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How I Met Your Mother

How I Met Your Mother is a comedy about Ted Mosby, a New York architect who wants to get married and start a family. Future Ted is telling the story of how he met their mother and we see his past story set in the present day and the adventures he has with friends Marshall, Lily, Barney and Robin. CBS 2005-???


Episode 2 - The Pre-Nup

4 October 2012

Credit CBS

Synopsis: Barney is advised by Arthur that he should get a Pre-Nup. Barney goes way over the top and provides Quinn with a ridiculous pile of documents with more than just conditions of divorce. It provokes each of the gang to question how their own relationships could be renegotiated. Ted is not happy to have Klaus staying with him. Marshall was upset when Lily yelled at him for throwing the baby in the air. Nick doesn’t like Robin watching TV while they have sex.

The Good: Barney and Quinn breaking up because they don’t trust each other feels about right. It’s a shame that didn’t develop organically and instead was delivered to us along with a mountain of nonsense. I suppose Robin giving a secret signal on air that she will understand later is a plausible idea. I can well imagine new parents doubting each other’s ability to take care of a child and the hurt that would cause.

The Bad: However this was the whole show in microcosm. We are all just waiting around out of loyalty and inertia to find out who the mother is and the show spins its wheels too. This episode was all about the characters talking crap until one of the couples broke up. The gag that it wasn’t going to be Marshall and Lily was hardly needed, we know each of the other three have to break up to get us where we’re going.

Obviously I had zero tolerance for all the ludicrous exaggerations. When Barney tries to break social conventions to gain something he can be brilliant. When he acts like he’s never met other humans before he is tiresome. All the Pre-Nup gags were pointless exaggerations because there was no way Quinn was going to sign such a huge document. At one point she demands to have the idea of seven other wives struck from the contract. Why? She’s not going to sign it.

The baby throwing, Robin getting turned on and Klaus nonsense was all a giant waste of time. The Klaus stuff was as desperate and horrible as sit coms can get with his nudity, ferrets and parents living in an airport locker. I don’t know what to say about the meta joke which closed the episode. Ted points out that Klaus’ German sit com is a broad comedy but can make you care about the characters. If that was meant in any way to reflect on HIMYM then that’s the biggest joke of all because no one cares about these characters anymore.

I know this is an arch nitpick but I do think it’s symptomatic of the bad writing on this show. At one point Lily says to Robin “You wink to future you watching the re-broadcast at eleven?” And Robin responds guiltily with a “Maybe.” But Robin was the one who said she had more to add to her story and clearly told them that! So what Lily is just literally repeating what Robin told them and then pretends like what she just admitted isn’t true? I know dialogue isn’t easy to write but these people get paid a lot to churn out crap.  

Comic Highlight: There was nothing to laugh at here but I didn’t object to Robin winking at herself.

How I rate your episode: The real bad part of this episode is that Victoria and Ted are back together and we didn’t see any of it. The show just isn’t interested in characterisation at all and she now becomes a non-entity like Nick. The writers just kick dirt all over him by showing us Barney and Robin together because they can’t wait to get there.



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