Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Posts posted by Chiara

  1. What has been missing in season six is the shared household sense of the previous seasons, such as the joint purchase of the Longclaw replica. Recall the Time Machine episode, where the other guys were jealous of the Nerdvana he and Sheldon had created.

    Well, we have had a few hints of domesticity : the steamer Leonard refused to pay for but wanted to use (The Bakersfield Expedition) and the remote control Sheldon bought even though it is too big for his favourite homunculus's hands (The Closure Alternative). Bert and Ernie are still fighting over the bills ;)


    Penny has probaly avoided talking to Leonard about what their marriage would be like, since she doesn't want to get him started. Maybe she should overcome her aversion, and have that discussion. Now that Leonard has agreed not to propose, she could try that. Talking this out would likely calm her fears of what marriage mean, and open her to the idea. I don't think Leonard has thought past just being sure of Penny, in spite of the "our children will be smart and beautiful" comment.

     Such a conversation would be tremendous progress on Penny's part. She hinted at the reason behind her fears in The Tangible Affection Proof : loss of control. The way she described it was quite telling : "As long as things keep going great between us, you'll keep asking me to marry you and eventually I'm going ot end up saying yes and we're gonna be married forever and the whole thing just freaks me out". 

    "The whole thing" in question is not marriage per se but the entire process leading to it, a mechanical series of causes and effects that Penny cannot control : her happiness, Leonard's subsequent proposal(s), her positive answer. There is a strong sense of inevitability emanating from Penny's line, something that looks strangely like fate. She will end up marrying Leonard because it was decided, somehow, somewhere, by someone who is not her. 


    Unfortunately, and in spite of her remarkable laziness, Penny is a control freak. She came to LA with a plan : waiting tables for six months then becoming a movie star (plan B : TV star). It may not look like much of a plan but it was hers. And she kept her eyes on the prize for over six years. It was only in The Closure Alternative that she started relaxing and realising that, even though her project is very noble indeed, it does not have to happen just like she wants it to for her life to be worthwhile, nor does she have to put everything else on hold while her career is still in standby.

    She is slowly letting go of the stranglehold she has over her life and feelings. When that goes completely, she will propose. And Leonard will weep his eyes out, poor sweetheart.


    I gotta agree with Rick on one point. I'd like to have her back just to see Penny's reaction. Her going into protective mode at the same time she goes into gloating mode has to be worth a few laughs. The awkward between Priya and Leonard. I can also see Penny going into retribution mode (and going all Nebraska on her if she gets even slightly out of line. I can see lots of laughs in there.

     Oh, I absolutely would not mind her coming back. I am sure there is a lot of comedy to extract from it, I believe Penny was never made aware of Pryia's shortcomings and is therefore, to this day, unaware that Raj's gorgeous sister is no competition. 

    So bring on the jealousy (and the gloating) !


    I didn't get that vibe from her either. I also remember Penny's father loved Leonard before ever meeting him. Obviously Penny spoke to her father about Leonard. In reality Priya couldn't ever compete with Penny. Priya never liked Penny because of his "closeness" to her. More of Penny's dislike of Priya had to do with her knowing she goofed breaking up with Leonard. (mentioning to Raj). @Rick mentioned Priya cheating on Leonard but in reality Leonard had cheated on her with Alice before he knew about that.That would of never happened if Leonard had still been with Penny

    That was one of the smartest aspects of the whole Pryia/Leonard relationship as defined by the writers. 


    We, the audience, have always known that, naturally, Leonard is not "that guy"; he does not sneek behind his girlfriend back and he does not cheat. Yet, when in a relationship with Pryia, he became "that guy" : he was more than tempted to ignore his S.O.'s wishes and keep on socialising with Penny "on the downlow" (The Prestidigitation Approximation) and he cheated, kissing a girl he had barely met (The Good Guy Fluctuation).


    By having Leonard act in such an uncharacteristic way, the writers basically indicated the relationship (Preonard ? Lyia ?) was doomed. 

    And just in case we did not get it, they had Leonard cheat with a Penny doppelgänger in the person of Alice. Both beautiful and street-y, both (rare) female customers of the comic book store, both sweet, both forthcoming in their overtures, both body art aficionadas (Alice had piercings in weird places, Penny has tattoos in strange locations), both with a history of dating jerks, both willing and able to throw Leonard out of their apartments, etc. 


    On a side note, it is interesting that Leonard was very quick to understand Alice was hitting on him (and even quicker to yield to the temptation) while it took him forever to figure out Alex was interested in him, in spite of her not being much more subtle that her predecessor...

    • Like 2
  2. I have always thought that Priya was a much better match for Leonard until she cheated on him with her old boyfriend.   I hope they bring her back just to see how Penny reacts.

    Really ? I never got that vibe from her. She did not like his friends, his style, his hobbies or his ways; while she definitely enjoyed the "serious" part of him (his job as a respected physicist), she could not have cared less for his "goofy" side (i.e. the geek). And that is without mentioning her being ashamed of him and not wanting her parents to know about their relationship. 

    Conversely, Penny takes Leonard as a whole, both the celebrated professional scientist and the total nerd who goes on a quest to get his best friend's imaginary ostrich back from a virtual thief. 


    I suppose Howard summed it up best in The Zarnecki Incursion : "This one's funny Leonard. How come you couldn't make it work with her ?"

