That Dang Bang BIG BANG

There’s a very fine line between lovable sociopath and just plain sociopath

First off, the comedy event of the evening is the return of Parks & Recreation, finally forming a Danielsverse hour with The Office as God intended. Watch it.

Non-events include the beginning of Perfect Couples‘ official run in a time slot that can’t possibly hurt it: after a low-rated show, up against American Idol. (Actually, as Modern Family‘s strong performance last night demonstrates, Idol is not — especially now that it’s lost a step or two — a killer of shows that already have a loyal viewership. Shows that are trying to get a loyal viewership, or shows that just plain nobody wants to watch like Live To Dance, are another matter.)

And then there’s Big Bang Theory, which has had a rather strange season in terms of its place in pop culture. Successfully anchoring its own night, getting more awards recognition and heading into syndication (the Comedy Network already has it in frequent reruns), it’s becoming more of a pop-cultural presence, and yet there’s also a sense that its moment has passed. Partly because it’s up against Community, which means it’s not getting as much attention online, but mostly because it just didn’t quite get over the hump that separates the good from the great.

Its best season was its second, and that’s not at all uncommon for a comedy, but the second season was a bit… I’m not going to say nobody thought it was great, because it did, in fact, get quite a lot of critical praise that year (all the more impressive because it’s not the sort of show that usually impresses critics). I’ll just say that I personally really enjoyed seeing it improve and gel and turn out some really good episodes, but it never quite seemed to be at that point where it was turning out a batch of great episodes, rather than good episodes with great moments. That’s a bit different from a show that peaked in its second season like How I Met Your Mother. That show also had flaws you could point to, but at its best, it was producing episodes that were so satisfying that the flaws were irrelevant.

Big Bang was more the kind of show where you could point to some fantastic scenes without being totally convinced by the episode, or even remembering exactly what happened in the episode. Maybe that’s part of the whole CBS esthetic. The showrunner of the NCIS twins has frankly said that he doesn’t think audiences remember plots, just moments. That’s actually true, particularly in television (think as far back as all those Twilight Zones where we remember the big twist without being certain about what led up to it) so maybe Big Bang has something similar in mind with its loose, baggy storytelling, where the plots are often thrown away or unresolved, and the only thing that matters is to have a basic situation that leads to some comedy scenes. I didn’t think the show, even at its best, turned this kind of thing into great episodes — to do that, the scenes have to be not just funny but absolutely damned spectacularly funny. But it was a legitimate approach, at the very least, that helped it stand out from all the over-plotted sitcoms on the air.

Anyway, the third season was uneven and the fourth has just been mostly disappointing, though I generally liked the controversial “Sheldon builds a robot” episode (while being surprised that the staff supposedly considered it one of the best episodes ever), the “Justice League Recombination” episode was good, and bringing back Melissa Rauch was a blessing. The show can still be funny, and some nights it makes me laugh more than anything else, granted that this is only because I’m the only person who finds some of this season’s Community episodes less than hilarious.

And it’s hard to point to anything in particular that’s wrong: the humour is a little meaner and raunchier than before, suggesting some failure to keep the Two and a Half Men and Big Bang styles separate, and Mayim Bialik doesn’t mesh well with the cast, but in the bigger scheme of things these are minor problems.

The thing that bugs me, and seems to be bugging at least some other people, is that the show has already become unable to do new things with most of these people, so it’s resorted to trotting out the same comic ideas again. This can work, just barely, if you have a show that is very plot-driven, so you can create a sense of novelty with new plots or settings. This show doesn’t have that option: same sets most of the time, simple plots. All the onus is on the characters, and they are just doing what they’ve been doing for a while. And the more they do the same things, the less likable they become, something that is a particular problem with Sheldon: there’s a very fine line between lovable sociopath and just plain sociopath, and he finally seemed to cross it a few times this season.

Then you have Koothrappali and his inability to talk to women, which has become something of a test case for how you look at the show. You’ll recall that the fact that he couldn’t talk to women was almost the first thing we found out about him in the pilot. For the first couple of seasons, the show piled a few new bits of information on top of that: he could talk if he was drunk, or under the influence of experimental drugs, and he could overcome his shyness if he thought he’d been drinking alcohol even if he wasn’t. Then it… pretty much stopped, and now it’s pretty much just repeating that he can’t talk to women unless he’s drunk.

