Season 7, Episode 14
46 minutes is the length of the train ride to Marshall and Lily’s house in the suburbs of Long Island. That’s it…no more Marshall and no more Lily, or at least it seems that way to the gang. To Barney it means no more lame married couple shooting down his great ideas and that he is the new leader of the group. It also means we get to witness the first of two theme-song spoofs, this one featuring lyrics sung by Barney to the gang’s photos—minus Lily and Marshall.
New Gang in Town
As the first act under the new world order of Barney Stinson, he decides the remains of the gang (and Kevin) should go to a strip club. Neither Kevin nor Robin want to go, but according to Future Ted, they are in ‘Early Relationship Chicken’ where they each keep agreeing to odd (or dangerous) activities simply because neither wants to cave first. Once at the strip club, I started to wonder if we would get a reference to the infamous doppelganger episode in which we met “Stripper Lily” Jasmine. Well, we got more than a reference—we got the return of the Russian stripper who looks like a really trashy Lily. My only complaint here is in the slight character inconsistency: back when we first met Stripper Lily, real Lily was quite excited to go to the strip club. She even purchased a lap dance for her hubby. Plus, as we all know, real Lily is pretty kinky and would not necessarily reject strip clubs and the like, so it is a little unfair for Barney to claim that Lily always rejected this idea. But I digress.
The night just gets weirder and weirder from there. Kevin and Robin suffer through an awkward lap dance where $20s go flying; Ted and Barney meet Stripper Lily’s boyfriend—a large over-bearing Russian dude whom they declare “New Marshall”; and Ted gets really drunk thinking that Marshall has abandoned their friendship. With their New Lily and New Marshall—and a new hilarious Russian version of the show’s theme song—Ted, Barney, Robin and Kevin head out with their new gang to an underground high-stakes poker game where Ted wins big. I love a drunk Ted—from dancing on a poll exclaiming, “I’m a stripper!!!” to singing about his winnings to the Russian mafia, “We built chip city!”
Over in suburbia, a land far, far away from MacLaren’s, real Lily and Marshall attempt to fully settle into their new home. There is just one problem: Lily’s previous absentee father, Mickey, is there to stay. Ever since learning about his daughter’s pregnancy, he really wants to be present—plus the fact he has no where else to live thanks to his disappointing career as the maker of Aldrin Games (who could resist Slap Bet!). Since Lily and Marshall’s house was given to them by her grandparents, this is also Mickey’s own childhood home. You could say that Mickey knows a few of the house’s idiosyncrasies, and his behaviors make him outstay his welcome.
After Marshall blows up at him and tells his father-in-law to move out the next day, the fuse blows out and Marshall must make the harrowing journey to the basement on his own. In a hilarious spoof of a horror movie shot in night-vision, Marshall encounters a labyrinth of traps in locating the fuse box. With Mickey’s annoying voice taunting him through the intercom system, Marshall’s number is almost up until Lily convinces Mickey that he could be a good father and grandpa by helping them instead. Marshall’s scary movie moment turns into an Apollo 13-like mission to restore power to the house as Mickey carefully talks him through step-by-step instructions. He is eventually successful, and to top it off, Marshall’s victory inspires Mickey to create the best-selling Aldrin game of all time, “Lites Out” (I still like Slap Bet better). In addition, Lily decides that Mickey can live with them for a while longer. We all know what this means: Mickey will serve the all-important role of ‘babysitter at any time of day or night’ for when Marshall and Lily join the gang on adventures in the city or at the bar. I am sure we will sometimes get to see Chris Elliot as Mickey, but I feel we will more often hear, “Oh, the baby’s at home with Lily’s father…let’s drink!” Hey, the writers had to come up with something, and this does seem better than baby Emma constantly missing on Friends.
Some favorite funny sound bites:
- “Long Island? I don’t understand – you can get spray tans here!” (Barney)
- “It’s like when they cancelled Party of Five for the second time…I mean, like when they cancelled sports.” (Ted)
- “This is the farthest apart we have lived since my semester abroad.” (Marshall, referring to when he and Ted lived on opposite sides of campus)
- Robin and Kevin’s awkward attempts at phrases like, “Make it rain!” and “Straight pimpin style!”
- “Larry doesn’t get a nickname because he has too many things—you get one thing Larry!” (Ted to the Russian mafia member who has a lot of ‘things’ like a mustache, eye patch, pet ferret).
- “Was he the guy who stabbed a bunch of prison guards?” (Kevin remembering how he knows Thug Marshall—he was one of his therapy patients).
- “I did it!” (Marshall); “No Marshall, you did it” (Mickey)
“46 Minutes” had funny A and B-stories, but more importantly for the show’s growth, it began to address how difficult it will be for these characters to experience some life-changing events. Ted, Barney and Robin were right—it is a big deal that Lily and Marshall have officially moved and soon their baby will be here. Their friendship will have to evolve and there won’t be as much time spent in their beloved booth at MacLaren’s. But as Future Ted points out, it doesn’t matter if the booth is in Marshall and Lily’s kitchen—as long as they are together. It will be a big adjustment for us all…because our little gang is growing up. And on that note…
Happy 150th Episode HIMYM! We’ve come so far, and I feel confident that we still have some great times ahead.