In a show filled with a cast of morally-inept characters, Charlie is in a wierd way the most innocent of the gang. He has many child-like tendancies, like emotional outbursts, poor grammar/spelling and bad hygiene. This season we got to see Charlie take on a job as a janitor, become "King of the Rats," see his dream book (sp. "Dram Bok") and leave Philadelphia for the first time in his life. Oh, and him and his roommate Frank decided to get married to reap the benefits of marriage (which of course didn't work out).
Abed is a pop-culture fanatic who acts as if he lives within a fictional story. He constantly references many shows and movies. He acts very socially awkward, but it's easy to believe he does it on purpose just so he can watch how people react. He loves comparing himself and the group to fictional storylines, sometimes breaking the fourth wall. One of the most brilliant things I've ever seen on television involved Abed. There was an episode in which Abed just wasn't around while the rest of the group was dealing with various things. If you look closely however, you'll notice in the background of various scenes that Abed is having his own secret storyline, which concludes with him delivering a baby. Another amazing Abed moment began during a dinner with him and Jeff. Abed explained an experience he had working as an extra on the set of Cougartown (on rival network ABC). I didn't think much of it, until I watched the season finale of Cougartown. Abed was in character as an extra in the background. It turns out, two characters from Cougartown also briefly showed up in the background during the finale of Community as well. Some interesting cross-network stuff going on with these two shows, and I like it!
Troy has changed a lot since he first started attending Greendale Community College. He used to be a jock who only cared about his image, but he has embraced his inner nerd since becoming best friends with Abed. Troy has become lovable, and his child-like tendencies make us smile. He certainly isn't the smartest person in the group, but he does have a big heart. Troy had to save the day during the zombie outbreak at Halloween (while dressed as "Thriller" Michael Jackson). He also enjoyed brief serenity when Jeff and him discovered a secret trampoline on campus. Troy got to meet his childhood idol LaVarr Burton, though he only wanted an autographed picture because "you can't disappoint a picture." Troy even decided not to date a librarian he was really attracted to because she called Abed "weird." I think Troy and Abed need a singular name, like Tro-bed.
Tom Haverford is one level down from Leslie in the Pawnee Parks Department. Tom is more concerned about using connections within the government to get famous than the actual point of his job. He has tried selling his own cologne (Tommy Fresh), alcohol (Snake Juice) and game show (Know Ya Boo). In the season 3 finale, Tom leaves the government to pursue a multi-media corporation with friend Jean-Ralphio. Check out his nicknames for food in the video below.
Morgan has really moved up in the world since the series first began. He is now the manager of the Burbank Buy More, and he gets to go on spy missions every once in a while. He recently moved in with Casey, and just so happens to also date his daughter. In fact, the Casey/Morgan dynamic has become increasingly enjoyable to watch. Casey acts as if Morgan really gets on his nerves, but you can tell Casey really does care about the little guy. Morgan has always been one of my favorite things about Chuck (as well as #3 further down the blog), and he has continued to remain that. It's hard to dislike the little guy that's also known as "the beard."
Sheldon is one of those characters that can sometimes really annoy you, but generally in a good way. He is neurotic and cocky, as well as very literal. His social skills are limited, but slowly getting better. He has started to understand the idea of sarcasm, and even throws a joke around now and again. This season Sheldon has taken on a "love interest," which in his eyes is a compatible mate in which he can artificially produce the ideal spawn. We also got to see another chapter in the ongoing fued between Sheldon and his nemesis Wil Wheaton.
If there's anyone that can rival Tom Selleck as having the greatest mustache on television, it is certainly the man known as Ron Swanson. Ron is the head of the Pawnee Parks Department, though he defers all work to Leslie. Ron prefers to sit back and let things happen as they happen. He really doesn't believe in government and prefers letting things fall apart, though he has tremendous respect for Leslie's passion and dedication to her job. Ron is a man's man. He loves woodworking, breakfast, hunting, dark-haired women and steaks. He has a secret life as jazz saxophonist Duke Silver. The season 3 premier brought us the brilliance that is the Swanson Pyramid of Greatness (see below). He also won a burger cook-off with health fanatic Chris. Chris grilled a lean turkey burger with chutney and other meticulous ingredients, while Ron just threw grilled hamburgers on a bun with nothing else proving his point that red meat always wins.
I don't think I've ever known anyone who can lay down a smooth grunt like one John Casey. The NSA agent known as "Angel de la Muerte" ("Angel of Death") in fictional Costa Gravas has a relatively unknown background. At the beginning of the series he appeared fairly cold-hearted, but has grown into showing signs of emotion. Once only viewed as colleagues, Casey now considers Chuck, Sarah, Morgan, Ellie and Awesome friends (maybe even family). This season Casey started to become a part of his daughter's life, who he only just found out about. Her mother thought he was dead, until discovering him in a recent episode. Casey and Morgan became more like partners this season while Chuck and Sarah began working together more. The partnership of Colonel Casey and The Beard has been every bit of entertaining.
It's not too often a character in a comedy series has such a rough year. Marshall and his wife Lily had problems getting pregnant, he quit his high-paying corporate job to pursue his dreams of cleaning up the environment and his father who he's extremely close to passed away. It was heavy material for one of the funniest characters on the show, and he delivered superbly. With all of the emotional turmoil, there were still many funny moments with Marshall. As in real life, he struggled for a while, but the support of his friends and family helped bring him back to normalcy. It may not have been Marshall's funniest season, but it was certainly his best.
Speaking of emotional material for the characters of How I Met Your Mother, Barney, like Marshall, had a life-altering father-related event take place. After almost never knowing his father, Barney finally got in touch with him. It made a very confident man seem vunerable. Of course, even with the daddy issues, Barney continued to concoct many new ways to pick up women. This season also finally showed the appearance of Barney's doppleganger, the last of the group's dopplegangers to be seen. The second biggest moment of the season (behind Marshall's father passing) was the closing scene of the season which showed Barney preparing to get married at an undisclosed future date. This ladies man will in fact eventually become a one-lady man. I'm sure it'll all turn out legen...wait for it...dary!