    • Like 7
  3. Of course the writers have to blame it on Leonard. These are the writers that don't believe in mapping out where the characters are going and just go with whatever idea pop in their heads.  There are no arches for the characters, there is no contingency for one episode to the next and it has come back to bite the in bottom.  I know some love this but I mean in the end they wind up painting themselves into a corner and which character do you think the hammer will fall on ---- Leonard.

    I recognize my previous post's phrasing lacked subtlety and for that I apologise : nobody is to "blame", literally speaking, for nothing "wrong" has happened.  


    There is an arch, not just for Leonard, but for all the characters involved. The hero stated it as clearly as humanly possible in the pilot (the one that was broadcast) : "smart and beautiful" babies. The show revolves around that very notion : four brilliant geeks finding their way to adulthood, learning how to cope with grownup, everyday issues (sexuality, heartbreak, responsibility, vulnerability, boredom, disappointment, etc) and teaching the adults that a healthy dose of geekiness makes life that much more amusing. 

    That is the finish line for every character on the show, regardless of which end of the geek-non geek spectrum they are on. They are all going there, at different speed. 


    Leonard is the instigator of the quest therefore the one most enthusiastic and eager to complete it. Conversely, Sheldon is the suspicious, one-man Greek chorus who resists the changes involved in the pursuit of the ultimate goal. It is Leonard's duty as the main character to drag his friend along, to help and encourage him on the way for a hero never leaves a companion behind. 


    Of course it all evolves at a rather glacial pace and I understand that it can be terribly frustrating. But that does not mean there is no plan. 


    So Leonard so called psychological issue was throw in to deal with them not wanting to pen Sheldon putting on his big boy pants and growing the heck up age wise (and as you I know he is a grow man in body only).  To be honest I don't think the writers cares that they are dragging Leonard through the mud in order to protect the Sheldon character and it upset me that Leonard can be sacrifice at the altar of Sheldon.

    I may be completely wrong but I fail to see where the "mud" Leonard is being "dragged through" is. 


    Leonard has a kink, for lack of a better word : he loves to be surrounded by alpha-type personalities.

    If you consider that disparaging or demeaning of the character, I am sorry but I, for one, cannot agree with this interpretation. I would in fact go one step further and write that this particular aspect of his personality makes him all the more interesting to me. 


    After they decided to saddle Leonard with Sheldon, the writers had to provide the audience with an explanation for, while he is very entertaining to watch, Dr Cooper is borderline impossible to live with. They could have gone for the obvious justification and depicted Leonard as a pushover : a guy who is perpetually taken advantage of because he is too weak or personality-deprived to defend himself.

    But they did not. They gave Leonard heaps of personality and strength and, above all, the courage to go after what he wants. They painted him as a guy who rarely ever says no to his friends and his lover because, most of the time, he does not really want to. However, whenever he feels like putting his foot down, he is always shown to be more than capable of standing his ground.


    The fact that he spontaneously favours tough-to-please, domineering characters highlights his own strength. Leonard's character has never been damaged or trashed by the writers and him showing partiality to dominant types does not change that in any way.


    Now, I absolutely accept that it is my biased interpretation and others may disagree entirely. Nevertheless, the idea that TPTB do not have Leonard's best interest in mind and are willing to sacrifice him as a character for Sheldon's sake is, to me, inaccurate. They may be OK with slowing Dr Hofstadter down so his best buddy can keep up (classic case of no man left behind) but they only do so because they know both will ultimately reach the finish line with all their limbs. 

    • Like 7
  4. At the time Sheldon didn't have Amy and had to be latched onto Lenny. Now things are different in my opinion and it's time the writers figure out what they are going to do with Sheldon.  It's not fair to hold back Leonard and to an extent Penny because they can't make up their minds on what to do with Sheldon and Shamy.


    Sidestepping can be just as bad as going backward to be honest.

    May I be slightly devious here and say that you might have to blame Leonard for this ? ;)


    The writers have, very intelligently (and very viciously), turned their narrative problem into Leonard's psychological issue : the show's PTB have a hard time letting go of man child Sheldon... And so does Leonard. 

    I am sorry for rehashing something I am sure I mentioned before but, while I absolutely acknowledge BangerMain's point about the show's extremely skewed economics (Penny lives an apartment as big as that of Bernadette and Howard even though they must make about 5 times as much money as her), if Amy can afford a nice little apartment on her own, so can Leonard. However, Dr Hofstadter never contemplates the possibility of living on his own. The most striking example of that was The Spoiler Alert Segmentation : he found Sheldon unbearable so he went to Penny; when Penny threw him out, he immediately went back to Sheldon. At no point did the idea of living alone penetrate his skull.


    In order to justify one of the show's main premises (Leonard is besties with Sheldon in spite of the latter's "whack-a-doodle" personality), the writers have provided the former with a neat little fetish : he simply adores domineering, commanding people. They even wheeled in his mother to make sure everybody understood where that particular neurosis came from. His masochistic tendency was reaffirmed time and time again through his choice of women : Leslie, Stephanie, Pryia and, above all, Penny. Very different in styles but all quite bossy and demanding in their own ways. No matter how much Leonard protests and complains, he always comes back for more because he is a freaky little devil. 


    On a meta level, Sheldon is anchored to the Lenny because the writers have yet to figure out how to drag him through puberty (figuratively speaking, of course; I am aware that Sheldon has in fact had a full pubis of hair since his nineteenth birthday). 

    But on an intra level, Sheldon is deeply embedded in Penny and Leonard's relationship because Leonard allows him to be. He loves his praying mantis and cannot let him go, just like the writers. 



