Funny Friday – A Sitcom Roundup

This week:

  • How I Met Your Mother
  • Raising Hope
  • Modern Family
  • The Big Bang Theory
  • Up All Night
  • The Office
  • Parks and Recreation

How I Met Your Mother – “Who Wants To Be a Godparent”

It’s strange. I didn’t hate this episode of How I Met Your Mother, yet I kind of feel like it exemplifies all the problems the series has. Lily and Marshall are the only characters who’ve actually progressed over the past few seasons. They have a baby, Marshall lost his dad, Lily has reconnected with hers. Progress. Ted, Robin and Barney? Stagnant. And nothing shines such a glaring light on their stunted maturity like trying to decide which bozo should take care of Marvin should Marshall and Lily die.

When we saw Ted talking to his teenage children in the year 2030, we assumed he’d eventually meet their mother. But the writers chose to go another route, delaying that moment to the point that what we’re left with is a thirty-something man-child who shouldn’t be trusted with a guinea pig let alone a baby. In the alternate world of HIMYM that exists solely in my mind, Ted already has a kid and would be a perfectly suitable godparents.

Also, I don’t buy for a second that Lily and Marshall would name all three of their pals are guardians. The only reason Robin and Barney were even competing for the role was because they like to win, not because they actually wanted it.

Best moment: Robin saying “If you want him to be raised by his underwear on a flagpole, Ted’s your guy. If you want him pulling the cord on some other nerd’s panties, I’m your guy.”

Raising Hope – “Throw Maw Maw from the House (Part 2)”

I wasn’t feeling this season of Raising Hope so far, but I loved this episode. The family was at their best. Lovably kooky and on a mission is how I like to see the Chances. The plot to rescue Maw-Maw was fun, but the fact that Virginia also realized that she’d lost patience with her grandmother and wasn’t treating her that well was a nice, realistic surprise. The resolution was just wacky enough without crossing the line.

Best moment: The Cocoon reference. I love that movie!

Modern Family – “The Butler’s Escape”

This episode had all the elements needed for a great episode of Modern Family. I loved the stuff with Phil and Luke. Phil wants so badly to be a good magician, but he’s a klutz. Luke is actually good, but wants to quit. It’s a familiar dilemma for many parents, I imagine, and I liked how Phil dealt with it. I also loved Cam’s epic fail as a music teacher to young teens, Mitchell having Claire help him pull off a day straight out of Martha Stewart Magazine, and Jay and Gloria’s snoring issue. Modern Family is still in danger of becoming too stale or repetitive, but as long as episodes are as funny as this one it’ll remain on my watch list.

Best moment: Claire trying to get Jay to reveal how much weight Gloria has gained.

The Big Bang Theory – “The Re-entry Minimization”

Howard returns from space and no one cares? Yeah, that sounds about right. The poor guy. His wife was sick (but god love her, she tried), his mother was sleeping with his dentist, and his best friend had replaced him. Meanwhile, watching Leonard, Penny, Sheldon and Amy compete in various games was also entertaining. This wasn’t an episode that stood out, really, but it was solid.

Best moment: Howard sadly singing ‘Rocket Man’ to himself and eating free cheesecake.

Up All Night – “Another Saturday Night”

You know a show is struggling when a new episode comes on and you say “Wait, haven’t we seen this already? Is this a rerun?” AND IT’S ONLY SEASON TWO. I’m done with Up All Night guys, you won’t see it in this recap next week.

The Office – “Work Bus”

This season of The Office so far has been monumentally better than the show had been for a long time. But in comparison to the previous three episodes, “Work Bus” wasn’t my favorite. I’m glad Erin bonded with Nellie, because Andy’s ridiculous beef with her was wearing really thin. I think that’s what turned me off of the majority of the episode, because the mission to get pie was actually pretty cute.

Best moment: Kevin trying to get Oscar to hit him in the face with pie.

Parks and Recreation – “Sex Education”

Finally, a hilarious half hour of television. First of all, Tom doing a week without screens? Amazing. And my worst nightmare. His real-life Pinterest board (so, a bulletin board) was almost as funny at his disgust over Jerry’s lack of tech knowledge. Alta Vista!  Ben and April’s storyline was simple, but watching them be freaked out by the robotic congressmen was more then acceptable. And when Ben told Leslie “You are like a machine! You get stuff done” it seemed to hint that he thinks she’d be a better congressional candidate.

