Romeward Bound

HIMYM episode 8x21 (181)

Romeward Bound 2
First aired:
April 15, 2013
Pamela Fryman
Chuck Tatham
Barney's Blog

Images (8)

When The Captain asks Lily to move to Rome for a year to be his art consultant, she fears that Marshall will resent her. Meanwhile, Ted and Barney become obsessed with a girl who is hiding her amazing body under a puffy coat.


Future Ted tells his kids that by the spring of 2013, Marshall and Lily’s life was great, but then something changed. The Captain tells Lily that he is moving to Rome for a year and he’d like her to move with him to continue her job as his art consultant. Lily tells him that it’s a big decision and he gives her a day to make up her mind.

At the bar, Lily tells Ted and Barney about The Captain’s offer. Ted asks her if moving to Rome is something she wants to do, and she tells her that she does, recounting her time in Paris during her freshman year. He asks her how does Marshall feel about this and she replies him that she hasn’t told Marshall yet since he really loves his job. But Ted says that Marshall also loves Italy. Lily calls Marshall but before she can say anything, Marshall tells her that he can’t talk as he is working on a big case and hangs up. Lily then fantasizes what moving would be like: she would be out all the time with The Captain, while Marshall would be at home taking caring of Marvin and making pasta. Missing Lily and feeling lonely, he would fall for an Italian woman. Lily then calls The Captain and declines his offer as he can’t ask Marshall to abandon his career. Lily then laments that her dream job as an art consultant is over. She then leaves to visit Marshall at work.

When Lily enters Marshall’s office building, she is surprised to see it completely deserted. Lily asks Marshall about this, and he tells her that ever since the Gruber Pharmaceuticals case, the firm lost a lot of business and people got laid off, and there is only one other guy in the office. Lily is outraged when she realizes that Marshall was lying when he told him he was busy, every time she called him. Marshall apologizes, telling her that he lied as he didn’t want her to see him fail, but Lily tells him that his lies cost them job offer from The Captain. Marshall is shocked when Lily tells him about The Captain’s offer and quickly leaves to convince The Captain to offer Lily the job again.

While Lily is at the apartment with the others , she gets a call from The Captain. He tells her that Marshall convinced him to offer Lily the job again, but Lily declines it again. The others are surprised at this, asking her why she turned it down again. She tells them that she is afraid that she will screw up and The Captain’s will fire her, she will become unemployed and Marshall will leave her for an Italian woman. She doesn’t want to throw away her comfortable life in New York. Ted tries to convince her that that won’t happen, but she asks him to leave it. Ted then texts Marshall to come home as Lily turned down the job again.

Sitting at the stairs of their apartment building, Marshall and Lily discuss the job offer again. Lily tells him that she is scared and her previous experiences of living away from home haven’t been great. Marshall tells her that if he can move from Minnesota to New York, then she can move to Rome. But Lily says that they don’t have any friends there and they don’t even speak the language. However, Marshall assures her that they can do this. Lily then decides to accept the job offer.

Meanwhile, at the bar, Barney sees Ted looking at a girl in a big puffy coat. Ted tells him that they take a yoga class together and she has a “ridonkulous” body. When Lily comes to the bar, she wonders why it’s so hot in the bar and Barney tells her that he paid Carl to turn the heat up to get that girl to take off her coat. Lily is shocked at Barney behavior as he is engaged, but Barney says that he is engaged to Robin who is cool with this, and there is nothing wrong with looking at other women. However, instead of taking off her coat, the girl wears a scarf, which frustrates Barney. Just then Robin walks in and greets the girl. They walk over to the gang’s booth and Robin asks Barney if he remember Liddy, the wedding planner she hired. Both Barney and Ted behave strangely around Liddy, which Robin notices. She asks Barney about this, and Barney tells her. To their surprise, Robin tells them that she is also wondering why Liddy never takes her coat off. Robin asks Ted why he didn’t ask Liddy out. Ted tells her that he almost did the first time they met, but he was left speechless when she took off her coat and he saw her body. Barney laments about Marshall not being here; being in a committed relationship, he could ask girls to do anything without being weird. Robin then says that Barney should ask Liddy to take her coat off, as he also in a committed relationship. With some hesitation, Barney asks Liddy to take her coat off, which she does. Robin and Barney are then left speechless when they see her body.