Chuck Lorre believes very strongly — having been burned by the fact that the network forced him to do pointless story arcs on Dharma & Greg — that shows should not change too much, that they kill the golden goose if they start fiddling around with the things that make characters who they are. Online, the push is always to get characters moving forward, trying new things. Maybe the mushy middle ground is just that characters shouldn’t have to change, but they do have to find new gags to add to the ones they’ve already been doing.

I’ll give you this example because they just invoked the memory of the show in a sketch on Saturday Night Live: you remember the “Carlton Dance” on Fresh Prince of Bel Air? You know when that started? Not until midway through the third season, on a show that only lasted six. I think it grew out of an early throwaway joke about the character liking Tom Jones, and so the writers actually decided to have him dance to Tom Jones, and that led to Tom Jones appearing on the show, and that led to all kinds of related gags that had never even been contemplated in the first two seasons of the show.

Lots of shows have introduced new running gags or character ideas late in the series. TGIF fans with hazy Boy Meets World memories might not remember that the “Feeny Call” didn’t exist for the first three seasons of the show. And that’s not even getting into the truly great long-running comedies, which have found ways to replenish themselves not by changing the characters (they can’t change very much), not even by bringing in new characters, but just coming up with new things to associate with the regular characters. I know Ross said “We were on a break!” way too much — which, itself, became a running gag — but it was something that became an iconic part of the show during its third season. And many supporting characters on The Simpsons had new gags or obsessions added to their portfolios after the second season.

And apart from running gags, characters can become the sources for different kinds of comedy without changing all that much. To continue in the James L. Brooks universe (Brooksverse?), look at how The Simpsons experimented with new, wilder types of humour in its third and fourth seasons, or how Mary Tyler Moore became a bit different just by increasing the importance of the scenes with Mary in Lou’s office (a type of scene that had been in the show since the pilot). Or it can do the same things while framing them in a different way: Taxi simply had Alex become more aware of the fact that all the characters were dumping their problems in his lap, so they would do the same types of stories but his reaction was a little different.

Now, with Big Bang, I can’t think of very much new they’ve found to associate with Raj, or Penny, or even Sheldon, since the second season. Apart from the Wil Wheaton rivalry, which is genuinely funny and has become a true part of the show’s mythology, most of what we “know” about the characters seems to come from the first couple of years. The show has also had a lot of trouble benching old running gags and replacing them with new ones — the robot episode used the knocking, the “Bazinga!” the “Soft Kitty” and the “you’re in my spot” jokes all in one episode, where the great sitcoms often put running gags into semi-retirement after overuse. Even Happy Days stopped “Sit On It!” after a couple of years, but BBT can’t let go.

And I suspect that’s a bigger problem than the lack of character development in the sense of growing or changing. They don’t have to grow and change, but we should at least get some new running bits piled on top of the old ones.




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That Dang Bang BIG BANG

  1. I think that you're absolutely right. the Sheldon character has become too mean-spirited. The writers could have had him progress, even a little and that would have given them lots of comedic opportunities. Instead it seems they are enhancing the negative characteristics. Too bad – because I'd like to continue watching, but if things don't improve, I likely won't.

  2. I think that you're absolutely right. the Sheldon character has become too mean-spirited. The writers could have had him progress, even a little and that would have given them lots of comedic opportunities. Instead it seems they are enhancing the negative characteristics. Too bad – because I'd like to continue watching, but if things don't improve, I likely won't.

  3. It's worth pointing out that if the producers had decided to make Sheldon "grow" as character, we'd all be complaining that they'd watered him down… I realize this is distinct from finding new "running gags", but as it relates to the apparent mean-spiritedness of Sheldon this season, I think it's clearly an attempt to maintain Sheldon's characteristic social awkwardness and superiority.

  4. It's worth pointing out that if the producers had decided to make Sheldon "grow" as character, we'd all be complaining that they'd watered him down… I realize this is distinct from finding new "running gags", but as it relates to the apparent mean-spiritedness of Sheldon this season, I think it's clearly an attempt to maintain Sheldon's characteristic social awkwardness and superiority.

  5. I watched the pilot a couple years ago when it first came and made it about 10 minutes into it before I realized it was going to be one of those comedies. You know, like a bad Jay Leno monologue, but with OCD jokes and not particularly funny nerd sayings.

    Anyway, after years of trashing it, assuming it was the worst show on TV next to Two and a Half Men, I gave in and watched the first season over the Christmas holidays. Turns out it was worse than I thought. I don't know that there's ever a laugh out loud moment in any of the episodes; I would, however, have the odd "snort and nod-knowingly" moment. The characters are mostly unlikable, the jokes are easy and predictable, and the nerd stereotypes aren't even funny!

