How I Met Your Father season 1 episode 5 recap & review: The Good Mom

‘How I Met Your Father’ season 1 episode 5 revolves around Sophie’s relationship with her mother and a realization that sets her free.


Sophie is talking to her son and telling him about the story of how she met his father.

She tells him how everyone has a blind spot for their parents. Everyone believes that their parents are perfect and can never do anything wrong but the truth is far from this.

Her son jokingly thanks her for finally realizing the truth about herself but is stopped by Sophie who says she is perfect.

Next, we see a younger Sophie. She is talking to Drew on the phone, who invites her for game night with his friends. Valentina teases Sophie and tells her that this is a big step in their relationship. Sophie denies and says this is not a big deal.

Sophie opens the door to leave and finds her mother Lori standing in the doorway. Sophie hugs her and asks her what she is doing here to which she replies she came for Sophie’s birthday. 

Sophie reminds Lori that her birthday was a week ago and is told that she was scheduled to be born today and it was her fault she came early.

Sophie asks Lori to come with her to meet her friends and asks her to not flirt with Valentina’s boyfriend, but she is seen doing exactly that in the next scene. 

Sid brings drinks for the group but as soon as he sees Lori, he stops mid-sentence and takes the drinks back. All of them realize that something is wrong with him but say ‘not it’ touching their noses when deciding who will go and talk to him.

Lori then tells Sophie about her new boyfriend Ash and invites her to see him perform on stage at ‘The Happy Idiot’ club.

Valentina tells Lori that Sophie has plans in the evening but on being told that Lori will be leaving for Austria tomorrow, Sophie agrees to come and cancels her plans with Drew. 

After Lori leaves, Sophie tells her friends that her mom is the best but she picks up the worst men and then she has to pick up her pieces after every breakup. She plans to make her break up with her musician boyfriend before she is left stranded in Vienna.

Sophie asks her friends to join her in the evening at ‘Happy Idiot’. Valentina agrees and asks Charlie to come but Charlie tells them about his plans to figure out what he is going to do with his life.

Jesse says no to the plans since Happy Idiot was the place where his failed proposal took place and hence he is still traumatized. Sid and Charlie decide to stay with Jesse. Ellen agrees to join them right after she is done watching ‘The Good Fight’.

Charlie goes to meet Jesse and Sid and tells them he has finally figured out his calling. He is going to help people who are suffering from trauma.

On being asked how he decided it was his calling, Charlie reveals that he has had enough therapy as a child, after he was found talking to his mother’s wigs and substituting it for his mother’s affection. And after his therapy, he hasn’t done this for months.

Charlie declares Jesse as his first patient and tells him that he will apply ‘Exposure therapy’ on him, which will need them to watch his failed proposal again. Sid has it bookmarked and immediately plays it.

Next, we see Ellen preparing to watch ‘The Good Fight’. She cuts a tomato and finds that it is rotten from the inside. She opens her main door and finds a waiter carrying a tray full of tomatoes to her neighbor’s apartment.

She enters her neighbor’s apartment and finds a funeral organized for an old lady. Just as she fills up her plate with tomatoes, she is approached by a woman.

The woman tells her that she is Rachel, the granddaughter of the dead old lady. Rachel starts a conversation with Ellen and asks her how she knows her grandma. Ellen panics and tells her she was her grandma’s best friend.

Sophie and Valentina reach ‘The happy idiot’ and are introduced to a 27-year-old guy Ash as Lori’s boyfriend. Sophie believes that he is bad news and might be a gold digger and asks Valentina to talk to her mom so that she could grill Ash.

On talking with Ash, Sophie realizes that he is a good guy and starts planning her mom’s wedding in her mind.

Ellen, on being asked about their friendship, tells Rachel how she was creating a Ruckus in the kitchen one day and her grandmother came to complain. But Ellen ended up complimenting her Broach and they became best friends from that day.

Rachel somehow buys the story and shows Ellen her grandmother’s jewelry and asks her if they can go somewhere else. Ellen agrees.

The boys watch Jesse’s failed proposal and Charlie asks Jesse how he is feeling. Jesse tells him he feels okay since this was much worse in his head than it actually is. Charlie tells him that the next step is to return to the scene of the crime. Jesse agrees but Sid stops them.

Sid then recalls a bad childhood memory with Lori’s poster as a bikini model and the death of his hamster. He feels ashamed and hence doesn’t want to face Sophie’s mom. Charlie takes up his case too and tells him that he will heal him.

Ellen also reaches ‘The Happy Idiot’ with Rachel. She approaches Charlie and asks him to tell all about Esther Horowitz, their dead neighbor, since he was good friends with her and tells him about her meeting with her granddaughter, with whom she is in love.

Charlie tells her that’s not possible since Esther had no children except for her birds.

Ellen thinks Rachel is an ‘Elder Fraud’ and confronts her. She also tells her how she was beating herself up the whole evening for lying. Charlie approaches her and tells her he got mixed up between Etsy Lebowitz and Esther Horowitz and Esther did have children.

Rachel gets angry at Ellen for lying and leaves. Charlie apologizes to an angry Ellen.

Lori excuses herself and tells Valentina she is going to wish her boyfriend luck. As soon as she leaves, Ash goes on stage. Valentina follows Lori and finds her cheating on Ash with his manager Brad.

Valentina is approached by Sophie who is happy about her mother’s boyfriend. She tells her about the kiss and asks if Sophie really thinks her mother is not the bad person in her relationship. Sophie is heartbroken after hearing this and leaves.

In the meantime, Charlie asks Sid to buy Lori a drink to overcome his trauma and realize he is an adult now. Sid feels relieved after doing it and thanks Charlie. 

Charlie then tells Jesse that he organized for Sid to perform on stage today. Jesse goes on stage and is made fun of again for his failed proposal. 

Jesse shouts at the audience when one joke is directed towards his mother and leaves the stage to avoid the chances of another embarrassing video. He does feel better after doing this and thanks Charlie.

Charlie decides to be a psychiatrist but is told by Valentina that it requires 8 years of schooling. Charlie becomes disheartened but is offered the job of a waiter at Sid’s bar, which he accepts very happily.

Sophie confronts her mother who tells her she is not bad just for not settling for something. Sophie confesses how bad her childhood was and how she doesn’t have any childhood photos due to their constant moving, yet her mother’s bikini poster was more important than her.

Her mother tells her that the picture on that poster was clicked the day she got to know that she was pregnant with Sophie and hence it means the world to her. She asks Sophie to join her for drinks, but she declines and goes to meet Drew, thus putting herself first for the first time.

On being asked by her son how this story is relevant when it is just between his grandmother and her, Sophie says that she couldn’t eventually wind up with his dad till she faced her issues with her mother and hence this story was important.

The story ends with a young Sophie going to meet Drew who sings ‘Happy to see you’.


  • The show seems to be trying too hard to make things seem funny but it is not working.
  • The storyline is well written and the relationships between all the characters look better and improved than before.
  • Sophie makes a great main character who is brave and lovable. The scene where she puts herself first and goes to meet Drew is really empowering and wholesome.
  • Some parts of the story seem unnecessary as they add nothing to the plot and the episode seems longer than it needed to be.

Rating: 2.5/5

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