How I Met Your Mother – Season 3
The conclusion of Season 2 didn’t have a cliffhanger, but instead offered a direct bridge to Season 3. We left off from the twisty last episode where we find out that Ted and Robin have broken up and Marshall and Lily just got married. Barney couldn’t be happier because he thinks he has his wing-man back, but it takes Ted the proof that Robin has moved on to finally do so himself.
And so the beginning of the third season embarks on Ted’s journey to find closure from Robin, which basically involves lots of casual hookups with random girls. Of course, Barney is usually right there besides him. There is some cleverness during these episodes, such as the “crazy-hot scale” and completing the “tricycle.” The writers are on the top of their game with these hilarious gimmicks.
Marshall and Lily begin to grow from their marriage. Marshall abandons his dream to use his law degree to help the planet by accepting a position with a major firm when Lily reveals she has major credit card debt. Also, the couple look for their own apartment.
My favorite episode of the season was “Slapsgiving.” This episode displayed Marshall and Lily preparing to host their first (of many) Thanksgiving with the gang (just like Friends?). Marshall set up a countdown until the next time he will slap Barney as a result from the “slap bet” they made. I cannot tell you how awesome Marshall’s song “You Just Got Slapped” is at the conclusion of the episode.
Another stellar episode was “The Platinum Rule” where the gang tries to warn Ted that going out with someone you regularly see (in this case, his doctor) is a bad idea. We go step-by-step through Barney’s rules and become aware of Barney’s failed attempt with Wendy the Waitress, Marhsall and Lily’s failed friendship with their neighbors, and Robin’s failed relationship with the sports newscaster.
Things really picked up towards the end of this 20-episode season when Robin Sparkles makes another appearance in “Sandcastles in the Sand.” The episode comes to a stunning conclusion that leads into the next episode, “The Goat.” Barney sleeps with Robin and actually feels guilty about it. He asks Marshall to find a loophole in “The Bro Code” to prove he’s still a loyal bro to Ted. After Ted finds out, their friendship goes sour.
The conclusion of the third season wasn’t mind-blowing, yet it really brought the group back together. Ted gets into a car accident and everyone, including Barney, rushes to Ted’s side. He’s perfectly fine except that he screws things up with his current girlfriend, Stella. Barney gets into an accident on his way to the hospital for Ted and they reconcile their differences. The season ends with a look on Barney’s face expressing some real feelings towards Robin.
By the third season, we’re used to the twists and backwards story-telling of How I Met Your Mother. Although not as strong as the second season, the third season was solid. It’s keeping up with its standards of balancing humor and heart together. Neil Patrick Harris still steals the show. I have to say that I didn’t like the story arc in the beginning of the season with Gael (Enrique Iglesias). Good thing that didn’t last too long. I like the story arc between Ted and Stella thus far and am wondering how much further their relationship will last. As for the rest of the regulars, they’re all on par throughout the season. But Barney with feelings for Robin? I won’t say it’s a bad idea yet, but it’ll sure be scrutinized.