Band or DJ?

HIMYM episode 8x13 (173)

Band or DJ 2
First aired:
January 14, 2013
Pamela Fryman
Carter Bays
Craig Thomas
Barney's Blog

Images (0)

When Robin learns that Barney never asked her father’s permission before proposing, she insists that he seeks his approval before announcing their engagement. Meanwhile, Ted keeps his feelings concealed by throwing himself into planning their wedding.


The episode begins from where the previous one left off. While Ted is at the New GNB Headquarters, he gets a text from Barney, saying that he and Robin are engaged. Future Ted says that their engagement marked a truly happy time for their group, but one of them was not happy about it.

Three days later, Marshall and Lily tell Ted at the bar that Marvin is constipated and won't stop crying. When Robin arrives, Lily tells her that planning a wedding is annoying, and she can do it for her, but Robin says she is looking forward to it. Lily says that they have to pick a date first, which Ted says is May 25th, 2013. Robin tells Lily that Ted offered to help with the planning of the wedding. Ted tells Lily that the ceremony will take place at the church in Long Island where Victoria almost got married, and the colors are cream and lilac, with Lily angrily looking at him and jumps at him when he finishes talking.

Marshall asks Robin about Barney, and she tells him that he is fine and his panic attacks are getting shorter and further apart. She tells them that she asked Barney if he got permission from her dad to marry her, but Barney tells her that he didn't. She tells them that her dad is scary, and she and Barney had lunch with him. Robin is about to shake his hand, but he asks for a hug. He thanks them for meeting him at his favorite restaurant, where he and Carol come. Robin asks him who Carol is, and he tells her that she is his girlfriend and she is the reason he moved to New York eight months ago (which Robin didn't know about, until recently). Barney then introduces himself, but Robin's dad mocks his hair, as grown men are not supposed to be blonde.

Barney then arrives at the bar and says that he wants a band for their wedding, but Ted says that they should get a DJ. Barney asks Lily if she remembers the band she almost booked for her wedding and Lily says that she will book them for the wedding. However Robin says that they shouldn't book anything yet, as Robin's dad hasn't given his permission yet. Barney asks her not to be worried as he has a plan.

The next day, Barney meets Robin's dad at the restaurant alone, with his hair dyed black. He tells him that he is very serious about marrying Robin. Mr. Scherbatsky says that when he wanted to marry Robin's mother he killed a whole family of bears with his bare hands and gave the pelts and bear meat to her father as tribute, which scares Barney.

At the apartment, Marshall and Lily are worried that Marvin is still constipated, when Robin walks in. Lily informs her that the band they wanted is booked for May 25th, and Ted suggests a DJ again. Robin says that her dad keeps sending her friend requests on Facebook, and she is going to accept it, but the others tell her not to, as she doesn't know what is on his page. However, Robin accepts it anyways.

At Barney's apartment, Mr. Scherbatsky wants him to shoot a rabbit, which Barney can't do as he has instantly become attached to it and has even come up with a name, Fluffernutter, and a backstory for it. Robin then walks in and sees this, and asks her dad why it says that he is married on his Facebook. He tells her that he got married to his girlfriend. Robin is angry that she wasn't informed about this. She tells him that since he has no interest in involving her in his personal life, she may as well tell him that she and Barney are already engaged, and since she was not involved in his wedding, he was not invited to hers.

At the apartment, Lily tells Ted that she found out that Ted is the one who booked the band on the day of the wedding, and Ted tells her that he did that so Barney and Robin can't book them. He says that Robin deserves better than "some crappy unreliable band". He says that bands let you down and "they slept with every girl in New York city." He can't believe that Robin is marrying... "the idea of getting a band". Lily takes Ted to the roof to talk about this. She tells him to say how much he hates that Robin and Barney are getting married. He says that he is happy for them and he is the one who encouraged Robin to go after Barney, but Lily says that he thought he was okay with letting Robin go, but now that she is gone, it hurts. Future Ted says that at that point in his life he had been hurt a few times already (montage of Ted getting hurt in previous episodes is played), but when he read the text from Barney, it hurt a million times more than that. Lily says that he will keep saying that he is happy for them because if he said anything to the contrary, that would make him that most awful person on the rooftop. She is therefore going to give him an out by saying something that is even more awful. She tells him that sometimes she wishes that she wasn't a mom, and she wants to pack a bag in the middle of the night and not come back. Ted then says that Robin should be with him instead of Barney. He asks Lily if she is serious about what she said, and she says that she loves being a mom and loves Marvin too, but art had been a big part of her life before and now she has no time for it. She spends every day with kids at work and it's the same when she goes home. Ted asks if she has talked to Marshall about how she feels but Lily asks him that same thing; has he talked to Robin about how he feels? She says that they have to accept what is happening in their lives. In the apartment, Marshall sees that Marvin's diaper is still clean, but Marvin smiles and poops all over Marshall.

