TV Recap: “How I Met Your Father” – Episode 3 “The Reset Button”

Sophie (Kim Cattrall) tells her son that when you are young and dating, that a friend group can often be confused for a dating pool. When Sophie talks about how by the time she turned forty she had kissed everyone in her friend group, her son asks if she had kissed Aunt Ellen? To which Sophie says yes. (Aunt Ellen as in familial relationship aunt? Does this mean that Jesse is the dad? Did we just get a big clue?)

In the present day, Sophie (Hilary Duff) is at the gallery ecstatic over the sale of her picture. The gallery tells her that the buyer wants to have her over to their penthouse so that she can explain the meaning of her picture to them. Unfortunately they also want Sophie to bring her model as well.

Jesse (Christopher Lowell) is less than enthusiastic to go to dinner at some rich stranger’s penthouse. As he says, this is the beginning of the plot to many horror movies. Resistant to going, Sophie plays up their friendship and tells Jesse that this could be a big break for her career. Jesse is helpless and agrees to accompany her.

Charlie and Valentina (Tom Ainsley and Francia Raisa) are cleaning up her items at his apartment when Ellen (Tien Tran) comes out talking about her date with Rachel (Aby James) and how they need to find another couple to join them at an exclusive bar. (This leads to a hilarious joke about a musical version of Flubber, that is silly and just perfect for a cutaway moment.) Valentina offers to go, and much to Charlie’s dismay, finds a date instantly.

Hannah and Sid (Ashley Reyes and Suraj Sharma) are trying to figure out a schedule for their long-distance marriage, when Charlie interrupts their matrimonial gloom to ask if they would accompany him on a double date tonight with his blind date. Charlie is desperate.

At the rich peoples apartment, Jesse and Sophie meet some very eccentric wealthy people, and the platter of raw meat offered to them is something that Jesse cannot embrace. Sophie begs him to play along. (Nothing beats a good sight gag, like people eating awful food.)

Jesse is feeling his angst and worry build up. Everything that he has experienced reminds him of the horror movies he has watched, and even though he references a Nicky Hilton film, Sophie implores him to be good.

At dinner Hannah and Sid meet Charlie’s date Alice, who happens to run an airline miles reward program. The possibilities for Sid and Hannah’s long distance relationship pop before their eyes. As Hannah tells Sid, Alice is the answer to their problems. Charlie walks into the restaurant thinking he is not ready and wants to call the date off, but Sid tells him that Alice is incredible.

While the rich couple praise Sophie, it’s clear that their interest is in Jesse, not Sophie. They praise him as the perfect example of the American male. Sophie spends the rest of the evening trying to worm her way into the conversation.

At dinner with Ellen and Rachel, Valentina has great chemistry with Rachel, but her date is nothing special. Even Sophie in the future doesn’t remember the date, what he looked like or his name, so they are just calling him Rando. (Another sight gag, the date is plastered with an emoji that changes depending on the topic of conversation. It’s the small moments of humor that really add to the show.)

The early chemistry between Valentina and Rachel dissipates when Rachel mocks Valentina’s belief in astrology. Dinner gets awkward as Valentina and Rachel trade insults, and Ellen tries desperately to lighten the mood. (Tien Tran is very funny in this scene.)

The creepy rich couple are so enamored with Jesse that they offer to give him a tour of the penthouse. Sophie is allowed to join them, but she can’t say anything on the tour but Jesse is allowed to say anything he wants. (The creepy vibes are brilliantly played up for laughs and make this subplot hilarious.)

At dinner, Charlie is less than excited by his date. Sid and Hannah are trying their best to spin his date as being great, but Charlie is not happy. After the girls leave to go to the bathroom, Charlie says he doesn’t understand what Sid and Hannah see in Alice. Sid tries to talk about how Charlie and Alice have so much in common, when in reality they have nothing.

Dinner is not going swimmingly at the penthouse, where Jesse and Sophie learn that their rich benefactor is a firm believer that there is a war against men. Rachel and Valentina trade insult after insult and eventually look to Ellen for the deciding vote as to which one is right. Just as tension is building, Valentina and Rachel start to criticize Ellen because they both know she is incapable of making a decision. Seeing an opportunity to move on, Ellen embraces the ridicule and makes herself the butt of every joke.

Alone in the study, Jesse and Sophie look up their hosts, only to find that the man is a prominent leader in the men’s rights movement. Sophie remarks to Jesse that they probably should have put this together sooner. We get a flashback of their evening, and everything that was said, which is downright hilarious.

Sophie is angry that her photo is the face of the men’s rights movement, while Jesse explains that his face is actually the face of the men’s rights movement. As they try to figure out what to do, with Sophie going on a tangent about starting their own competing podcast to dispel the ridiculous movement and offer hot takes on celebrity hairstyles, (Hilary Duff is brilliant in this scene.) Instead Sophie plans to distract the couple while Jesse steals the photo.

Back at dinner, Charlie’s date is a walking disaster (including bringing her own toilet seat cover to the restaurant), and she displays little connection with Charlie. Unable to do this anymore, Charlie tells them he’s not ready to date, and if he was it wouldn’t be with Alice. Trying to change his mind, Sid is accused of wanting Alice for her air miles, and Hannah tries to play coy with her involvement. Though Alice is disappointed, she is under the impression that she met her new best friend for life in Hannah, and Hannah is willing to play along if she and Sid could get access to free air miles.

Unable to embrace her hosts' crazy ideas, Sophie turns on her wealthy hosts and explains to them that Jesse is hardly the ideal version of the American man. He can’t even get the photo off the wall. While Ellen tries to keep Rachel and Valentina from fighting, both Rachel and Valentina come to an agreement that Ellen has some issues around conflict and despite her love of astrology, Valentina agrees that Ellen might want to seek help with a psychologist.

Back at Pemberton’s Bar, Sid and Hannah meet up with Charlie and apologize for being selfish jerks on the date. They offer a peace offering by bringing him the perfect first date outfit. Charlie is naturally curious about what happen with Alice, and Hannah tells him that she got enough miles from Alice to last them a while. A look of shame comes over Hannah’s face as she tells Charlie not to ask her how it happened.

Though Sophie sees the night as a failure, she and Jesse reconcile their friendship. Sophie tries to take a call and sets her photo down on a waiting taxi which takes off with the prized picture.

Returning home, Sophie tells Valentina about her night, and learns that Valentina spent the night with her date. Asking her how she bounces back from Charlie so quickly, Valentina tells her best friend that she believes that her and Charlie will ultimately be together. She’s not worried about him meeting someone else because Valentina believes that Charlie will take a long time before he starts dating.

Coming out to the bar, Charlie meets a beautiful stranger, and as Sophie of the future tells us, it looks like Charlie was hitting his own reset button for life.

Bill’s Final Thoughts

Well executed and incredibly funny. This episode allows Hilary Duff to showcase her comedy chops. Sophie and Jesse also get a chance to mend their friendship which needed to happen to move the season along.

Once again, I am so very happy to see Ashley Reyes and Suraj Sharma have prime time storylines in the episode. I feel like How I Met Your Father has found its groove and continues to showcase how funny the cast is.

Bill Gowsell
Bill Gowsell has loved all things Disney since his first family trip to Walt Disney World in 1984. Since he began writing for Laughing Place in 2014, Bill has specialized in covering the Rick Riordan literary universe, a retrospective of the Touchstone Pictures movie library, and a variety of other Disney related topics. When he is not spending time with his family, Bill can be found at the bottom of a lake . . . scuba diving