How I Met Your Mother Review: “Last Time In New York” (Season 9, Episode 3)

How I Met Your Mother

As How I Met Your Mother‘s longest wedding weekend ever drags on, if the episodes don’t bring the laughs, some people may seek out vengeance with the furor of Inigo Montoya. After all, in just one weekend, how many exciting things can happen? There’s got to be some humor to balance out the moments of just waiting for the wedding day to finally come. Fortunately, this third episode of How I Met Your Mother brought the laughs and then some, delivering one of the funniest episodes for the show in a long, long time.

This week, Barney and Robin are worried about losing their sex life once they’re married, so they seek out a final bang before their elderly relatives show up. That leads to them spending most of the episode dodging the walking zombies in search of an opportunity to do it where they shouldn’t (not like that). Meanwhile, Lily finds Ted’s list of things to do before he leaves New York. As she goes through the list, lots of laughs are had, but then she finally reaches “have a last scotch with Barney,” which is the easiest thing on the list. Or it would be if Ted wasn’t avoiding Barney.

As it turns out, Ted really has been avoiding Barney. It’s obvious he feels awkward about all the things that have happened between him and Robin, but we don’t really get too much of that before the episode ends. That’ll likely be a much bigger part of the next episode, but this one isn’t bogged down by those serious, somewhat sad moments. Rather it’s filled to the brim with the quality elements that HIMYM is known for.

What works best is Ted and Lily’s friendship this episode. It seems like season 8 may bless us with a lot of these moments, as Robin and Barney are focused on getting married and Marshall is driving across the country. That leaves Ted and Lily to spend plenty of time talking to each other and focusing on their friendship before they (supposedly) head their separate ways. I’ve written time and time again about how much I enjoy the friendship between those two, as it’s the realest and rawest of any relationship on the show. They always bring out the best in each other by never fearing honesty, and that continues in perfect form in this episode. I’ll be very happy if there are many more of those moments to come this season.

The struggles Barney and Robin are faced with continue to be realistic struggles that a married couple would be dealing with, not simply struggles for the sake of a conflict, as was the case for much of season 8. Any couple getting married is going to have hesitations about how that will affect their marriage and their love life, especially when those close to them have had failed marriages. The realization that marriage doesn’t have to ruin their sex life, or their awesomeness, is one that won’t come instantly. The revelation they had at the end of the episode likely won’t end all the qualms they’ll ever have about the matter, but it’s nice to see that they dealt with it in a mature way. Both characters have shown immense growth this weekend, and if that continues throughout the season, their storylines will be all the stronger for it.