‘How I Met Your Mother’ Recap: ‘The Pre-Nup’

I was talking to a friend yesterday about spoilers. I had explained that my attempt to marathon season one of Homeland before the second season premiere would have been a lot more enjoyable if I hadn’t read about how it had ended a few months before. She countered that she always reads the last page of a book before starting to read it, because of a fear of dropping dead before finding out what happens. I thought this was absolutely insane, and told her as much. Thankfully I quickly remembered - and I sincerely apologize that I keep bringing this show up in these recaps - that before virtually every episode of Lost I read all of the spoilers about it (the term spoiler apparently started with Lost). I told myself and others that it was so I can completely understand what was going on when I watched it, but truthfully it probably had something to do with a generational Facebook and Twitter era fear of not knowing something as soon as humanly possible. Man can you imagine?! I think it ultimately dulled my viewing experience, considering that I did not seek out spoilers before the series finale and liked it a lot more than most people seemed to. I apologized to my friend, and only secretly continued to think she was crazy.

So I don’t know what to think about How I Met Your Mother telling us what is going to happen months and maybe years before it’s going to happen with sixty percent of its characters. It better be funny right? Thankfully they brought back Bob Odenkirk’s Arthur character, Marshall’s former boss and Barney’s co-worker at GNB, at least for “The Pre-Nup”. Bob Odenkirk is like comedy’s dad. It has something to do with the fact that the first time most of us ever saw him was on Mr. Show, where he was wearing a suit next to a guy in a flannel shirt and shorts who looked like he didn’t give a shit. Also he got angry really easily. He was ridiculously good at yelling, actually. Practically made it into an art form.

At this point Odenkirk elevates any show with his presence, whether he’s aiding meth cookers or womanizing sociopaths. So not surprisingly a highlight of “The Pre-Nup” was when Arthur got the ball rolling by insisting Barney get Quinn to sign a prenuptial agreement, citing all of the awful things that his ex-wife Darlene did to him. She took the house, the car, *choking back tears* his dog Tugboat. He even lost full custody of his children and now he’s stuck with them ALL THE TIME. “Your kids are horrible.” “The worst!” Arthur agreed. “Barney, I watched as Darlene cut everything good out of my life like a deranged surgeon hacking out organs and that’s not a metaphor. She got one of my kidneys!” Arthur revealed a scar. In an inspired moment, we heard the classic strings from Psycho. It turned out to be Arthur’s ringtone for his ex. “I HAVE NOTHING LEFT TO GIVE YOU DARLENE!” It was a more mature, hilariously pathetic yowl from comedy dad, earning him a lifetime seat at the family dinner table.

Quinn unsurprisingly did not sign the hasty but thorough pre-nup that Barney and Arthur put together, mostly because she had insisted on reading it. Highlights/lowlights of the proposed agreement included visitation rights to Ann, Sarah and Molly, Barney’s names for Quinn’s body parts; a $2000 fine for each pound gained per week; and a breast upgrade every five years, or 50,000 honka honkas permitted, whichever comes first. Barney was equally upset when rehashing it to the guys, which in this case included Robin’s new paramour Nick. He poisoned the well and successfully put it in all of their heads that there is at least one thing in their relationships that they would want to change, and that night Ted, Marshall and Nick all talked in bed with their significant others about their beef. None of the ladies were pleased, which led Saget Ted to say that one of these three couples would break up the very next day!

Well that is certainly a surprise! They should have warned viewers with a heart condition before the show started that it might not be safe to watch with all of this shocking information coming out. All of these couples are going to bite the dust Saget Ted. Also, it’s odd that Saget Ted said “these” three couples, as if his children can see what the hell he’s talking about. I really hope narrator Ted isn’t actually senile.

So what are the guys upset about? Marshall was annoyed that Lily yelled at him for not being careful with the baby. You see, he playfully through Marvin really high in the air. In Lily’s version of events Marshall threw him up and out of view entirely. Marshall insisted she was exaggerating, which has to be true otherwise Marvin would be dead, and pointed out that when he was an infant and was brought home for the first time his father and older brothers threw him around like a football. Literally. It was weird and a little icky to see Marshall’s dead father (original Marvin) back yet again for another funny flashback after his crazy dramatic sudden passing two seasons ago.

Nick was upset with Robin because during sex she got caught watching television. Yeah, I’ve done that. Robin had in fact been watching herself on TV. Nope, definitely never done that. When she admitted as much to Quinn and Lily they told her it was weird and to never tell anyone ever again. TV Robin even winked to bed Robin.

