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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

How I Met Your Mother 9x11: Bedtime Stories


More clever and amusing than outright funny, this was, nevertheless, a pretty enjoyable episode. There wasn't much more to it beyond the central gimmick (well, I suppose James Van Der Beek returned), but it was another episode set away from the inn, it didn't involve sitcom-y wedding hijinks, and the gimmick did generate a few laughs all on its own (mainly from seeing how certain words got rhymed and/or fit into the meter - Barney in particular had some impressive ones).

Maybe it's just the English major in me, but I thought this was tons of fun. As far as stunt episodes for long-in-the-tooth sitcoms go, this could have been much, much worse. What it ultimately boils down to is whether or not you enjoyed the gimmick. I did.

Other Thoughts
I liked how Ted and Barney's stories referenced each other - a nice bit of narrative structure on top of the rhyming business.

Ditto the way the script used HIMYM's usual jump cuts to occasionally finish off a line, as in Ted musing "what do I say" followed by a cut to McLaren's and Marshall bellowing, "Teddy Westside's got a date!"

Also amusing: rhyming Yankees players with potential dinner options (spaghetti marinara/Mariano Rivera in particular made me laugh).

The man sitting across from Marshall on the bus was named Gus. Bravo.

I know that the show has had SagetTed clean things up for his kids in the telling before (most notably, in substituting sandwiches for joints), the act of which always makes this more apparent, but was this the first time the show openly acknowledged that the central premise of the show has led SagetTed to, on occasion, tell his kids some wildly inappropriate stories and/or details about the lives of their father, aunts and uncles?   

I haven't been the biggest fan of the Marshall road trip story (and I'm still not, especially since it seems it's going to drug out even further, even though he's only five miles away), but I do like the way the mode of travel on his journey has devolved, from plane to car to bus and now to foot. I fully expect him to show up at the inn crawling. 

If I'm not mistaken, I believe the particular meter in which this episode is written is iambic heptameter, a trait it shares with the theme from Gilligan's Island (amongst other more literary things, of course).

I really wanted to write this entire review in rhyme, but try as I might, I simply could not find the time. 

2 comments:

  1. I was fairly ambivalent to this episode. Yeah, it was clever but I felt its cleverness lost its luster around halfway in. And I spent a lot of time trying to decide if these stories were true. I decided they were. (Well, the story that Barney told a story is true. His story was, obviously, false.)

    I'm not sure why Ted was "getting revenge" on Barney. It's not like Barney knew Ted would be going on a date with that girl. I should also add that Mariano Rivera is a terrible guess. He's married and super religious.

    Five miles isn't that far to walk. A slow walk will get you there in like an hour and forty minutes. I could do it without breaking a sweat...depending on the temperature.

    I suppose the bigger question is if the Far Hampton Inn is really just five miles away. Also, how much will Marshall be carrying? Considering he's coming home from a week long trip with his kid, that includes all his luggage plus all the baby stuff he'd need for an entire week and...well...the whole idea of walking probably should be negated before it starts.

    Finally, isn't Marvin a little too young to have a memory yet?

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  2. @Dr. Bitz: And I spent a lot of time trying to decide if these stories were true. I decided they were.

    Yeah, I took them to be true as well.

    I should also add that Mariano Rivera is a terrible guess. He's married and super religious.

    They clearly went with him just to have to try and rhyme "Rivera". Also, I quibbled with the inclusion of Alfonso Soriano, who, depending on when in the season that story was supposed to be set, may not have even been a current Yankee.

    I could do it without breaking a sweat...depending on the temperature.

    Quit showing off, Adonis. For what it's worth, I could do it too, though I'd be a sweaty mess. Because I can barely type without sweating...

    Considering he's coming home from a week long trip with his kid, that includes all his luggage plus all the baby stuff he'd need for an entire week and...well...the whole idea of walking probably should be negated before it starts.

    Indeed. Even if you assume his mom has stuff like a crib and high chair that she keeps at her house, at the very least, he still has the carseat, on top of all the luggage, diaper bag, etc.

    Finally, isn't Marvin a little too young to have a memory yet?

    Who am I, Dr. Spock?

    I wondered about that too, briefly, then just shrugged and decided I really don't know either. My gut says yes, but I can't intelligently say it's not possible.

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