The Big Bang Theory Review: Risk and Relief

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In summing up this week's The Big Bang Theory, one key thought comes to mind: what a relief! 

Sheldon's Time Off

The Big Bang Theory Season 7 Episode 13 began on the morning after the end of The Big Bang Theory Season 7 Episode 12, as Leonard was certain Penny would want to break up with him after he hesitated at her marriage proposal. To his relief (and ours) she was now fully sober and realized that what she did was a little nuts.

Then, to Leonard's chagrin, she told him she had quit her job at the Cheesecake Factory so that she could devote all of her time to acting. Much of the episode was spent with Leonard showing his nervousness at her decision while trying to assure her he supported her.

How many times can you say "I support you" before it starts sound like a broken record? I guess that's what Penny saw, especially when he revealed his relief at what he thought was her getting her Cheesecake Factory job back.

Like any good argument, they had to get down to the specifics before it was resolved - which Leonard did, with Sheldon's unhelpful helpfulness. 

Someday those two are going to get married. They'll get their picket fence on a corner lot and a house with a spare bedroom where Sheldon will live. You can't leave those Nobel prize winners hanging around just anywhere.

Raj's understated humor was beautiful. The last time I recall seeing him being this funny was in The Big Bang Theory Season 4 Episode 23 when the guys were playing a game, and he came up with a hilarious quip to go with every card. 

Among the many great The Big Bang Theory quotes for this episode was this one, which got me laughing out loud.

Amy: I'm just going to go find him and be brutally honest.
Raj: He'll be so upset. He'll probably climb up the Empire State Building and start swatting at planes.

Sheldon's observation about great yogis got my head spinning, just a little bit. In all of the reading about eastern mysticism, I don't recall ever seeing anything which remotely suggested his visual. Clearly, he saw the yogic process of drawing in water in much the way elephants do. Sort of. His advice to Penny when deciding to get a milkshake - that she would need a straw - confirmed this. 

Where do the writers come up with this? That's just horrifyingly hilarious.

Speaking of Sheldon... his immediate understanding of Penny's dilemma was pretty cool and surprising. He gets what it means to be entirely devoted to one's goals, without a safety net to fall back on. I was glad he was there for her, she needed that honest support.

I'm not sure "support" was the word for Bernadette when it came to Stuart, however. More like "lip service" maybe, as she was a woman on a mission. Like Sheldon and Penny, she had a singular goal - although hers was short term only. Her empathetic support of Stuart would only go so far, ultimately. 

You had to smile at the hint of a grin on her face when Jesse told her they only had chocolate chip and she shouted well that sounds even better!

The additional players for this episode were perfect for their roles too. Jesse the jerk comic book shop owner, and Bert the lonesome monster rounded things out well. Amy legitimately knows she's got game now that she's had to fend off a crush.  That's got to be a good thing. I was a little surprised that the writers didn't have her tell Sheldon about all of this.  

What did you think of this episode? Did you suspect Leonard and Penny would break up? Were you surprised, relieved or disappointed when they didn't?

Penny and Leonard have had their ups and downs, yet have managed to work things out every time. Eventually. What do you think should happen with them now?


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.2 / 5.0 (56 Votes)

Douglas Wolfe is a staff writer for TV Fanatic Follow him on Twitter



I loved this show a few years ago. Now, CBS is so proprietary about it's programming that I can't watch it online without interfacing with their terrible web site and it's irrelevant advertisements (six consecutive and identical ads for cheap wine in one episode? - whoever said Penny was a drunk might have accurately pegged the show's new demographic of aging, boozy, CBS Baby Boomers). This is (now) 2014. Every other network outsources online programming to sites like Hulu that are smart about commercial programming and savvy about making the online experience palatable for their viewers. Boo CBS. The Big Bang Theory is the only connection you have left to adults under 40. Get with the program or continue to watch your programming fade into the sunset like your viewers.


I agree with most of the coments about the two unfunny and annoying couples. But I believe the writers won't change anything. They never do in these two last seasons. Maybe they don't really know what to do, or they are too afraid to lose viewers because the show is now a gigantic hit.(I mean Shamy and Lenny fans). I personally lost all hope that the show will go back to its old format, or will try to be funnier by focusing less on akward couples. I know it sounds sad, but I really can't wait and hope for something that just won't happen. The show really sucks now, at least for me...


Sheldon, in this episode, acted the part of a pet dog and then the part of Penny and Leonard's child (which just brings back when they did the Sheldon as the child of divorce when they broke up). I really can't fathom why so many (at least a majority of TV Fanatic posters) want Penny to dump Leonard for Sheldon. It also strikes me that none of these 3 characters have grown at all, which I'm assuming is because the comedy premise requires them to be the same as at the beginning of the premise (meaning the pilot that got the network to take the show). Leonard hasn't grown at all by having a hot girlfriend. He's just as unsure of himself as he was in the beginning. Sheldon still doesn't know what girls are for and Penny has become an alcoholic. So, it's not funny when Leonard's a wimp or Penny's drunk or Sheldon is a jerk to Amy.


