7.5/10. I don't know what to tell you folks. The Ted storyline, where he tries to pick up the more than a little off-center Cassie, and as he's repeatedly reminded by the knight from The Last Crusade, chose poorly, is the kind of big dumb plot that I normally hate. But this one worked for me, and I'm not entirely sure why. Maybe it's just that it was so out there and insubstantial as a storyline that I could just go with the silliness of it. Maybe it's the Indiana Jones twist that is equally exaggerated, but a fun device. Maybe it's Josh Radnor, who sells Ted's defeated response to this whole thing like a champ. Long story short, this is a plotline that shouldn't work but does.

I feel the same way about Daphne rehearsing Marshall through his confrontation with Lily. There's a playacting quality that this show does well, and it allowed Marshall to dig a little deeper into his family's dilemma and gain a little perspective on it. I'm still not over the moon about Daphne, but I liked how she was used here (at the risk of conflating two characters for superficial reasons, her story about her husband respecting her career aspirations feels of a piece with Shirley's on Community).

The weakest story in the episode was Barney and Robin trying to mollify their uptight minister by having stolen Marshall and Lily's story. Again, it points at the cracks in the Robin and Barney relationship and their real life story, without doing enough to spackle over them (though I have to admit, having Lily angrily take down everything about Robin and Barney's romance was oddly cathartic). That said, seeing Robin and Barney-qua-Marshall and Lily and vice versa was an enjoyable lark, and made up for the weak premise.

Overall, this is an episode that shouldn't be as good or as fun as it is, but somehow manages to pull it off. Who am I to deny its charms?

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