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Archive for the ‘How I Met Your Mother’ Category

Oh, snow. You crafty bastard. Always using your wiles in the most inconvenient ways. You show yourself at the most inopportune times, blanketing our fake towns in fluffy white mush (that is CLEARLY not real snow), stranding our favorite fictional characters in cars and cabins and forcing dramatic, and sometimes hilarious, confrontations. You are cold, you are ruthless, you are unforgiving.

Keep up the good work.

5. My Boys “Madder of Degrees” (2009)

Ok, so TECHNICALLY this episode of the cable series is about what happens when a heatwave hits during a typically brutal Chicago winter but, in this case, I think it works since the absence of snow, really, is the device used here. Also, it’s -5 in Chicago right now and the very notion of a day when it’s suddenly warm enough to wear SHORTS and eat ICE CREAM makes me want to recite all of the episode’s lines by memory. I mean, it’s so cold that you actually have a moment, while walking outside, where you wonder if maybe you should just give up, if you should just lie down on the snowy sidewalk and let the cold take you. You wish for death, basically. I’m not even kidding. That’s how cold it is right now.

So yes, when PJ states that a warm day during a Chicago winter leads to 24 hours of temporary INSANITY, believe her. It’s the truth. Chicago winter will make you do insane things. Like spontaneously getting a super-nice condo with the guy you’ve only been dating for three months. Or getting a dog. And a Jeep. With no windows.

4. How I Met Your Mother “Three Days of Snow” (2009)

I just re-read the description of what happens in this episode and am amazed, once more, by how much plot HIMYM can cram into 22 minutes of air time. Basically, it boils down to Ted and Barney getting to man the bar in a blizzard (which goes great, “it’s THE DREAM”, until it’s overrun by college kids), Lily having a bunch of hilarious run-ins with her old car service driver Rajit at the airport, and Robin and Marshall stuck in the classic “It’s snowing really hard so of course let’s get stuck in our car” device. Does this ever actually happen in real life? Or is this a result of all these television episodes being written in Los Angeles, where a dude in a Hawaiian shirt sits at his desk, trying to guess how snow must feel and what it’s like when it actually falls from the sky. “People must get trapped in their cars ALL THE TIME,” he mutters to himself and reaches for another Corona Light. Yeah, I thought so.

3. Gilmore Girls “Love and War and Snow” (2000)

It’s hard to imagine a list about snow without mentioning Lorelai Gilmore. Lorelai loves snow, to the point that she can SENSE when the first snowfall of the season is coming, dragging everyone (her daughter, her boyfriend at the time) out into the middle of Stars Hollow to enjoy the first flakes. She’s crazy. About SNOW. (God, I’m tired.)

Anyway. Though there is a lovely episode in later seasons where Lorelai and Luke battle over whether snow is the most magical thing on Earth or just a royal pain in the ass (culminating in Lorelai getting all grumpy about her former BFF snow and Luke feeling bad so he builds her an ICE RINK on her front lawn. He really would’ve gotten the prize for Best Boyfriend Over 35 Ever if he hadn’t, you know, hid a secret daughter from his girlfriend for two months.) I prefer the Season 1 episode, where a snowstorm forces Rory’s adorable teacher/would-be boyfriend of Lorelai to stay the night with the Gilmores. If only for Rory, who gets to display a LOT of awkward small-talk with her TEACHER who woke up IN HER HOUSE the next morning.

2. Alias “Cipher” 2002

Let’s all agree to pretend that 1) the last season of Alias didn’t exist and 2) Season 2 of JJ Abrams’ spy show is seriously fantastic. “Cipher” is one of my favorites, with Sid’s near-death experience once of her most harrowing, involving Siberia, some thin ice, an ICE CAVE and a creepy music box.  The ending succeeds with a nasty cliffhanger. Just watch.

1. Taxi “Scenskees From a Marriage (Parts 1 & 2)” 1982


Back to the old “car stranded in the snow” routine! This time there’s SEX involved. Hol-ler! Latka is sent out to rescue a female cabbie who’s trapped in the snow. Unfortunately, he gets trapped with her and that whole “body heat” thing comes into play. So, yeah, Latka gets lucky, his wife Simca is pissed and their only solution (clearly) is for Simca to now have sex with one of Latka’s friends. Alex. Resulting in one of the show’s best lines ever- “Now peel me like a grape so I can get out of here.”

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barney_8091by Judi

Show: How I Met Your Mother

Character: Barney Stinson

Played By the Legendary: Neil Patrick Harris

In a Catchphrase: Barney Stinson likes women. He likes women, cigars, making up rules about life, catchphrases, sleeping with women, hitting on women, having and being a wingman, working at Goliath National Bank, being awesome, and suits, which he wears all the time, even to bed (his silk suit-jamas, which is one of my favorite made-up-words of all time).

Barney comes from good stock. Well, his mom was basically a giant slutsky and that, combined with a bully in seventh grade who once claimed to have slept with 100 girls, leads us to the Barney we know today.

Why We (Wait-for-It) LOVE Barney: Oh, Barney. Sweet, lovable, masochistic Barney. He will do ANYTHING to successfully pick up a woman at MacLaren’s, even dressing up like an old man and pretending like he’s come from the future to tell a pretty girl to sleep with his younger self, and then running away, changing into his “younger” self and hitting on her. How can you not love that?

