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October 10, 2015

'How I Met Your Mother' - 'Home Wreckers' Recap

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 20th 2010 12:02AM
(S05E20) It figures that right after I do a long post about the prominence of silly standalone episodes on 'HIMYM' this year, Bays and Thomas come back with an episode that could both stand alone and be part of the "mythology" of the show. And it gave us a new drinking game, to boot.

Of course, the problem with most mythology-centric episodes on this show is that they center around Ted, whom most fans acknowledge is the least interesting character in the gang. But when he gets support from the rest of the group, the stories are much more palatable. So think of this episode as this year's version of last year's finale, 'The Leap,' even though Ted's big life leap forward takes place with some episodes left this time around.

The character who gave Ted the biggest assist this week was Marshall. Not only did he have Ted's back as everyone else was telling him how stupid he was to buy that flea trap of a house, he created the instant classic game, "Drunk or Kid?" It's just way too true that the dumb stuff you do when you're drunk is indistinguishable from the dumb stuff you did when you were a kid. Though I was happy to know that when Marshall drove his brother's car the wrong way down the interstate he was a kid. Making the answer to that question "Drunk" would have been one of those step too far jokes that most sitcoms do a good job of avoiding.

Speaking of a step too far, ya gotta love Barney's storytelling abilities. Interesting that the writers got no notes for saying the words "Your penis is enormous" twice on an 8PM show. I liked when they brought the joke back during Barney's story about trying to seduce Ted's mom. I'm just thinking that he was trying to cover for crying at Clint's silly dragon song at Ted's mom's wedding. But the fact that he went that step too far not once, but twice, earns the stories my Best Barneyism of the week.

Somehow, despite the fact that the room in the scene of the kids on the couch we've been seeing for five years looks nothing like the house Ted bought, my fiancee just knew that they were referring to Old Ted's house. Maybe the plot development wasn't that hard to figure out, given the nature of the series, but I never would have made the connection.

It's the time in life where people do things like this, isn't it? Ted's not 29 anymore. You get in your mid-30s, see your mom remarry -- and "eat more sandwiches" than you -- and you do things like buy a nearly-condemned house. So as full of romantic fancy Ted is, as much as he likes to plan his life out, him buying his future house doesn't seem wildly out of character at this point. Too bad it'll take him until he's fifty to renovate it.

More fun stuff:

-- The creepiest line of the night? Seeing the painting of Clint and Ted's mom and hearing Old Ted tell his kids, "There was no guitar."

-- I wonder if all men would like to have a home inspector come in and inspect their girlfriends or wives. I like how the inspector said that Marshall was "never going to fix" Lily's outspokenness. Also liked the inspector's suggestion that Marshall would be better in something "Spanish" than a "Gothic."

-- Loved everyone saying in turn as Ted looked in horror at the painting: "Best. Wedding. Ever!"

Hopefully, we're starting on a good late-season roll. We'll find out next week, won't we?

[Watch clips and free episodes of 'HIMYM' at SlashControl.]

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I thought this episode was great. Ted is usually the most stable of the group but I love when he does stuff like this; it humanizes him a bit and gives the audience something to relate to. I also enjoyed that Barney went too far in his story telling a couple times. This show is just hilarious and something that definitely adds to it is that I get to watch it in HD through my employee subscription to DISH Network. I hope the final season of the series goes as well as the rest of it; I really fell in love with the show.

April 20 2011 at 6:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I was happy to see goth-Lilly make a comeback, but I really wish they'd do more Lilly plots. It seems like everyone else gets their due time except her. She's always just a foil to Marshall's zanyness.

April 22 2010 at 10:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Anyone else think that Ginnifer Goodwin would be a perfect "Mother"? I see her with Ted.

April 22 2010 at 7:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Little detail, the kissing part of Barney and Teds mother was already mentioned in season 4e11 "Little Minnesota".
So that probably wasn't a fake story from Barney.

April 22 2010 at 6:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Ted is my favorite character on the show! I think Josh Radnor does a terrific job of playing Ted. He is mostly the sane voice in his group of peers, but sometimes he goes off on a totally random crazy tangent which is great fun to watch. But, as others have said, without Ted, you don't have a show since he's the key to the central underlying plot. Personally, I find Robin to be the most boring and least funny character on the show.

April 22 2010 at 3:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Rufus Firefly

Ted realized he didn't have the wife or the kids but decided he could at least have the house. Isn't he forgetting about a source of income? Didn't he quit his job at the architectural firm? And now he's an adjunct teacher, making about $5,000 per course. He must have a huge savings account, or a massive trust fund, because there's no way his teaching gig is covering his living expenses in New York.

I know, I know, this is one of those points we're not supposed to think about in sitcom land, but it still bugs me!

April 22 2010 at 2:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I personally think the best Barneyism was "Mellencamp!"

April 20 2010 at 8:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It was pretty easy to see that it was Old Ted's house because the deck has been used before. I think it was the porch from the porch test when Lily said she was trying to picture whether the douche-tastic Karen would fit into the gang playing Bridge on the porch when they were old.

April 20 2010 at 6:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I loved the callback to "Brunch" with Barney and Ted's mom and the broach story.

April 20 2010 at 6:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The comment about going for spanish instead of goth, most likely a nod to Marshalls doppelganger, the spanish attorney...

April 20 2010 at 5:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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