How I Met Your Mother kept the Halloween celebration rolling in last night’s “Canning Randy,” featuring guest stars Jennifer Morrison, Will Forte and Ted’s awesome hot dog suit.

Got to keep it quick this week. Here’s the rundown:

Plot Points:
The good news is that Marshall’s storyline had nothing to do with babies this week! And the better news is that it had all to do with Will Forte, whom I have been missing something terrible this season on Saturday Night Live. Forte returned as Randy, Marshall’s awkward, useless, dumb, slightly creepy and totally lovable employee who has a perma-rection for Robin and a trigger-happy shredder finger.

randy-himymep7.jpgRandy has a dream: To one day open his own brewery. When Marshall fires Randy (based on his total incompetence for his current position, arguably the best reason to fire somebody, besides wearing the same color tie as you) Randy’s dream is about to come true, thanks to his hefty severage check.
But Marshall also has a dream: To never fire anybody, ever, for any reason. Wracked with guilt, he approaches his boss (the returning Bob Odenkirk, always a pleasure) and gets Randy unfired. So Randy intentionally screws up (mostly by spilling) until Marshall fires him again, but it’s only after an impassioned speech about brewing his rainbow dreams (or something) that Marshall realizes the right thing to do is to give Randy a bunch of money to not work there.
Meanwhile, Robin, too, has a dream: To outshine her new, super obnoxious co-anchor Becky, who donned a red wig and starred in a non-commercial for “boats” to get attention. Becky should just be a cocktail waitress. Or the newest addition to “Fox & Friends.” But Robin doesn’t want anyone to know about her job probs, so when she heads home the morning after Halloween in a nurse’s outfit, she lets everyone believe that she slept with Randy so she won’t have to admit that she starred in a commercial for adult diapers. Yeah, it’s weird.
And, last and also very much least, Zoey has a dream: To stalk and harass Ted until he stops the GNB teardown of The Arcadian. Which, let’s address this finally: If Ted were a real person, and a real architect, and really working on a project for a huge globo-corp like GNB (if GNB were real): He would have literally NO control over what happens to The Arcadian. The most he could do is quit the project and watch as they hire a new architect to help them bulldoze the building. Well, the most he could do is try to incorporate the original facade into his design–which he DID, and she spat on that idea, and also he probably would have been fired for it, anyway. So when Ted tells Zoey that she knows nothing about architecture, what he really should have said is that she knows nothing about how BUSINESS works.
But what Zoey does know about is how stalking works: So, after following Ted home a few times, she now follows him to work, sits in his classroom and turns all his students against him. Until Ted makes a car alarm noise while turning the light on and off. And threatens everyone with an F if they don’t show up for class. Professor Hard Ass! (And I have to say, with his laying down the law and finally seeing Zoey for the psycho she is, I haven’t found Ted so attractive in a very long time.)

What We Learned:

  • Zoey is still annoying, and still on her lifelong crusade of wearing aaaaaall the hats.

zoey-hats-himym-canningrandy.jpgzoey-hats2-himym-canningrandy.jpgzoey-hats3-himym-canningrandy.jpgCould she BE wearing any more hats? – Chandler Bing

  • Lily is kind of a sadist. Especially for a kindergarten teacher.
  • “I’ll do what I can, but in my experience, twice shredded is fairly permanent.”
  • “Even in the shower, the farthest we ever get is hugging.”

Best of Barney:
“I’d like to make an impression on those guys [boobs]. Man, I love the Office Halloween Party. It is so much sluttier than the Office Christmas party. Though, not as freaky as the Office President’s Day Rave. Or the Office Tu B’Shevat Pajama Jammy Jam.”
“There she is. Florence Night … in bed with a stranger.”
“If getting fired is an execution, at least the guy had a last meal.”
Randy Bonus: “At the risk of bragging, my hazelnut pilsner won fourth prize at the Wehawken Retirement Home Clambake and Wheelchair Maintenance Picnic.” 

Verdict: Two out of five bottles of Randy’s Wharmpess.
Will Forte carried this episode. That’s about all there is to it. So while there were plenty of redeeming aspects about “Canning Randy,” the title of the episode references them all. I found it extremely out of character and pathetic that Robin would “secretly” star in an adult diaper commercial just because she is jealous of Becky. Old, super-awesome, Canadian, gun-toting Robin would have kicked some ass and made Becky feel like the stupid, silly, small non-journalist she is. I also have no patience for this Zoey storyline. Even in sitcom-land, her character is ludicrous, and her most consistent and lifelike personality trait is her passionate desire to keep her head cozy-warm. Normally, two things in a Halloween episode could have made me overlook these aforementioned problems: More Halloween, and more Halloween Barney. But we got a gaping hole of lack on both accounts.

BONUS! Here’s an unaired commercial for Randy’s Wharmpess, from which I finally got the pun:

(Images courtesy of CBS)

Meghan Carlson

Senior Writer, BuddyTV

Meghan hails from Walla Walla, WA, the proud home of the world’s best sweet onions and Adam West, the original Batman. An avid grammarian and over-analyzer, you can usually find her thinking too hard about plot devices in favorites like The OfficeIt’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and How I Met Your Mother. In her spare time, Meghan enjoys drawing, shopping, trying to be funny (and often failing), and not understanding the whole Twilight thing. She’s got a BA in English and Studio Art from Whitman College, which makes her a professional arguer, daydreamer, and doodler.