Bobby Kaleel ’15
How I Met Your Mother returns for the fourth episode of its final season with “The Broken Code.” This episode is full of predictability and continues the pervasive fear of messing up the show in the last season. “The Broken Code” picks up where the previous episode left out, two days before the wedding, when Barney admits that he saw Robin and Ted holding hands at the carousel. While Ted believes to have resolved the problem by telling Barney he was merely “helping a friend,” Barney actually holds a grudge throughout the episode.
Conflict moves to Robin, when Lily asserts that Robin has no other female friends. This realization comes to light when Robin blames Lily for her pathetic Bachelorette Party, attesting that Lily failed to invite all of “her girls.” However, Lily had no “girls” to invite. While Lily helps Robin make a new friend, she soon destroys the relationship, fearing that during Lily’s year in Italy, Robin may replace her.
Focus shifts back to Ted, who, given a multitude of odd jobs by Barney, believes he is fulfilling his duty as best man, but is actually being tortured by Barney. The breaking point comes when Ted sees that he has been replaced as best man by “The Real Karate Kid,” Billy Zabaka. Barney and Ted argue whether Ted’s holding hands with Robin at the carousel was in violation of the “Bro Code.” Eventually, they resolve to have Marshall to make a “judge’s decision.” Marshall, still on his way to the wedding after being kicked off his flight, delegates via video call. He decides that because Ted was “comforting a friend,” his action was only in violation of the code if it is weird for Ted to comfort Barney the same way as Robin. This requires Ted and Barney to hold hands. While the two hold hands, they finally talk out their issues. Ted admits that although he will always feelings for Robin, he will never let them conflict Barney and Robin’s happiness. The question, he says, is if Barney can accept that. The episode concludes with a poker game, with Ted and Barney enjoying each other’s company.
The problem with this season thus far is the lack of risks taken by writers Carter Bays and Craig Thomas. Many fans, including myself, were expecting fireworks after the discovery of the mother. The whole season spans two days leading up to a single wedding. Nothing for further development of the story has happened in this season, which has turned into an almost boring must watch as diehard fans must continue watching to meet the mother. The writers are letting the fans down, and are even reusing old ideas. One episode in season three, titled “The Bro Code,” had Barney and Ted debate articles in the book as well. This season better start vamping its episodes up or the hype for the final season of a great show will be diminished.