Confessions of a Big Bang Theory Virgin (or: nerds do it better)

It's a little embarrassing to admit, but I -- a person who writes regularly about television -- have never seen an entire episode of The Big Bang Theory, arguably one of the most popular sitcoms of the past half-decade.

the big bang theory

It's not that I looked down on the show and the people who rave about it, and thought that CBS and the producers were greedily cashing in on the current trendiness of nerd culture... Okay, actually that's pretty much exactly it.

It's not my fault though. I blame Chuck Lorre. If not for his antics with Charlie Sheen and the sleaziness of Two and a Half Men, I might have given The Big Bang Theory a try years ago. For whatever reason, the sexist cynicism I associate with Lorre and Two and a Half Men just wasn't present on The Big Bang Theory (at least not on "The Decoupling Fluctuation," which aired tonight). Lorre can write a snappy joke, there's no denying that. And without the baggage and general grossnesss that surrounds Two and a Half Men, I can now see that he's capable of making a perfectly pleasant sitcom.

Here are a couple of things I took away from my first experience with a full dose of The Theory. What? No one calls it that? Sorry.

I can see why Jim Parsons won two Emmys.
Is he funnier than Louis C.K. or Larry David or even Alec Baldwin? Probably not, but he's still damn funny. And his Sheldon character is infinity more accessible than the characters played by those other three. Plus I'm a sucker for a good Texas accent.

Being a physicist is easy.
Apparently all you do is watch movies, play some sort of Magic: The Gathering-esque card game with your bros, and tap leisurely at the keyboard of a laptop while bugging the shit out of your best friend.

Johnny Galecki -- what's the deal with this guy?
I thought he was supposed to be one of the leads of the show? Was "The Decoupling Fluctuation" just a Leonard-light episode? It seemed like he only got like 5 lines, and none of them were funny. Parson steals every scene he's in, what role does Galecki normally play within the structure of the show? Is he more than just Parsons straight-man? I feel like he must be.

Living in the same apartment, yet in different bedrooms, as your girlfriend is weird.
Why don't Leonard and Penny share a bed? Let me guess: Penny has a wicked case of night-farts?

Cosmonauts love fecal humor.
No insight to add here, it's just a fact. Like gravity. Or magnets.

By Lucas High

About the author

Lucas High is a man on a mission. That mission: to watch television for a living. Drop him a line at lhigh2@gmail.com, on Facebook and on Twitter at twitter.com/LucasHigh.

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4 Comments
On: Thursday, October 4, 2012
Eric - TV Geek Army "Revered Leader" said:

great stuff lucas -- and I am with calling it The Theory !

On: Friday, October 5, 2012
Julie said:

Leonard doesn't share an apartment with Penny, he lives with Sheldon. He never lived with Penny and with their on-again/off-again relationship, probably never will.

On: Friday, October 5, 2012
Mark D Curran said:

I haven't been at all impressed with the new season. So far, neither of the new episodes have ended with any sort of resolution. There was a scene last night, the only point of which was to set up the call-waiting joke, which has been overdone (and done better, for that matter) on other shows.

Lately the show doesn't even do a good job of representing the nerd/geek/science culture it tries to boast, which is pretty atrocious considering Penny is the only "layman" amidst 6 academics. The first two or three seasons were when BBT was in its stride - lately it's been entirely focused on relationship problems without actually addressing the problems the episode is supposed to be about.

On: Friday, October 12, 2012
JimmyMackey said:

The show is turning into a more of a drama first, comedy second, much like how I see HIMYM.  The “situational” episodes are taking a back seat to the relationship drama, and the few light moments we have are with Howard, which isn’t very funny in my opinion.  My DISH coworker and I have been watching the show since the beginning though, and we love to quote to each other lines from the recent episode.  Now I save all of the shows on my Hopper DVR, since I have a thousand hours of recording time, in HD.  That way I don’t have to keep buying the DVD’s at the end of the season, and I can watch it as many times as I want.

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