While, Ted and Barney are alone at the bar, Barney says that he can’t wait to see Liddy on his wedding day, as she won’t be wearing her coat. However, Ted asks him to be careful. Barney asks him what he means and Ted replies that he hasn’t been acting like a guy who is getting married in three weeks. He thinks that Robin is cool, but she isn’t that cool. Barney retorts by sarcastically saying that he would know this as he knows Robin better than him, her fiancé. Ted tells him what he would be like if he was getting married in three weeks, but Barney interrupts him by saying that Ted is not the one getting married, he is and Robin is marrying him, not Ted. Ted then apologizes for overstepping and gets up to get the next round.

Later, when Barney enters his apartment, he sees Robin on the couch wearing a big coat. He then turns up the heat to get it off her.


  • In this episode, Marshall explains that he didn't lie as he told Lily what he was doing, but Lily thought he was using an idiom. In Natural History, Marshall explains another method he used to lie to Lily, using made-up words. In Jenkins, he lies about Jenkins by avoiding pronouns to omit the fact that Jenkins is a woman.
  • When Lily talks about her aspirations to live abroad, she references her semester in Paris in college first mentioned in Cupcake. She also talks about the time she went to San Francisco, in Come On.
  • Marshall says that the firm lost a lot of business after the Gruber Pharmaceuticals case. Although the firm won the case in Twelve Horny Women, the judge only ordered Gruber to pay 25 thousand dollars, instead of the 25 million dollar claim, which wasn't what Marshall had expected.
  • Marshall tells Lily that Cootes is in his bomb shelter, which Cootes told him about in Field Trip.
  • A reference to the Threeway Belt, which is first referenced in Third Wheel, is made when Barney finds out that Robin and Liddy know each other.
  • "Murder Train" by the Foreskins, which is first referenced in Sandcastles in the Sand, makes another appearance when Ted is being beaten up by Liddy in a fantasy sequence.
  • Barney says that the reason Marshall can ask Liddy to take off her coat without her becoming offended is because he has no stink. Robin remarks she still has to split a cab with him after basketball, referencing Marshall playing basketball in Splitsville.
  • Ted hates when people overuse the word literally, as mentioned in Spoiler Alert.
  • As she leaves the bar, Lily murmurs "wedding planner..." bitterly referencing to Liddy. Lily wanted to plan Robin's wedding, as we saw in Band or DJ?.

Future References (Contains Spoilers)

  • Lily's offer to live in Rome for a year will be a main plot point in Season 9.




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

Memorable Quotes

Ted: Can I just say something as your bestman? Be careful.
Barney: What do you mean?
Ted: You just– you haven't been acting like a guy who's about to get married and I know you think it's okay since Robin's so cool but I'm telling you she's not as cool as you think she is.
Barney: Oh, I see. And you'd know this because you know Robin better than I do. You know what she appreciates better than her own fiancé.
Ted: I'm just saying if I was getting married in three weeks,..
Barney: ..but you're not getting married in three weeks, Ted. I am. Robin's marrying me, not you.

Ted: ...and he only dropped that because he had a conflict....of not being stoned.