Our sitcom-friendly maniacal genius loves playing pranks on his friends, digging up humiliating secrets about them and, basically, telling them that, whatever they’re doing, they’re doing it wrong. He’s shameless and he’s got to have at least five STDs by now (having slept with over 200 women) but it’s CBS so I’m guessing the closest they’ll come is saying, “Barney’s come down with a case of the crab cakes.”

How much do we love Barney? Ordinarily, sitcoms cherish the old “these two friends finally get together/Ross & Rachel” storyline and for a while, we all dealt with the ramifications of Barney falling for Robin and then her falling for him right back. The relationship ended on last night’s episode, culminating in Barney stepping back into the bar (after playing out the majority of the episode in a fat suit, his relationship pudge) as a suited-up single man, ready to get back to work. And? It was awesome. To quote Bridget Jones, we love him just as he is.

Barney Catchphrases:

“Suit up.”

“Legen-wait for it-dary”

“Awesome”

“High-five!” (This list makes him sound like Long Duk Dong)

“True Story”

Favorite Moments:

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by Judi

As a kid, I loved September because I was a giant nerd who enjoyed shopping for school supplies. As an adult, September is really all about television and thus, a reason to celebrate. What shows (both new and returning) am I most looking forward to? I’m so GLAD you ASKED.*

Glee (New)

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When: September 2 on FOX

Why: Because I loved Nip/Tuck before it got way too weird. Because Jane Lynch is in it. Because teacher Will Schuester is seriously cute. And it’s about outcast kids who SING. As we’ve established, I kind of love that a lot.

Community (New)NUP_134878_0426

When: September 17 on NBC

Why: JOEL MCHALE. The promos have actually been amusing (which is nice for a change). Chevy Chase looks like he’s doing his best Lovahs impression but mostly for Joel McHale, whom I would walk through a California fire to see.

Bones (Returning)bones

When: September 17 on FOX

Why: Honestly… I don’t know. I was seriously irritated by the season finale but…argh… I just…I can’t… I’m willing to give Season 5 a chance to redeem itself. Let’s leave it at that. (Plus, the BBC just canceled Robin Hood and I’m so happy about that, that I’m willing to be charitable.)

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (Returning)

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When: September 17 on FX

Why: Doesn’t it feel like forever ago since we’ve seen Dennis, Mac, Charlie, Dee and Frank? I started seeing previews for the new season a few weeks ago and cannot even begin to describe my joy and excitement. Just that one image of Charlie and the cat with the red mittens set me up for the rest of the month. Can’t wait.

How I Met Your Mother (Returning)

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When: September 21 on CBS

Why: I probably would never have started watch HIMYM if it weren’t for sweet, glorious Lifetime. I have an automatic aversion to CBS comedies (hearing that everyone’s dad likes “The Big Bang Theory” is not enough of an incentive to actually watch the show. And I’ve seen “Two and a Half Men” and all I have to say is, “Really? THIS is the biggest sitcom in America?”). Mother, however, while not being all-out funny is actually really enjoyable to watch. The characters are just quirky enough to be endearing and the situations actually ring true for a 20/30 something group of friends. Plus, Neil Patrick Harris is in it and apparently you didn’t get the memo that we have to see him in EVERYTHING these days.

Modern Family (New)

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When: September 23 on ABC

Why: The up-close previews at my local movie theater actually made me chuckle. And while I’m pretty sure I’ll watch this show once and then completely forget it exists, I’m still excited to see that first episode. Plus that girl from Ed and Lost (and Happy Madison!) is in it.

* Harry Connick Jr. was seriously underrated on Will and Grace. Just saying.

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heroes-cast-3

While watching the dismal scene between Claire and Nathan in Mexico on this week’s episode of “Heroes,” it occurred to me that what made the scene so disappointing is EXACTLY what was bothering me about a scene I had written myself that day, in the novel I’m working on. I didn’t really buy my scene either.

All of a sudden Claire and Nathan have this heart-to-heart about what kind of man he should be. Yeah, he should act like a man but first, don’t we need to get a little angry first? This dude locked up your friends and has established it so that people like him are being held in detainment centers by the government and the only reason you’re ok with this is because he rescued you from getting locked up? And not because he suddenly came to his senses but because he was found out for having powers? What?

I’m serious, as soon as this scene was over and I was done shaking my head, I grabbed my laptop and erased the scene I’d written earlier in the day. I had to face facts that I was rushing things, that the emotional current I was creating between my main characters was not authentic and, therefore, was ultimately a waste of someone’s time. And yes, I’ll have to rewrite it but at least then it will be marginally better. Before I delete that and write it again. And again. And again.

This is the last time I’m going to say this, Team Behind Heroes- I get it, building emotional connections between characters is tough. I’m grappling with it myself. But forcing it is unacceptable. You want my advice? Demand an end-date for the show, ala Lost, and get down to writing out how this is all going to go. Create an end-point for these characters, emotional and plot end-points and then create a LOGICAL WAY TO GET THERE. This is Story 101 not rocket science.

I could be watching “How I Met Your Mother” for God’s sake.

– Judi

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