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The Big Bang Theory

The Big Bang Theory is a comedy about two physicists Leonard Hofstadter and Sheldon Cooper who live and work together in Pasadena, California. They live a comfortable geeky existence until attractive wannabe actress Penny moves in across the hall. CBS 2007-???


Episode 21 - The Closure Alternative

2 May 2013

Synopsis: Sheldon is upset to learn that Alphas has been cancelled despite its final episode ending on a cliff hanger. Amy suggests that he has issues with closure and tries to help him overcome them. Leonard is excited to introduce Penny to Buffy but she isn't passionate about it. She does realise that she is happy in life though. Meanwhile Raj discovers Lucy's blog where she described him as feminine. He is determined to appear masculine on their next date.

The Good: The use of Alphas and Buffy within the stories felt entirely appropriate. Particularly Buffy which of course is dear to my heart but would certainly be the ideal show for Leonard to try and entice Penny into enjoying. And although I didn't think it was a very good joke it was deeply cathartic for me to hear Sheldon say that " 'Heroes' gradually lowered the quality season by season till we were grateful it ended." Amen brother.

However I wasn't sure of what to make of Penny's epiphany. She has never appeared passionate about Leonard. I can buy that after a the last year or two she is genuinely happy with him but passion felt like an adjective too far. Does this signal a genuine move toward contentment? It would be odd for any TV show to go there because how do you generate stories from happy domesticity?

Of course the show revels in the status quo so maybe it's not implausible. The Sheldon closure story was fun but never funny. Initially it seemed like Amy had uncovered something interesting but it was really an excuse for a series of simple sketches. It made me smile to see him undo all her work but it did little beyond that.

As for Raj, I can't complain about a plot that addresses his masculinity given how central it's been to his character.

The Bad: Although not a lot was done beyond bringing it up. Lucy likes it so that's it. We won't be uncovering any deep seated issues on this show. Raj is Raj, Sheldon is Sheldon and Penny is now a happier Penny. That's about it.

Comic Highlight: Sadly the thing I reacted most to was Raj saying "I always thought if I had a white name it would be Gavin." It was the most basic of racial comedy but it took me by surprise which nothing else did.

In Conclusion: Pleasant static from a static show.



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  • Fun but not funny." That's my feeling too - about the whole episode mostly. And, maybe the whole season.

    Leonard's tried to share his enthusiasms before - and Penny's tried to appreciate them - so while I like the Buffy references, it felt too familiar. And it reminded me that these two (after six seasons) are still woefully mysterious to each other.

    Sheldon's and Amy's scenes were clever but not especially funny; I felt that Sheldon's undercutting of Amy's efforts was a lost opportunity for him to know himself.

    To me, TBBT seems like a man who's put off doing something for years and is now trying to catch up. For years, the show neglected giving Raj real growth, Penny background, Leonard forcefulness, Sheldon empathy, etc. - and now, they're trying to do something that would've been more interesting and more fun if it had been shown and developed within the context of other events.

    I think the TVCritic said something to this effect in a review of an episode from an earlier season. Of course, he said it better and more succinctly.

    Viewer score: 60 / 100

    Posted by JStrange, 02/05/2013 5:11am (7 years ago)

  • Wow, Buffy on the Big Bang Theory. What a shame we will never see the Big Bang Theory on Buffy.

    So, was Buffy ever mentioned on BBT before now? Leonard is strangely enthusiastic about Buffy, but I don't recall him or anyone else ever mentioning it. Perhaps he just discovered it.

    Was there actually an episode about cheerleaders turning evil? I don't recall one. Though Cordelia, Harmony etc were pretty evil in early Buffy, so perhaps it would have been redundant.

    Some pretty nice quotes. Penny on Buffy: Yipee! It's backwards - I get it.

    Posted by Faheem, 26/04/2013 5:49pm (7 years ago)

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