    By the end of the season, I'd arrived at the point where I thought, "It's not even subjectively bad. It's just flat out objectively terrible."

    Who are the people watching this show? Why aren't you watching Community instead?

    Anyway, I'm getting pretty worked up about this, probably more than I should. But let's just leave it with me writing that I cannot say or write enough bad things about this show.

  6. I watched the pilot a couple years ago when it first came and made it about 10 minutes into it before I realized it was going to be one of those comedies. You know, like a bad Jay Leno monologue, but with OCD jokes and not particularly funny nerd sayings.

    Anyway, after years of trashing it, assuming it was the worst show on TV next to Two and a Half Men, I gave in and watched the first season over the Christmas holidays. Turns out it was worse than I thought. I don't know that there's ever a laugh out loud moment in any of the episodes; I would, however, have the odd "snort and nod-knowingly" moment. The characters are mostly unlikable, the jokes are easy and predictable, and the nerd stereotypes aren't even funny!

    By the end of the season, I'd arrived at the point where I thought, "It's not even subjectively bad. It's just flat out objectively terrible."

    Who are the people watching this show? Why aren't you watching Community instead?

    Anyway, I'm getting pretty worked up about this, probably more than I should. But let's just leave it with me writing that I cannot say or write enough bad things about this show.

    • You know, there are a surprising number of comments along the lines of this one, on this and other blogs. As in "it's the worst show, why are you watching it, watch Community instead," without examples of why (not that I think every comment needs examples, just that it seems to be a common characteristic in this particular case) and with a surprising amount of anger over the success of the show.

      I'm not sure why, really, though I get the sense that some commenters (on other sites) are angry because it's held up as being an example of insider nerd culture when it really isn't, and there's a feeling that it's co-opting and caricaturing that culture for ulterior purposes. Other than that, I don't quite get the intensity. Two and a Half Men isn't a bad show either, but at least I get why it makes people angry.

      Anyway, the answer to "why aren't you watching Community instead" varies from person to person; it is funnier than Community some weeks, though not every week. But I'm sure at least part of it comes down to "because Community is the kind of show whose fans angrily berate other people for not watching it."

    • Ya, buddy – YOU hate it so it MUST be "objectively" terrible. What an idiotic comment.

      • THANK YOU!!!! I'm sorry but there are things I am not enjoying about Big Bang this year but to me it continues to be thursday nights BEST, actually Best comedy on TV period for me.

        I am sorry that Community fans resent the fact that Big Bang came on to thursdays and practically crushed Community's demos ratings and I'm sorry that they think their show is getting killed because of BBT, but did you ever thing that maybe I watch Big Bang and not Community because I find BBT to be the better show???

        You love Community, great for you, I love The Big Bang Theory. Community is screwed by more than just Big Bang being it's competition, it suffers from the lack of a crowd drawing name and it suffers from being on the crappy network it is on. Nearly 15 million people watch Big Bang Theory every week, were not all idiots for choosing it instead of Community, we simply like it better, deal with it.

        • It seems to me that Community fans berate others to watch, but if people watch the show and then come to the conclusion they don't like it, then they're left alone. I think Community fans understand it's a niche taste (heck, reactions within the fandom range the entire spectrum from episode to episode, based on who likes what mix between romance, comedy, and high-concept parody), but they want people to try it out because it's a fun show to talk about with other fans. The fact that there are relatively few fans to talk about it to makes them a little too rabid, however.

          Yet Big Bang Theory fans seem to be offended if you don't like the show. Actually offended. And that comes from both personal experience, and this comment.

          The seriousness with which some are taking this debate is a bit much. And there's a deep irony and hypocrisy in belligerently attacking someone because you found their post too belligerent.

          • Sorry – but there's a difference between being offended that someone doesn't like Big Bang Theory (I couldn't care less) and someone proclaiming that it's an "objectively" bad show (which is literally saying anyone who DOES like it must be mentally incapacitated).

          • That is not a correct use of the word "literally."

  7. You know, there are a surprising number of comments along the lines of this one, on this and other blogs. As in "it's the worst show, why are you watching it, watch Community instead," without examples of why (not that I think every comment needs examples, just that it seems to be a common characteristic in this particular case) and with a surprising amount of anger over the success of the show.

    I'm not sure why, really, though I get the sense that some commenters (on other sites) are angry because it's held up as being an example of insider nerd culture when it really isn't, and there's a feeling that it's co-opting and caricaturing that culture for ulterior purposes. Other than that, I don't quite get the intensity. Two and a Half Men isn't a bad show either, but at least I get why it makes people angry.

