How I Met Your Mother
Slapsgiving 3: Slappointment in Slapmarra (9×14)
Synopsis: Sunday 1 am. Barney gets unnerved as Marshall describes his extensive preparations to make the next slap from the “slap bet” as painful as humanly possible.
So that’s four slaps, and Marshall is finally back on the show. I’m pissed off that we had to wait thirteen episodes for Marshall to get to Farhampton but now that he’s here we’re getting our sweet, sweet slap from the results of the slap bet.
Marshall spends the episode preparing Barney for the next brutal slap. Although Barney seems to be unafraid of the slap, and scoffs at Marshall’s story about the Slap of a Million Exploding Suns, inevitably Marshall’s story gets the better of Barney.
Little known fact, Marshall is my favorite character (Is it little known, I feel like I may have told you multiple times). I have been pretty bummed at his lack of appearance all season, but man am I glad to see him here now. And to open his return to a full episode with a slap is perfect.
This episode brings us back to classic HIMYM comedy. Time jumps and extravagant tales told on ordinary sets make the episode a joy to watch. Marshall tells the story about meeting the three slap masters, two in Shanghai and one in Cleveland. The slap masters: Red Bird, White Flower, and the Calligrapher are actually visualized as Robin, Lily, and Ted.
Both women agree immediately to teach Marshall their skills after finding out his target is Barney. While The Calligrapher is willing to shell out his skills for a date with Marshall’s divorced former relative.
The episode is full of subtly hilarious moments like the same noodle shop that Marshall arrives in to meet each of the masters, or McClarens having a fake jukebox that helps Marshall trick Barney, or even the forests where Barney is slapped looking like Gonjin forest that holds the fabled slapping tree.
To end a fantastic slap, they brought in Boyz II Men to sing a rendition of “You Just Got Slapped” and ended a great episode. It was also a great way to start closing up story lines in this intricate television show. They’ve always done the Slap Bet well, so we’ll see how they close up other story lines next week when Barney loses his ability to lie.
Maybe we’ll finally find out what he does for a job.