For the first time in a while, AD had a really tough act to follow.
Steve: Oh my God, a mall Santa. I...I didn't see him. Is he... Stan: Dead? You were gonna ask if he's dead? Steve: I was gonna ask if he's ok! Stan: Oh, no. No, no, no. No, he is...he is dead. He is NOT ok. He will NEVER be ok. Because he is, say it with me...dead. You didn't say it with me.
So with FG going in one odd direction, AD went in a different one. Santa as a revenge-crazed maniac was a nice change of pace. And that was a hell of an epic fight at the end against Santa and his army of elves. I expected the whole thing to end in a dream sequence, but how about that? It was all real. That was the biggest surprise for me.
I know I'm in the minority but I'll take HIMYM even over the NBC shows. Marshall and Barney are way more consistent than the Office cast. The Office cast, especially Dwight and Michael, are funny sometimes but then other episodes not so much.