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About Hillo

  • Birthday 10/28/1951

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  • Interests
    Science (voracious consumer of pop-science and "hard" sci-fi, border-line Trekkie but too much of a sci-fi snob to go all-the-way), computers (started programming when you had to punch your own cards), horses and horseback riding (owned, trained and exhibited a show-horse for 10 years, now trying to avoid that expensive addiction, but summers are hard).
  • Location
    California, USA

Big Bang Theory Opinions

  • Favorite Episode
    The Scavenger Vortex

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  1. I actually think that there's TBBT before this episode and TBBT after it. It's in this ep that we see: - That Leonard has broken it off with Priya but that he's not moping or depressed, even though he would have been at least as justified in being so as with his split with Penny. Priya, after all, seemed to respect his intellect, appreciate his appearance (enough to try dressing him up and getting him to show off his pretty eyes), and his skill and creativity as a lover much more than we ever saw with Penny. Yet, when Priya cheats on him, he seems to come through it with more, rather than less, self-esteem, which comes through later in the season. (Though I don't think the writers did nearly enough with it!) - That Bernie (especially) and Penny don't just tolerate Amy, but really feel connected with her; enough so that they try not once but twice to patch things up, in spite of Amy's passive-aggressive whining. - That at this point, Sheldon actually shows more of a connection with Amy than she does with him. It's Sheldon who freaks when she goes silent for what looks like a single evening. It's Sheldon who seeks her out and consents to her, rather callus, negotiating tactics, even though it's not at all clear how she would back up her ultimatum. I think of it this way: What would have happened if Sheldon had refused to play along? He would have been forced to abandon her in her misery in spite of him knowing he could have helped her. But the only way this could have affected Sheldon would have been if he actually cared about his connection to her, if he cared about her well-being, and if he accepted some responsibility for it. Up to this point, I don't think we've ever seen anything like this from Sheldon. - That Amy is, initially, so focused on self-pity that she's actually annoyed to see Sheldon at her door. It's not until she sees that he's committed to helping her that she, apparently, sees him as a partner and furthermore as someone who has something to lose if her needs aren't met. I see this as an extension of, "The Zazzy Substitution", in S4, when we, and Amy, saw Sheldon fall apart without her. Now we see her exploiting Sheldon's dependence upon her, while at the same time, and really, I think, for the first time, reaching out to him, and perhaps beginning to re-focus her desires and hopes for emotional growth on a more suitable target than Penny. I really see this ep as the one in which all these things are brought to the surface, in spite of the feeble attempt in the tag to do a reset by having Amy revert to being an obnoxious, arrogant pest. (Sorry, writers; I didn't buy it!)
  2. Hi, from California, USA! Welcome to the forums!
  3. Welcome to the forums sunbeam!
  4. At this point, remembering what The Shamy taught us, that our hands can be magic, I've literally given myself a pat on the back. To all who met The Challenge, Congrats! Good job! Give yourself a pat on the back!
  5. Welcome to the forums! People say I look like my brother and I was once accused of trying to vote twice because he and I voted at different times at the same polling place. The thing is, while we're almost exactly the same height, my skin color (we have African ancestors) is a shade lighter than his, I have hazel eyes to his brown, have almost no gray hair where his is almost totally gray, and, in general, I'm much better looking than he is!
  6. Hello from Northern California, USA, and welcome!
  7. From another new member, Welcome!
  8. +HulkSmash, I'm writing this in response to your posts #149 and #161 which, just to save space, I haven't included. (Also, Welcome to the Forums! Also, thanks for giving an Unspoiled member like me somewhere to post and something to post about!) I like this topic because it explicitly invites us to express our subjective and arbitrary opinions. Of course we do that all the time in other topics, but the title of this one makes it clear that it's OK to do so, or at least should be. From this perspective I can't argue with the sentiments you have (so far) expressed about Penny (in #149) and Leonard (#161). But, reading them, as well as other comments in this topic has helped me crystallize a subjective and arbitrary opinion of my own, which I will now share with you. (Generous of me, I know! ) What I've come to see is that the producers/writers of this sitcom (TPTB) seem to have deliberately created a, to me, interesting pop culture interaction between those creators and us. With this show, we are invited to apply our own values to people (the characters in the story) who don't share those values. We are also invited to pass judgement on these characters, even though the characters seldom do that among themselves. So, we can see Penny as a "drunk loser" even though there's little sign that any of the characters in the story view her that way. On the contrary, they tend to treat her with respect and admiration and seldom mention her drinking or her career problems other than as fodder for brief, casual ribbing. We don't, for example, see anyone pressuring her to get help, or avoiding her company. Other characters, Leonard and Sheldon in particular, ask her for advice and sometimes take it. Bernadette and Amy are shown as feeling privileged to be her friend. And while, those last too have been portrayed as becoming increasingly aggressive about Penny's lack of education there's no sign of any serious rifts in their relationships. Leonard provides another example for me. As you point out, he (like just about all the characters) has done some stupid, reprehensible things, but again, there's little sign that any of the characters hold these mistakes against him, or that they don't respect and even love him. On the contrary, Leonard is shown, and has from the beginning been shown to be the focus of the group, the center around which it revolves. As I see it, a key to pulling this off is that the writers have created a world in which the constant bungling, sniping and insulting, and the sometimes dangerous pranks that we see don't have much in the way of even medium-term consequences. In addition, we see a minimum of the passing of judgement among the characters. They tease and taunt each other, but, with the notable exception of Leonard and Sheldon, and even with them it's short term, we rarely see them condemning each other or threatening to stop associating or valuing each other because of past or current misdeeds or weaknesses. So, to me, this provokes the question of what justifies our imposing our values and passing our judgement on these characters who live in a world that's only superficially equivalent to ours, a world in fact that has been deliberately constructed to push the boundaries of our morality? Why should we blame Leonard for getting Penny fired when there's no sign that she, or anyone else on the show does that? Why should we say that the Leonard's reckless treatment of the rocket fuel is reason to condemn him when none of those who's lives were at stake are shown to do so. Sheldon has obviously forgiven Leonard, Howard and Raj for making a fool of him and threatening his career. We never see him mention it again to any of them. Why then should we condemn them for it? And so on... To put it yet another way, TPTB of this show have presented us with a world where consequences of mistakes are slight, where people almost instantly forgive each other for egregious mistakes and transgressions, where insults and humiliations are standard elements of close relationships, where tragedies like abusive childhoods are little more than fodder for frustrated outrage, and do not result in more tragedies like long term depression, drug use or psychosis, and, I think most importantly of all, where the main characters don't pass judgement upon each other. Yet in many cases our instinctive responses to these same things are heavily weighted toward blaming and judging according to the morals and realities of our world. I don't think this is an accident on the part of TPTB of this show. I think this split is part of the shows foundation; a, "Judge not, lest you be judged and good luck with that!", narrative sleight-of-hand.
  9. Hillo


