HIMYM: The Best Man & The Naked Truth

by Danny Zawacki

While I may have missed the live debut of the first two episodes of season 7 of How I Met Your Mother because I was at the Cubs game last night, I have since had a chance to sit down and watch them. I can honestly say that I’m glad to have the show back and this season looks like it will be one of my favorites.

If you haven’t seen the episodes yet, you really should go and see them (they can be found on CBS’s website). This post is going to recap the two episodes, or at least the parts I find worth mentioning. Spoilers to follow.

While we ended last season on an uncertain note after being led along all season into thinking that the wedding Ted was going to be the best man at was his friend from high school Punchy’s wedding, we learned that it was in fact Barney’s wedding. It was quite skillfully done and I was even taken by surprise (my track record for guessing plot before it happens only gets better as I watch more television). The question loomed all summer, who was Barney finally settling down with. Last night’s episodes confirmed one of my two theories.

I feel like it’s common knowledge that Barney Stinson and Robin Scherbatsky are deep down in love with one another, despite their failed relationship. Robin always seems to confide this knowledge to Lily, though not openly, and Barney does the same with Ted. As a result of this, I firmly believe that Barney and Robin should be the couple at the wedding. But they won’t be. Last night’s two episodes led me to believe that Barney is going to date Robin’s friend Nora and ask her to marry him. Robin, in an attempt to write Barney off for good, ends up realizing that she’s still in love with Barney but ends up helping him get back together with Nora. Barney eventually proves himself to Nora and lands himself a second date. This sets the path for Barney and Nora’s wedding.

However, in the beginning and the end of the first episode, The Best Man, we see Barney struggling to choose a tie to wear to his wedding. Barney makes sure to explain to Ted and the viewers that when he says that he doesn’t know if he made the right choice of tie, he isn’t actually talking about the tie. My prediction is that Barney will be asked to say “I do” to Nora and he’ll turn his head and see Robin looking sad in the crowd and the season will end with some sort of line like, “I can’t.” After this, we’ll know that he chose Robin. Though, knowing television plots, she’ll likely be in a relationship of her own. This will quickly be cast aside in the first few episodes of next season.

I’m not wholly impressed with the Marshal and Lily stories at the moment. Marshall is pursuing his dream job of being an environmental lawyer which we know will eventually happen. To be honest, this story line bothers me. I have nothing invested in it because the show isn’t called How Your Uncle Marshall Got His Dream Job. By the same logic, I shouldn’t be interested in the Barney/Robin story but I am because the shows title could, in a sense, apply to them too. Marshall will get his job and eventually he’ll be happy until he sits at his desk late one night and opens the letter Lily wrote to him which he should only open on his death bed.

There is the aspect of the Marshall/Lily story which involves the baby, but the only surprises to come are when the others find out (which was taken care of in the first episode last night), the gender of the baby and whether or not the writers decide to off the baby before it is born (for some reason I highly doubt that Lily will miscarriage or have a stillborn because of all the work the show went through to get them pregnant). I’m not expecting any surprises and therefore I’ll watch this baby story like I watch any other baby stories, with mild interest.

Ted’s story is where the show is truly taking off this season. In the second episode, The Naked Truth, Ted uses his new found architecture fame to land him dates with two different girls. However, he can’t decide which one he should continue dating and ultimately invite to the Architecture Gala. Not until he sees Barney proving his devotion to Nora does Ted realize that he won’t invite either girl because he doesn’t have the same sort of devoted attraction to either one of the women that Barney is giving to Nora. Ted takes Robin to the Gala instead (who wanted to go thinking that Lenny Kravitz the singer would be there but instead finds out it was the architect Leonard Kravitz). However, there’s quite a sighting at the Gala which has me more excited than I have been in a while.

Of all of the girls Ted has dated throughout the show, I’ve only really ever felt one of them would be the elusive “One”. Nobody ever liked Karen. Robin was the One for all of one episode in our minds. Victoria chose to follow her dream and took a fellowship in Germany. Stella I have always hated because she never felt right. Zoey and Ted always fought. I can’t remember what was wrong with What’s-her-name.

Only one of those girls did I ever truly wish Ted to marry even after she had left the show. Last night, she came back even though I never thought she would. At the Gala when Ted turned around he saw Victoria arranging cupcakes. Victoria is back. My mouth literally fell open and stayed that way for a few minutes before I could process it.

We only saw Victoria for a few seconds and that’s not a lot to go off of. But I’m going to give it a try. I have a feeling that Ted and Victoria will find a way to rekindle what they had but in the end it won’t work out, much to my dismay. The problem is in the details of other shows. During a monologue from Future Ted to his audience, he explains that at the time of the Lucky Penny episode he has not met the mother. This episode was in season 2 and Victoria was season 1 and therefore means that she isn’t the one.

That’s a bummer but I’m still glad they brought her back, even if only for a couple of episodes.

I can’t wait to see what next week’s episode holds and what questions will be answered.