HIMYM Recap: “Platonish”

HIMYMWhen do you consider something a retread and when do you see at a necessary rehash of past events to provide greater understanding for the present? That is the question at the center of last night’s HIMYM as the show takes a break from Farhampton to head back to the bar and revisist the Ted-Robin-Barney love triangle. Have we been here before? Yes, but as a Ted-Robin shipper, it’s an important flashback as the show continues to distance itself from the relationship that started the story in the first place, and transitions to the one that will close the story.

“Platonish” shows the flip in Barney and Ted’s personalities and how it leads to success for one and failure for the other. The two characters go off on very different plots, one stationary and one active. Ted and Marshall head to a Globetrotters game where they sit and discuss how Ted and Robin should be together. Marshall and Lily have come to personify certain fan feelings this season. Lily seems to be venting fan frustration at certain elements that have been bugging the audience for years. Marshall, however, is the embodiment of those fans who hope against hope that Ted and Robin end up together. At this point most everyone knows what is going to happen (minus some secret twist that the show runners have in their back pocket). But the writer’s recognize that the fact Ted and Robin aren’t going to end up together is still something people have a hard time getting over. What this episode does is illustrate not only why Barney deserves to be with Robin, but why Ted doesn’t.

Barney’s persona has always been effortless when it comes to picking up women. It’s a point hit on again as he is put through a series of challenges by Robin and Lily to pick up women in increasingly ridiculous ways. Every obstacle thrown in his path is blown apart by his charisma and cunning. Contrast this to Ted who has been trying (in many cases too hard) to find the love of his life. But as the episode progresses, both come to realizations. Ted understand that he is no longer the guy that will steal a French horn, while Barney comes to understand that to get what he really wants he is going to have to put forth everything he has to succeed.

Ending the episode with Barney sitting down to write “The Robin” is a nice touch, but I want to go back and talk about Ted and Marshall at the basketball game. I’ve mentioned numerous times this year that someone needs to sit down and have a chat with Ted about his behavior. I’m hoping when that happens it will be a mirror to the scene in this episode. Marshall gets Ted and wants what’s best for him. Hopefully when he finally reunites with him, his difficulties with Lily will lead to a revelation that will allow him to provide Ted with some much needed guidance.

Other items…

  • I love that Marshal and Ted are Generals fans. It fits seamlessly with their characters, and feels like an effortless reveal.
  • Nice to have Marshall interact with the gang in ways other than through a phone.
  • Just a very solid half hour comedy-wise.
  • I’d mention Cranston, but I’m hoping he has a more substantial role in a future episode.
  • Sorry, I missed last week. Trying to get back on track here.
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