The same night, Robin agrees to meet her dad one more time. He apologizes for getting married without consulting her and is going to get a divorce from Carol to make things right. He asks if it was what she wanted. Robin says that all she wants is a normal dad. She wants him to give Barney permission to marry her, come to the wedding, give her away, and dance with her like a normal dad, but he only agrees to one dance. He says that he'll see her at the wedding. She tells Ted about this and says that it is amazing that Barney made her dad apologize to her when he has never done it before in his life and realizes just how much Barney loves her. Ted says that Barney would be crazy not to and that he is really happy for them, but she should still consider getting a DJ. Future Ted says that he made a really strong case that night, but Robin wanted a band.

Four months later, Ted meets Cindy and her partner Casey on a train ride, a week before Barney and Robin's wedding. He tells them that the band that was hired to play at the wedding cancelled, and asks them if they know a wedding band. Cindy tells him that she recently had brunch with her ex-roommate (The Mother), and her band is available for the weekend to play at the wedding. Ted says that he is lucky to run into both of them.

Future Ted says that "lucky" doesn't even begin to describe it, because if Barney and Robin had taken his stupid advice and hired a DJ, he never would have met the mother. A flashforward to the wedding shows the band playing. Ted sees the bass player and smiles.


  • In the beginning when Lily finds out Ted is planning the wedding, the music from Lily's "you're dead to me look" is played.
  • Barney previously got attached to and named another rabbit in Architect of Destruction.
  • The montage of Ted getting hurt before is mostly taken from previous episodes:
  • A cover of the song Voices is played over Ted's montage of getting hurt. A drunk Ted previously sang this song to Robin over the phone in The Pineapple Incident.
  • Lily tries to hire the band that almost played at her wedding in Best Prom Ever for Barney and Robin.
  • In Big Days​​​, Future Ted says that Cindy did become a mother. In the "four months later" scene, Cindy and Casey have a stroller with them in the train.
  • This is Cindy's first appearance since Big Days​​​.
  • It is implied that Cindy and The Mother are on better terms now than they were at the time of Girls Versus Suits where Cindy calls her a "whore" and dislikes the attention men were giving The Mother and not her. It is said that she and Casey went to brunch with The Mother earlier that day when Ted sees the two on the train. It could be related do the fact that, as now Cindy dates girls, she doesn't feels competitive at all with The Mother.
  • In Farhampton, Robin questioned whether she would run away from her wedding. The flashforward in this episode confirmed that she won't.
  • The wedding date, simply identified previously as 'A little ways down the read' since season 6, was finally established to be May 25th. The date was established when Lily told Robin that their first band choice was booked for that date. Additionally, the "Four Months Later" caption is the first instance in a flashforward about the wedding that references a timeframe more specific than "A little ways down the road".
  • Marshall says he'll ask Barney to check the cameras. In The Final Page - Part Two​​​, it is shown that Barney has cameras in their apartment.
  • Ted says "I feel like we're coming back to the DJ." Robin says a similar line ("I feel like we're coming back to the whole 3 months to live thing.") in The Three Days Rule​​​.

Future References (Contains Spoilers)

  • Lily's revelation about her job will lead to a small fight between her and Marshall in The Ashtray.
  • The flashforward in this episode would reveal that Robin and Barney indeed got married. The End of the Aisle would have some scenes that would question whether their wedding would even take place.  
  • The flashforward of Ted looking at the Mother for the first time at the wedding reception is later depicted in Last Forever - Part One.


For a listing of all images on the wiki tagged as being from this episode, see Category:Band or DJ images.

Memorable Quotes

Robin: Hey guys.
Lily: Well, well, well. Here comes the bride. Now the annoying part, right; planning the wedding. So not fun, right?
Robin: I don't know, I am kinda looking forward to it.
Lily: Fine, I'll do it for you. First thing we need to do is set a date.
Ted: May 25th, 2013.
Lily: Thank you, Ted. The ladies are talking.
Robin: Actually, that is the date. Ted offered to help with a planning a little. And well, uh. (Ted takes out a binder)
Lily: That's a big binder.
Ted: Oh, this. This is just cakes. Anyways, we are having the ceremony at that beautiful little church on Long Island where Victoria almost got married. Lovely spot. And then we are gonna have the reception in a big white tent on the front lawn of the hotel. Oh, and the colors are cream and lilac.
Lily: (jumps at Ted) I will cut you, bitch!