    I was only partially joking when I suggested that Leonard shoot Sheldon for barging in per the S7.2 spoiler. They need room to be a couple. I'm not that enthused by the 5a solution either. I just don't think I can hope for the move away from Sheldon, yet or before the curtain comes down.

    To be fair to Sheldon, in this season's second episode, he only barges in in order to protect and defend his best friend's honour. At the time, he is convinced Penny is cheating on Leonard and wants to stop whatever adulterous debauchery he imagines is taking place in his neighbour's apartment. 


    Poor soul ! Even when he wants to help, he gets in the way. 

    • Like 6
  5. While marriage is a fair prospect indeed, we must not forget that it is not the only relationship milestone the writers have in store for Penny and Leonard. 

    Let us not forget that they do not live together yet... 


    So basically, it all boils down to Sheldon (more than Penny). Until the writers can figure out what to do with him, Penny and Leonard will remain pretty much stationary. Should Penny move in with the boys ? Should Leonard move out and live in Penny's apartment while Amy takes his place ? If the writers do not have the answers to those questions yet, they will not push the Lenny further down the aisle. They may still do lots of great things with the couple (after all, they have yet to meet each other's parents in an official capacity or have a great big shouting match in which both of them are sort of right, both of which are classic television templates) but no wedding prospect until the cohabitation conundrum is solved.


    It is not to say that the matter of marriage cannot be brought forward at any point before that. It simply means that, were such a topic to emerge, it would necessarily put the question relative to the characters' living arrangements on the forefront and I do not know how willing the writers are to tackle this particular issue. Though I have to say it was interesting to see them ackowledge their own dilemma in The Spoiler Alert Segmentation. They know the current situation is unsustainable in the long run.  

    The second part of this season premiere may be a clue as to what is to come : Penny willingly welcomes Leonard into her apartment and lets him stay there for 48 hours straight. Foreshadowing ? Coincidence ? Overthinking ? You decide.


    I am certain the characters will get there. At a glacial pace, as usual, but they will. 

    • Like 6
  6. I can't help thinking Penny is still in control of the relationship. When Leonard gave her the responsibility to propose, he also gave away all control on the progress of the relationship. Normally a guy lets a girl know he wants to take the relationship to the next level by proposing and if the girl accepts, she agrees. If she doesn't, it usually causes problems because it means they have obvious different views about their relationship. Leonard has found that out a couple of times, so now by giving Penny the power, he just waits with no control, forever? I liked Tensor's idea in his fanfiction, there should have been a time limit put on Penny. Right now Leonard is helpless and just has to wait for her to do something. Think how you would feel if you had to wait for your SO to make that decision and you had no real control, how long would you wait?

    Technically, you are absolutely correct. Leonard's decision to leave Penny in charge of the proposal could spell disaster for him. However, in this instance, I believe his move was strategically brilliant. 


    Penny has issues. One of them is her gut-wrenching fear of being "trapped" into a marriage she has not had the time to think through. But she knows Leonard wants to get married someday. She knows it all the better because, in his own words, he proposes a lot. So, before the 2013 Valentine's Day near massacre, she must have been living with a sword of Damocles over her head : is he going to propose now ? Tomorrow ? Next week ? If he does, what do I do ? I love him but I am not sure I want to get married just yet, how can I say no and not hurt his feelings ? 

    The last proposal had not been a great experience for either of them and, considering Penny's problems, it might have left a rather ugly mark on her mind. Every time one of those questions popped up in her mind, it set her back a little and made her that tiny bit less likely to answer favourably to any of her boyfriend's overtures. 

    By giving her the reins in this matter, Leonard actually got closer to his ultimate goal. Now, Penny is relatively comfortable, relaxed in the relationship. She is no longer looking over her shoulder to see if Leonard is about to kneel and ask the dreaded question. Eventually, she will mellow enough to be completely at ease with the idea and propose herself.


    Therefore, Leonard's idea was, I believe, a tactical victory.

    It is also important to note that he made the decision after he heard Penny confess that, if he were to keep on proposing, she would eventually say yes. So he knew she was not allergic either to the concept of marriage in general or to the prospect of marrying him in particular but rather had an issue with the timing and delivery system. Ultimately, he has no reason to think Penny will never propose, or will only do so in 20 years. He knows it is coming; he is willing to wait it out. 


    Let us not forget that Leonard has a 173 IQ and plays chess. His move was a sacrifice and I think it worked just fine. 

    • Like 4
  7. I was pondering exactly when it seemed that Leonard grew a backbone with regard to Penny. Was it after the ILY? There was a sea change in the sixth season, where suddenly, Leonard is willing to stand up to Penny and call her on her bs. Clearly after Alex, Penny started to experience jealousy and insecurity while in a relationship with Leonard, so at that point she started to doubt that her beauty was sufficient to hold him. Having just received the Blue-Ray/DVD set of Season Six, I started with the premiere, and Leonard was clearly in the weaker role. In fact, they highlighted the gender reversals. Leonard is serving Penny, and trying to get information about the status of the relationship. In the first episode with Alex, those roles get reversed in the final scene, where Penny serves a plate to Leonard, and is clearly playing the attentive girlfriend. It is obvious that she is doing everything she can to draw him in, with smiles, and facial expressions. It is so opposite of the earlier episodes. Leonard is too oblivious to pick up on it, but after that, the last time he seems weak in the relationship is with regard to Penny's friend from school. After that, he is master of the relationship. I even think that was clear in the episode where Leonard is about to move in with Penny to get away from Sheldon. Penny is not in control, and is willing, in spite of her reservations, to let Leonard move in.