    Anyway, the answer to "why aren't you watching Community instead" varies from person to person; it is funnier than Community some weeks, though not every week. But I'm sure at least part of it comes down to "because Community is the kind of show whose fans angrily berate other people for not watching it."

  8. Ya, buddy – YOU hate it so it MUST be "objectively" terrible. What an idiotic comment.

  9. THANK YOU!!!! I'm sorry but there are things I am not enjoying about Big Bang this year but to me it continues to be thursday nights BEST, actually Best comedy on TV period for me.

    I am sorry that Community fans resent the fact that Big Bang came on to thursdays and practically crushed Community's demos ratings and I'm sorry that they think their show is getting killed because of BBT, but did you ever thing that maybe I watch Big Bang and not Community because I find BBT to be the better show???

    You love Community, great for you, I love The Big Bang Theory. Community is screwed by more than just Big Bang being it's competition, it suffers from the lack of a crowd drawing name and it suffers from being on the crappy network it is on. Nearly 15 million people watch Big Bang Theory every week, were not all idiots for choosing it instead of Community, we simply like it better, deal with it.

  10. You complain that there is no character development, I say you aren't looking. At all.

    Leonard has had a crap-ton of development (relationships, Penny and his break-up, his childhood issues were explored, and you can CLEARLY see his maturity change from season 1 to season 4), as has Howard (his desire to be loved, his relationship with Bernadette, and his dynamic with being the only person in the "group" that Sheldon doesn't consider a friend, which doesn't bother him) and Penny (Her boyfriends, his thoughts of inferiority, her failures in life, her dads disapproval of her choices in men [side Leonard] and her odd relationship with a group of geniuses)

    Sheldon shouldn't change at all; his character, even described in the show, is a beast of habit. Changing actually ruins his character and mannerisms. This is the critical error in your post; how could you suggest changing Sheldon? This, to me, seems like you are trying to find reasons to back your opinion and failed to find one for Sheldon. Sheldon isn't meant to be lovable, as shown by all of his interactions in the show; while everyone can get along with him, everyone is also eager to drop him (Side Amy, but more on that later)

    Koothrappali has been more and more effeminate each season, showing the progression of his "Latent homosexual tendencies" and his "ersatz relationship" with Howard brought on by a pathological fear of women. Additionally, we also found out he can speak to large crowds, it is confrontation with (beautiful) women that causes his anxiety disorder. Further more, we also can infer that he can also talk when he is not aware of a females presence. In tangent to his relationships, I find it shocking that you used him as a mark against the show because of his inability to interact with females when he has some of the most dynamic MALE relationships. His bonding with Howard borders on a male + male relationship and his working with Sheldon was one of the highlights of your "condemned" season 3.

    Amy and Bernadette are the new additions and are still being given profiles. What we know is that Amy is clearly Sheldons significant other; she is extremely smart and equally stoic when it comes to interaction. However, it is given that Amy is more hung up on being socially accepted than Sheldon is, as shown by her DEEP desire to befriend Penny (a highlight of "lackluster" season 4.) Bernadette is the great link between Penny and the rest of the group. Where Leonard, Sheldon, and company can go off on a rant about scientific greatness, Bernadette can both participate in discussion with them and with Penny about her interests (sex, shopping, relationships, etc.)

    As a final bullet, I want to address your condemning of the "running jokes" on BBT. You blatantly state that for over twenty seasons the Simpsons has had running jokes, no problem there. Then FRIENDS, again, you had some reason that it was fine. Same goes for "Fresh-Prince" and "Boy Meets World" with your reasoning being "They only lasted 3 seasons" – BAZINGA has lasted less than 2 seasons, while Soft Kitty and The Cushion are tied directly into Sheldon's character which, as stated before, should not change to support the progression of the show.

    In conclusion, this came off as a jealous post by a biased "Communtiy" fan. I am sure "Community" is a fine show. I wouldn't know though, I am too busy being thoroughly enjoyed, pleased, and entertained by the cast of Big Bang Theory.

  11. I am kind of happy to be accused of being a biased Community fan because (as I mentioned in the post) I actually don't like Community as much as most people I know, and feel — wrongly, I know — guilty about it. Finally I belong!

    I don't condemn running jokes on BBT, more that I want to see more of them, and new ones. (One example of a new running gag, because it's for a newish character: Bernadette's involvement with apparently deadly experiments.) And I agree that Sheldon should not change; that's why I was trying to argue for something other than traditional ideas of growth and change — it wouldn't work for these characters and especially not for Sheldon.