Robin: This is, like the fifteenth time my dad has sent me a friend request. I'm just gonna hit "accept".
Ted: No!
Marshall: No, no, no, no, no! Don't do it, Robin. You don't want to see what's behind that door.
Robin: What are you talking about?
Ted: He's talking about my mom's 2000-word review of Fifty Shades of Grey. And 14 of those words were "vulva".
Marshall: You're gonna get endless requests to play some game that has something to do with gangsters or farming.
Lily: Never mind the embarrassing cheerleading photos from highschool.
Marshall: I begged my mom to burn those.

Ted: The big deal is Robin deserves better than some crappy, unreliable band! Sure, bands seem cool with their nice suits and their well-rehearsed moves, but let's be honest: bands let you down.They-They cheat, they deceive, and God knows they've slept with every girl in New York City.I just, I can't believe Robin is going through with marrying– the idea of getting a band.

Lily: Say how much you hate that Robin and Barney getting married.
Ted: What? No! I'm happy for them. I encouraged Robin to go after Barney.
Lily: I know because you thought you were okay with letting her go, but now that she's really gone, it hurts.

Ted: I am happy for them.
Lily: Is all you let yourself say out loud. Because if you said anything to the contrary, well, then that would make you the most awful person on this rooftop. So I'm gonna give you an out.
Ted: And how are you gonna do that?
Lily: By saying something that is even more awful.
Ted: Like what?
Lily: [starts crying] Sometimes I wish I wasn't a mom. Sometimes I wanna pack a bag and leave in the middle of the night and not come back.
Ted: Robin shouldn't be with Barney, she should be with me. [pauses] Are you serious?
Lily: I don't know. I mean, I love being a mom, I love Marvin so much. But you remember when I wanted to be an artist? Art was my whole life, and... and now it's been months since I've even picked up a brush. I spend the whole day taking care of kids in my job, and I come home, and it's more of the same, and it's just... it never lets up. It's just really, really hard, Ted.
Ted: Have you talked to Marshall about how you feel?
Lily: Have you talked to Robin about how you feel?
Ted: Fair enough.
Lily: I think we just have to accept our lots in life, and... I have to be a mom to a beautiful, wonderful, if slightly constipated little boy, and you have to let Robin and Barney get a band.

Barney: Your Dad has something to say.
Robin Sr.: I'm sorry for getting married without consulting you. It was wrong of me.
Barney: There.
Robin Sr.: Now, Robin I know that no mere apology will fix this.And that is why I've asked Carol for a divorce.
Barney: What?!
Robin Sr.: She's heartbroken, understandably. Possibly suicidal.
Barney: I did not tell him–
Robin Sr.: But if that's the price for my daughter's love then I will gladly let Carol pay it. Was that not what you wanted?
Robin: You want to know what I want? A normal dad. That's all. I want you to give this blond guy permission to marry me. Come to the wedding, give me away, smile in the pictures, and then dance with me like a normal dad. Is that too much to ask?
Robin Sr.: One dance, "Cheeseburger in Paradise". And Carol's going to sing it. Well, see you at the wedding.

Future Ted: I made a pretty strong case that night, but in the end, she didn't want a DJ, she wanted a band. And guess what happened?
*Four months later*
Ted: ...That's right, the band cancelled at the last minute, just like I said they would. The wedding is in a week and no bands. When will people realize I always know what's what?
Cindy: He says to the lesbian he dated for a month.
Ted: That's a fair point. Anyways, you guys wouldn't happen to know of any good wedding bands available at the last minute, would you?
Casey: Ted, do you believe in destiny?
Ted: You really don't know me, do you?
Cindy: We just had brunch with my ex-roommate.
Ted: The bass player?
Cindy: No, she's not just a bass player, she's a bass player in the best wedding band in the Tri-state area. They had a gig lined up for this weekend, but it just fell through this morning.
Casey: You, my friend, are gonna save that wedding.
Ted: Do you know any DJs?
Cindy: Dude! Come on!
Casey: Let it go bro, just let it go.
Ted: All right, all right, all right. Well, I guess it's a lucky thing I ran into you guys.
Future Ted: And kids, "lucky" doesn't even begin to describe it, because if Robin and Barney had taken my stupid advice and hired a DJ, I never would have met your mother.

Marshall: Hey, Robin, where's Barney? Did he skip town already? If so, exactly what time was it? It's important for the over/under.
Robin: Barney's fine, it's just well, earlier this morning. (flashback) So, it's been three days since I said yes.
Barney: True.
Robin: And your panic attacks are getting shorter and further apart.
Barney: I can't do this! I feel like I'm drowning! Also true.
Robin: So I guess we're officially engaged. Maybe we should tell our parents. I assume my dad already knows. You did call him and got his permission, right?
Barney: Yeah, yeah, Robin. I bought you with an ox and some spices from the East.

