First Aired: 25th January 2016
Josh Radnor Ted Mosby
Colbie Smulders Robin Scherbatsky
Jason Segel Marshall Erickson
Alyson Hannigan Lily Aldren
Neil Patrick Harris Barney Stinson
Lyndsey Fonseca Ted’s daughter
David Henrie Ted’s son
Joe Nieves Carl the Bartender
Marshall Manesh Ranjit
Plot: It is the year 2030 middle aged architect Ted Mosby is telling his kids thelong story of how he met their mother.
He starts in 2005, when he was 27 and his best friend Marshall got engaged to his long time girlfriend Lily. This left Ted worrying about where his life was going, which he discusses with his other friend the suit-clad womanising sociopath in training Barney, who is convinced that no one before the age of 30 should be married and maybe not even then. To take his mind of the idea, he gets him talking to some random women in the bar, one of them being journalist Robin. They hit it off and go out and have an amazing first date. Including seeing a painted blue french horn, leading to Ted referring to it as Smurf penis, Robin’s laugh proving how well matched they are. Robin has to bail on it early to cover a news story. Convinced that he should have kissed her before she left, Ted gets in a taxi with Barney, Lily and Marshall, driven by Ranjit.
Ted goes to see Robin and the mood is romantic and it certainly looks like they are both into each-other and only a complete f**king idiot could screw that up. But Ted is that particular type of idiot and professes his love for this woman he met yesterday. Not being a complete lunatic, Robin is understandably freaked out and the moment is killed so effectively that only my wife or I could kill a moment more effectively.
Striking out, he ends up at the bar they gang frequent, McLarens and expects never to see that woman again and that he tells the kids, is how he met their aunt Robin.
Well he did say it was a long story.
Notes: It would be very easy to compare this to Friends, with it’s close-knit group and their regular hang out spot. It’s relationship related comedy with sharp one liners and from there the similarities kind of dry up. Friends is an ensemble piece, while HIMYM is very much Ted’s story. Marshall is Ted’s flatmate, Lily one of his oldest friends, Barney one of his newest and Robin seems to be the woman he longs for. So it’s very much from his point of view as he narrates the story to his captive audience. How much of this story is what happened and how much Ted is bulls****ing his kids is neither made clear, nor really relevant. The cast are naturally funny together, exaggerated, but still relatable. Jason Segel is likeable and Alyson Hannigan is always good quality on screen, but the star of the show is most certainly Neil Patrick Harris’ Barney Stinson. Barney is a character that should be unredeemable. He’s vain, greedy, mysoginistic and yet, loveable and charming. You wouldn’t like a Barney in real life, but here he shines as the reason I would come back to this show.
The framing device, creates a very unique looking show, nothing else looks like it, it had it’s own built in endpoint and most of all was incredibly funny. I watched this first when it was being shown back to back somewhere, after one episode I and the MIGHTY Rosie were hooked.
Does it work? Yes, a well constructed framing device gives us a great first chapter.
Does much need fixing? Not really, it’s clearly a first chapter rather than a traditional pilot.
Does it stand up? Pretty well, because it’s presented as a memoir, it works at any point.
Do I want to watch the next one? Yes I did, so easily hooked on this show.
Did I enjoy it? Yes I did.
Overall: 5 out of 5. One of my favourite sitcoms and a welcome addition to this list.