Season 9, Episode 22
The End of the Aisle
Sunday 5:28 pm… 32 minutes until the wedding
We made it. The end of the aisle. It was bittersweet and legendary as Robin and Barney finally, FINALLY said their I-dos. Vowza! But the walk down the aisle—set to Sandcastles in the Sand no less—was not without some final, last-minute panicking. Fortunately, all the nerves led to a good place.
We arrive at a point we have seen before, with Ted going to see the bride and finding her a tad upset. Robin is dealing with her lingering doubts. That missing locket still weighs on her mind as a bad omen…she secretly thought Barney would come through with it. Cue Ted, who HAD secretly retrieved the locket, running to Barney and insisting that he give it to her. To Barney’s credit, he is at least a little reluctant, but ultimately does as Ted says. Robin doesn’t see through this lie for a moment. She calls Ted back in and knows he is the one who somehow moved heaven-and-earth to find it, despite Ted’s adorably elaborate tale involving pigeons to explain how “Barney found it.”
This is where Ted and Robin really truly for probably the very last time EVER confront any lingering feelings and put the love-triangle to bed. Robin wonders if she should be marrying Ted after all, since he is a man who always goes above and beyond for her. Ted is quick to point out that Barney also ‘goes big’ for Robin [Canadian rehearsal dinner, proposal] but Robin counters that Barney’s antics always involve lies. I never thought about the fact that Barney’s initials are actually B.S. until Ted mentioned it. Robin even goes full circle in wondering if Ted is the better man in that he stole the blue French horn for her on their first date, and here he is now going to great lengths to retrieve her locket. But then Ted shows what a best man and best friend he is—he tells Robin that they don’t love each other like the way they used to anymore. And that he would never, ever ruin what she has with Barney. Good boy, Ted.
But Robin makes a run for it anyways. And she runs straight into the Mother at the reception set-up, knocking her down in the process. So now the last member of the gang (other than Ted of course) has met the Mother, and even sort of gets to second base with her! The Mother may not be able to offer a lot of advice to the frantic bride she just met, but she does recommend taking three very deep breaths. Side note: LOVED the Mother’s throwaway line that she could sense something was wrong because she was “a bit of a detective” as a kid. Your soul mate is SO close! OK back to Robin…The three breaths are enough to calm Robin down and, even better, Barney appears with a stack of Barney-esque [read: unusable] vows. That’s when he tells her that he is only going to make one vow to her because it is the most important: he will always be honest with her. He starts off by making good with this vow and tells her that Ted got the locket. They seal the deal with a kiss and head to the altar.
Before the happy couple says their vows at the wedding, another couple had already renewed their vows. Lily and Marshall had another sweet episode as they assisted Barney with his own nerves and vows. While Barney calls them out on various vows they have broken—why did we never get to see drunken Marshall dressed as Wonder Woman?!—it becomes more and more clear to them that vows can change over time, just like life. So Marshall sweetly takes his bride since 2007 [that WAS a long time ago!] into the church before the guests arrive to profess their real, daily love for one another. Most importantly, they vow to keep making new vows as their lives change. Awwwww. Marshmallow + Lilypad 4ever.
Sunday, 5:59 pm…one minute until the wedding
So much goodness happens in this brief-yet-legendary ceremony. Marshall doles out the FINAL SLAP to calm the groom at the altar! Barney may not miss the slap bet, but we sure will. Robin walks down the aisle with her father to a slow piano version of Sandcastles in the Sand! And we finally get to see the infamous ring BEAR, which Robin ends up loving. But Barney wisely cuts the “flower guerilla.”
And a wise Future Ted paints the whole picture and gives us some nice perspective, for one penultimate time: Love is the best thing we do.