How I Met Your Mother, “Canning Randy” (6.07)

“Ha-burn!” – Ted and Zoey

Could the promised renaissance of How I Met Your Mother be upon us? This is the second episode in a row to impress, after all. More on the episode, written by Chuck Tatham and directed by Pamela Fryman, after the jump…

“Canning Randy”, like “Baby Talk”, wasn’t a game changer. But as I said last week, the show doesn’t need to blow our minds, it just has to make us laugh. And this episode definitely succeeded, with three consistently funny plots that serviced the entire cast, while pushing along this season’s Goliath National Bank-centric arc.

First up: The aggression between Ted and Zoey continues, as Zoey turns his adoring architecture students against him, forcing him to stop relying so much on their worship of him. This worked surprisingly well, from the juvenile squabbling between the two outside of GNB, to Ted’s interactions with his scorned class. It went right in line with Ted’s character, used both his jobs to the benefit of the story (something last season particularly failed at), and also gave both Josh Radnor and Alyson Hannigan some fun stuff to play. Though her character is a little flat, Jennifer Morrison is doing some fun things with Zoey, playing her smugness right up so that it crashes up against Ted’s. I really think they may be perfect for each other… or cause the world to implode with smug architecture nerdiness. And this episode would have been excellent even if it just had the Godfather reference. Lily truly is evil, isn’t she?

The second plot also had some meat on it, giving Jason Segel the derivation from ‘silly Marshall’ he’s been looking for by finally addressing where he is vs. where he’d planned to be. His struggle between his urge to stay himself against his frustration with Randy was a lot of fun, and it tied up with the heart that the show is finally pulling off again after a couple off years. Also, Randy works much better here than he did as a gimmick back in season three’s “Rebound Bro”, and I really enjoyed seeing him interact with the cast and, particularly, Marshall.

And finally, the Robin plot, which I both enjoyed and feel ambivalent about. ‘Aimless and worried about her career and her love life’ Robin was fun enough back in season four, though nothing truly strong came out of that arc, and having a rehash of it doesn’t 100% sit well with me when we finally got a bit of confident Robin back last week. That said, Becky as antagonist means that the plot works a thousand times better than it did a couple years ago, and Cobie Smulders seems to be enjoying Robin’s new struggles. Plus: laughs. The ‘boats boats BOATS!’ commercial, and its sequel in Robin’s commercial, were two of the biggest laughs the show’s gotten from me in ages.

For those curious, according to Wikipedia, Chuck Tatham has been credited for two episodes in the past. Canadian fans should remember his name, as he wrote “Little Minnesota” (4.11), which gave us the Hoser Hut, and “Duel Citizenship” (5.05), which gave us Robin and Barney’s wonderful field trip to Canada. Funny enough, Tatham is Canadian, which might be why I felt a kinship with both of those episodes’ depictions of Canada vs. America.

Also, did anyone wipe away a tear in memoriam of Better Off Ted when the ‘corporate video’ plot was introduced? Sound off in the comments.

One Response to “How I Met Your Mother, “Canning Randy” (6.07)”
  1. Camila says:

    Zoey will make me turn my TV off. Why is this new character so annoying? Can´t stand her and i hope she is not the mother.

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