    But the question is not whether the other characters can stand him, but whether we can stand him, and some viewers who originally loved him are finding him grating. I feel like if he got some new bits, some new but in-character obsessions, that could help, or maybe not — but anyway there are ways to make a character more appealing without changing them.

    The rest of what you say is interesting, especially re Amy. I agree she has potential as a character, though it wasn't until tonight's episode that I thought Bialik's performance really fit in at all.

  12. I am kind of happy to be accused of being a biased Community fan because (as I mentioned in the post) I actually don't like Community as much as most people I know, and feel — wrongly, I know — guilty about it. Finally I belong!

    I don't condemn running jokes on BBT, more that I want to see more of them, and new ones. (One example of a new running gag, because it's for a newish character: Bernadette's involvement with apparently deadly experiments.) And I agree that Sheldon should not change; that's why I was trying to argue for something other than traditional ideas of growth and change — it wouldn't work for these characters and especially not for Sheldon.

    But the question is not whether the other characters can stand him, but whether we can stand him, and some viewers who originally loved him are finding him grating. I feel like if he got some new bits, some new but in-character obsessions, that could help, or maybe not — but anyway there are ways to make a character more appealing without changing them.

    The rest of what you say is interesting, especially re Amy. I agree she has potential as a character, though it wasn't until tonight's episode that I thought Bialik's performance really fit in at all.

    • I see what you mean with Sheldon now, though. I was hooked on this thought that you believed he was inhibiting the show and should suddenly emerge from his anti-contact cocoon into this social butterfly (or as the series brought up a few times; the final stage in his alien species!) and be a totally new character. I actually agree with the fact that some minor additions to Sheldon's habits would be a nice fresh addition to his character (and Jim Parsons is fantastic, I trust he can do anything that the writers throw his way) and keep his charcter from becoming too over bearing. (Which, if I did have a complaint [and I do] I would accuse Leonard of being more grating over the past two seasons than Sheldon. Since he dated Penny he has been a complete jerk to his friends. Condescending remarks, thick sarcasm, and backhanded comments seem to be the only interactions left between him and his male friends, that I notice at least.) I acknowledge these "flaws" of sorts, but I still think BBT is one of the best shows on TV. It has great continuity, good cast dynamic, and it definitely does its job as a comedy week after week!

      As a side note:
      Sorry for accusing you of being so into Community. Assumptions on my part; bad, I know. I wrote the post quite late and get a bit fired up while writing it, I hope I didn't offend you at any point in the message. Though I did accuse you of bias, I would also like to say this this was a very well thought out post from you and I enjoyed being given the opportunity to share my half with a person who doesn't revert to something along the lines of "I am right and you are wrong" – Hope you have a nice night, Jaime!

  13. I'll preface this with "I'm old enough to remember when nerds just got beated daily' disclaimer, and move forward.

    Maybe I give up on TV too quickly. Maybe I'm just bitter because the shows I like die nasty, brutish and cut-short deaths. Or maybe, just maybe, Big Bang just ain't that funny. I see what they're trying to do. It's painted in big, wide letters across the screen, If the plots were any more painful, you'd expect Larry, Darryl and that other brother, uh, I forget his name, to come out and do a guest spot. But yeah, the whle crew is just so damn unlikable. Its like seinfeld, for people who think they were all outsiders in high school…

    Okay, I'll go have a drink and mourn the impending doom of Fringe. Sometimes, I wish i had a Walternate…

  14. I'll preface this with "I'm old enough to remember when nerds just got beated daily' disclaimer, and move forward.

    Maybe I give up on TV too quickly. Maybe I'm just bitter because the shows I like die nasty, brutish and cut-short deaths. Or maybe, just maybe, Big Bang just ain't that funny. I see what they're trying to do. It's painted in big, wide letters across the screen, If the plots were any more painful, you'd expect Larry, Darryl and that other brother, uh, I forget his name, to come out and do a guest spot. But yeah, the whle crew is just so damn unlikable. Its like seinfeld, for people who think they were all outsiders in high school…

    Okay, I'll go have a drink and mourn the impending doom of Fringe. Sometimes, I wish i had a Walternate…

  15. It seems to me that Community fans berate others to watch, but if people watch the show and then come to the conclusion they don't like it, then they're left alone. I think Community fans understand it's a niche taste (heck, reactions within the fandom range the entire spectrum from episode to episode, based on who likes what mix between romance, comedy, and high-concept parody), but they want people to try it out because it's a fun show to talk about with other fans. The fact that there are relatively few fans to talk about it to makes them a little too rabid, however.

