The Big Bang Theory Review: Solving the World's Energy Crisis with Potatoes

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Sheldon has the tendency to go cuckoo over the craziest things, but that's why we all love him, right?

In "The Proton Resurgence," Sheldon was ecstatic to find out that the host of his favorite childhood science show was available to do parties. And, what did he do? Of course, he hired Professor Proton to come over and do a party for him, Leonard and Penny. The premise was ridiculous, but it ended up being quite funny. 

Professor Proton

Given Sheldon's excitement over meeting Professor Proton, Amy should have been there. Wouldn't he have wanted to share this moment with his girlfriend? There wasn't even a comment to explain her absence. Given their relationship, that was an oversight, but as far as the jokes went, it worked better without her.

The character, Sheldon, is all over the place on The Big Bang Theory. In order to enjoy the show, I've come to just accept whatever craziness comes out of him whether it really makes sense or not. In this case, his excitement over Professor Proton wasn't the issue, it was the naivete that came with it. The same was true with Penny in this episode just in a different way.

Penny's ignorance of science was bright as the Las Vegas Strip. She definitely came across as dumb, but it was actually quite adorable at the same time. Though, how did that egg thing work? And, I only know about the potato clock because I did it in elementary school. If I hadn't learned that in school, I would have probably thought the same thing as Penny.

Her exchanges were the highlight.

Professor Proton: I power a clock with a potato.
Penny: Shut up! You can do that? I mean ... wouldn't that solve the world's energy crisis?
Professor Proton: No. | permalink

Penny: If you don't mind me asking, uh, the potato clock -- how does it work? Is it a trick clock or a trick potato?
Professor Proton [to Leonard]: What do you two talk about? | permalink

Professor Proton: I'm having trouble with my pacemaker.
Leonard: I'll call for help.
Penny: Any chance we could plug it into the potato?
Professor Proton: No. | permalink

Arthur went from impressed that Leonard was with Penny to flabbergasted by her comments. Though, she was the only reason that he stayed as long as he did. So, that's saying something.

It was sad to see that Arthur was disappointed in his life's direction after the show. He was a real scientist, but was trapped by his past. Even after Sheldon and Leonard shared that he was responsible for their love of science, it didn't seem to be enough. He was a broken man. If "Soft Kitty" couldn't cheer him up, nothing could. Though he did seem to warm up to Sheldon after he called him "Father."

It's too bad we didn't get to see Professor Proton, Jr at work. After the disastrous science presentation they did for the school girls, I'd be afraid what he would say at the party. Though, he does have the puppet to help.

The Professor Proton bit was definitely the better part of the episode. And, Bob Newhart was awesome as Professor Proton. There were some cute moments with Raj and Cinnamon. Howard and Bernie's conversation about having kids was also good, but that storyline fell mostly flat. 

There were a ton hilarious lines throughout the episode. Check them out in our The Big Bang Theory quotes section. 

Did you find Penny's potato comments to be the funniest part too? What was your favorite joke or quote? Can you see Howard and Bernie becoming parents any time soon? Did you miss Amy?


Editor Rating: 4.6 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (93 Votes)

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


This episode exposes the lazy writing that prefers cheap laughs over any real love of science. When Penny understandably asks about the potato clock, instead of taking the opportunity to demonstrate something cool, Proton as good as sneers at her for being stupid (or ignorant) and gives up. The real Proton would have dived into an explanation - possibly with comic enthusiasm. Instead the writers chose to laugh at the blonde. Cheap.


Please, people, the egg does NOT get sucked into the erlenmeyer flask, it's BLOWN in by superior atmospheric pressure. As the candle burns it heats up the air causing it to expand, the egg act like a one way valve, allowing the candle increased pressure air to escape, when the candle uses up all the oxygen and goes out the air temperature inside the flask decreases creating a corresponding decrease in pressure. Now this is where the egg comes in it makes an ideal deformable seal on the rim of flask which can be squeezed to a smaller diameter allowing it to fit through opening of flask. What they didn't show is the trick to get egg OUT of bottle. There are 2 ways, light candle again and flip bottle upside down, as air inside heats up again egg spits out. or you can tip bottle upside down and heat with external source ie: bunsen burner.

@ NoFNclue Watudu

(Please, people) Sucking due to low pressure is the same as blowing due to high pressure - it's the same phenomenon


I maybe in the minority, but I didn't like the episode at all. I thought it was slow, boring and very forgettable. Probably the worst episode of all seasons. I didn't miss Amy, I really missed some clever lines, and I found Bob Newhart (a brilliant actor), confused and tired. I expected so much more from the writers, but I was terribly dissappointed. And please stop making Sheldon and Penny so stupid! It's embarrassing!


Raj's dog was lost by Howard and Bruney and she scream at him!!!! Wow that character is not in my liking list...
Bob you the man!!!Great job with Jimbo my man ....
Can't wait for his recurrence episodes.


I loved the episode, I too am married to someone like Leonard and am somewhat like Penny so I know how she feels. Was good to see Bob Newhart and he was perfect for the part as he has that "dry" sense of humor and it was perfect for Professor Proton. My youngest son said who is that guy? I thought it was one of the better of the season.


It was really great seeing the trio in the spotlight like old times. Bob Newhart played the character well and it was really cute seeing sheldon all fanboying over him.Howard and bernie taking care of raj's dog was a catalyst for something more to come and I'm guessing its gonna be children for them. I really did not miss Amy, infact I didn't notice until it was mentioned here.Guess I'm not much of her fan.


@Dadesh64 - Thanks. I checked it out. The pictures make it easy to follow too!

Sue ann

@ Dadesh64 This is one of the sites which references the information that there are two episodes planned for Newhart on TBBT next season. It is not the one where I first encountered it, but it (the prospective recurring role info) is out there. Apparently it was one of Newhart's requirements, that this not be a "one off". http://www.hollywoodreporter.c...


I watched Newhart in his two series and his guest appearance on NCIS last year. Great actor. I loved the ending shot of Newhart's second season (where he wakes up to find himself in bed with his wife from the first series & the second series was all a dream). For days I was explaining to those under 20 years of age that I knew, just who was that woman.


I watched Letterman when he had both Bob Newhart and Jim Parsons on! I truly love Bob Beqhart and so enjoyed watching him as a child. This episode of BBT was so classic. Jims open comic idiosyncrasies in tandem with Bob's comic genious made this episode one of this series very best! I did not miss Amy either! Lol Amy is so amazing as well. The humor was so well written and played by each of the actors! Great job to the cast and writters. And I would love to see more of Bob Newhart!

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The Big Bang Theory Season 6 Episode 22 Quotes

Howard: Why don't you put her in a kennel?
Raj: Why don't you put your mother in a home?
Howard: To be honest, she'd do better in the kennel.

Leonard: It was pretty cool.
Penny: Aw, so cute when you use the word "cool" wrong. Like when kids say "pasghetti."