How I Met Your Mother Season 8 Review “Lobster Crawl”

Watching this week’s episode of How I Met Your Mother, I began to wonder if what I had been missing all along this season was a heavy dose of Robin centered comedy. She’s had moments of comedy gold sprinkled in b-stories here and there, but it has been a while since she was stuck front and center of a major story line. “Lobster Crawl” didn’t bring out the most admirable aspects of Robin’s character, but it definitely brought out that awkward-yet-sexy brand of comedy that only she can pull off.

The idiotic character that takes over Robin’s personality when she’s trying to flirt with Barney seems to link right back to her old Robin Sparkles personality when she was dating Simon in “Sandcastles in the Sand.” That embarrassing side of her personality had never really disappeared and I really enjoyed seeing it surface again, much to Robin (and Lily’s) dismay.

Robin wasn’t good at the giddy, girly flirting back then and she hasn’t improved her skills at all. Everything about her sudden desire to be with Barney could have been plotted by her hopeless seventeen-year-old inner self, so it was fitting that the desperate side of her would sneak out when she wasn’t being careful.

After ditching her standard flirting plan, Robin went through a checklist of back up plans that were embarrassing for her character, but were entertaining for us. Hands down, Robin screaming at Patrice is just one of the funniest running gags on How I Met Your Mother. I don’t care if Patrice and Barney become a thing and get married and Patrice and Robin become BFFs – as long as Robin never stops screaming at Patrice, I think I can be happy.

Barney’s total focus on BroBibs combined with his complete mental block of everything Robin-related was severe, so it was a little jarring to see the softer side of him at the end of the episode. I’d be disappointed if we discovered that his time with Patrice and his journey to figure out what he wants were all part of a ploy to get Robin interested in him again. I want to believe that he was serious about trying to quit Robin and that when he looks at her now, he still sees her as something that will never happen for him. He’s so loaded with complicated schemes that I have a hard time believing he’s sincere sometimes.

Meanwhile, Lily and Marshall were dealing with an obsessive Ted who, after completing work on his “baby” (the building he designed) was struggling to find another new project. Ted latched onto Marvin and became obsessed with guiding him through baby firsts. As expected, Ted was borderline creepy when it came to his obsession and if Lily and Marshall didn’t know him as well as they do, they might have considered banning him from Marvin’s life permanently. The highlight of this subplot was the payoff at the end when we flashed into the future and saw Lily and Marshall taking their revenge on Ted with his first child and taking all those memorable “firsts” from him as payback. Lily and Marshall don’t let go of their grudges, they get even.

I might have preferred if Robin’s entire story line on this week’s How I Met Your Mother didn’t revolve around Robin aggressively pursuing an off-limits Barney, but I managed to enjoy “Lobster Crawl” despite it. Robin and Barney have been playing this game for far too long and we already have a rough idea of where it will lead, but Robin was so funny in her failed pursuit of Barney that I was able to set that complaint aside for the duration of the episode.