Episode Reviews

The Best Man – The Naked Truth

“You can’t talk yourself into falling in love, it doesn’t take days of deliberation. When it’s real, you know pretty quickly, and with absolute certainty.”

In the season seven premiere, we are treated to a great full hour of Ted and the gang. With this season’s theme of “timing”, Bays and Thomas picks up right where we left off last season with Barney’s wedding. Of course in typical fashion, we won’t find out anything about the bride till the the end of this season, but it’s still interesting to see Barney is truly flustered and in love.

Meanwhile, the first of the double episode premiere centers around the gang coming to realizations with their various situations. We jump back to September 2011 at the wedding of Punchy and Kelly, two of Ted’s old friends, where the central motif is to await the inevitable meltdown of Ted during another famous best man toast, which is a comedically cruel twist. The major point follows Ted along as he comes to terms with the fact that while his professional life is finally coming into place, his personal life is still as messy as ever. He spends a lot of time contemplating the idea that he might never find “the one.”

It’s another adult theme that this show does so well, the feeling of defeat after one disappointment after another. It’s hard to move though life when that doubt starts wearing you down, but though the love of his friends, and the happy news of Marshall and Lily, we might start to see the charm and self determination that we have known Ted to have. It speaks to me on a personal level as much as I hate to relate to the douchey side of Ted, I do truly relate to the life experiences of Ted and the fleeting belief in himself.

Speaking of Marshall and Lilly, in their side plot, we see the early effects of Lilly’s pregnancy as they try to determine if they should tell their friends before the first 3 months as to not jinx it. Marshall, to protect his wife, ends up drinking all of of her drinks, and promptly gets hammer. This leads to some of the more entertaining bits of the show, as in his drunken stupor, Marshall ends up completely taken by the number of cute babies at the wedding. Of course the onslaught of babies and their cuteness at the wedding put a quick end to that, with them revealing that they are expecting. I’m sure as the season plays out, we’ll see more and more pregnancy related incidents.

Barney on the other hand, has taken to using this out of town trip to test out and evaluate new pick up schemes. As a man of logic (while his own twisted version), he spends the wedding hitting on, failing, and surveying the various women at the wedding. There’s a suggestion that it’s all a ploy to get back with Robin (whom totally denies she still loves him to Lilly, yet reveals it to Barney as an aside), or in fact a cry of desperation lamenting the failure of Nora, whom incidentally, calls him back during the wedding. It’s an interesting look as we might sees a lot of growth in Barney this season as a continuation of his powerful performances last season.

In the second episode, we find another great ensemble episode with equal showing by all casts, with the exception of Robin who felt a little underutilized this time around. The second episode picks up right after the wedding with Marshal’s massive hangover and his short lived sweeping declaration that he’ll never get drunk again. Like many of us, we can relate to these sweeping declarations, many of which are as short lived as Marshall’s.

It was great to see Marshall as he attempts to clean up his online life, revealing some great insanity and transgressions of his younger idiot phase of his life. With this episode, we get the introduction of a new character, Marshalls’ new boss Garrison Cootes (Martin Short) and his great alter ego, Beercules, master of Edward 40-Hands (which Ted humorously begins to explain to his kids). Beercules is the drunken streaker that will continuously haunt Marshall for years to come. With last season’s revival of callback after callback, it’s been a while since we’ve had a new show property to have fun with.

Meanwhile, the other part of the episode revolves around Barney’s pursuit and attempt to rekindle his relationship with Nora. We get more of the show’s classic listings in the form of Barney’s list the various ways he’s lied over the years. It’s interesting to see Barney truly trying to change his life around for Nora, sticking it out at the diner until she returned to give him another chance. I’m sure Bays and Thomas will tease use the whole season as we see Barney grow in his relationship with Nora, and we’ll have to wait to see if he ends up with Nora or Robin.