    I may be completely wrong but it seems to me that Leonard has always had a "backbone". If The Ornithiphobia Diffusion taught us anything, it is that Leonard is perfectly capable of defending himself. After all, he did call Penny stupid, or something to that effect, in front of a stranger.

    What has changed over the years is the way the people closest to him react to his displays of character strength.


    All the way back in season two (The Bath Item Gift Hypothesis), Leonard already had a backbone. He invited himself into Penny's apartment to demand an explanation about her relationship with David and her lack of rationale for not dating him (Leonard). He spotted an inconsistency in Penny's behaviour, put his foot down and was determined to have her justify herself. And then Penny cried. And he melted. Because we all know that when Penny cries, Leonard cries too.

    We got a redux of this scene in season six (The Tangible Affection Proof) : Leonard disliked Penny's actions, barged in and demanded she explained her appalling behaviour. And Penny... did. She took his criticism on board and tried her best to provide him with an understanding of her reaction. 


    I may be mistaken but I believe that, had Penny wept or yelled at him, Leonard would have given up and tried to console/appease her just like he did in season two. The one who changed is not so much Leonard (though he undoubtedly did evolve) but Penny. In the past, she would hide, unconsciously I think, behind tears or anger to deflect any indepth inspection of her behaviour. Now, she is able to absorb Leonard's feelings, even the negative ones, and respond to them appropriately. 


    Funnily enough, the same trend is observable in Sheldon's responses to Leonard's outbursts. On three occasions, Ernie gave up on his roomate and his weird contract. The first time around (The Staircase Implementation), Sheldon just waited out Leonard who eventually came back and apologised. The second time (The Friendship Contraction), Sheldon had to take action and attempt to force a reconciliation through the medium of pulling the building's main circuit breaker switch. Furthermore, he invented "Leonard's Day", a creation which, while mostly symbolic, showed some willingness to acknowledge his roomate's contribution to his life. Finally, in The Spoiler Alert Segmentation, Sheldon was shown to be clearly distressed by Leonard's absence and, even as they were getting back together (how sweet), he demonstrated a limited ability to alter his behaviour to suit his friend's needs (he blurted out a spoiler but immediately corrected himself by saying it may or may not be true). 


    Both Penny and Sheldon are growing up, at different paces of course. As they do so, they become more capable to deal with Leonard's feelings and give him more room, so to speak, to exist and express himself.

    • Like 8
  8. You would think Penny would help Leonard look more like Johnny, but I guess that wouldn't make him the perpetual nerd.

    Stephanie tried to change him, Pryia tried to change him, Penny likes him just the way he is. Hoodies and hair gel included. ;)

    • Like 1
  9. Damn them hoodies. 


    And the hair gel-y hair. 


    Ah, t-shirt scenes are the best. 

    Really ? You do not like the hoodies ? I love those. I find them to be a very smart move by the costume department. Leonard is a worrier so of course he would always wear a hood, just in case it gets rainy... In Pasadena. Furthermore, he is from New Jersey. He is not used to all-year-round sun.

    He looks perpetually prepared for a nasty gust of very cold wind. What could possibly be more Leonard-y than that ? 


    As for the overly geled-up hair, while I would welcome an appearance of Mr. Galecki's naturally untameable curls, it also makes sense for the character to style his locks like that. He has no idea what he is doing; nobody has ever taught or shown him how to be conventionally attractive. Not his father, not his younger brother, not his few friends at Princeton, not Sheldon (Heaven forbid), etc. Pryia and Stephanie tried but it made him itchy. So he does what he thinks is best and goes way overboard with the hair product. I like it. It is cute. Like a little boy trying his hand at pampering before his very first date. 

  10. It is interesting that the girls formed a separate group, as it satisfies the Bechdel test. Usually girl groups in an ensemble sitcom mainly reinforce the various relationships. Here, the girls have each other's back first.

    I have to say the writers deserve some kuddos for that. They have managed to create, in a male-oriented show (initial ratio : four boys, one girl), a special space for the female characters to interact believably and independently from their male counterparts. 

    While they do spend a lot of time talking about their men, though not more than said men spend talking about them, they have their own activities : going to clubs, dressing up as Disney princesses, painting portraits of one another, playing drunken Twister... They are busy ladies !


    I agree with Bernie, I think Amy would be better off with someone else, but I'm not a writer for the show.

    The heart wants what the heart wants... But I am not the right person to talk about stable, fulfilling relationships; I am the person who did not mind her neck turning green because of some dodgy jewelry. ;)


    The writers are in a fix, I believe, with regard to the Shamy. They've amped up Amy's sexuality, and made her more like the girls than like Sheldon. She was quite the distaff counterpart early on. In many ways, she is like Leonard, who puts up with Sheldon for no obvious reason. Sheldon is clearly miserable without Amy, yet is so poorly suited to have a relationship with a girl.

    It is a classic case of upstairs/downstairs in a way. Even in Shakespearean plays, especially his romantic comedies, there are often instances in which the same story, roughly speaking, is told twice simultaneously, with different pairs of characters : Hero/Claudio and Benedick/Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing; Bianca/Lucentio and Katherina/Petrucchio in The Taming of The Shrew, etc. One version of the story is played kind of "seriously"; the other one is more "for laughs". 

    Amy "is" Leonard : emotional, vulnerable, forgiving, devoted; Sheldon "is" Penny : aloof, immature, tough-talking, clueless in the ways of normal romance. The writers will see it through; it will just take a while.


