Episode Reviews


“Tailgate” is another emotional followup to last year’s incredibly touching episode “Last Words” as Marshal visits Marvin’s grave to tell the story of the gang’s New Year’s Eve.

Unlike last year episode, this year’s “Tailgate” is more reflective and filled with plenty of humor. Marshal, wanting to keep a long tradition of watching the Vikings play over New Years, brings a grill to his father’s grave to tell him the story of his friend’s New Years Eve. Of course he’s soon met with many visitors from the town. It takes a while, but he soon realizes that his need for a private get together with his dad isn’t really needed, and that his huge tailgate party with the whole town is exactly as his dad did when Marshal was young.

Speaking of stories, the episode itself revisits a crazy idea that Ted and Barney had a while back, opening their own bar “Puzzles.” Distraught after the bar charging $100 a head for New Year’s, the guys decide to fulfill the dream of opening their bar, and a huge crowd follows them. Of course, it’s a sobering wakeup to the reality of holding an event at a bar on New Years, as they increasingly have to raise their prices and drive out their customers whom destroy more and more of their place as the night wears on.

Meanwhile, the episode makes a thinly veiled discussion on raising children in households where parents have different faiths, a topic that sometimes is not discussed till long after marriage. It brings up the obvious question on how to raise a child where the parents, as loving as they are, don’t agree on their basic faith principles. It’s not to say that it is a bad thing, or that couples should refrain from intermixing faiths, but the episode does raise the concept that it is indeed difficult to agree sometimes on how to raise children when the parents have fundamental belief differences.

Finally, we get to see Robin back in the spotlight, going on national TV with about 10 minutes notice. Undoubtedly a terrifying proposition, but what she truly wants in her life right now. It’s a good start and opens up the arc of how Robin became a renowned broadcaster.

Overall “Tailgate” is a quiet step back from the emotional end of December with light humor and plenty of emotion to offer as it pulls in all the resonance that comes with remembering the traditions we hold with our families.

Other Observations

  • Slicend Processed Alien Meat
  • I forgot that Marshal is the “tiny” sibling, which is ridiculous in how they found two actors who are even bigger.
  • “Wow, he’s totally wasted! Can we really keep airing this? This is bad…Feel free to change over to Seacrest, everybody…” – Broadcast ticker during Sandy’s ranting.
  • “I always wanted to be a bartender. It’s like therapy where you can drink openly instead of hiding booze in your coffee mug.”
  • is disappointingly not setup.
  • HIMYM continues to be able to bring in the excellent Bill Fagerbakke via flashbacks.

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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