How I Met Your Mother returned to MacLaren’s in “Platonish,” where Lily and Robin challenged Barney and Marshall confronted Ted about his feelings for Robin.

Just one day before the wedding, Robin (Cobie Smulders) is crying uncontrollably after learning that her mother wouldn’t be attending the wedding due to her fear of flying. As always, Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) sees this as the perfect challenge: make Robin stop crying. Challenge accepted. In light of this new challenge, Lily (Alyson Hannigan) thinks back to the “diapers and samosas” challenge.

Cut to the gang at MacLaren’s six months earlier where they debate the million dollar question: can man and women just be friends? Barney doesn’t think men and women can just be friends. According to Barney, a man and a woman can just be platonic if there is no chance that they will hook up in the next twenty minutes. The only two people he thinks will never, ever hook up, are Robin and Marshall (Jason Segel), who, according to Barney, wouldn’t even kiss if Lily had a bomb strapped to her chest.

After Barney gets some random girl’s phone number in a challenge he set for himself, Lily and Robin point out that he never accepts challenges from others. So, he accepts the challenge of accepting their challenges. Robin and Lily are more than up to the challenge of messing with Barney, and so the “diapers and samosas” begins. They start out innocent enough – “get a girl’s number while talking like a dolphin” – and eventually escalating to going to the drugstore and returning with diapers, samosas and phone numbers.

At the drug store while picking up diapers, Barney meets The Mother (Cristin Milioti), who calls him out on his pick-ups. Intrigued, Barney opens up to The Mother outside and tells her about his relationship with Robin. She encourages him to “do it right” with Robin, inspiring what leads up to the proposal. After his talk with the Mother, Barney’s challenge became to get Robin back.

Meanwhile, Marshall and Ted go to a Harlem Globetrotters’ basketball game – they go to heckle their eccentric playing – so that Marshall can confront Ted about his feelings for Robin. Marshall thinks it’s pointless for Ted to deny his feelings, and tells Ted that Robin admitted that she still loved Ted. Ted is shocked, and Marshall admits he made it all up, but he still believes that Ted and Robin belong together. Ted doesn’t agree, and, in the end, Marshall ends up losing his five-dollar bet with Lily about who Robin will end up with. While at the game, Ted receives a call from architecture big shot, Hammond Druthers (Bryan Cranston), who offers him a job. Ted turns it down.

How I Met Your Mother airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on CBS.

Olivia Truffaut-Wong

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