    On a side note, is it just me or is there some sort of trend in TBBT couples in re. eyesight ?  It seems there might be an unofficial rule of thumb on the show about this kind of things : characters without glasses can only be in relationships with their bespectacled couterparts. Leonard and Penny, Amy and Sheldon, Bernadette and Howard... 

    Furthermore, it appears that the poorly sighted ones are always the "responsible" ones in their couples; they tend to lead the charge and cajole their S.O.s into deeper and more mature forms of commitment. It is almost comical in a way : a case of the literally (somewhat) "blind" leading the figuratively (romantically) "blind"

    That makes me worried for Lucy's future on the show. Unless we find out she wears contact lenses, the girl has no chance in hell to come back as Raj's romantic interest. What he needs is a severely myopic woman and he will be good to go. . 

    • Like 3
  11. When Newhart agreed to do the guest shot in season 6 one of the conditions he set was to return for two more episodes. This was how Chuck Lorre, who correctly views Bob as a comedy god, got him to agree. I'm not sure why Newhart wanted to make mulitple appearances but maybe he wanted to be associated with such a popular show and introduce himself to a new generation of TV fans.


    Whatever his reasons were (and I believe you are correct in your assessment), it is a brilliant idea. Not just because Bob Newhart is an amazing actor and Pr Proton a good addtion to the show but also because it keep shis appearance from looking like stunt casting. 


    That is usually the problem with famous guest stars : they show up, do their bit and their characters disappear into the ether, never to be seen or talked about ever again. It often feels forced to me for the parts famous guests end up playing are rarely interesting; they are merely vehicules to justify the star's presence on the show.

    Pr Proton is a really good character and considering Sheldon's obsession with him, it makes sense for him to come back at some point. 


    when is the next taping?

    17th September, I believe. 

    • Like 2
  12. I never had the impression that Amy was supporting Leonard, but was consoling Penny.

    I believe that is one of the most consistent aspects of the girls posse dynamics displayed on the show : the girls have one another's back. They have their own friendship, separate from their respective romantic attachments.


    Now, on occasions, there may be a clash (the parking space episode was a demonstration of that) but ultimately the girls' allegiance is to one another, not to the guys or to the 'ships as entities.

    So when Amy encouraged or pushed for the Lenny in season four, it was out of concern for Penny herself who she knew missed Leonard. When Penny mentioned to Bernadette the possibility of looking elsewhere after Howard messed up, she was not trying to destroy the Hernadette (?) but attempting to find a way for her friend no longer to be miserable. And in this season's premiere, Bernadette will encourage Amy to "shop around" not out of dislike for the Shamy but out of empathy for her friend who, she thinks, might be happier with somebody else than Sheldon. 


    It is a rather moving side of their interactions, as a matter of fact. They take one another's happiness to heart, regardless of the boys. They exist as a separate group, not just as the guys' girlfriends/wives.

    • Like 9
  13. While Sheldon is the most frustrating character on the show in a way Penny and Leonard do need him around. (just not all the time)

    He is indeed an integral part of their relationship. However, it has been quite interesting to see them spend more and more time away from him in season six when, three years before, they might as well have called themselves a threesome considering the Lenny was barely ever separate from Sheldon.


    That does work both ways. At various times Penny is quite obviously uncomfortable, with any kind of movement forward with commitment. Here, reports indicate she seems to be quite happy with him living there, for several days. This is not to say that she would have let him move in permanently, but it gives her a chance to get used to the idea of her and Leonard living together.

    Oh absolutely !There is no doubt in my mind that missing Leonard has, once again, allowed Penny to rethink her relationship with him and his return makes her giddy enough not to ruminate over his offer to stay at her place, 24/7, for a couple of days. That is usually the rule with them; as long as they do not overthink their relationship, they are fine.


    That being said, this instance of Leonard being confident enough to let himself in coupled with what we know of this season's third episode could be indicative of a wider trend. The writers may be tempted to follow through with the idea they first explored in The Egg Salad Equivalency :  Leonard getting increasingly more secure while Penny is losing some of her self-assurance/aloofness. I for one would love to see that play out.

    Not just because there is comedic value in Leonard struttin' around like he is 5'6'' and taking control of the relationship for a while but also because it cannot possibly last...


    In the interview they gave for the season six DVD bonus, Mr. Galecki and Ms. Cuoco called Leonard a "fighter" with a "stubborn heart". I agree wholeheartedly but would go on step further and say that Leonard is, for lack of a better word, a bit of a masochist. While in the very early days of the show, the writers did not give much explanation as to why he was so willing to let Sheldon abuse him, over the course of the following years, they have provided Leonard with enough of a backbone and devious mind (when need be) for the pushover theory not to compute.

    Leonard is not just a lovely, sweet, forgiving, intelligent and caring man : he can also be petty, passive-aggressive, revengeful, obstinate and insulting. He has been shown to be capable of biting back. So why does he not do it all the time ? My guess is that, no matter how much he may protest, he loves being around tough-to-please, difficult people (I believe he has Mommy Dearest Beverly to "thank" for that).


    The writers have shown this tendency of his time and time again :

    - They could have kept Sheldon's craziness  "hidden" from Leonard during their first meeting (The Staircase Implementation), thereby implying the latter was duped into believing he was moving in with a normal guy and subsequenly trapped in an accidental cohabitation/friendship with a controlling man-child. They did not. "Die Sheldon Die !" was as clear a foresign as there ever was and Leonard still moved in;

    - They could have had Leonard show interest in really sweet, loving, agreeable and caring women while he was "waiting" for Penny. They did not. Leslie and Pryia were extremely domineering and Stephanie was... What is the polite word ? Manipulative ? 

