HIMYM review Season 1 Episode 17 “Life Among the Gorillas”


We begin “Life Among the Gorillas” with future Ted explaining how Marshall chose to be an environmental lawyer. Young Marshall became fascinated with an anthropologist who lived with gorillas in the wild and wrote a book about it. When young Marshall asks for advice to follow her footsteps, the anthropologist tells him the gorillas will all be dead, presumably due to pollution, deforestation, etc. Flash forward to the present and Marshall is getting ready for his first day at Barney’s company, Alltrucell. Alltrucell makes the yellow fuzz on tennis balls but also is alluded to dabbling in pollution, weapons manufacturing and cigarettes. Marshall goes to leave with his packed lunch and finds a package for Ted from Victoria. Ted mentions feel like a horrible boyfriend since this is the third package in a month and he hasn’t even sent one. After calling Barney and pulling a Sasquatch prank in front of his office, Barney introduces Marshall to his new coworkers, Bilson and Blauman. After a long day at work, Marshall returns home and tells Lily he hates his job, his coworkers make fun of him and put him in stupid hypothetical sex scenarios. Lily encourages Marshall to quit, if that is what he wants to do.

Meanwhile at MacLaren’s, Ted asks Robin for advice with Victoria. Ted tells Robin he left Victoria a voicemail thanking her for the package and goofed up by saying her package was already in the mail. Robins suggests Ted send a package filled with things from New York and top it off with a copy of the New York Times from three days ago. Later, Marshall and Barney meet at MacLaren’s where Marshall quits. Barney convinces Marshall to stay at Alltrucell for Lily and his children’s future. Barney even teaches Marshall how to fit in with the group.


The next day, Ted is in a panic again because he fell asleep during his phone call with Victoria. Ted asks Robin for advice and she assures him everything will be okay. Feeling down about his recent failures as a boyfriend, Ted tells Robin long distance is hard and he thinks he knows what he needs to do. Thinking Ted is talking about breaking up with Victoria, Robin is shocked to find Ted plans to visit Victoria in Germany. Back at Alltrucell, Barney’s training is helping Marshall fit in with his coworkers. Everything appears to be going great until Marshall brings his office persona home. Lily demands Marshall live his office antics at the office because he sounds like a loser and so do his coworkers. Marshall tells Lily she is wrong and convinces her to join him, Barney, Bilson and Blauman for karaoke. Back at the apartment, Ted is about to buy a plane ticket to Germany, when he receives an email from Victoria. Immediately, Ted seeks out Robin for advice. Victoria’s message said the long distance is hard and she and Ted need to talk that night, this leads Ted to think she is going to break up with him. Robin assures Ted that won’t happen but cautions him to wait to buy the plane ticket.


Lily and the guys are at the karaoke bar and Marshall is acting like he is at work. When Lily notices their song is in the karaoke catalog, Marshall shrugs her off and says he can sing “Iron Man”. Marshall tries to console Lily at the bar but she doesn’t want anything to do with Marshall’s coworkers. Marshall confesses he wants to give Lily a better life and this job can do that. Lily does her best to convince Marshall she doesn’t want that and walks away brokenhearted.Ted reaches out to Robin once again. He is waiting for Victoria’s call and getting impatient. Robin tells Ted it’s Saturday night and he needs to go out for awhile. Ted realizes Robin is right and joins everyone at the karaoke bar. Ted finds Marshall drinking alone and tells him he thinks Victoria is going to break up with him. After Ted tells Marshall he thinks he is noble for wanting to fight to save something that probably isn’t savable. Marshall makes up with Lily by singing their song, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” by Elton John and Kiki Dee. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQmRgFzg0jI) After a few drinks, Ted heads back to his apartment to await Victoria’s call. Future Ted ends the episode by using Bilson’s scenario game saying, “Here’s the real question, it’s 2 a.m., your friends are still out singing karaoke, but you’re home early because you’re expecting a call from your girlfriend in Germany who was supposed to call 4 hours ago.” The phone rings and Ted answers it. Robin is on the other end and asks if Ted wants to come over. Future Ted asks, “What do you do? Go!”

“Life Among the Gorillas” is another filler episode that showcases the struggle of long distance relationships as well as the struggle of normal relationships. This episode seems like an average episode to me, a couple of funny scenes, progressing Ted’s story, but mostly demonstrating to the audience that sometimes the person you are at work, isn’t the same person you are at home. Your environment can be a big factor in what shapes you. It’s obviously clear that Robin’s feelings for Ted are becoming more and more clear, especially since she invites him over to her apartment at 2 a.m. And Ted and Victoria’s relationship is nearing it’s final stages. Perhaps Ted and Robin end up together after all.

My favorite scene is when Marshall calls Barney with a disguised voice alerting him to a Sasquatch sighting and then does the famous Bigfoot walk from the “Patterson film”. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJjUt2sXo5o)



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