It’s Friday at 6 p.m. with 48 hours before Barney and Robin’s wedding … and things are NOT okay on “How I Met Your Mother.”
For starters, in episode 5, “The Poker Game,” Marshall is still nowhere near Farhampton for Barney and Robin’s nuptials. Instead he’s driving through Chicago with Daphne, who refuses to stop at Marshall’s favorite pizza joint (that was previously shut down for rats).
Back at the hotel the poker game is still going on and the stakes are pretty high. Robin becomes annoyed that James keeps taking digs at marriage and decides to teach him a lesson. Since he’s still wearing his wedding ring after announcing that he and Tom are getting a divorce, Robin raises James her ring and he does the same. Winning the ring, Robin believes she put James in his place … until he sends his mother (guest star Frances Conroy) to get it back for him.
Barney’s mother tells him to get James’ ring back, but Robin refuses to hand it over. Instead she plays poker with Barney’s mom and ends up taking her shirt. (“Please don’t play strip poker with my mom ever again,” Barney tells Robin. “It’s all kinds of confusing.”)
Torn between siding with his family or with his future wife, Lily tells him that he should always choose his wife. Not fully listening to her, Barney does end up choosing Robin … but does it in the worst possible way.
“This mother, son thing is over,” he tells his mom. “I have a wife now so you mean nothing to me.”
Telling his mother and brother to forget about the holidays and family, Barney ends it with a zinger: “Know why? Because Robin said so. This came directly from her.”
Horrified by Barney’s outburst, Robin attempts to make amends with her future mother-in-law by offering her shirt back as a peace offering. Instead Barney’s mom tells her to keep it as a consolation prize.
“You won the battle but I’ll win the war,” she tells the bride-to-be.
“Game on, b*tch,” Robin counters.
Meanwhile Lily’s (very) angry because Ted can’t stop bragging about his wedding gifts for Barney and Robin … and he never gave Lily and Marshall a gift for their wedding. Through a flashback “How I Met Your Mother” fans see that Marshall and Ted have been engaged in a bit of a war for the past six years. Marshall believes that Ted never gave him a gift for their wedding, and Ted believes that Marshall never sent him a thank you card for the gift he gave.
The two would try to incorporate the phrases “wedding gift” and “thank you note” into their everyday conversation, with both of them going as far as to dress up as wedding present and thank you note for Halloween.
It turns out that Ted DID get Marshall and Lily a gift for their wedding – the same coffee maker (but the next model down) from their favorite coffee shop. Lily and Marshall got the gift but it had a tag that said it was from Stewart and Claudia. Stewart finally came clean to Lily, explaining that he ripped the card off at the wedding and wrote his name on it. He stuck with the lie because it saved his marriage with Claudia who was ready to leave him (Claudia was sending topless pictures to Stewart’s brother, “the whole nine yards”).
Ted and Marshall apologize to each other, with Ted telling his buddy, “I shouldn’t have spent the past six years passive aggressively drinking coffee around you.” To make it up to him Ted gave Marshall one last gift – Marshall looked out his car window to see a pizza delivery guy bringing him the Chicago pizza he was craving.
What did you think of episode 5 of “How I Met Your Mother”? Let us know in the comments section.