|“Monday Night Football”|
| First aired:|
February 5, 2007
The gang must postpone their viewing of the Super Bowl and must avoid hearing about the game until then.
The gang is excitedly planning their traditional Super Bowl viewing party when Wendy tells them about the death and funeral of Mark (who the gang admit they don't even know once Wendy is gone). Because attending the funeral would mean missing the Super Bowl (and because they don't even know Mark) they decide they can just send flowers. That is, until Carl throws another patron out of the bar for suggesting the same thing.
The next night, after praying to the TiVo gods, they head to the funeral with plans to watch the Super Bowl after. But the wake at the bar lasts for hours and they realize they won't have time to watch the game that night. Lily says they should give up on watching it and check the score. But Ted reminds them of the importance of watching it together by talking about previous games and how they watched it.
The first year (2003) the tradition starts with Lily excited about commercials and Marshall loving the wings. The next year (2004), Marshall gets Barney started with gambling. By 2006, it's a full-fledged addiction and Robin is becoming part of the tradition (where she fits in great). In deference to the sacred traditions, the gang make a pact to avoid hearing anything about the game until they can watch it together.
Ted decides to work from home to avoid contamination. Barney arrives and handcuffs himself to the radiator so he won't check the score. He explains he has a lot of money riding on the game. Ted leaves him alone while he goes to get the wings. He wears the "Sensory Deprivator 5000" to keep from learning anything about the game while he goes to the sports bar. He returns to the apartment, realizes he has to make a second trip out for missing dipping sauce and heads back out. He slips on a stray pool ball and narrowly avoids hearing the score.
While Ted is gone, Barney escapes. He races down the street trying to find someone who can tell him the score. However, no one seems to know anything. Not even Emmitt Smith. He finally gets the score to discover how much he has lost in a newspaper.
Meanwhile, Robin has particular difficulties because she works at a news station. She cries about how she has lost her friend Mark and her coworkers sympathize and censor themselves. But a field reporter blurts out the winning team on an unrelated story ruining things for Robin.
At the same time, Marshall is hiding out with Lily and her kindergarten class. But one of the students, Doug, sees an opportunity for profit when he learns Marshall is trying to avoid hearing the score. He extorts 10 bucks from Marshall but continues to torment Marshall because he is in love with Lily. Marshall finally gets Doug off his back by blackmailing him with a splash of juice in his lap and the embarrassment of being seen with wet pants and demanded Doug a refund along with his pudding snack pack. Marshall and Lily make it through the day without hearing the score until they pass by the janitor who is listening to it on the radio.
The gang meet back at the apartment that night. Everybody but Ted knows the score but don't let on. However, Ted still learns the outcome of the game too early: Knowing who Barney has bet on means that Barney's devastated screams in the next room "ruins the game for everyone". However, they decide to watch the game anyway and have a great time.
- Future Ted mentions that he has told stories about various holidays, including Halloween in Slutty Pumpkin, Thanksgiving in Belly Full of Turkey, and Christmas in How Lily Stole Christmas.
- Robin is not shown joining in on the Super Bowl tradition until the 2006 Super Bowl, as Ted and the gang met her, as seen in the Pilot, in the fall of 2005.
- Once Marshall finally gains leverage over Doug, he demands his pudding snack pack. Marshall's love of pudding snack packs was previously alluded to in Come On.
- The origin of Barney's gambling addiction, first shown in Atlantic City, is explained.
Future References (Contains Spoilers)
- The gang, without Barney, watches the Super Bowl together again in Rabbit or Duck.
- Lily in Say Cheese disapproves of Ted bringing new girls to group events.
Future Ted: And here's the funny part, as unforgettable as that Super Bowl was, here it is 23 years later and I don't remember who won... Hell, I don't even remember who played. What I do remember is that we drank beer, we ate wings and we watched the Super Bowl together. Because sometimes, even if you know how something's going to end, that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the ride. We even raised a toast to good old Mike. I mean Mark. Matt. Crap! Why do I keep doing that?
Marshall: Oh, yeah? Who are they gonna believe? I'm a grown-up, third year Columbia law student, and you're just a little pants-wetter!
Notes and Trivia
Goofs and Errors
- In the scene where Marshall wets the boy's pants in Lily's class, the juice packet keeps changing from standing position to lying on the table between shots.
- Barney says that he doesn't wear suits in funerals. However, in Last Words, he is shown wearing a suit at Marshall's dad's funeral. This was most likely out of respect for Marshall's dad.
- The gang is shown to be at the wake till 2:36 A.M. when the scene starts. Later Ted says that they will watch the game at 6:00 P.M. and will not find out who won for the next 18 hours. However, there were only a little over 15 hours till 6:00 P.M. at that time.
- Those extra hours could come from actually watching the game.
Allusions and Outside References
- Lily's comment about Janet Jackson and the halftime show is a reference to the halftime show controversy that occurred in 2004.
- Emmitt Smith claims that dance was more important than football. He had recently appeared on and won Dancing with the Stars.
- The actual Super Bowl game that occured in 2007 was between the Indianapolis Colts and the Chicago Bears. The score was 29-17 Colts. It was shown on CBS.
- Narrator Ted says that he doesn't remember who won or even who played. This is because episodes are written about 2 months in advance. At that time, not only would the writers not know who won, this would be too early to predict.
- Charlene Amoia - Wendy the Waitress
- Joe Nieves - Carl
- Monique Edwards - Producer
- Emmitt Smith - Himself
- Nicholas Roget-King - Doug
- John Ducey - Kevin
- Robert Michael Morris - Lou
- Staci Krause of IGN gave this episode a rating of 5.4 out of 10, saying that although the premise had potential, the episode was "overall, very disappointing" . This is the lowest rating given by IGN to any episode in Season 2. 
- The St. Petersburg Comic Review gave this episode 9 out 10 stars. "Only Marshall could get exploited by a five-year-old."
|Columns||Monday Night Football |