    "The heart wants what the heart wants" and Leonard's heart, as described by TPTB, wants people who crack the whip from time to time. He has boundaries, of course, and gives as good as he gets when he reaches his limit. But one has to face the fact : he is not a victim; he is kinky, in a way. 


    While I believe theirs has always been a much more balanced relationship than it seems (they both love and depend on each other equally), there is no point in denying that Penny has the official control of the Lenny couple : she determines its pace and intensity. This season's first couple of episodes could be seen as foresigns of a power shift, so to speak, between them. If so, it should be funny to see it unfold. I believe Leonard would enjoy it tremendously for a while... Until he realises that he sort of misses a more aloof, controlling, bossy Penny who does not always answer to his "I love you" with an "I love you too" but sometimes with an "I know" ("Thank you" is not acceptable though).



    (It had been a while since I last wrote such an overly long post... I do apologise). 

    • Like 4
  14. He [Leonard] is such a core character to the show that having him away, breaks up the gang as shown in the premiere. I imagine the writers wanted him back so that they could bring the gang back together as quickly as possible.

     It is indeed always interesting to remove the protagonist and see how the others cope in his/her absence. 


    What we see in the season premiere is a slight reshuffle of the cards : Bernadette and Amy socialise together (something they usually do only with Penny around) while Penny and Sheldon have to rely on each other without Leonard as their glue. Even after Leonard's return, the "reshuffling" theme continues with the third episode, in which all the "organic" pairs are dismantled and rearranged into "inorganic" duos. I wonder if the writers intend to take the idea further. It would be interesting to see the characters explore new grounds and possibly unveil hitherto unknown aspects of their personalities when associated with other characters they had not really bounded with. 


    We have gotten some good stuff out of it anyway. The scene where he surprises Penny is one I cannot wait to see!

    What interests me in this scene, aside from the very, glaringly obvious, is the fact that Leonard invites himself in Penny's apartment. Something he has very rarely done. He usually knocks (we even had a bit of a kerfuffle because of that after The Closure Alternative). He never assumes he is allowed in. The only exceptions I can think of are The Bath Item Gift Hypothesis (in which he did knock but let himself in without waiting for Penny's answer) and The Tangible Affection Proof (in which he just barged in) : on both occasions, he was so supremely frustrated he forewent (possibly even forgot) his normal "knock-and-wait" routine. 

    Ordinarily, Sheldon is the one who does not mind (over)using his key when he feels he has something important to say to Penny (or when he really has to clean up her place when she sleeps). Leonard does not usually do that. This time, he is comfortable using his key to wait for Penny at her place, without fearing she will throw him out. It is such a breach of his protocol I cannot believe it is an innocent move on the writers' part. 

    Leonard is getting confident. 


    Now say it with me : Careful Icarus ! 

    • Like 3
  15. I've rethought your observations and agree and disagree with you. I agree the real insult was from Raj because he did make everyone a winner because of Penny, But I disagree in regards to expecting to be a more science based scavenger hunt. Since Penny was going to be involved it would be "unfair" to have a scavenger hunt based solely on science.  So to me logically it was going to be a more "regular" scavenger hunt. The others, espicially Leonard and Amy, should have realized that. The funny part seems to be if there had been only one winner it would have been Penny.

    To further this point, I believe it is also worth noting that "scientists" are not experts in all realms of science. So a science-oriented scavenger hunt designed by an astrophysicist (Raj) would not necessarily be any easier to complete for a neuroscientist (Amy) or a microbiologist (Bernadette) than for a layperson (Penny). 

    As proven in The Vacation Solution, physicists do not fare well in biology labs and I would assume the opposite is equally true. 


    Penny and Bernadette would have really beaten the rest.  Now that would have been really unfair. :icon_lol:

    Now that would have ruined the suspense. These two would have wiped the floor with the other teams. 

    • Like 2
  16. Maybe Leonard thought it would be less fighting if he and Penny were on different teams. Then he would only have to deal with her being mad that she wasn't his partner. It might also imply that he could be feeling a little smothered.

    If Leonard were the only one not wanting Penny on his team, I would definitely agree with you and say that there are many ways in which his "names in a hat" proposition could be interpreted. However, the fact that Amy reacts in the exact same fashion as him when Penny offers to pair up with her and Raj's explanation for the "everybody's a winner" trick leave little wiggle room.


    Leonard would rather not have Penny on his team because he thinks she could keep him from winning the race.  

    It does not make him bad; after all, he immediately feels guilty and even considers quitting the scavenger hunt when he realises he hurt Penny's feelings (it takes all of Bernadette's evil genius to keep him focused on the prize). It just makes him wrong. 

    Just like when Penny called theirs a "boring" kind of love : she was not being evil; she was being mistaken. And realised it a couple of episodes later. 


    Perhaps Leonard needs to go through a similar process. He is allowed to make mistakes from time to time. This may be one of those instances. 


    It was an interesting call-back too, as Sheldon's uncontrollable need for closure interfered with the team. It could be a metaphor of Shelddon's larger professional progress, or lack therof. He is so controlled by his emotional tics and flaws that he may not be able to do work of quality. Handing a paper with an algebra mistake to Hawking shows that he's not capable of Nobel quality work. One would think that he would only have handed him a perfect paper. In the first season, Leslie corrected his board of a sign error. These mistakes are so fundamental, one wonders if his insistence on his perfection with his need for misplaced closure is limiting his career. He could learn from Penny to stay on point and not get bogged down in unnecessary details.

