Robin, then Robin and Don. Besides those two non-Ted storylines there has been really little story progression, at least that's memorable. However, this week I thought it would change. I am a fool.

This week had a great callback, well, a potentially great callback in the film "The Wedding Bride" teased seasons before after Stella left Ted at the altar for her ex, Tony who wrote the film. This was all a bittersweet reminder of the major life events that used to happen on the show. This season has felt like a standstill, perhaps spinning its wheels until they can figure out/time correctly meeting The Mother.

Ted starts dating Joyce (Judy Greer) after discussing baggage with the buddies in the bar. The storyline is neatly set up in the cold-open, but it feels pointless. This is a typical "life lesson" episode, the lesson this week is that everyone has baggage-even Ted (gasp!). After worrying about Joyce's baggage, Ted's own past comes back to haunt him when the pair go to see "The Wedding Bride" a film that is a twisted retelling of the Ted-Stella saga.

The movie provided a blank-slate for the show's writers to get big laughs. They failed. The main joke is how horrible Jed Mosly (Chris Kattan) was to Stella (Malin Akerman). It was one note and the movie that was supposedly being seen by millions around the world was terrible. Call it the Sorkin Sketch Comedy Problem (I'll get more into that whenever I talk about Studio 60-shameless plug). If you want people to think this is a great hilarious movie, you better bring the goods. Supposedly the humor was supposed to be derived from how untrue all the events in the film were, but it was just sad. In that regard it was effective in getting the audience to sympathize with Ted, but it was certainly played for laughs.

After wallowing in self-pity, Ted realizes we all have baggage and he runs to the theatre dramatically to tell Joyce who is there watching it again because it is so good. In a well staged scene, Ted runs to the front of the theatre and explains his past with Stella in synch with the running film. This was probably the most clever writing in an otherwise uninspired episode. Ted wins Joyce back with his honesty and openness about his baggage. So the episodes ends with them together. Wait, is Judy Greer going to be on HIMYM for more than an episode? Hell NO! The conveniently have the blip at the end of the episode reveal that Joyce has tons and tons of baggage which prompts Ted to kick her out of the apartment, thus ending a beautiful meaningless relationship while at the same time undercutting the message of the episode to some point.

Next week brings the season finale to, what I believe, is the show's worst season. No growth, nothing really happens. Want to get depressed about where HIMYM is now? Pop in a DVD of season two and just watch. The finale is entitled Dopplegangers which means we'll probably see Barney's doppelganger meaning it's time for Marshall and Lilly to have a baby. Great.

D+

Notes:

-Part of my grade reflects the frustrating nature of the season, and the blandness of this episode, so much rich story to work off here and its squandered for a stand alone episode few will remember.

-Good to see them cast comedic stalwarts Chris Kattan and Malin Ackerman for something that is supposed to be funny.

-Judy Greer wasted

-Marshall had a B-story. He is really nice to people-too nice. I'm not kidding.

-Single laugh of the night for me was Barney chanting "Kiss him, Kiss him" in the theatre when Bob Saget says he wasn't really saying Kiss

-Jordan will be back next week to cover HIMYM duties, can't wait to see how wraps up the season.
Tags: How I Met Your Mother
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