If you remember nothing else from this weecap, remember this: Jason Segel got his haircut! I'm giving the episode an A right off the top, just for that. He looks young, adorable, and like himself, again. I swear it improves his acting, too. This is a fun, funny episode, with lots of continuity-gasms, but nothing in it makes me as happy as Marshall's short, curly hair. Welcome home, hair. We've missed you so. Please don't go away like that, again. M'kay?
You ready? Okay, let's go. Over a montage of fight scenes -- boxers, sumo wrestlers, kangaroo/man boxing matches -- Saget!Ted ponders the human urge to fight. He comments that it's in us from the beginning, and we cut to Lily's classroom. She's breaking up what is supposed to be a fight (but looks more like an awkward Lambada) between two boys in her class. When she tells them fighting is stupid and juvenile, they of course say something like, "We're six. We are stupid and juvenile," as is the precocious child trope.
I am Ted's broken heart.
Cut to MacLaren's. In slow-motion, a beaten and bloodied Barney and Ted return to the bar through the rear door, as Saget!Ted tells his kids that he's only been in one fight in his life, and this is the story of how it happened. Oh, Saget!Ted? The first rule of Fight Club is: you do not talk about Fight Club. He's too busy narrating to listen, so over a shot of current Ted reading Stella's "Dear John" letter, Saget!Ted explains that after getting left at the altar itself, the unrelenting pity of others is the worst thing about being left at the altar. We should invite him to the boards.
The gang is ensconced in the semi-round booth in the corner, instead of their usual. Wendy the waitress delivers their drinks and addresses Ted as one might address a newly orphaned child. When he asks for a menu, she assures him she will be back with it. Ted complains he's going to have to find a new bar, because at MacLaren's he'll always be the guy who got left at the altar. In a faraway voice, Barney says, "Good times." Ted notes that they've lost him and when Robin is confused, Lily points out the girl in a tight red sweater across the bar whose mere presence has Barney so distracted, he is not listening to a word they're saying. "Right, Barney?"