Uh, he's gonna put you in a cage. and send you on horseback to my remote desert camp.

Robin: Okay, Barney Hold on,
Barney: I'm not done Where you'll be bathed in perfumes and oils and delivered to my tent. After you perform the traditional Dance of the Seven Veils, we'll adjourn to the tiger skin rug where we'll
Robin: Barney!!
Barney: Robin! If we're gonna build a marriage together, we have got to stop interrupting each other all the time.
Robin: Fine, finish your story.
Barney: Thank you. Where we'll do it.
Robin: Did you ask for my father's permission?
Barney: No, I did not.

Notes and Trivia

Goofs and Errors

  • Ted says the wedding will be on May 25, 2013. However, that day was a Saturday, and the way the events develop later indicate it was one day later, on Sunday, May 26.
    • Ted said that it was the date picked at that time, but wedding plans gets altered all of the time. So it is possible that the wedding was originally planned for the Saturday, then changed
  • Robin's father says he did some wet work for the CIA in the early '80s, but he lived in Canada at the time and "CIA" is only an acronym for the intelligence agency in the U.S. The Canadian equivalent is CSIS.
    • Not necessarily an error, as the CIA has employed citizens of non-US countries for specific tasks, and will most likely continue to do so.
  • Cindy alludes to the fact that she and Ted dated for a month. In Girls Versus Suits, they only went on one date, before breaking up.
  • Ted tells Robin about her father "When he met me..." somehow implying that he met Robin's father while they were dating. However, in Happily Ever After​​​ it is said that none of the gang has met Robin's father, meaning that this is not the case. Ted describing what happened when he met Robin's father could possibly only mean that Robin introduced Ted, Marshall and Lily to her father after reconnecting with him in Last Words​​.
  • In the Pilot, Ted mentions he prefers a band over a DJ for his wedding, but he advocates strongly for Barney and Robin to get a DJ.
    • It's possible that he is only advocating for a DJ to show his dislike for Robin choosing Barney, because Barney already wants a band.
  • In the flash-forward when Ted reveals he met the Mother because she was in the wedding band, he was standing at the bar when he first saw her. Yet in Last Forever - Part One, he was sitting at a table with Marshall and Lily discussing his plans to move to Chicago when he first laid eyes on her, rendering him speechless.
  • Robin's father says that the restaurant they are eating at is his favorite, implying that he's been there numerous times, but he doesn't correct Robin's assumption as to which bathroom label is for ladies. Granted, he's a jerk and it's possible that even after numerous visits, he's never needed to use their restroom.

Allusions and Outside References


Other Notes

  • This episode shows the very first moment Ted ever directly sees The Mother, before meeting her, when she's playing her bass guitar at the wedding reception. The first time The Mother ever saw Ted was in Definitions​, when he walked into the wrong class (Economics). Ted also caught the first glimpse of the mother 20 minutes later, during the race between the Economics classroom and the Architecture classroom as seen in How Your Mother Met Me.
  • Barney writes about the rabbit's backstory in his blog; The Splendiferous Adventures...
    • This is the third time Barney interacts with a rabbit. The first one being in Rabbit or Duck​ (his phone turns into a rabbit) and the second in Architect of Destruction (he strokes a rabbit).
  • Cobie Smulders may have been sick during filming as her voice is hoarse in this episode.



  • This is the most viewed episode of Season 8 with 10.51 million viewers. [1]
  • Donna Bowman of The AV Club gave the episode a B+. She mentions that the Marvin storyline was not like the others saying that "The preoccupations of new parents and the drama of the search for young love pull the show in two different directions, and the result is that one or the other is bound to find itself ghettoized." She also said that Ted and Lily's talk on the roof "vibrated with creative honesty". [2]
  • Max Nicholson of IGN gave the episode a 7 out of 10. He says that "although Robin Sr.'s scenes with Barney weren't particularly funny, his scenes with Robin were a bit more compelling." He also says that "the Ted not being over Robin thing is now officially tiresome" and that "Lily's confession to Ted that stood out as the more meaningful revelation". [3]
  • Angel Cohn of Television Without Pity gave the episode a C. He says that the episode demonstrates that the show is "going to beat this Ted loves Robin nonsense into the damned ground now". Cohn also comments that it would have been better for Jason Segel to "have made Muppets 2 instead of sticking it out with this show another year". [4]
  • The St. Petersburg Comic Review gave this episode 7 out of 10 stars. "...with that image, dinner is done."


External Links

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