I'm sure when the How I Met Your Mother writers finished scripting this year's Halloween episode, they felt what they had created, like the title they gave it, was "Perfect on Paper." I tuned in with the highest of expectations, like when I used to run up to that first house on Halloween.
Instead of a delicious treat, however, thiswas like the old lady who handed out pennies and raisin boxes as opposed to candy.
Ted was right, some things just aren't meant to be and Katie Holmes as the Slutty Pumpkin was one of those thing.
With her best days behind her, lost on the waters of Dawson's Creek, Holmes was not the least bit slutty nor engaging before or while she wore the now legendary costume. It was like seeing Topher Grace cast as Venom in Spiderman 3. The popularity that had built up over the years among fans set a bar of expectation that few could have matched.
Unfortunately, with Holmes' stardom also came all of her sorted history and it overshadowed the costume that has become such a big part of HIMYM lore. The "To Do List" costumed girl from the roof party would have been a far better choice if you ask me.
Even the great Barney Stinson's Apollo Creed entrance, a la Rocky IV, wasn't enough to pick this episode up off the mat. Like Lily on the way back from the bathroom, it never seemed to find its way. Jokes such as Lily's pregnancy brain and Robin's obscure Canadian references were overused and lacked the usual amazing timing that we are accustomed to seeing between the main characters. It was as if the cast of another show dressed up as our beloved crew for Halloween. I did love how excited Marshall got when presented with the extra skinny microphone from Lily's grandfather, however... but there was no new car at the end of this showcase.
Anyone who follows my reviews of this show knows that I am a huge fan of Carter, Craig and their team of writers, but this year's Halloween special left me saying "Boo" - and not in the spooky sense normally associated with my favorite night of the year. Normally, I have to restrain myself from including nearly every line from the show in my favorite quotes section, but yet another indication of my disappointment was the difficulty I had in finding any lines worth noting.
How I Met your Mother is not the Bare Naked Ladies of sitcoms, thank goodness. Sadly, though, there was no hope someone would "Pinch Me" this week and end my bad dream; it really happened. With time, I will forget about this episode like I did the monsters under my bed and focus instead on all the amazing installment we've shared and no doubt will be treated to in the future.
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