Finally, we follow Ted around a little bit as he determines who to make his next girlfriend. It’s the typical Ted delusions where he even goes to the point of making pros and cons lists and colored charts to determine which of the two girls is more his style. In the end though, he thankfully comes to the realization that he really wants someone that he falls head over heels over, with the final revelation of the return of Victoria (Ashley Williams), arguably one of the favorite ex-girlfriends, and one of the only ones who didn’t completely break Ted’s heart. It’ll be interesting to see what her feelings are after Ted broke her heart in arguably one of the most horrible things he’s done to anyone. Voted the most desired “Mother” in an online poll, it is no real surprise that the producers decided to bring her back into Ted’s life.

Overall, it was a great start to season seven for long time fans of the show, with enough randomness for new fans as well, and I look forward to the rest of the season, especially if i get to see more of the lovely Ashley Williams. With the themes of “timing” and “chance” encounters, I hope to see more great interactions with fate that makes the show so great.

Other Observations

  • The show starts with the return of the kids, and a reference that the story “not all that close to the end.”
  • Disappointed to see that while the show producers usually have websites mentioned on the show available, they do not have the various YouTube clips online. I’d LOVE it if they would put them online.
  • Schmosby is a wedding toast train wreck.
  • Marshal has a robot in his bedroom on the dresser.
  • Licking Lilly’s stomach for luck is sweet
  • The dance scene was odd and kind of out of place I thought.
  • In nine months I’ll be pushing an pumpkin headed Eriksen baby out of my hoo-ha.
  • Robin has a “truth” voice, which is high and squeaky.
  • The patio scene outside the banquet hall is the same patio as Ted’s house.
  • Minefield of cuteness complete with knee dimples
  • Ducky tie?
  • Of COURSE Ted hangs out by the newspaper stand with a copy of his magazine in hand.
  • 16 moments of destiny, 10 of them single, 7 liked what they saw, 4 were women, and 2 gave real numbers
  • Magazine articles
    • Mystery vs History, is it better off to know?
    • Is Van Smoot Van Smitten
    • In the Garrison Cootes article, it mentions an old silver Fiero roaring by spewing out gas as the owner waves to him, which is likely Marshall.
  • People cheered for his pros and cons list and his color charts…really…right.
  • Serious – third base. “Honk away my friend”
  • Search results for Marshall Eriksen
    • 19 Pound Baby Country’s Largest Ever
    • New Evidence in Bigfoot Myth
    • 50 years, 50 stars – Marshal Eriksen was simply known as Vanilla Thunder
    • Bask-ICE-ball
    • The Funk, the Whole Funk, and Nothing But the Funk
    • Straight out of Connecticut – rap group he formed with Ted
  • Ted is still a cheap jerk
  • Why did Robin wear a super expensive dress to a diner?
  • I don’t want to be choosing between two girls, I want to be a complete head over heels idiot for one. – Me too Ted, me too.
  • I do love that they brought back Victoria.
  • They didn’t do any ending stinger for either episode this week.


  • If you want to nail something at this wedding, lose the trapper keeper.
  • Barney’s success rate is always the inverse of what he says.
  • Barney spends his Cleveland trip testing new
  • Trials that Barney ran
    • Escaped man slaughterer
    • Patient zero
    • Guinness Book record holder of long fingernails
    • Vampire that invented Facebook
  • Lies Barney has told
    • There’s no time to explain how I got bit there, you just have to suck the poison out
    • The surgeons gave me a new face. Aren’t you relived I’m alive.
    • Me llamo David Beckham.
    • If I were only casting the “White Swan” the role would be yours
    • No I am a lesbian, this thing I’m wearing is really lifelike
    • The Soul Man, Barnyo
    • I’ve been bitten by a moon snake, and you have to suck all the space poison out.
  • Funny, handsome, and really quite clever..but you’re also a sociopath. – I count three plusses to one minus.


CBS has uploaded the remix video!

By Kien Tran

Based in Dallas, Texas, Kien Tran is an avid television enthusiast. After spending hundreds of hours wasting away on a couch, he decided to actually do something creative with his hobby and created this very blog.

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