Duel Citizenship

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"Duel Citizenship"
How I Met Your Mother episode
Episode no. Season 5
Episode 5
Directed by Pamela Fryman
Written by Chuck Tatham
Production code 5ALH05
Original air date October 19, 2009
Guest actors

Kenny Rogers (Kindly Book Narrator)

Season 5 episodes

"Duel Citizenship" is the fifth episode of the fifth season of the CBS situation comedy How I Met Your Mother and 93rd overall. It originally aired on October 19, 2009.


Future Ted explains that Robin's Canadian quirks and mannerisms were strange (slang, impervious to cold, and severe aggression in bar fights), which got her into trouble in the fall of 2009. After a bar fight, she is charged with assault and could be deported unless she gets American citizenship. Barney takes the opportunity to reiterate that Canada is lame and America is awesome. He encourages her to take the citizenship test and teaches her to be obnoxious, arrogant and willfully ignorant—the hallmarks, he says, of a true American. Robin takes on the role perfectly, but on the way back home, she walks past her Canadian bar, the Hoser Hut, and tempted by her heritage, she goes in. After some serious drinking with Canada's national women's curling team, she blacks out and ends up in a Toronto hotel room.

Barney has tracked her down and convinces her to come home and take the test. They stop at a Tim Hortons coffee shop, where the cashier mistakes Robin for an American. Depressed, Robin feels neither Canadian nor American. Barney makes a speech ridiculing Canadians for letting such an amazing woman go (among other things), and then is promptly beaten up. After some free Canadian health care, they return home and Robin decides she wants dual citizenship.

Meanwhile, Ted hears that a pizzeria in Chicago named Gazola's is closing down. He and Marshall used to drive straight from Wesleyan to the pizzeria when they were in college, even though the pizza was awful. The road trips helped cement their friendship, and Ted proposes they take one last trip. Future Ted mentions that they drank Tantrum, a soda which had "the highest caffeine level legally available over the counter"; this may be a reference to a series of high caffeine sodas from the late '90s, such as Jolt Cola, Mountain Dew, and Surge.[citation needed] Pumped to spend some personal time with Marshall (and reeling from a severe caffeine high), Ted is disappointed to find out that Lily is coming along.

Lily needs bathroom breaks frequently and insists they listen to an audiobook parodying Marley & Me (narrated by Kenny Rogers). Ted is annoyed and becomes exasperated when they stop at a bed and breakfast instead of driving through the night. After Lily and Marshall engage in some couples' activities, Ted tricks Marshall into driving with him to Gazola's in his bathrobe. They enjoy the pizza, but Marshall feels guilty over abandoning Lily, and they leave. Ted admits that he is angry that Lily tagged along, and the two stop speaking.

They drive back to the bed and breakfast not speaking to each other, but the audio-book story they are listening to makes them realize they need each other's friendship, and they reconcile. Lily hasn't even noticed that they're gone because she has been powerfully sedated by the hotel's spa services. After some severe stomach pains from the pizza, the three head back to New York.

Critical response[edit]

Donna Bowman of The A.V. Club rated the episode with a grade of A−.[1]

Brian Zoromski of IGN gave the episode 9.5 out of 10.[2]

Vlada Gelman writes about the Canadian jokes in the show and expresses a strong appreciation for the attention to detail and continuity the episode shows.[3]


  1. ^ Donna Bowman (2009-10-19). "How I Met Your Mother: Duel Citizenship". The AV Club. The Onion. Retrieved 2009-12-11. 
  2. ^ Brian Zoromski (2009-10-20). "How I Met Your Mother: Duel Citizenship Review. Canada jokes, energy drinks and bad pizza make for a great combination.". IGN (News Corporation). Retrieved 2010-01-31. 
  3. ^ Vlada Gelman (2009-10-20). "'How I Met Your Mother': To be a Canadian or an American". The Los Angeles Times. 

External links[edit]