Tuned In

The Morning After: Get Your Goat

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Harris as Founding Bro. Take that, John Adams! / Sonja Flemming/CBS

SPOILER ALERT: Be certain to watch last night’s How I Met Your Mother before reading this post, or I’m pretty sure we’ll be at war with Portugal.

Nobody on How I Met Your Mother can keep a secret. That’s a given. The fun, in last night’s “The Goat,” was seeing the way in which they spill—Robin, out of guilt; Marshall, out of panic; Lily, with glee; Barney, by booking Ted a trip to the “Valderrama suite” at the Bellagio in Vegas.

Until the last few minutes, this was just a good, solid episode about the most reliably funny element of HIMYM: Barney’s delightful evil. But then came Barney and Ted’s breakup (bro’-kup?) over Barney’s violation of The Bro Code, and the final bombshell, which I didn’t notice at first, being distracted by the resolution to Future Ted’s shaggy-dog, or rather shaggy-goat, story. Robin is living in the apartment on Ted’s 31st birthday? What the, huh, wha?

I don’t really have much to add to that, so on to the hail of goat bullets. Which look exactly like musk ox bullets:

* Does Barney work for the Dharma Initiative? I love the constant hints to his company’s unspecific sinister business—from “I don’t want any more secrets, especially now that I know what you guys did to the drinking water in Lisbon” to “Technically, you’ll be paid by a toy factory in Pyongyang” to the guy who hypnotizes the staff before depositions.

* “You didn’t break any laws… Robin knows you slept with her, doesn’t she?”

* There needs to be a name for that little move Barney makes with his eyebrows at the end of a pronouncement, as if he’s just been struck by his own profundity. It’s little things like that that show how valuable Neal Patrick Harris is to this show.

* “Barney, you want my Xbox?” “Ted, she has a name! And just what are you accusing me of?” Seeeing Barney spend an entire episode exercising somthing like a conscience was, I think, what made this episode stand out.

* Loved the focus and musical stinger on the goat, which reminded me of Dramatic Prairie Dog.

* It somehow seems perfect that, in Barney’s imagining, Ben Franklin would speak as though he had lived in Elizabethan England. “You codpiece-blocked me!”