Definitely definitely never done that. That’s a very Barney thing to do actually.

Ted wanted Victoria’s ex fiance Klaus out of his apartment. As “Hero Ted”, T-Mose offered Klaus a place to stay after he encountered a metric shit ton of bad luck ever since his engagement concluded, but quickly regretted it when Thomas Lennon became the most annoying roommate possible by owning multiplying ferrets, hogging the DVD player to watch the German sitcom Strange Compatriots(“One is neat. And the other one is very VERY neat.”) and no longer having a use for clothing. The first and third things are such annoying roommate cliches, not to mention it being done with a stereotypical German accent. But Strange Compatriots sounds downright entertaining. Ted is one hundred percent right on this, but Victoria had a new haircut so it was a toss up.

The ladies decided to exact revenge. Quinn had written a pre-nup of her own, insisting that Mr. Stinson wear a “shock ring” that would electrocute him in an unpleasant area if he so much as he checked out one of her friends.  All of the men and women involved somehow were able to enter the GNB conference room to argue in front of good old Arthur. Because this episode had to end sometime, Arthur, who only knew Barney and continued to forget who Marshall was (and hit on Lily a few times as a result of this), insisted that everyone STFU because love is trusting someone enough to tell them what’s really bothering you. The outburst forced Marshall to admit he thought Lily was calling him a shitty dad. Lily said she has trust issues because of her dad. I wish she wouldn’t speak ill of Chris Elliot, but anyway, all was well. Ted didn’t want the past bothering him and gnawing at his eye because that’s how ferrets kiss. Victoria said look at my new haircut. All was well. Nick was hurt that he found her so sexy but she didn’t feel the same about her. Robin told him the truth about the weird watching herself stuff. The nice, pensive, sitcom resolving music suddenly screeched to a halt. Nick said it was cool. They rushed off to have sex, because that isn’t super rude or anything. Barney and Quinn didn’t get to talk because it’s obvious they’re the ones breaking up. “I once loved someone but I didn’t say it enough,” cried Arthur. He worked up the courage to call his loved one. “Hello Darlene? Put Tugboat on the line. Hey! Hey it’s the man!” Never change Arthur.

Barney and Quinn fought again and ended it. That’s one down, two to go. Barney said one of the saddest things you can possibly say to his friends at MacLaren’s, something about finding out he’ll never trust anyone enough to get married. But ten seconds later we see a flashforward of Barney shouting to some co-workers that his wedding is going to be legendary. Arthur brought up pre-nup again. “Not this time.” The old extra sitting down next to Barney who was smiling a second ago suddenly looked confused and cold and alone in another fine moment of extras overacting. First he was smiling.

Then his brain was full of cobwebs shaped like question marks.

Oh right, and the woman he was talking about was Robin. The hospitals must have been busy last night! Lot of people watch this show. “See Tugboat?” Arthur asked a creature that doesn’t understand what he’s saying. “That’s love.”

It’s strange that Bob Odenkirk petting a dog was the most heartwarming part of an How I Met Your Mother episode. Was that the case because we didn’t see it coming?. Or because it was Bob Odenkirk?

Things to Say After Enjoying an Onion Bagel with Nothing On It 

“I’ll cross it out!” (He never did.)

“I’m new at this but I’m guessing yes.” Nick knows Barney is full of shit already.

“Marshall, this morning you thought a ghost made your toast.”

“You can honka honka yourself tonight.”

“Mama is still going it’s like a clown car!”

“A half million dollar fine any time Mr. Stinson can’t “rise to the occassion” cue sad slide whistle sounds?” *Lily plays slide whistle*

“It’s big comedy, but you care about the characters.” - Ted talking about Strange Compatriots/the writers making fun of a few fanbases probably.

Things to Ponder While Never Looking at Rice Krispies the Same Way Again

Okay weird but I never noticed that the whooshing segues is a fast pan of MacLaren’s. Has that always been the case? Am I an idiot for never noticing?

Would Lily have been bummed if she didn’t get to use that slide whistle?  Or super bummed?

Are you a Ludwig or a Wilhelm?

Did you notice that a slide whistle tagged a joke on Strange Compatriots? Slide whistles are universal.

Roger Cormier is definitely a Ludwig.

‘How I Met Your Mother’ Recap: ‘The Pre-Nup’