HIMYM Episode Review: S9E20 “Daisy”


So Mother lovers, how did you like that one? I thought it was a pretty solid episode. Let’s jump right in!

Spoilers Ahead…

We begin with Robin’s mom explaining how she got to the wedding. She took a flight even though she is afraid of planes (one of the few things we knew about her prior to this episode). I assumed Tracy Ullman would deliver on whatever they threw at her and I was right. I particularly enjoyed how she totally lost it on the plane, but was then oh-so Canadian and polite in her apologies and general conversations with other passengers. Oh Canada.

Then we jump to the boy’s table downstairs, where Ted, Marshall, Barney, Ranjit, and Billy Zabka are all gathered for breakfast. The first thing we see is a little girl with dark hair in pigtails. Marshall seems to notice her, which got me to thinking. My first guess was that this was Carter Bays’ older daughter making a cameo? But she may just be a random adorable little girl.

There’s no mention of her, though, so I didn’t focus on that long. Important things were happening at the guy’s table, like Marshall wondering what changed Lily’s mind and Barney wondering if he can conquer the Saltine challenge. This is the sort of thing that initially makes me think gosh guys are so weird, and then I realize this Saltine business is funny and silly and totally something my actual guy friends – and I – would do. So I didn’t mind that bit of frivolity.

Lily calls Barney so that he can come meet Robin’s mom (still don’t know her name yet either, correct?) and Ted translates that he will be right up once he finishes his very important cracker challenge. But then Marshall gets to wondering…why did Lily just change her mind?

To us, it might seem like Lily changed her mind because of a reasoned conversation that she had with Marshall that night. But that conversation was entirely in Marshall’s head, so the mystery was actually still at large. Billy Zabka helpfully notes that he saw Lily at the Stop and Go (I don’t remember the correct name of the convenience store, and I don’t have time to watch again before work!) around 3 am. Everyone is totally comfortable with Billy’s story about how he was on his dirt bike in the parking lot in the middle of the night.

Anyway, this adds another layer to the Lily mystery. But then – a clue! Just what the Mosby Boys need to crack the case. Lily was in a car with the license plate “Ahoy”. The Captain! Marshall is more worried than ever, but he tries to put it aside for the sake of Barney and Robin’s wedding day. Barney asks if Marshall wants them to all just go over to The Captain’s house, punch him in the face, and then come back to the wedding.

This reminded me of an episode from the past that I can’t quite place. I think Ted was recently fired, and Marshall asks if they want to go down to the building (GNB building I think) and just pee on it a little, as revenge. Ted was happy because Marshall totally got him and what he needed. This week’s episode showed that Barney gets Marshall, and understood what he needed. Also Barney was down for some entertainment on his wedding day – challenge accepted!

When the whole gang of guys arrive, Marshall greets The Captain with a punch in the face. Ever the gentleman, though, The Captain invites them all inside. He promises that he did nothing inappropriate with Lily, and points to his fiancé as proof. It’s Boats Boats Boats Becky! This made me happy. I like that the show is giving us end game couples to count on. Yeah, Becky and The Captain aren’t key players, but I want everyone to end up happy. This is a good start.

It seems that The Captain has had a good influence on Becky’s style, as she now has darker hair and is a bit more poised and mature. Zoey was never right for him, but this match seems like it could really work. Marshall is not convinced, and he challenges The Cap’ to a duel with a pair of swords conveniently hung on his wall. Marshall even warns him that he has totally pretend fought with swords twice before. Them’s fightin’ words!

Before Marshall can make his move (he had plenty of time, but was clearly not all that prepared to actually joust), Ted stops him. The Mosby Boys have cracked the case! Unfortunately he took his damn sweet time getting to the big reveal. That whole scene annoyed me, because I’m a little tired of waiting for this show to reveal stuff. I assume that was the point, but it felt like overkill at that point. When we got back from the commercial break, Ted was still trying to draw the whole thing out.

