How I Met Your Mother Season 8 Review “Romeward Bound”

Although I did chuckle a number of times during this week’s episode of How I Met Your Mother, “Romeward Bound” still managed to be one of the most personally frustrating episodes in recent memory. If there’s one plot device I can’t stand, it’s when conflict arises because people can’t seem to communicate with one another on a very basic level. I’m sure that there are plenty of people who have no problem with a communication breakdown for the sake of a silly story, but I’m not one of them.

I’m not sure when Lily and Marshall became so distant from one another in their relationship that they had lost their ability to have a real conversation with one another. Moving to Rome for a year would be a major family decision so when Lily declined The Captain’s offer without actually having am actual conversation with Marshall about it I was immediately irritated. At that point, she was talking about her decision as if she was making a huge sacrifice for the sake of her family without ever really consulting her family.

Things became even more frustrating when Lily stopped by Marshall’s office only to discover that his busy time at work was a series of time wasting projects. I still don’t understand why Marshall felt the need to lie to Lily for weeks about having nothing to do at work. I can understand if they had stopped talking about some of the more mundane aspects of their work days, but a series of layoffs and the CEO taking off to hide in a bunker seems like something that might come up at the dinner table. At what point did Lily and Marshall stop talking to one another?

Even after getting the seal of approval from Marshall, Lily turned down the Captain’s offer and it wasn’t until the very end of the episode that she finally admitted her fears to Marshall. Things all worked out in the end, but it was – for me at least – a painful ride getting to this happy ending. Marshall was able to comically say the same Italian line over and over again and Lily was able to understand him, so maybe in the future, he should just use that line exclusively in their home conversations so they’ll actually stay up to date with what is happening in one another’s lives.

Meanwhile, Ted, Barney, and Robin were hanging out at the bar trying to get wedding planner, Liddy, to take her giant coat off so they could all sneak a peek at her legendary body. Their efforts were amusing and I got a good laugh out of Barney’s initial misinterpretation of Robin and Liddy’s relationship as well as Robin later admitting that she had been desperate to see what Liddy was hiding under that coat. Still, what might have been the most interesting part of this story line was that little biting moment between Barney and Ted after Robin had walked away from the table. Ted gave Barney a warning, and Barney sort of snapped back at Ted for inadvertently insinuating that he knew better what kind of person Robin really was.

The truth is that Ted has had multiple failed relationship attempts with Robin, and while his advice probably came from good intentions, it was somewhat insulting for him to tell Barney that Robin wasn’t the person Barney thought she was. Ted seemed to realize this once Barney snapped at him, but I’m not sure he believes that Barney is right. Barney has also had a long, dramatic, and on occasion, deeply emotional relationship with Robin and it’s telling that Ted doesn’t recognize that part of Barney and Robin’s relationship. On the surface, Robin and Barney still seem like simple sex buddies, but we’ve watched the two of them struggle to get to this point over the course of the last few seasons of How I Met Your Mother. Of course, I happen to agree that Barney might be testing Robin’s tolerance a little too much recently, but I hope that just means that she’ll comes back at him with some tolerance testing of her own.