The long awaited return of How I Met Your Mother has sent me into a tizzy of excitement. Then the episode threatened to make me sad. Then the ended made me all happy all over again. Let me explain:
We start off with Barney telling the story of how he convinced a girl that he was Neil Armstrong and was reverse-aging. They story got him laid, which was deserved. Anyone who can pull that off deserves a reward...IN HIS PANTS. Up top!
So then after a discussion of how much Marshall likes pizza, he reveals that he was mugged. Mugged? In New York? Oh noes! Lily freaks out over the news, and Robin tempts her towards the dark side with a REALLY BIG GUN. Seriously huge. Suspension of disbelief follows, as we cut to Lily at the shooting range, and her arms should have been torn clean off of her body by the recoil from Robin's hand cannon. Marshall, not wanting Lily to get a gun, reveals that he was actually mugged by a monkey. Only Marshall...and the gang goes into the patented "sit around the booth and crack jokes about the situation" scenes, although Barney's suppositions about the involvement of a banana really made the scene. Robin, whose morning show is still the equivalent of watching paint dry (Or like three episodes of Chuck), insists that Marshall come on her show and tell the story. Marshall is forced to reveal to Ted and Barney that the story is a fake that he made up to stop Lily from buying a gun. Of note is the fact that Ted can't tell if Marshall is lying or not.
So we all come together in the end at Robin's show; Ted and his mystery sheet (containing his scale model of the Empire State Building), the creepy doll guy, the bored camera man and his paper airplanes, and of course, the money that may or may not have robbed Marshall. Marshall becomes the ultimate guy in the middle here: If he was mugged by a person, then Lily will buy a gun and Robin loses her journalistic credibility. If he was mugged by a monkey, then the monkey will be separated from his mate, and Marshall will be a national laughingstock. What does Marshall do? Well, he goes home, and no one ever knows what the truth was.
Now, what turns this episode from "Any episode of any sitcom" to "How I Met Your Mother-worthy"? Well, the monkey escapes, grabs a doll, and climbs to the top of the scale Empire State Building, then is bombarded by paper airplanes. A long way to go to set up a joke? Oh yes. Oh hells yes. And that's why I missed you, How I Met Your Mother. <3