    Welcome! You are not alone. I visited some friends I hadn't seen in years, who, I was appalled to discover, didn't watch TBBT. For the first couple of days, this caused some failures to communicate since my end of any conversation was peppered with references that baffled them, like Sheldon", and "Leonard", and memorably, "Professor Proton". The few times I logged on here, during my visit, were like returning from a country where they spoke a different dialect!
  10. Thanks, so much! Very nicely done. Mark my words, once TBBT is over (assuming that ever happens!), someone will wise up and remake a Tracy/Hepburn (like the horribly titled, Adam's Rib) or Grant/Hepburn (like The Philadelphia Story) RomCom with those two, and clean up!
  11. How weird am I? (Had to ask, didn't you?) My favorite Shamy moment came in S7.2, when they're both crouched in front of Penny's apartment. Here, for the first time in ages, we see them as an adorable couple in pursuit of a common goal, e.g., rescuing Penny from their mutual suspicion. We also see that they can bicker playfully, without the mean-spirited rancor that's become all-too-common. From memory: Amy: Do you hear anything? Sheldon: I hear a woman's voice. Amy: Is it Penny? Sheldon: No, it's you. Later: Sheldon: Now I think I hear kissing Amy: Like you know what kissing sounds like. Sheldon: There's kissing in Star Trek, smarty pants! Funny and adorable! In fact, their whole scene, until Sheldon opens Penny's door, is one of my favorites and shows what we're missing while the writers drag out the drama of getting them together.
  12. Please, forgive me for this. Couldn't help writing it, then had to post it. It's long (two verses, like in the musical)! C'est Moi for The Challenge (Sung to the tune of, “C'est Moi” - From the musical, “Camelot”, by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe) (First verse) Premier Night! Premier Night! I celebrate, in verse and song! Premier Night! Premier Night! It's far away, but I'll be strong! I know in my soul, The Challenge is for me, And this I will now make you see. The man who takes up The Challenge should stand brave and tall. His courage will be assaulted constantly. He should scrutinize each update, To the pages of Season 8, Clicking only the ones he knows are spoiler free! He postpones discussing any issues, large or small. Did Sheldon come back? Did Penny cut her hair? But, who's he that boasts “No need for spoiled posts 'Til episodes start to air”? C'est moi, c'est moi, I must shed the mask, "'Tis I", I humbly reply. That man who'll stay Unspoiled through the fray C'est moi, c'est moi, 'Tis I. When threads are roiled By each new reveal I'm so high above all that. I stay unspoiled And don't even feel The urge to post or chat. C'est moi! C'est moi! So up-to-the-task. A poster pious and proud. And here am I, my mouse in my hand, Committed to take a virtuous stand, And honor the pledge, I've vowed! (Second verse) The man who accepts The Challenge should be so mature That gratification can be weeks delayed. He'll be sure that his choice is right, And look forward with great delight, To the night when he'll hear that catchy theme song played. The need to know all, should never have the least allure. The taping reports should tempt him not at all. But, who is this man, This untainted fan, Who can't hear the Siren's call? [spoken] C'est moi. C'est moi, c'est moi, I must say what's true, Like Sheldon I can't tell a lie. That man who thwarts Those taping reports C'est moi, c'est moi, 'Tis I. 'Til Season 8, I'll stay on my toes, Reports have no hold on me. I'll calmly wait For shining new shows, To seal my victory! C'est moi! C'est moi! Unspoiled! (Aren't you?) More pure with each passing day. Still, I'm afraid that Penny would sigh, And say to herself, "He's so not the guy!" The moment she heard me say... C'est moi!
  13. I have an excellent reason: Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting! That's enough for me. Actually, I too hope they don't do anything like this. My crush on her is already trending toward obsession. S7 was devastating for me. She owned it. So much excellence in her performances, such range, energy and spot-on comedic timing. She's a terrible crier, so that helps. How bad is it, you ask? (Well, you didn't ask, but let's move on.) I found myself resenting the fact that she didn't get at least nominated for an Emmy, which is to me a particularly ridiculous artifact; right up there with the backyard contraption in, "Good Neighbor Sam".
  14. Over There - George M. Cohan
  15. You are most welcome, here! I think The Challenge is indifferent to intent. All that's required is the courage, the tenacity, the virtue needed to resist the lure of instant gratification!.
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