The Big Bang Theory Review: Hanging with Mrs. Cooper

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On this week's The Big Bang Theory, "The Rhinitis Revelation," Sheldon's mother stops by for a visit - and that means lots of laughs!

Mrs. Cooper (Laurie Metcalf) is a unique addition to the show when she visits. Here, we saw a different side to her. She wasn't there at Sheldon's beck and call, instead she had her own ideas about how she wanted to spend her time. I was just as shocked as Sheldon when she refrained from jumping up and making him fried chicken. I also expected she would cringe at the idea of going out for sushi as Leonard suggested.

Laurie Metcalf on The Big Bang Theory

It was a pleasant surprise to see Mrs. Cooper wanting to try new things, a sharp contrast to her anal retentive son. However, I don't expect she'll be eating sushi again any time soon and her idea of sightseeing included all the local churches. Her lines were by far the funniest of the night, even outdoing the usual winner, Sheldon.

I do understand if some people found her comments somewhat offensive. Or even entirely offensive. When it comes to comedy, I don't believe in political correctness. That doesn't mean I think it's acceptable to tell jokes that hurt someone, but outside of that, just about anything goes. Mrs. Cooper's set in her conservative, old-fashioned ways. While she may be misguided in her word choice and even perhaps her beliefs, she doesn't intend to hurt anyone. Hence her humor here, especially as Leonard corrected her.

The writers did an amazing job of balancing her awkward comments with her genuine caring nature. She was there for each of Sheldon's friends to support them and help them work through their problems. In the end, she was there for Sheldon as well by telling him to grow up... and then singing Soft Kitty to him.

I'm not sure if Sheldon's conversation with Amy, encounter with the common man on the bench, or heart-to-heart with his mother really got through to him or not. Will he change his superior ways? I don't think so and for the show's sake, I'm not sure I want him to. At the same time, it has been enjoyable to watch Amy become more "normal" through her friendships with Penny and Bernadette. Is it time for Sheldon to grow up? Do you want to see that transformation?

Check out this week's The Big Bang Theory quotes and relive the laughs!


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.2 / 5.0 (83 Votes)

Carla Day is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.


@Sue Ann: I finally saw the scene where Amy and Mrs. C. were in the same room, but I noticed they never spoke to one another directly.


Last season,I had sort of started to go along with those who said the show was too Sheldon-centric but this episode reminded me of why it is.This is the first episode that was laugh out loud funny this season.Jim Parsons and Laurie Metcalfe are really great comedic actors,even separately, but especially together.
I can definitely see why Sheldon wouldn't be very happy with his upbringing.Yes, you can see he was loved, but can you imagine being so intellectually evolved and growing up not only with someone who is very religious-therefore has her life centered around something that can't rationally be proven-but also has so many prejudices?Mrs.Cooper obviously doesn't mean to be discriminatory but ,if you know better it must get tiring to hear.Never mind what it must be like for someone who dreams of becoming a physicist to live with a creationist or a houseful of them for all we know.
I know a lot of people are saying he has Aspergers but I wonder,he is awkward but that might just be from having been taken away from the normal emotional evolution process by being sent to college as an 11 year-old.We don't realize how much of what we consider our natural behavior is actually the way we learned to be by imitating peers our own age as we grew up,he skipped all that back then, and his present day friends-except Penny- are all too strange for him to learn much about maturity by being around them.


Knowing how Sheldon loves monkeys, he must have been VERY bitchy :D


It's probably just me, but TBBT is actually getting more and more offensive by the episode this season. They've made about every Indian joke that could be made by now, and now they're making Jesus jokes. Pulling jokes off people's ethnicity and religion on a weekly basis is just low. Even the nerd jokes are getting old. Their definition of nerd is becoming vaguer and vaguer by the season. Maybe it's just me, but TBBT is probably one of the laziest comedies out there. After Wilfred and Community and Archer and Sunny in Philadelphia, I can't laugh at this anymore.

Sue ann

@ Joe Mrs. Cooper and Amy have already met, in the episode last season where Sheldon and Amy broke up, and Sheldon got all the cats. Leonard sent for Mrs. Cooper, who came up, assessed the situation, had Amy come over (ostensibly to meet her), and forbade the relationship (in order to get Sheldon to resume their relationship.) Since she is supposed to be opposed to Sheldon being with Amy, it makes sense that Amy would not appear in this visit.


Seems like a gushing review for such a pretty mediocre episode. Mrs. Cooper was pussycat. After seeing her, I don't understand Sheldon's attitude toward his upbrinnging. The writers also missed an opportunity by not putting Sheldon's mom and Amy in the same scene. Wouldn't she want to meet the closest thing he's ever had to a girlfriend? The show seems to be running out of ideas.


Ah finally and episode TBBT that warrants a re watch. So far throughout its run there have been very few eps that I haven't enjoyed re watching, but lately season 5 has been very horrible and only watched them once is fast forward. But this episode has been a hOot and a half! Seriously!

Uncle jackass

@Sue Ann, I too remember a similar discussion on the show Bones when it was showed in season 1 if Temperance Brennan had too Asperger's syndrome. It seems the affliction is quite common with the gifted or scientific inherent students if TV & Movies was to go by. Given it is an autistic disorder, I think it may be more a managing and burdened medical condition. As for the show's plot direction. Given this is produced by Chuck Lorre, the creators of Two and Half Men, I don't expect a direction or clear plot. It was never designed to give a clear plot unlike HIMYM. It just gives you a nice Thursday night viewing. As for the Church tour visits, it does not surprise me. I've stopped 1000 x over from one temple to another. It was painful with the micro-feet steps but also rewarding.

Sue ann

It would be nice to see him grow up just a little, anyway, so that it becomes clear that it is possible. The other characters are growing as the series progresses. Sheldon needs to grow, too, although I realize that Asperger's Syndrome is a very difficult condition to overcome. (That seems to be the consensus on what afflicts Sheldon, amongst the scientific community who've studied the show and the various possibilities.) I also appreciate the verbal jabs Amy gives Sheldon every week or two. She is the person whose mind he seems to most respect, and he definitely wants to please her, although he would probably not think of it that way. Amy's influence would be an excellent tool to use to cause Sheldon to develop more introspection. From the literature I have read on Sheldon's problems, and based on people I have observed in my own life, I don't believe that Sheldon is capable of being anything like "normal", but his intelligence is such that this would be unlikely anyway. It would be nice to see him eventually become capable of (somewhat) mature human relationships. I think he might be happier, although he would no longer be in absolute charge of every facet of his life as he usually is now. As the show is renewed for at least three more years, I do not expect to see rapid progress on any changes. The writers also have stated that there is no long-term plan for this show, such as there is for How I Met Your Mother; these guys write it as they go along. I guess we will just have to wait and see. It was nice to see another side of Mrs. Cooper; her wish to tour churches did not surprise me. That is what interests her. I go to Nevada, but I don't gamble, I visit cemeteries. My interests lie in genealogical research. People follow their interests when they have a chance or a choice. It was logical for Mrs. Cooper. I particularly appreciated Howard's efforts not to burst into flames. I laughed so hard I scared the pets.


I agree with the review.

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The Big Bang Theory Season 5 Episode 6 Quotes

Frankly, Mom, I'm encouraged to see how advanced your group has become -- willing to sail into the ocean without fear of falling off the edge.


It's all themed. There's Jonah and the Whale Watching. All-you-can-eat Last Supper Buffet. And my personal favorite, Gunning with God.

Sheldon's mom