Screen ShotHow I Met Your Mother is a show for its fans. It’s not a one off show, where anyone can sit down and watch an episode to understand what is going on. You really need to be an avid fan of this show to enjoy its witty moments. Usually, that would harm a show’s ratings, especially nine seasons into it, when some people have given up on it after it started to get lackluster, but for those of us that have stuck around, these last couple episodes have been worth it.

“Last Time in New York” once again leaves the gang separated but it matches everyone up with a perfect comedic counterpart. Lily and Ted have always been my favourite couple that’s not actually a couple because they are so different but so loyal to each other. While Lily gets a little too involved in Ted’s love life, she’s always there to talk him out of silly decisions or support the silliness when Ted’s mind cannot be changed. This episode displays Ted and Lily’s friendship perfectly. It has Lily stealing what she thinks is Ted’s speech right out of his hands because she needs to ensure there won’t be any Robin drama. Even though we’ve known since the pilot that the mother isn’t Robin, I still feel really bad for Ted. First he doesn’t get to marry the girl he’s in love with, and then his best friend constantly reminds him that she’s not in love with him. Take a hint Lily! If the guy is willing to move to Chicago to get away from her than maybe he doesn’t want to be constantly reminded that he’ll never have her.

Things lighten up a little when the avid HIMYM fans get a call back to the season one episode “The Duel” where Marshall and Ted get in a sword fight and stab Lily in the arm. Ted comes clean about April 26 where he finds the swords and with the most perceptive analysis of the Princess Bride and a nod to Mandy Patinkin, the boys start fighting again, only to ruin Lily’s dress that’s the perfect balance of slutty and classy. She of course makes the boys wear things they don’t want to because she doesn’t get to wear what she wants, even though she has a sword-fighting secret of her own. Turns out, she found the swords and her and Robin had a duel of their own, only to break the $600 dollar scotch Marshall and Ted had been saving. The girls quickly decide to replace the broken bottle with another bottle of scotch, some ketchup, chocolate syrup, and hand sanitizer. I’m all for keeping secrets to the end but letting your friend drink Purell is a new level of evil. And dangerous.

On the Barney and Robin side we get more Mandy Patinkin references and grandparents. A lot of grandparents. Seriously, who has that many grandparents? Shouldn’t there have been 8 old folks max? Maybe one or two more since Robin mentioned her great grandparents but how many people in their thirties actually still have great-grandparents? It was like they walked into a bingo hall, not a hotel reception. Anyways, Barney and Robin spend the episode hoping they won’t lose their spark as they age and decide it’s time to have sex in naughty places (and by places I mean rooms, apparently that needs to be clarified more than once). My favourite brother, James Stinson appears, hiding out from then grandparents and warns the soon to be bride and groom that he and Tom lost their spark, so they need to be careful. As an early wedding present, he launches himself into the grandparents, ready to be bombarded with questions about his race and sexuality.

Since it’s still only Friday of the longest wedding weekend ever, Marshall is still on the rode. This time driving through Wisconsin, and since he had as much to do with the destruction of Lily’s dress as Ted did, he has to wear a cheese shaped hat and Packer’s gear. His story line is easily the worst the groups. Perhaps it’s the lack of gang interaction or maybe it feels like Jason Segel has been ready to move on for a while, but man do I hope he makes it to the rehearsal dinner. There’s nothing exciting or funny about the Daphne character, and Marshall is at his best when he’s explaining his absurd but profound theories (see: Inigo Montoya/Andre the Giant argument).

Overall, I’m excited to see where the season ends up. It really feels like a season of throwbacks, nods, and reflections with classic humor thrown in. I hope it comes full circle, and we get a taste of seasons past but with more mother thrown in. She’s already got me hooked and she was a very noticeable absence this episode. Here’s hoping she’ll be back next week.