Ted finally reveals that he noticed Billy Zabka was chewing gum. We flash back to earlier scenes from the weekend, where Ted notices Lily is (uncharacteristically) chewing gum. Ted puts together a pretty plausible explanation for Lily’s behavior this weekend – she’s back on the smokes. That’s why she had to get out of the car on the way there, that’s why she stopped at the convenience store, that’s why she was chewing gum, and that’s why she’s needed drinks nearly funneled into her mouth the past couple days. This aha! moment made sense, and it tied in as a callback to prior episodes. But it felt a little bit off…

When we see Ted’s version of Lily at the convenience store, it was very reminiscent of season one Lily back in Minnesota. In S1E9 “Belly Full of Turkey” she runs away from dinner to go buy a “knock up test”. Once my mind made that connection it couldn’t get away from it, and things started to add up. See, the smoking thing totally could have worked – had Ted not “solved” the mystery and come up with it himself. The Mosby Boys do not have a great track record, save for the one time they found someone’s retainer in the trash. So if Detective Ted determined that Lily is back on the cigarettes – well, she’s probably not.

Ted’s belabored explanation focuses around a potted plant – A DAISY – in The Captain’s bathroom. When Lily arrived at his house, she immediately asked to use the powder room. At this point in the story, Marshall is on board with the theory. It makes perfect sense to him that Lily would hide a cigarette butt in the soil, instead of throwing it away where someone could see it, or throwing it outside where it could destroy the environment. By the way, I don’t see Lily caring THAT much about the environment. If she had a cigarette I can absolutely see her littering with that thing to escape getting caught.

Anyway, Ted roots around in the dirt, determined to find the cigarette butt – but what does he pull out instead? A pregnancy test! We see the same flashback scenes, but now they make more sense. Lily needed the bathroom on the train so she could deal with morning sickness. Lily asked Linus to make all of her drinks nonalcoholic. Lily swore up and down that she could keep a secret, and it turns out she has been keeping a possibly big one this whole time. When Marshall confronted her about him, Marvin, and any future kids being consolation prizes in her life, she realized she had to find out for sure. I gots to know!

This is all obviously very exciting, but let’s get back to Robin for a few moments. Robin’s mom has been telling her all about how she knew that Robin’s dad was a bad bet for marriage. All of these red flags from her past just happen to line up exactly with Barney’s behavior, right down to being engaged to a stripper and having a gay black brother. Where is Robin’s gay black uncle at this wedding?! Robin is understandably freaking out by these revelations. No one really wants to acknowledge that they’re marrying a version of their mom or dad, and no one wants to be faced with a similar marriage ending in bitter divorce.

Sidenote – Robin’s mom has a British accent. Weird, right? I mean, the actress has an accent, but I never expected that the character would. If anything I was hoping for a super strong Canadian accent, but alas, no luck. I’m not focusing too much on all of the stories about Robin’s dad being just like Barney (or vice versa). It was an important plot point for explaining a lot about Robin’s pre-wedding freakout, but I didn’t enjoy the connections. It felt a little heavy handed to me.

Meanwhile, the guys are on their way back to the hotel after realizing that Lily is preggo. They burst into the room, and Marshall asks her right away. Lily tearfully explains that she told everyone she could keep a secret. Then I cried a little, because when Lily cries, I cry. Much like how when Ted pukes, The Mother pukes, I guess. I was just happy because both Lily and Marshall previously discussed wanting more kids, and it didn’t seem like things were headed in that direction. After last week I did think that perhaps Marv was an only child. The way the were drinking in the bar after sending him off to college felt like what you do when your only child is away at school, not just your first child. But I can work with that.

Robin and her mom go onto the balcony to give Lily and Marshall some privacy. We all know what is coming next – L and M get naked, and fast. We witness a good conversation where Robin’s mom explains that love and marriage is like flying. It seems so crazy, but if you have someone you can count on, it’s worth it. She asks if Robin has someone who she can depend on. Robin thinks, and responds that she does. I know some people believe she was thinking of Ted in that scene, but I believe she was only thinking of Barney.

