Photo: CBS, HBO

Slap Bet vs. Deadwood's Proxy Fight

It's the ongoing torment of Barney Stinson vs. keeping an eye out for Hearst's henchman!

72%
374 votes

Slap Bet

28%
147 votes

Deadwood's Proxy Fight

The case for Slap Bet

How I Met Your Mother had some high highs and some very low lows. And at its highest, it brought us Robin Sparkles and the incredibly amazing Slap Bet between Marshall and Barney with “Lily Aldrin, Caring Wife, Loving Friend, Slap Bet Commissioner”. It was supposed to be a simple bet: With the gang wondering why Robin wouldn’t go to the mall, Barney bet that she had done Canadian porn while Marshall suggested that she had been married in a mall. Because of Robin’s desperation to keep her shameful secret (that she had been a teenage pop star in Canada), confusion was created which caused first Marshall and then Barney to collect on the bet prematurely. All of the resultant penalties, etc, led to Lily giving Barney the choice: “either 10 slaps right now in a row or 5 slaps that can be doled out at any time from here to eternity.” Barney chose the 5 slaps and thus was born the ongoing gag that was not put to rest until the penultimate episode “End of the Aisle” when Marshall slapped the sense back into Barney and simultaneously freed him from the torment of the slap bet forever. Probably the best wedding gift he could have received.

In season seven Marshall was awarded three additional slaps when Barney wanted to remove his duck tie, bringing the grand total to eight. The most wonderful of the slap bet episodes though were definitely “Slapsgiving” (3x09) and “Slapsgiving 2: Revenge of the Slap (5x09), the first of which featured an actual online countdown clock and a theme song (You Just Got Slapped). The long-term continuity of the slap bet through over seven seasons of an often uneven show combined with the sheer force of the slaps, often sending Barney flying to the floor is just a good bit of business. — Lynny

The case for Deadwood's Proxy Fight

Power struggles are a dirty business. Take Al Swearengen and George Hearst. Each seeks to control the town of Deadwood but neither is the type to get their hands dirty if they can avoid. So you send in your best man and they fight. Oh how they do fight. — Boeing Wichita


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