The Big Bang Theory Review: "The Engagement Reaction"

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After mostly relegated to the B story as a supporting character for the past four years, Howard Wolowitz finally found himself front and center this week, as "The Engagement Reaction" followed his mother ending up in the hospital.

Howard has certainly become much more likable of a character this season; Bernadette has helped give his character an excuse to grow from a one-note horndog into a slightly more rounded individual.

Mistake by Sheldon

Now he has all sorts of new jokes they can beat like a dead horse. Like that he's Jewish and marrying a Catholic woman. Speaking of dead horses, I was previously getting very sick of the always off-camera voice that's been Mrs. Wolowitz since season one.

The generic, obnoxious yenta voice that is Wolowitz's mother finally grew on me. Why? Because of the "twist" that she was concerned for her new daughter-in-law getting food poisoning, and not having a heart attack because her son was marrying a shixa. How's that for acceptance, Glee? But Bernadette doing the voice and it turning Howard on?  All kinds of creepy.

Speaking of characters that are growing on me, where was Amy? I know, I know. I spent how many weeks of reviewing bashing her character. But I realized something during last week's adventures with her bestie: I like Amy now.

Was she needed in the hospital story line? Not at all. Would she have gotten in the way of Priya and Penny bonding? Probably. But that was a risk I was willing to take.

Priya continues to do the opposite of grow on me and even irritate me more with each episode. I don't care if she bonds with Penny, they have set up her character as just too unlikable.

Since TBBT is still the Sheldon show, even when Wolowitz is given the A story, everyone's favorite preying mantis had to do his thing here. This week's episode focused on one of my least favorite quirks of his: germaphobia.

Sheldon always manages to walk that very thin line between unaware of social norms and being a jerk. Unfortunately, I just felt his obsession over getting out of the hospital while his friend's mother's life was in danger leaned too heavily on the jerk side.

That's okay, because the payoff of Sheldon wandering into a quarantined patient's room was almost worth it. I hate to say it, but it's the Sheldon show for a reason. It got the most laughs of any of The Big Bang Theory quotes for me.


Editor Rating: 3.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.1 / 5.0 (68 Votes)

Eric Hochberger is the programmer of TV Fanatic, so please forgive his mediocre writing. His programming is far better. Follow him on Twitter and/or email him. Just don't request threaded comments. They're coming.


Well, I'm Caucasian and I think Priya is very beautiful...


i know he didnt really have a story but my favourite character from this episode was Raj ive always loved him but this season i seem to look forward to seeing him more and more i loved it when he told sheldon he was drinking his water and then revealed he had taken the mouthwash. as for the reviewer being racist thats ridiculous peoples opinions on characters are just that - opinions, just because you dont agree with his doesnt make him racist


I disagree with Laura too. Assuming that someone is Caucasian and using this assumption for unfounded libel is way more racist. Most people who watch a lot of tv shows would easily notice that the character of Priya, when first introduced for a one-shot role was likable but that, when she returned as a regular, writers wrote her in as a sort of nemesis for the girls and especially Penny.
I agree that, if you listen to what Priya says, it's not mean or anything, but the viewer is made to share the resentment of Penny and, by extension, the other girls. This is a stratagem used in most comedies where two main characters' relationship has to be broken off (Friends, Scrubs...).


Priya is a little cold (like "Scary Quinn" in Glee). Sheldon and Amy are vulnerable, even at their most insensitive. That's the difference (to me). A lot of super smart scientists are emotionally cool and distracted rather than eccentric and as up front as Sheldon and Amy are. That is, if they want, down the road, they can make Priya warmer and generate some audience care for her.


No, I don't think the reviewer is racist. I prefer Amy over Priya too, and it has nothing to do with her similarities to the other characters. After all, Penny's nothing like the guys and yet she's still perfectly lovable. Besides, how can you say the reviewer is racist when he obviously has no problems with Raj? Was that selective memory on your part or does Raj not count as Indian in your mind?

Sue ann

@ laura -- What makes you believe the reviewer is Caucasian? Is there a picture somewhere of him? He is right. The writers have deliberately made Priya a bitch. Her brother Raj is the sweetest of the four males, usually, although that was in abeyance last night. But if you remember back to the episode with the cricket they caught and had to take to the entomology department to have it identified, Raj is the one who tried to make Lewis Black's character feel better about the destruction of his career. Sheldon and Howard simply walked out after he answered their question. Raj has often been the peacemaker. And he is the same non-Caucasian that Priya is. It is not logical to assume that the reviewer is being racist. Analyze Priya's character. She is not a nice person. Her skin color is irrelevant.


no offense but you seem a bit racist. My friends and I all watch the show and Priya has grown on us, meanwhile Amy is still rather infuriating. I can't help but think that you don't like her simply because she is not exactly like the other characters. It's a little messed up but it's clear from all your other posts about TBBT, I am no surprised. And I have to say I am offended and people like you make all Caucasians seem racist and it's upsetting to me.

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The Big Bang Theory Season 4 Episode 23 Quotes

Sheldon: Do you know where the phrase jibber jabber comes from?
Penny: Oh my god, you're about to jibber jabber about "jibber jabber?"

Have you told your parents you're dating this short glass of skim milk?