Marshall: ...Lily, if I could move from St. Cloud, Minnesota, to New York City, then you can move to Rome.
Lily: We know nothing about Italy. We have no friends there, we don't speak the language..
Marshall: "Andiamo, fratello. Non Mastroianni tutti i Funions" (Come on, bro. Don't Bogart all the Funions)
Lily: Okay, so you know that one sentence. Can you say anything else?
Marshall: "Andiamo" (Come on), "fratello" (bro), "non Mastroianni tutti i Funions" (Don't Bogart all the Funions)
Lily: That was the same sentence, you just changed the inflexion.
Marshall: "Andiamo" (Okay!), "fratello" (Fine!), "Non Mastroianni tutti i Funions. Andiamo, fratello, non Mastroianni tutti i Funions" (Maybe the only sentence I know is "Come on, bro. Don't Bogart all the Funions"), "Andiamo, fratello..." (But I know, in my heart...), "...Non Mastroianni tutti i Funions" (...that you understand me anyway), "Andiamo, fratello, non Mastroianni tutti..." (Because no one has ever understood anyone...), "...i Funions. Andiamo, fratello, non Mastroianni tutti i Funions." (...better than you and I understand each other.), "Andiamo, fratello?" (Is this trip going to be scary?), "Non Mastroianni tutti i Funions" (Yes), "Andiamo fratello non Mastroianni tutti?" (Do I like the idea of not knowing the language?), "...i Funions" (Of course not!), "Andiamo fratello, non Mastroianni tutti..." (But I believe we can do this), "...i Funions, Lily" (I love you, Lily.), "...I Funions" (I love you.)
Lily: I love you too. Right, we are going to Italy!
Marshall: "Sì" (Yes!)

Robin: So why don't you ask her?
Barney: Pardon me?
Robin: Aren't you a guy who's met the girl of his dreams and wants to spend the rest of his life with her and only her?
Barney: Of course, baby.
Robin: So why don't you ask her to take her coat off?
Barney: Um
Ted: And you never even saw Ghost Protocol.
Liddy: So, the big day's coming up. How are you guys feeling? I talked to the caterer, and the mini lamb shanks are gonna be amazing. Oh, by the way, I talked to the florist, and the violets - are gonna be gorgeous.
Barney: (in the thought) Okay, Barney. You can do this. Just say it. Say it. little ones and big ones Say it.
Barney: Hey, Liddy, do you want to take off your coat?
Liddy: Sure (Liddy take off her coat)
Ted: (Squeaks)
Barney: (in his thought) I did it! I proved to myself and everyone else that I have no desire to be with any other woman. I am completely immune to every other Holy crap!(They are blinded by the flashes of Liddy's body)
Robin: And it was, indeed, ridonkulous.

Barney: What are you looking at? The girl in the big coat?
Ted: We were in the same yoga class together. You know how sometimes you'll meet a girl and there'll be that one bewitching little detail that'll make you fall in love with her instantly? You know, a little freckle on the nose, the-the lilt of her laugh, the way she pronounces a certain word or phrase?
Barney: Sure, totally.
Ted: Well, in this girl's case, the bewitching little detail is the fact that she has just a "redonkulous" body.
Barney: Redonkulous?
Ted: Redonkulous!
Barney: I've only heard you use "redonkulous" to describe Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol.
Ted: Barney, this girl has the Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol of bodies.
Barney: Whoa.
Ted: Just wait till she takes that coat off. Oh, wait, sorry, you were just about to leave, right?
Barney: I mean, I've already paid for this drink.

Liddy: Is it hot in here?
Ted: It's not cold.
Barney: You know what? It's hot; it's sticky.
Ted: It's not It's like Bikram, right? We're yoga buddies. (singing) Yoga buddies.

Robin: So, Ted, when you say ridonkulous.
Ted: I can't even describe it. It'd be like trying to explain a rainbow to a blind person.

Captain: Ahoy.
Lily: Hello, Captain?
Captain: Lily, I hope you're not calling to harpoon our big move to Rome.
Lily: Thank you, but I can't ask my husband to abandon his career.
Captain: Would you like me to try and convince him? I'm very persuasive.
Lily: I'm sorry, the ship has sailed.
Captain: What's that mean?
Lily: Well, you know, "The ship has sailed"? That it's over and there's nothing you can do?
Captain: A peculiar expression, hmm. Well thanks for all your hard work, Lily. I've never been good at goodbyes, so...