The occasional fight between Ann and Leslie is always good for the show, and keeps their friendship fresh. Ann was obviously right on the sex ed issue, but like with all friends the disagreement got personal – Ann told Leslie she wasn’t being herself, so Leslie had to point out how Ann changes to fit whatever relationship she’s in. Right now she’s a cowgirl.

Best moments:
Andy’s reactions during the seniors’ sex ed class.
Tom’s tweet:  “Four green lights in a row. #blessed.”
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About Jill

Pop culture junkie and TV aficionado. I write sharp and snarky TV recaps at www.couchtimewithjill.com
This entry was posted in HIMYM, Modern Family, Parks and Recreation, Raising Hope, The Big Bang Theory, The Office, Up All Night. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Funny Friday – A Sitcom Roundup

  1. kristaspurr says:

    We are mostly in agreement this week. HIMYM had an off week for me, but that’s the nature of the beast. With the series so close to its finale, I didn’t get the sense this was momentum for any of the characters. All that Marshall and Lily have done is to create a logistical, friendship-destroying nightmare for their friends if they themselves die. Bad form!

    Raising Hope is enjoyable, but that’s about it. Have you been watching Ben & Kate? I’m enjoying it immensely, might be worth including now that you’ve (rightfully) dropped Up All Night.

    Modern Family is fine, but it’s really declined in quality since its groundbreaking first season. It’s the best of the four, ratings wise, in their Wednesday comedy block, but only because Suburgatory might not be common enough in its humour to ever develop a large audience.

    I’m glad you’ve dropped Up All Night. I’m so indifferent to it now I can’t even recall if I watched it last night. Just 12 hours ago! May I suggest you replace your coverage with Happy Endings?

    I agree this week’s Office was the weakest of the season so far. However, unlike this week’s HIMYM, I still get the sense they’re making progress on the series conclusion.

    Parks and Rec was stellar this week. It is criminal this show is not more popular. My quote of the week: the starting-to-get-sexy Ben and Leslie phone conversation at the end: “I can’t do that now!”

    • Jill says:

      I watched the Ben & Kate pilot and didn’t love it, but I hear good things and may give it another chance. I’ll definitely be covering Happy Endings when that starts up, I love that show. I’ll include B in 23 as well.

  2. Kristin B says:

    HIMYM is so stagnant, it makes me rage a bit. Plus I think they’re very obviously walking a very, very thin line now. Ted’s ‘kids’ are teenagers in the year 2030… meaning realistically, they need to be popping out in within the next five years… meaning Ted has an extremely small ‘find the mother’ window now, right? They’re pushing it. They’re reeeeally pushing it. Plus I feel like Ted has actually back-pedaled as a character over the last few seasons. When he was with Stella, he seemed like he was in a place where it felt right for him to be married and starting a family. He’s regressed like craaaazy. He needs to start maturing – and quickly – for it to be believable now. But what do I know, this is TV-land not reality. ;)
    And I’m just going to put this out there – but I really do not like Barney and Robin together. I don’t know why, it just feels weird to me. *shrug*

    Another thumbs up on Big Bang from me this week. I’m impressed with this season so far! Could this be a Big Bang renaissance? ;) Loved Penny, Sheldon, Amy & Leonard game night! And I loved Howard’s storyline too. I think they’ve done wonderful things with him in the last little while. He’s certainly become a much more lovable character and one that you root for now instead of just chuckle/cringe over.

    Parks and Rec, you can do no wrong. How this show doesn’t get more recognition is beyond me. Tom’s story was hilarious. This wasn’t my favourite episode of theirs, but even in a weakened state, P&R is a level above the rest.

    • Jill says:

      I agree, Howard used to annoy me so much as a character on TBBT. But putting him in a relationship with Bernadette and showing his sensitive side balanced that out, without completely losing some of his quirks.

  3. Dana says:

    I’ve watched a few stray episodes of HIMYM and I’ve always thought it was funny but I think I just came onto it too late in the series. I like it but I have a weird thing with comedies in that I find it hard to catch up with them. I don’t have that problem at all with dramas but I can’t seem to make myself power through most comedies. I feel the same way about Community, and over the summer I tried to go through Happy Endings and stopped somewhere in teh beginning of the second season. I guess I am more of a drama girl.

    I am liking Modern Family this season, I know ppl are pissed at them because of the Emmy’s and I get it, there are other deserving shows out there, but they are on their game so far this season.

    • Jill says:

      Early HIMYM was really good, because it was funny but also had a strong narrative. But they tried to stretch things out and it failed.

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