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The Big Bang Theory Review: "The Bus Pants Utilization"

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The Big Bang Theory started on a strong note this week, with Wolowitz providing his mother with technical support that had me laughing and crying at the same time. I could feel his frustration because I live it. Often.

The rest of "The Bus Pants Utilization" had the usual moments of hilarity, but the biggest laugh out loud moment for me was the exchange between Raj and Howard about linked mansions in Raj's dream.  They continue to find funny references to make light of this curious bromance. 

Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar play off each other well, and are often the funniest of these offbeat characters..

The Bus Pants Utilization Scene

Let's face it, though. This may as well be called The Jim Parsons Show. For the most part, everyone else typically revolves around, and reacts to, Sheldon's character. This was no different.

Sheldon spent most of his time, as usual, serving as irritant to his pals, but my favorite Sheldon moments are when he's interacting with Penny.  The contrast in their characters is like sporting an outfit with two plaids so starkly different that they somehow strike a harmonious chord.  She really brings out the colors in his character like no other, and I was disappointed there was very little of that tonight. But I did find their back and forth over the shoe app idea amusing. 

Is it possible for Sheldon to be even more over-the-top than usual?  It sure seemed like it to me this week.  Not that he isn't funny, absolutely he is, but I'm worried that with all the much-deserved accolades lathered upon Parsons, the writers might be starting to layer it on a bit thick. 

I'm getting inklings of his character becoming more and more bombastic, akin to John Lithgow in the later seasons of 3rd Rock From The Sun.  Not necessarily a bad thing, I guess, but I wouldn't complain if Parsons played with just a hint more restraint, because it's getting to the point where I can't help but wonder what in the world keeps the others from putting him and his "bus pants" on a one-way charter bound for Texas.

This was my first introduction to a theremin.  I had no idea that was an actual instrument and was used to create the original Star Trek theme. The things I learn about sci-fi history watching this show.  Parsons seemed to be getting the hang of it, playing the Trek theme mostly on key, and to adequate comedic effect.

Lastly, the 13 year old kid inside of me can't help but agree with Raj: Fart apps are funny.

Even on a somewhat off night, The Big Bang Theory is without question the best of all remaining multi-camera comedies on TV these days. A review of these quotes from the episode proves that:

Penny: What if I got him to apologize and promise to behave?
Leonard: Then I guess we would let him back on the app team and while we're doing that, you can take an aerial tour of L.A. on your flying pig. | permalink
Raj: Last night I had a dream we got so rich from the app, you and I bought matching side by side mansions. But there was a secret tunnel connecting your front yard to my back yard. What do you think that means?
Howard: It means that after we play handball I'm showering at home. | permalink
Leonard: What are bus pants?
Sheldon: They are pants one wears over ones regular pants when one sits on bus seats others have previously sat on. | permalink
Raj: Hey, why am I in charge with phone support? Seems a bit racist. | permalink

Review

Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.9 / 5.0 (37 Votes)

Jeffrey Kirkpatrick is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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I don't understand Raj's and Howard's joke about the tunnel connecting their front and back yards. Could someone explain?

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Simply put, everyone was funny, but not Sheldon...

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And this, ladies and gentlemen, is the direct result of The Powers That Be living in denial that their preferred plan (that of Leonard and Penny, primarily) not only fails, it actually manages to devolve the show. Sheldon and Penny have the most chemistry (for a het pairing; Raj/Howard is a whole different kettle of fish -- awesome, but different), but that wasn't in anyone's plan, and heaven forbid TPTB change directions. The world might end and a huge group of fans could potentially be happier with chemistry that actually emcompasses romance and comedy. Or, failing that, by not pushing the Leonard/Penny ... thing.. the show might go back to the nerdy, geeky humor of the first 2 seasons -- which is what got everyone's attention in the first place. You have to admire the thought processes, if nothing else.

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At least there was no Blossom in this episode. The producers are making such a mistake making everything about Sheldon. And you're right. His character is getting more exaggerated all the time. He's the new Urkel, for criminey's sake. Talk about overusing a tool. This show, in my view, is only borderline funny. I get more laughs out of Galecki's reaction to things than I do out of Sheldon's antics.
The bright spot in this ep is the continuing tweaking of the Wolowitz and Cuthrapali bromance. That was worth it. Because it was a little subtle.

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If this is truly the best of the multi camara comidies, we are really hurting for comedy. This show is not funny and the acting is sooooo sad.

Aurelia101

Not a big fan of this episode, and it's all because of Sheldon. As you say he was a bit over the top this week, and quite a lot too. I've always seen Sheldon as the "calm freak", not the "excentric freak". It doesn't fit him.

The Big Bang Theory Season 4 Episode 12 Quotes

You have so few good ideas Leonard and you're going to spill the beans in front of an outsider?

Sheldon

I won't say that all senior citizens who can't master technology should be publicly flogged, but if we made an example of one or two, it might give the others incentive to try harder.

Sheldon
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