Well, it seems that the producers try to sell the blonde Joey Tribianni of TBBT, i hope not
Poor Stuart, and poor Raj, they are on the ground, even Stuart is on the underground of success


@Douglas Wolfe - Sorry, I was way too harsh on you. Anything with Leonard nowadays makes my blood boil and it's get tenfold with him and Penny.

@ Jonas

Not a problem at all, Jonas. Everyone is entitled to their opinion on these guys. I didn't mean to speak for all when discussion my relief that they're good with each other. Though there was an attempt to level it out by suggesting not everyone would be necessarily happy about how it turned out (one of my questions near the end of the review hinted at it), I likely didn't go far enough. The royal "we" just muddied the waters. : ) Interesting that Johnny Galecki in real life seems to be nothing like his nervous character. Some good acting there.


I always like the Penny/Sheldon outings! I think Wolfe is hard on Leonard in this episode,though. Face it, one's chance of becoming a successful -- or even self-supporting -- actor (or singer, dancer, etc.) are EXTREMELY small. You'd be more likely to win the lottery. Penny has been at it for years, with only a hemorrhoids commercial to show for it; people waste whole decades of their lives pursuing an acting career, and wanting it badly, and being attractive, etc., are not enough. It is perfectly legitimate for Penny's longtime romantic partner to ask what her Plan B is. And Leonard was right, her quitting her only paying job to pursue acting was completely nuts. How will she pay her bills? How long does she do this before she entertains the idea she needs to find herself a real career, if she doesn't want to be a bartender all her life?


@ Douglas Wolfe - "To his relief (and ours)" - Really? You can't see that lackluster relationship for what it truly is? And even worse assuming that we all are onboard with it - Why don't you read "Relationships for dummies" and learn something, Penny and Leonard is the worst and unfunniest couple that has ever graced the airwaves. Thank god for not any interaction between Amy and Sheldon - The whole time I was thinking "yes, yes make it happen with that rock guy", but of course that didn't happen. Leonard continued his streak with being a total dimwit when it comes down to Penny even in this episode and it's not even slightly funny about it, it's pathetic, sad, clingy and desperate. Howard and Raj made some funny and spot on remarks to Amy about her relationship with Sheldon - It was brilliant! Yes Sheldon supported Penny's decision to quit her job without even blinking and made her smile with his personal anecdote - Penny (Kaley) and Sheldon's (Jim) chemistry is off the charts and any moron can see that by now. So bring on Penny and Sheldon ASAP and make this show funny and interesting again, the ratings will go through the roof.

@ Jonas

i am with you on the shamy i am so glad they apart this week
they bring each other down every time the are shown togather it's time to break them apart. i agree with on penny and sheldon the have chemistry the is on fire

@ Jonas

@Douglas Wolf - Sorry, I was way too harsh on you. Anything with Leonard nowadays makes my blood boil.


i like it alot. i like that everyone was separate.the best part was that amy was not near sheldon!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i love the fact we had sheldon and penny togather the we had leoneard with too. i love sheldon was there for penny and see him self in living her and leoneard


I still see Penny getting together with Sheldon in some future time. His automatic support of her decision may go a way to make this happen, sooner rather than later.

@ clifbean

I wholeheartedly agree with you! - Penny and Sheldon would be a hoot to watch dating . Amy and Leonard can hook up because both of them Think with their midsection anyway - It's a match made in heaven when you Think about it

@ clifbean

I totally agree with you! I can see this happening or her (inadvertently) falling for Sheldon and then denying it for a Season or two.

@ Leesa

Totally agree. I see the series ending with Sheldon and Penny together. Definite unrealized chemistry there now, but they are good for each other.

@ Zach

I'm surprised that Penny and Leonard have lasted so long, given how little chemistry they have together. Penny and Sheldon would make a much more interesting couple. Amy also deserves to be in a better relationship. It was refreshingly hilarious to see her in a seen with Howard and Raj....we need more of that!


I liked how they separated the couples in this ep--Sheldon separate from Amy, Bernadette without Wolowitz, and yes...even Raj without Stuart. Now for the plot hole we can all see from space....if Penny quit The Cheescake Factory, what's she gonna do for money?

@ MrWriteSF

Its not like the boys don't support her already mostly.

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The Big Bang Theory Season 7 Episode 13 Quotes

Leonard: Listen. I could never do what you're doing. I'd be terrified.
Penny: Well it's scary for me too.
Sheldon: I'm fine with it.
Leonard: My point is: just because I couldn't do it doesn't mean you shouldn't. And I'm proud of you.
Penny: Okay. Thank you.

Jessie: You're back.
Bernadette: Yes I am. There are a few more things I want to say to you. Stuart's store is just fine, and he's a much nicer person than you are, and if you still have that comic I'd like to buy it right now.
Jessie: No problem. You want a latte while you wait?
Bernadette: No I don't want a latte. I want a cappuccino and a blueberry scone.
Jessie: I only have chocolate chip.
Bernadette: Well that sounds even better.