Notes and Trivia

Goofs and Errors

  • When Liddy gives Barney the menu, he holds it landscape although the words are clearly printed on it in portrait. It could be that he was too distracted by Liddy to hold it straight though.
    • It's also a continuity mistake - from Barney's perspective he holds the menu in landscape mode, but from Ted's POV it's portrait.
  • When Lily calls Marshall from the bar, he is wearing a white shirt and a brown tie with white stripes. But when Lily visits him (which happens on the same day), Marshall is wearing a purple shirt with a multicolored tie.
    • The same thing also happens to Bernard; During the aftermath of Lily's phone call, he is wearing a purple shirt and a green tie. But when Lily visits Marshall later that day, he is wearing a white shirt and a light yellow tie with black dots.
      • It's possible (although very unusual) that both Marshall and Bernard changed their clothing between Lily's call and her visit.Particularly given how bored they were.
  • One of Lily's reasons for not wanting to move to Italy is that she and Marshall cannot speak Italian. However, in The Possimpible, Lily's CV states that she is fluent in Italian.
    • It may be because she's making excuses not to go to Italy. It's also possible that she padded her resume.

Allusions and Outside References

  • The title is a reference to a 1993 movie Homeward Bound.
  • Ted and Barney refer to Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, and Ted refers to the scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark in which Indiana Jones survives a divine punishment that melts Nazis.
  • Marshall wears an outfit similar to Don Fanucci during a scene in The Godfather Part II.
  • In Lily's dream sequence, the Captain's line "Cicc, a porta!" is also a reference to The Godfather Part II.
  • In the phrase "Andiamo, fratello. Non Mastrioanni tutti i Funions.", Mastrioanni refers to Marcello Mastrioanni, a famous Italian actor regarded by many to be the best Italian actor of all time, much like Humphrey Bogart in the original phrase "Come on, bro. Don't Bogart all the Funions."
  • A fictional Italian version of the Price is Right was playing in one of the what-if sequences.  In Italy, the show actually used to be called OK, Il Prezzo è Giusto .  It last aired on Italian TV network Rete 4 in 2001 and has not been revived ever since.


Other Notes

  • When Marshall receives a message from Ted saying that Lily has turned down the job again, he yells "Maronn' "! It's a dialectal word for "Madonna" in many areas of the South of Italy, and it's used expecially by old ladies, to express astonishment, anguish, regret or worries. It should sound like "Mother of God!" or maybe "Sweet Mother of God!" in English. It's a probable reference to "The Godfather" script, like Don Fanucci's white suit.
  • In the theoretical flashforward to Marshall in Italy, the cafe he sits at is called "Caffe Cristalli" which is a reference to Jenna Cristalli, the girl who Marshall gets to 2nd base with in high school, as revealed in The Broath. This is a clever expression of Lily's fear of Marshall leaving her by incorporating the only other girl Marshall has "done anything" with.
  • In the section where Marshall repeats "Come on bro don't bogart all the Funyuns." he ends up replacing "I love you" with "i Funyuns" which could be a reference to Ted's Best man speech in Showdown​. In which, he tells the story of Marshall saying 'I love you' to Lily for the first time, in which he is really talking to Ted because he's brought back Funyuns for Marshall



  • With 6.58 million viewers, this episode became the least viewed episode of the season. [1]
  • Donna Bowman of The AV Club gave the episode a B-. She said,"Romeward Bound uses a relatively thin B-story (Ted and Barney try to get well-endowed wedding planner Liddy to take off the coat hiding her redonkulous body) to reintroduce an unavoidable obstacle to Robin and Barney’s wedding, and pads out its big A-story revelation (Lily and Marshall decide to move to Rome) with dream sequence after dream sequence. Plenty of jokes land, and I’m inordinately fond of the little character bits Josh Radnor busts out."[2]
  • Max Nicholson of IGN gave the episode 6.7 out of 10. He says, "[While Marshall and Lily's] arc did bring up some intriguing points about Lily's career as an art consultant, as well as Marshall's future in environmental law -- especially since it appears that he has little left to do at his current firm. Otherwise, though, this storyline was pretty uneventful -- more bridge-building than anything else. As for Ted and Barney's storyline with Liddy the wedding planner, there were definitely some notable moments." He also added that most of the would-be scenarios of Marshall and Lily adjusting to life in Italy were hit or miss. However, he enjoyed Marshall's series of non-lies to Lily.[3]
  • The St. Petersburg Comic Review gave this episode 7 out of 10 stars. "...'The mini lamb shanks are gonna be amazing'..."


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