    I believe you are absolutely correct. 

    Sheldon's obsessions and peculiarities have allowed him to reach the status he has now. Yett they are starting, or so it seems, to slow him down. Basically, they have taken him this far but cannot take him any further. He might have to rely on other, possibly new, skills in order to develop more. He has started growing a teeny sense of self-sacrifice (he tried to be a good friend to Leonard in The Bon Voyage Reaction, even though there was nothing in it for him), a modicum of emotional openess (he communicated with Amy in The Love Spell Potential; he buys Leonard a welcome back present in the season premiere) and a wee amount of humility (when he had to work with Kripke). 

    He might have to develop those qualities a bit more in the future to be more efficient in his work.

    • Like 3
  17. eta. ha, if you had written binôme I would have been all over it.

    I really enjoy coming here!

    Be careful what you wish for ! If you let me get away with one diacritic, soon enough, I will just write my whole posts in French and you will have to deal with it ;)


    I believe Chiara was comparing the locket to one she had received as a child from an admirer, that had turned her skin green.  She was contrasting the difference between love as a child and an adult. i.e. Locket that turns skin green as a child, no big deal (the thought that counts).

    His name was Alexandre and I still have that necklace. One of my most prized possessions. 

    • Like 3
  18. I am just reacting to what we see in the taping report. They pair Penny and Sheldon together for the scavenger hunt, when they had three other possibilities. Girls against guys was pretty funny before, but the choose Sheldon and Penny after pairing them in the premier?

    I can see why it is a bit disheartening but I wonder how much of the writers' decision was dictated by circumstances.


    As Tensor pointed out on the S7 Spoiler thread, from sundown Sept 4th to tonight (Sept 6th) it is Rosh Hashanah and it seems that both Mr. Helberg and Ms Bialik observed the holiday since neither of them was at the Wednesday night taping (while the Tuesday taping took place during the day, I believe). 

    It is therefore entirely possible that both actors warned the production team ahead of time telling them that they could not work on Tuesday night (Sept 4th) -regular taping night- due to religious obligations and the writers sort of worked that into the story. The probable absence of two actors on the same night might have helped them realise that Amy and Howard had yet to share any meaningful scene. So they decided to pair them up in some way and came up with the idea of the group being divided into "inorganic" binomes. 


    "Inorganic" may be too strong a word; what I mean by it is that amongst this seven-people group, there are pairs of characters that assembled "organically", due to mutual romantic attraction or immediate and intense friendship whereas other associations owe their existence to more circumstancial factors. For the sake of the argument, the "organic" pairs are : Bernadette/Howard; Howard/Raj; Sheldon/Amy; Amy/Penny; Penny/Leonard and Leonard/Sheldon. All either lovers or besties. 


    Amy/Howard is not an "organic" binome. Once you remove these two characters (and Raj, because there needs to be a ringleader and because seven cannot be divided by two), there is only one option remaining for the others. If Bernie goes with Sheldon (inorganic pairing), it leaves Penny and Leonard together (organic). If Bernie goes with Penny (sort of inorganic, though debatable), Sheldon and Leonard end up paired (organic). So to stay in keeping with their "inorganic" theme, the writers had to go for the only other combinations : Leonard/Bernadette; Penny/Sheldon.  



    On a more "intra" level, I do believe there might be some trouble ahead for Leonard and Penny. 

    Now, before anybody starts throwing sharp ones and zeroes at me, allow me to explain. Some time ago, Bangermain pointed out that the writers like to introduce the elements of an issue in the very first couple of episodes in a season only to solve the problem later on. I believe it is correct. 

    Season six was a textbook case : the season premiere introduced the "Penny's ILY" conundrum through the unexpected medium of a drunken and overly enthusiastic Raj. The issue made Penny stumble, caused her to make mistakes (she envisaged breaking up with Leonard) but eventually she found her way back by realising how much and why she loves him ("Sometimes I forget how smart you are" - The Holographic Excitation) and, at last, we got the long awaited ILY in The 43 Peculiarity. After that, it was pretty much smooth sailing... By Leonard and Penny's standards of course.

    This season's issue, as far as the Lenny is concerned, may very well be the "Penny's physique/Penny's brain" dichotomy. The season premiere will contain a scene in which Leonard shows off Penny's remarkable anatomy to some of his crewmates and we now know that the third episode will feature a scene in which he refuses to pair up with her for fear she might slow him down in the course of an "intellectual" game. There might be something in there that will get developped a bit later in the season. 

    Just like Penny had to be reminded of how much she loves Leonard back in the early days of season six, this year Leonard may have to remember that his gorgeous girlfriend is also a pretty smart cookie. 


    There might be some to and fro; there might be some frustration along the way. But do not fear ! They will see it through. 

    • Like 5
  19. Haha join the club everyone is puzzled to as why people ship Sheldon and Penny in a romantic dynamic, I have watched the show since the pilot, the only reason Sheldon and Penny seven years later are even Friends is because of Leonard's persistence in making Penny part of the group. I have been confused always to even where the idea comes from, and what amazing friendship? Sheldon and Penny are no closer then she is with Howard or Raj theirs no difference IMO. It is a scavenger hunt and the writers decided to pair up Sheldon and Penny knowing it will bring alot of banter and comedy, they have been friends for seven years. Only thing I can think of is Shamy fans are getting more frustrated, if an ep doesen't have their relationship being the basis, like I said TBH coulden't care less the relationships well take care of themselfs, its the Big Bang Theory always has been always well be

    To be honest, I do not judge the 'ship itself. As far as I am concerned, fans can 'ship whichever combination of characters they see fit. That could not be more OK by me. Shenny 'shippers do not hurt anyone : they just fancy Sheldon and Penny together. Good ! 


