HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER: 9.07 “No Questions Asked”
I appreciated this episode. In fact, if you haven’t already seen it, you should go watch it now. No questions asked.
Now, I’m not saying it didn’t have its flaws, and I’m sure by the end of this post, I’ll get to them. But the episode did a great job at intermixing the crazy shenanigans of the HIMYM crew in flashbacks while balancing the present day rather well. It’s their usual style of entertainment, and it worked.
Of course, Marshall (of all people) would have plenty of “no questions asked” favors he could ask of others because, of anyone, he’d be the one that would go out and do the wild, crazy things that everyone asked of him. It’s his Midwestern upbringing. And the situations that all of the group got it just felt right as well. Ted would certainly do something as weird and creepy as write a letter to an anonymous woman at the drug store, after overhearing her address. After all, she could be the mother. And Barney always does over-the-top things. Heck, even Robin, who had the most mysterious of all the situations, I could see needing help in such a scenario. While hers was the biggest stretch, knowing Robin, it wasn’t that much of a stretch at all.
And all this was done so that they could delete the text message on Lily’s phone. It was silly but creative, and it got the job done. And in the end, I appreciated that Ted was able to pull out the “no questions asked” line in order to save the day.
But now let’s take a moment to harp on a couple negatives. First, what got in the way for me was the Barney/Robin realization that they can’t be their solo selves anymore, and they need to work together as a team. Once again, we have the relationship reality hitting them smack in the face — and hitting us in the face as well. I’ve complained before that I hate that we’re squeezing so many of these relationship conflicts into every episode of the season, and really, I think this episode could have been sustainable without it.
My other complaint was Lily’s reaction to Marshall’s news. Marshall’s realization that he never wanted to keep secrets from Lily gave us a very heartfelt, emotional confession of his career choice. And what could have been a tense reaction and cliffhanger was instead transformed into a silly joke. Lily’s cartoonish anger and declaration that she’s going to kill him did murder one thing: the moment. We would have gotten so much more out of just an angry face. Or a blank look with silence. Or something that left us wondering what her reaction was. Heck, even just hanging up on him would have been more enticing. Her reaction just killed it for me.
But beyond that, I think it was a well-put-together episode. So I do give them credit for that. Plus, blaming every flaw in the room on a ghost? That was clever. I wonder if other hotels do that…