Neil Patrick Harris called it a casting stunt the first time around, but the folks at How I Met Your Mother need all the ratings help they can get, hence the return of Britney Spears. Actually, Harris has come around on Spears, who appeared on the show's March 24 episode and helped to draw 1 million more viewers than usual. Britney apparently is "ecstatic" about returning to Mother but some joker in her camp thinks it's merely a "new element of fame for her to have to deal with." But anything that makes Brit a little less trashy is good, no?

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