Up to this point, The Big Bang Theory doesn’t seem to be covered very much here on TVOvermind, but if there’s any interest from readers, I think that should change. For one thing, Jim Parsons is comedy gold. The guy adds something new and hilarious to his character week after week. Not that the other actors aren’t great, too, but this show would be worth watching even if it were just The Sheldon Cooper Show.
The Big Bang Theory, which is the final half hour in CBS’ 2-hour comedy block on Monday nights, frequently brings the network its highest share of the 18-49 demo, more than How I Met Your Mother and Two and a Half Men. Ratings have been very high in Season 3 at around 15 million viewers per week. So that means some of you must be watching, right?
“The Bozeman Reaction” began with the guys sitting down to eat dinner in their favorite Chinese restaurant. It has been a long time since the four of them have all hung out together, since Leonard and Howard are both in relationships now. As usual, Sheldon quickly becomes distressed by something trivial — this time it’s the restaurant’s updated menu. He thinks that moving General Tso’s Chicken from Specialties to Chicken means that the food is not as good anymore. “Did the chef lose confidence in the dish or himself?” After he sees another dish listed as Shrimp in Mobster Sauce, he becomes convinced that the restaurant is now a front for organized crime. They decide to leave and go get a pizza instead.
Later, Sheldon and Leonard walk up the stairs to their apartment and notice that the door frame is broken. They enter to find that they have been robbed, and their television and laptops are gone. Sheldon runs to his room in panic but is relieved to find that his comic books are still there. The police arrive to write a report, and Sheldon lists off every video game and console that was stolen. He then wants to know when the CSI team will get there because he found a soda can that one of the thieves discarded and it can be dusted for prints. Sheldon also suggests that the cops monitor scientific publications in case someone tries to present one of the experiments he was working on that he had stored on his compute.
Sheldon now thinks that the criminals will return to kill him in his sleep, which makes him even more fidgety than usual. He goes over to Penny’s apartment where she and Leonard are getting ready for bed. Knowing how scared Sheldon is to be alone, Penny plays Pictionary with him until 3:00am when she and Leonard stumble off to bed. Sheldon blockades the apartment door and then sits down to watch a movie on his phone, the only piece of technology he has left. The eerie music and slasher killing sounds of a horror flick do nothing to help Sheldon’s nerves and he runs off to wake up Leonard and Penny.
The next day, Howard installs a state-of-the-art security system, complete with thumbprint and voice recorder keypad, motion and infrared sensors, facial recognition software, and an electrically charged fishing net rigged to fall on intruders. That night Sheldon is in bed writing in his journal about how he still can’t sleep because he now knows what a dangerous place Pasadena is. “I lie here awake, tormented, while out there evil lurks, probably playing Donkey Kong on my classic Nintendo!” He hears a noise in the hall, and instead of opening the door to see what it was (like a normal person would do…), Sheldon climbs out his window onto the ledge to crawl over to Leonard’s room. He interrupts an intimate moment between Leonard and Penny (the source of the scary noise he heard). He lets them get back to bed and goes to the kitchen to get some milk, when the intruder alert sounds and Leonard and Penny come out to find Sheldon in the net on the ground twitching from electric shock.
In the morning, Sheldon is resolved to move somewhere safer. He analyzes many low-crime cities based on a set of criteria (High-speed internet connection? Model train shop? Civilized, hospitable people?) and settles on Bozeman, Montana, for his new home. He packs his bags and gets ready to leave, and because he is uncomfortable with “prolonged good-byes and maudlin displays of emotion,” he has a video recorded for Leonard, Howard, Penny, and Raj to watch. “The four of you are three of my closest friends, and one treasured acquaintance…”
After landing in the Bozeman airport bundled up in his winter clothes, a young man comes up to Sheldon and offers to help him with his bags. Sheldon gratefully accepts, and the guy runs out the door with the luggage. Sheldon immediately goes up to the ticket counter and purchases his return ticket to Pasadena.
Overall, the episode had its funny moments but was largely unmemorable, perhaps because it comes on the heels of several consecutive episodes that were very well-written and advanced the character relationships in some way. What did y’all think?
No new episode next week, so we’ll be back with another recap in two weeks!