Yes, he was unavailable to help her dig up the locket. But he has always been there for her, and the whole group, throughout all these years. Sometimes he pulls a superhero move and helps out without anyone realizing, but he does actually do good. When Robin told him that she couldn’t have kids, he was there to support her. When Lily went to San Francisco, Barney brought her back. When everyone was hungover and unable to make it through the day, Barney pumped them up with his pep talks and Stinson Hangover Fixer Elixir. Some of these are little things, but they add up to a lot.

Ted has always been there for Robin in the ways that he thought were right – but Barney has been there for her in the ways that she actually needed. He has proven his love for her, and I’m happy that she is able to see this and take some measure of comfort (if only temporarily) from it.

Okay, back to Lily and Marshall. The second baby is what convinced Lily that they should stay in New York, but now Marshall says they have to go to Italy. He points out that Lily has given him his biggest dream by making these babies. That is a really fair point – particularly because we know that the Eriksen newborns come out the size of Thanksgiving turkeys, with big ol’ melon heads. Pushing out a couple of those will likely ruin tiny Lily’s body forever. But it’s worth it.

So then we see a scene that is titled as a year later. Based on the scenery, Marshall and Lily are in Rome. I was still hoping this was an elaborate ruse – like when Marshall decorated the windows so Lily could take a “trip” for her birthday. But it seems like they really are in Italy. They’re speaking Italian and talking about importing Funyuns from America. Seems legit. Then Mickey and Judy show up, and again, I like this end game couple. Lily’s dad and Marshall’s mom (her in particular) deserve to be happy, and this is the perfect outcome for them. They will spend so much time with their grandkids and be so happy!

We end with Marshall saying good morning to Marvin, and then greeting baby Daisy. Of course her name is Daisy! It pretty much had to be after all of that, but it was nice to get confirmation of it. I was glad that they specifically named her because I didn’t want anyone to jump onto a weird theory where they gave their baby to Ted and The Mother and somehow that’s how they got Penny. People have a lot of out there theories about Penny right now, and that could have fueled even more.

I didn’t expect The Mother’s name to be Daisy – seemed too easy for them to reveal it in an episode title – but I am glad it was someone’s name. Here’s the only other wrinkle…we can now consider last week’s episode in the context of Lily having a daughter. Some fans have already decided that Ted’s tears were because Lily may miss her daughter’s wedding – perhaps the death doesn’t have anything to do with Ted or The Mother directly? I have a hard time buying that idea, but it would be a major shock. (Major Shock – salute).

I have to dash off to the day job, but I will be following along in the comments all day. I can’t wait to read about what everyone thought!

Reposted with permission from Ted-Mosby.com

8 thoughts on “HIMYM Episode Review: S9E20 “Daisy”

  1. Corina is so talented. Be prepared for the HIMYM Monday night Episode Recap of Gary Blauman. Last Three nights of a very interesting series. If you have time Corina, give me a text please.

  2. For some reason I don’t remember Ted’s tears when she said that. Ah! I need to re-watch the episode or it will bug me :(

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  4. Dear Ms. Writes,

    I have already mentioned that Don Leo XII Loayza and George “The Captain” von Smoot are doppelgängers. It strikes me now that both have multi-part names.

    Don Leo has an odd proclivity for singing at funerals. So, when “The Captain” is singing, we are led to expect a funeral but, like The Mosby Boys, we have jumped to the wrong conclusion. The writers pull a switch-a-roo. Instead of death (cigarettes), we get new life — a baby!

    Note that daisies have appropriately dichotomous symbolism: they can represent new beginnings and innocence — Lily is innocent! — but daisies can also can symbolize death — “pushing up daisies” for example. In Celtic lore, daisies represent the spirits of unborn children. The daisy might also correlate with Marshall’s decision about supporting Lily in her dream of going to Italy: will his marriage to Lily live or die? By tradition, the game of “he loves me / he loves me not” is played by plucking the petals from a daisy. It seems that daisy had an odd number of petals!

    The theme of “from death, new life” may have a parallel with Marshall receiving confirmation of fertility on the same day that he learns of his father’s death (season 6, episode 13, unluckily).

    It seems that Becky — boats! boats! boats! — should have a doppelgänger but I am stumped. Where are those Mosby Boys when you need them?


    [:-)] Mark

    Mark Zajac

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