The Big Bang Theory Review: Like a Black Hole

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Stephen Hawking made a triumphant virtual return to The Big Bang Theory in "The Extract Obliteration."

Sheldon, ever desperate to make certain friends, was ecstatic when he started playing Word with Friends with Hawking. Surprisingly, neither Sheldon nor his pals mentioned the unfortunate mathematical error made during their previous actual meeting.

An Argument with His Idol

Hasn't everyone who has played Word with Friends wondered at one time or another why their opponent has stopped playing? Or possess that one friend they either always beat or always lose to? Add in playing against an idol and we have Sheldon's hilarious Word with Friends adventure.

Sheldon's superiority complex of being close with Hawking and his willing Hawking to play provided laughs. The best part was when Sheldon tried in all seriousness to use a Jedi mind trick to get Hawking to participate.

In the end, I was a bit surprised that Sheldon threw the game. That may be the first time we have ever seen Sheldon let someone best him. It was especially poignant after he reprimanded Amy for helping him with a word. Can you think of any other instances? 

While Sheldon was busy playing - or not playing - games, Leonard was dealing with the aftermath of finding out Penny was taking a college class. Penny knows Leonard so well, doesn't she? Of course he loves her, so he's going to want to help.

Only that always - yes, always - ends in disaster for him and hurts their relationship. At least this time, when Leonard butted in, it ending up helping Penny. The breakfast in bed and shoemaker's elves story was quite cute and I thought it would cushion the blow a little more than it did. But Penny was strong in her conviction.

I cheered for Penny when she showed Leonard her B-. Good for her. And Penny's imitation of Leonard cracked me up. I hope Penny pulls that out again, it's sure to make me laugh every time.

Penny ended up not doing it all on her own, though. Kudos for recognizing the need for help, that's what friends are for. Though, from the sounds of it, Bernadette and Amy had to give A LOT of assistance. I hope if the school thing comes up again that Penny is learning and growing from her experience.

In the past, a fight like this would have put a big dent in Penny and Leonard's relationship. This time, they didn't talk for a couple days, but seem to still be going strong. They do belong together, Leonard just needs to learn some boundaries.

Odds and Ends

  • Poor Bernadette using Mrs. Wolowitz's underwear as a towel. She really must convince Howard to move into their own place. 
  • Did Raj learn his American accent from watching cowboy movies? It was bad. Very bad. Howard had a much better Indian accent.
  • Hawking went from Wheels, to being called a baby, to Rolling Thunder. 
  • Leonard and Sheldon's fight was the only part I didn't really care for. It's situations like that which make me question why they even live together. That takes me out of the humor (if there is any) of the exchange. Though, the chess clock did add a nice uniqueness to the situation.
  • Amy: I feel like I'm in high school again.
    Bernadette: Yeah, doing the prom queen's homework, so she'll like us.
    Amy: I know. It's finally working. | permalink
  • Professor Hawking: What do Sheldon Cooper and the black hole have in common? They both suck. | permalink
For more funny moments from the show, visit our The Big Bang Theory quotes section. 


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.2 / 5.0 (99 Votes)

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


Ahh honey...I hate to break it to you, but Howard's accent sucked as well. Sincerely, an Indian.


Hahahaha I related well to this episode. Both my boyfriend and I can be overprotective of each other, at different times, thus annoying the crap out of one another sometimes.its usually best just to take a step back, as Leonard found out the hard way tonight. Also, its a little moment but I caught it. Leonard sneaking out of bed was pretty fun. It's friggin' hard to do! Another thing I related to. I liked this episode, I thought the argument between Leonard and Penny was very realistic. Leonard wants to encourage Penny but to her it looks like he thinks she's not smart enough. Awesome acting.


Makes me really sad to witness how this show is not the same anymore. Yeah, this episode had some nice moments, but in general since season 5 the show's been loosing steam, with very week story lines, like the very fast and ridiculous marriage between Howard and Bernadet. And it seams as though the writers lost any good ideas. Raj constantly mocking India and his origins is getting really old, or Leonard trying so hard to impress Penny...


@Jim -- Well said! "... the obsessive mode where he smothers Penny and tries too hard with her that always results in him basically sabotaging himself and turning off Penny." I also have to remind myself that this is comedy and the show's logic and development is often sacrificed for jokes -- but I don't want them to break up again! As characters I'm fan-invested in, I believe they're together partly because his smothering and trying too hard makes her feel good about herself, like she counts to somebody she values and counts on -- which WOULD then lead to her wanting that feeling on her terms, like getting the girls to help her get a B- so she could rub it in his face -- but, yes, I know I'm rationalizing how the plot's twisted for jokes.


I don't see how what Penny does is any different then what any other female does name one female who does not do what Penny does Look at NCIS


I wish they'd just break up Leonard and Penny for good. It's painful to watch him continually go into the obsessive mode where he smothers Penny and tries too hard with her that always results in him basically sabotaging himself and turning off Penny. You'd think after 6 seasons of this that he would have learned by now.


I am starting to like penny less. What does she do for herself? Bullying bernie and amy into doing helping her was a disappointment, i had hoped she got that b minus on her own. However, leonard loves her, so she needs to examine what she really wants in life. To be a drunk waitress forever or maybe find a new career path and learn to respect herself. Their relationship would be so much healthier then. We will see...


I wasn't surprised Sheldon would throw the game I remember he let Will Wheaton win at cards out of pity-I think that really started their feud.
I believed Penny was finally coming around on her lack of education and was happy when she decided to do her work on her own but having it turn out to be Bernadette and Amy, while funny, was disappointing.
The jokes about Howard's mom are wearing thin. I don't know if it's because we can't see her but I have a hard time imagining someone so repellant that she seems to have no redeeming qualities even in her son's eyes.Maybe they should have her marry the dentist and move away, off the show, if they don't want to bring her out.


I'm old enough to remember when the Nerds and the Geeks were the un-cool ones. Finally some payback for all the popular girls' sneers.


Sheldon let Will Wheaton beat him at cards when Wheaton gave him that phony story about his grandmother, and he sacrificed himself at paintball to give his crew a voctory. It seems he does have a soft spot.

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The Big Bang Theory Season 6 Episode 6 Quotes

What do Sheldon Cooper and the black hole have in common? They both suck.

Professor Hawking

Oh, it's only a matter of time before we're coming up with fun nicknames for each other. I'll be Coop. He'll be Wheels. If he's okay with that.