Column: Katy Perry’s acting disappoints

By Ellie Rulon-Miller

This past Monday, Katy Perry joined the cast of the popular CBS show “How I Met Your Mother.” Perry played the cousin of Zoey, a recurring character as of late.

It was not Perry’s first foray into television. She has appeared in several series, including “The Young and the Restless” and as the voice of herself on “The Simpsons.” This episode of “How I Met Your Mother” was the first time she has played the role of a character instead of herself in a television series.

Perry is also lending her voice to a production of “The Smurfs” this year. She will play the character of Smurfette. If it is anything like her character in Monday’s “How I Met Your Mother,” it may be a promising role for her. She does naïve well, so playing a little blue cartoon character may go over very well.

Zoey, played by Jennifer Morrison, first appeared in the series as an activist who appeared regularly to protest protagonist Ted Mosby’s various architecture ventures. Prior to her time on “How I Met Your Mother,” Morrison was best known for her role in the popular series “House,” on which she played Allison Cameron.

Perry’s character is referred to throughout the episode only as “Honey.” This is because the gang can’t remember her real name. They talk to her like a child throughout the episode because she is extremely naïve and everything she says makes them say, “Oh, honey.”

Honey’s naïveté is not very believable in part because of the reputation Perry has built up as a performer. Her look is too edgy for this childish character – she wears a sexy, low-cut shirt and her tattoos are visible throughout the episode. Visually, she looks more like Mandy Moore’s character Amy when the other pop star made a guest appearance on the show as a dangerous-looking woman in 2007. It would have been more appropriate for Moore’s character to be like Honey, and for Perry’s character to be more like Amy.

After the last episode – in which Marshall’s father passes away – aired, viewers needed “How I Met Your Mother” to be lighthearted again. The episode was a buzzkill, even in its final moments when Marshall managed to smile and joke again. While the new episode was a happier one, viewers were reminded of Marshall’s loss.

The plot of the episode was told to Marshall over the phone by different members of the gang. He went back to Minnesota to spend time with his family. He sits in his childhood bedroom playing Clue by himself as Robin calls him. While she tells her version of what happened when Honey came to visit, her phone call is interrupted by a call from Barney, then from Lily, and so on.

Each version of the story is told in ways that are characteristic to each of Marshall’s friends. Barney talks of the girl in sexual terms, Lily gets all worked up and makes a comment about sexting with Marshall, and it seems that Robin tells the story in the most realistic way.

Despite Perry’s relatively minor role in the episode, it is a fairly bland one. Perhaps this is the reason a popular old joke was brought back: the friends planning interventions for each other. In this case, an intervention was planned for Ted.

Among the funniest things about the episode is the way that Marshall and his family interact. They revert to childishness, and his mom and brother are constantly interrupting his lengthy phone call.

Though the episode had its funny moments, it seemed to lack the typical humor usually associated with “How I Met Your Mother.” Jokes were not as sharp or as well-executed as they typically are. The show will have a chance to redeem itself on Monday, Feb. 14, when the next new episode airs.

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