Season 9, Episode 13
Bass Player Wanted
Saturday, 10 PM, 20 hours before the wedding…
It’s a Christmas miracle! After half a season, Marshall finally reunited with his wife and friends! Now it will be another miracle if Lilly doesn’t punch him like she did her Marshpillow. Overall, this was a pretty jam-packed episode that propelled the major storylines forward—and even propelled an oncoming slap—which is good because now we must wait until the New Year for another episode.
Playing with the devil
After the fun of the world’s most spectacular Canadian themed rehearsal dinner, the gang settles into the Farhampton Inn bar for a night cap. Lilly and Robin meet an enthusiastic stranger who quickly charms them, only it seems Robin knows him. She can’t place how, but before she can worry about that, stranger Darren begins to toy with their friendship. He tells Lilly that Robin sides with Marshall regarding the job situation, and even that she feels abandoned by the upcoming move. As the girls start to bicker, Darren the devil sets his sights on another pair of friends: Ted and Barney.
Working his moves to charm + disarm, Darren mentions Ted’s impeding move to Chicago (the city, not the pizza) and Barney is completely taken aback. He is hurt that Ted would make such a decision and not tell him, and even more astounded when he learns that Ted is leaving immediately after the wedding. While this was by no means the ideal way for Ted’s news to be revealed, it ultimately leads to Barney realizing that his best man just can’t hang out with only Barney and Robin—a girl he still loves in many ways.
Marshall vs. the Machines
Back on the road, it was time for another folk-song edition of Marshall versus the Machines. Yes, Marshall and his adorable little hitchhiker, Marvin, had set out on foot for the final five miles. Just when I thought we would get another four episodes of a delirious Marshall and his adventures with a smoking bigfoot, behold, for hark the Mother angel arrived…in a van.
It seems that the Mother was quite angry at her devil of a band-mate and decided to ditch her band at the wedding. And thanks to Lilly’s suggestion of Aldrin Justice, this also included taking the band’s van. But because she recognized Marshall and Marvin from all of Lilly’s earlier ramblings on the train and at the Inn, she pulled over and offered to give them a lift first. And this was how Marshall met Mother. I loved how she toyed with Marshall by pretending to be a freaky psychic. It was a nice touch to see Mother explain how her evil band-mate, Darren, goes about causing drama with Disney villain touches, all while watching it unfold over at the Inn. Mother was also a victim of his antics. She had formed the band years ago with some business school friends, but Darren had completely taken it over and was trying to boot her out. We could debate who has the better band name: Marshall’s law school group “The Funk, the Whole Funk and Nothing but the Funk” or Mother’s biz school band, “Superfreakonomics.”
Marshall and Mother end up having a very nice moment in the van when Marshall encourages her to stand up for herself and her band. Both Marshall and Mother are honest-to-goodness nice people, which means they don’t always stand their ground. By the time they reach the Inn, Mother has decided that SHE is going to be the lead singer again. But she needs a little liquid courage and orders the Kennedy Package, just like someone else we know.
Let’s have a Marshall and Lilly “PAUSE” here to discuss how Mother is quite literally the perfect embodiment Lily’s quirks (and looks) and Marshall’s goodness. Which of course means that she IS the perfect woman for Ted. And un-pause.
But speaking of pauses, the ultimate Marshall-Lilly job confrontation will have to wait because, first, the two are just so happy to have their little family reunited. And so are we, guys. Hallelujah. They join the gang for a toast on the deck with the latest bottle of Glenn McKenna scotch (that Ted stole to prove his “bronor” to Barney). When Darren rears his ugly head and breaks the bottle, Ted punches him in the face. Little did Ted know that inside the bar, Mother truly appreciated a punched-out Darren. He quits the band and Mother tells Linus to give the best man a glass of their best Scotch, which just so happens to be a Glenn McKenna 35 year.
If Mother inadvertently buying Ted a drink for the first time isn’t enough of a Christmas gift for you, then stay tuned for Marshall’s gift to Barney: another slap! To be continued in 2014!