    My only point is that the writers could have made the Shenny canon. They have had six years for that. Nobody could have stopped them : neither the fans, nor the network, nor the studio, etc. No one. They chose not to. So to interpret their decision to pair Sheldon and Penny on a scavenger hunt as a concerted effort to hurt or damage the canonical relationships seems erroneous to me. 

    • Like 8
  20. All I am saying is at this time the writers want scenes of P/S together and I am not talking romantic scenes.  Think about how they are writing things at this time ----- supposedly the Lenny guardian said they would be putting them together and that is what they are doing.

    I understand that for us, 'shippers of either Lenny or Shamy persuasion, it can be frustrating to see the couples we favour "dismantled". However, so much of their development is already focused on romance-related business that a little break, on occasion, can only be beneficial. 


    As for the writers' obvious delight at pairing Sheldon and Penny, we have to accept it and admit that they know a good association when they see one. 

    Penny and Sheldon are fun together. They just are. Both are superbly callous; they can say pretty outrageous stuff without even noticing. However, when they deliver such lines to their respective S.O.s (or even their friends), there is always a slight undertone of discomfort for the characters around them are rather sensitive. Penny and Sheldon are not sentimental. Not even a little bit. And they do not give a flying toss about each other's opinion.They can dish out insults and barbs at each other all day long without anybody's feelings ever getting hurt. It is manna from heaven for the writers : they can reach their "cruelty quota" without any downside. 


    Let us allow them their (and our) fun and not read too much into it. Soon enough, the Shamy and the Lenny will take centre stage. The characters just need a little breezer. 

    • Like 7
  21. Please I saw this coming a mile away, when I read 7x02 when Penny was doing everything to make Sheldon happy after he found out Leonard was back and didn't tell him.  Now P/S are thick as thieves and so Leonard/Amy had to be made the scapegoats (not wanting to be team up with Penny) in order for P/S to be teamed together.  I am not going to jump down Leonard and Amy throats because the writers have a hard on for P/S being together at this time.

    I am sorry to ask but are we reading the same material ? 


    Penny does everything in 7.02 to make Sheldon happy and completely ignores Leonard ?  In that she tries to make sure Sheldon's feelings are not too hurt by his best friend's deception and shows such tremendous excitement at Leonard's return that she implicitely allows him to live with her 24/7 for a couple of days. A notion she used to find borderline traumatic not too long ago.


    Sheldon and Penny are thick as thieves ?  In a way that makes Sheldon depressed when he is paired with his neighbour and makes Penny bang her head against a door to escape Sheldon's compulsive need to finish a puzzle. 


    The writers have a "hard on" for Sheldon and Penny ?  So much so that in six years, they have never shown these two to be romantically compatible. Six years of TPTB being able to have their characters do whatever they wanted and they never once had either of them declare any romantic attachment to each other. If they had wished to, they could have paired Sheldon and Penny up. No one would have stopped them. Yet they did not...


    I am officially puzzled.  

    • Like 6
  22. First off, thank you so very much to Roxanne and Alexandra. The report is great and has been so very swiftly delivered. Incredible job !


    It could be a really good episode or a rather average one depending on how the scenes we know nothing about are woven into those we have been spoilt for. 


    The pairings are interesting. Aside from Sheldon and Penny, they are couples we are no used to seeing : Howard and Amy have never interacted before and Leonard and Bernadette do not spend that much time together either. My main problem is Raj : he is a member of the group. The writers should find a way to include him more, not as a ringleader but as a full-on teammate.


    I believe the Amy/Howard scenes have the potential to pack a real punch. Both are musical (Mr Helberg is a talented musician and Ms. Bialik's singing voice is very sweet) and the fact that they bound over their common love for a singer is definitely promising. Can you imagine the rocking version of "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" these two could come up with, with Amy on the harp and Howard on the keyboard ? That could be epic.


    Bernadette and Leonard : I have to admit I love it when Evil Bernie comes out to play. The idea that she would upset Leonard on purpose to make him more fight-ready is hilarious to me. I can already envision her malevolent grin and his very pissed off face. 


    Penny and Sheldon : I have mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, I am getting a bit uncomfortable with the "Penny is stupid" trope. We know she is scientifically illiterate and poorly educated. That is perfectly fine and in keeping with the character. However, she is not an idiot. The other characters know that. So the idea that both Leonard and Amy would recoil at the mere possibility of being paired with her on a scavenger hunt for fear of losing (as well as the fact that Raj would turn it into an "everybody wins" situation due to Penny's seeming lack of intellectual prowess) is both odd and canonically incorrect. 

    On the other hand, the writers seem aware of that discrepancy and make sure that Penny gets her revenge, in a way. She gets most of the clues and manages to finish the hunt in time with the "smart" team.

    As for her and Sheldon being paired together, it is nothing new but why not ? After all, with their very opposite abilities, they could make a great team. Like the Justice League where all the characters have complementary powers. And it is interesting to see that once again, Sheldon's love of minutiae is what slows the team down. If only he could relax just a little bit, he would kill this kind of competition. 


    Also, "run all the way to India" is a great line. 

    • Like 5
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.