Disaster Averted

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"Disaster Averted"
How I Met Your Mother episode
Episode no. Season 7
Episode 9
Directed by Michael Shea
Written by Robia Rashid
Original air date November 7, 2011 (2011-11-07)
Guest actors

Kal Penn (Kevin)
Teresa Castillo (Maya)

Season 7 episodes

"Disaster Averted" is the ninth episode of the seventh season of the CBS sitcom How I Met Your Mother, and the 145th episode overall. It aired on November 7, 2011.[1]


Barney has grown tired of his Ducky Tie and makes up a story in order to hide the fact that he has thrown it away, but he is foiled when Lily enters the bar holding the tie after having found it in the garbage.

When entering MacLaren's bar, Kevin notices a sign at the entrance which read "Absolutely no boogie boarding", and asks about it. The group tells him what happened to them during Hurricane Irene. Ted had planned to have his friends ride out the hurricane in his house out of the city, but Barney convinces them to stay in his city apartment, saying that the storm is nothing to worry about. Lily and Barney eventually get calls from their parents asking if they are all right, and Robin grows jealous because her father has not called her. When she denies that she feels neglected, Barney fake-calls Robin as her dad to prove her jealousy. When the group do decide to evacuate to Ted's house, Ted tells Barney that he can't come, as Ted found a girl in the hallway whom he said could ride in Barney's place. This alteration causes altercations; everyone fights over who gets to go or stay, until Ted finally says that he is going to go by himself. Marshall turns on the TV just in time to call Ted back to hear Mayor Bloomberg's speech saying that the evacuation time has passed and that everyone must go inside and wait out the storm.

Marshall had no health insurance during that time because of his unemployment. He was seeing death everywhere and refused to go alone anywhere without Lily because he thought he would be attacked by a bear. Lily had complained that he was not giving her enough alone time and that all she wanted to do is sit in the bath and read a book. That night, Marshall ran Lily a bath and told her to have a little alone time. Lily said she wanted Marshall to stay and they ended up conceiving their baby boy in Barney's bathroom.

Meanwhile, in the present, Barney offers to let Marshall deliver his final remaining slap in their Slap Bet in return for being allowed to take the Ducky Tie off. Marshall is torn between slapping Barney and forcing him to continue wearing the tie until Kevin points out that since Barney had not complained about the Ducky Tie in weeks, there must be an agenda to Barney's offer. Kevin hypothesizes that he has to impress someone and deduces that Barney is going to meet Nora's parents, which Barney reveals happens in two days. Lily and Marshall agree that Barney can take off the tie, but he must gain an extra three slaps to his already existing final slap. Barney agrees and Marshall delivers two of the slaps, with two still remaining.

In the end, it is shown that the gang had gone out after the end of the hurricane and played around in the rain, which led to Marshall going boogie-boarding and eventually crashing through MacLaren's front window - hence the sign against boogie-boarding. Robin and Barney decide to share a cab home and they reminisce about the moment after Marshall's accident when they had almost kissed but Robin's dad had called her. They make fun of what could have happened and end up kissing in the cab.

Barney's blog[edit]

Barney gives a list of reasons to have sex.[2] This list is presumably in addition to the list of similar reasons made in the entry coinciding with the episode "The Naked Man".


Cultural references[edit]

  • Barney says, "I'm going to like the way I look. I guarantee it," a reference to TV advertisements for Men's Wearhouse.
  • The chase sequence at the start of the episode is a parody of the 1981 film Raiders of the Lost Ark. The kid Barney saves from falling off the GNB building is a nod towards Short Round from the movie Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.[3]
  • This episode uses a clip of the actual speech given by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg during Hurricane Irene.[4]
  • Several references are made to Memoirs of a Geisha, the audiobook that Ted plays in the car.
  • Lily refers to Marshall's mood as being like "a really clingy Edgar Allan Poe." In the next shot, Marshall is shown standing near a carving of a raven and waxing poetically about his isolation.

Critical response[edit]

The AV Club's Donna Bowman graded the episode at A-, stating that it had several of the same elements that made the Ducky Tie a wonderful episode: "constantly interrupted storytelling, callbackariffic structuring, fleet pacing, machine-gun dialogue, and a dollop of sweetness at the end."[5]

Angel Cohn of Television Without Pity gave the episode a B+.[6]


  1. ^ "How I Met Your Mother - Episode 7.09 - Disaster Averted". The Futon Critic. Retrieved November 5, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Barney's Blog: IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT (AND YOU FEEL FOIN!)". November 8, 2011. 
  3. ^ O'Hara, Chris (November 7, 2011). "How I Met Your Mother Review: The Perfect Storm". Retrieved November 9, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Hurricane Irene: Mayor Bloomberg warns New Yorkers to stay indoors - video". The Guardian (London). August 28, 2011. Retrieved November 9, 2011. 
  5. ^ Bowman, Donna (2011-11-07). "“Disaster Averted”". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2012-11-17. 
  6. ^ "How I Met Your Mother TV Show - Disaster Averted". Televisionwithoutpity.com. Retrieved 2012-11-17. 

External links[edit]