    Yet Big Bang Theory fans seem to be offended if you don't like the show. Actually offended. And that comes from both personal experience, and this comment.

    The seriousness with which some are taking this debate is a bit much. And there's a deep irony and hypocrisy in belligerently attacking someone because you found their post too belligerent.

  16. I would say that the weakness mentioned in the article are more about the way big American networks produce their shows rather than something the shows creators are actually failing at. It's the business model that determines the shows development.

  17. I would say that the weakness mentioned in the article are more about the way big American networks produce their shows rather than something the shows creators are actually failing at. It's the business model that determines the shows development.

  18. The criticism of Big Bang strikes me like the criticism of McDonald's as a restaurant. It is not that the arguments are without merit rather that they are completely irrelevant to ongoing success.

  19. The criticism of Big Bang strikes me like the criticism of McDonald's as a restaurant. It is not that the arguments are without merit rather that they are completely irrelevant to ongoing success.

  20. Sorry – but there's a difference between being offended that someone doesn't like Big Bang Theory (I couldn't care less) and someone proclaiming that it's an "objectively" bad show (which is literally saying anyone who DOES like it must be mentally incapacitated).

  21. i'm just sick of people thinking you can only like one or the other…i happen to really enjoy BOTH community and BBT…i watch one and record the other on time-shifting.

    i can understand if people don't like one or the other…but people *can* enjoy more than 1 comedy at any given time. that's what the hundreds of channels are for!

  22. i'm just sick of people thinking you can only like one or the other…i happen to really enjoy BOTH community and BBT…i watch one and record the other on time-shifting.

    i can understand if people don't like one or the other…but people *can* enjoy more than 1 comedy at any given time. that's what the hundreds of channels are for!

  23. That is not a correct use of the word "literally."

  24. I stopped watching Community regularly when they started going off campus and the characters were turning into superheroes and other theme-personas. What is interesting is that they bring on people who play really horrible characters and the regulars remain good and innocent. BBT is getting stale and the new character has little to make her endearing. I prefer the reruns from seasons 1 and 2. Sheldon is losing his charm but I do like it when he talks about his home life in Texas.

  25. I stopped watching Community regularly when they started going off campus and the characters were turning into superheroes and other theme-personas. What is interesting is that they bring on people who play really horrible characters and the regulars remain good and innocent. BBT is getting stale and the new character has little to make her endearing. I prefer the reruns from seasons 1 and 2. Sheldon is losing his charm but I do like it when he talks about his home life in Texas.

  26. Uh… the answer to "why aren't you watching [my favourite show] instead" is: It's the 21st century, man. Nobody watches anything "instead" of another show unless you're too stupid to operate a VC—er, DVR. (Or too stupid to change the channel, given reruns and timezones.)

  27. Uh… the answer to "why aren't you watching [my favourite show] instead" is: It's the 21st century, man. Nobody watches anything "instead" of another show unless you're too stupid to operate a VC—er, DVR. (Or too stupid to change the channel, given reruns and timezones.)

  28. I see what you mean with Sheldon now, though. I was hooked on this thought that you believed he was inhibiting the show and should suddenly emerge from his anti-contact cocoon into this social butterfly (or as the series brought up a few times; the final stage in his alien species!) and be a totally new character. I actually agree with the fact that some minor additions to Sheldon's habits would be a nice fresh addition to his character (and Jim Parsons is fantastic, I trust he can do anything that the writers throw his way) and keep his charcter from becoming too over bearing. (Which, if I did have a complaint [and I do] I would accuse Leonard of being more grating over the past two seasons than Sheldon. Since he dated Penny he has been a complete jerk to his friends. Condescending remarks, thick sarcasm, and backhanded comments seem to be the only interactions left between him and his male friends, that I notice at least.) I acknowledge these "flaws" of sorts, but I still think BBT is one of the best shows on TV. It has great continuity, good cast dynamic, and it definitely does its job as a comedy week after week!

    As a side note:
    Sorry for accusing you of being so into Community. Assumptions on my part; bad, I know. I wrote the post quite late and get a bit fired up while writing it, I hope I didn't offend you at any point in the message. Though I did accuse you of bias, I would also like to say this this was a very well thought out post from you and I enjoyed being given the opportunity to share my half with a person who doesn't revert to something along the lines of "I am right and you are wrong" – Hope you have a nice night, Jaime!

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