How I Met Your Mother: Season 6, Episode 22
The Perfect Cocktail
I am tired of the Arcadian plotline. I see why it was important at first, being that it introduced Zoey (who is presumably important to the masterplot in some way still, right?) to the show, but I thought it pretty much played itself out in the first episode involving her. Then, next time she was around, the show did pretty much the same thing. And it has been playing slight deviaitons on this stupid fight for most of the season now. Tonight's revelation that Zoey grew up in the Arcadian gave her a reason to want it to stand, and we've always known that Ted wants to build a skyscraper, so they both have reasons for their positions. But that doesn't make me care about this any more. The Arcadian drama has been a big drag on this season every time it has appeared, and tonight it kind of trashes what could have been a pretty good episode, if not for the fact that it was a pretty bad episode.

The best thing about this episode, honestly, were the callbacks to previous episodes and ongoing jokes. I always love that about this show, but unfortunately tonight they were about all the show had going for it in terms of big laughs or excitement. I liked that Barney still does the "sending a picture of him defiling whatever the person is touching/eating/drinking." Lily still hits on Robin, which I guess is good continuity, but it isn't all that funny and it never really was. The best moment in this episode, in a landslide, was the return of the cockamouse, a fantastic creation from way back in season one. Nothing was done with this, which again demonstrates the laziness of this episode, but at least the writers remembered the existence of the cockamouse for long enough to drop a reference.

The worst thing was everything else. The Zoey and Ted in the Arcadian plot was something we've seen before (the couple in a horrible place but trying to stick it out) topped with Ted springing "I Love You," a declaration he's made so many times on this show that it might be sapped of all meaning by the time he finally gets to the mother (if he ever does at this point). Marshall and Barney's feud was funny at times, but it felt incredibly rushed and didn't really build to anything. It seemed like the writers thought it would be cute to see which types of liquor effect everyone in which ways. Which is fine as a montage, but as the driving plot of the episode felt very lacking. Worst perhaps was the "gang is banned from the bar" plotline, which should by all reason have been hilarious but was instead completely wasted, not even being used at all. The group was banned, sure, and mentioned it once, but Barney and Marshall were able to go into the bar without trouble later, and Ted apparently didn't even realize they had been banned. It's ok, Ted. Neither did I.

Look, honestly I'm just tired. At this point there is so much fatigue hampering the masterplot of this show that it can be tough to keep caring. Most weeks I strain to remember what it was about this show that made me fall so in love with it in its early seasons. How I Met Your Mother was never the best comedy on television, but for a few years there it was maybe my favorite and I was excited every week for what the show would turn out. When Ted was with Victoria, I thought it was cute. I loved the balls it took for the show to spend a year on Ted and Robin (even though we knew they wouldn't end up together), and I loved that I really cared about how those two would fall apart. I even liked the Stella arc, at least enough for the short time we spent on it, and for the fact that it was more about where Ted was at the time than about actual romance. But since then, we've been stalled. In season one, I loved Marshall and Lily. When they broke up, I cared about that and worried for the characters, and when they finally got married it was one of the series' best moments. But for years now, they've been in the same place. Hell, they've been making pregnancy jokes and contemplating having kids for TWO SEASONS NOW.

I used to be excited by this show, stimulated by it, moved by it, intrigued by it. Now, I watch it. I watch, and I wait, and I hope that the show gets back to where it should be going. I cared about this show when it was telling a story, and damn it, as cynical and tired as I get, I still want to see the ending. Carter Bays and Craig Thomas are contracted for two more seasons. So is the cast. I haven't given up hope that this show can rebound, especially if it finally moves to the endgame and introduces the mother. But mostly, I'm scared of how much further this show could fall in two more years, hoe much it could tarnish its legacy by going on far, far, far too long. I'm scared, and yes, I'm tired.

Grade: C


-"We fired him when we caught him clubbing a seal in his office with an even cuter seal."

-"I'm sorry, but your crabs have super herpes."

-"We're a dream of babies having a dream of babies having a dream." "I keep telling you that didn't hap-..." "It happened, and it changed me!"

-"Look, I can handle you trying to prevent me from achieving a lifelong dream. That's just being in a relationship." Even Ted is cynical now.

-"Kids, don't drink tequila." Amen.
Tags: How I Met Your Mother
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