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5.22 The Stag Convergence (Apr. 26)

How do you rate this episode?  

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  1. 1. How do you rate this episode?



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Last night's episode of The Big Bang Theory topped American Idol in key adults 18-49 demographic, despite falling to a season low in the ratings.

"The Stag Convergence" was watched by 12.52 million people, down by 770,000 viewers from the last original episode. The Big Bang Theory finished second in households and total viewers, ranking behind American Idol. In the important adults 18-49 demo, Big Bang edged slightly ahead of American Idol to finish first with a 4.0/13 rating, down by four tenths of a rating point from April 5. The Big Bang Theory was the night's highest-rated program and was also the night's most-watched scripted program.

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I didn't like it too much, it wasn't funny at all.

And Sheldon is definitely not Sheldon anymore.

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Just my opinion, but does Penny not know how to be tender to Leonard at all? To me, the more tender moments would be where true chemistry would come through. Penny seemed to be torn apart with the Leonard/Priya pairing, yet, when they get back together for the "beta test", she doesn't seem to be able to be anything but snarky with Leonard. To me, moments like in season 3 (I believe) when she calls Leonard her little homunculus is a bit of tenderness that was cute. Now, there are only put-downs or disinterest. I don't get it. I enjoy the Leonard/Penny pairing, but it seems they are taking them nowhere or backwards.

Other than that, I thought the episode was "ok".

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Guest I'm not dead Cheryl

The thing is, after a second viewing of the episode, that I think this episode was not supposed to be an episode only for laughs. And I'm ok with it.

This episode was all about Howard. The rest of the characters were only an enviroment set and now that I think about it I love it. This episode was to show how much Howard has changed from his creepy/perv self into a grown man, that may still have mommy issues and everything, but despite that knows what he wants and who he wants to be with. He is not old Howard anymore.

He is no doubt the character that has grown and evolved the most of all of them (who would have thought?) and I do enjoy that. Howard showed everybody a lesson last night. He was able to better himself, to grow and finally become a grown up in all senses, something that the other characters on the show still haven't managed to do.

I love the back to back hilarious episodes like everybody else here, but at the same time I do love that we finally got an episode with so much feeling and heart behind it. It is not all about cheap laughs. Cheap laughs fade. And IMO this episode was fantastic. All the other characters were there basically to show a contrast on how much Howard is the most mature of them all.

Sheldon drinking and being silly I do think it was made on purpose (and for the people complaining he was OOC... he was drunk.. he was supposed to be OOC), Leonard being insecure and trying to show everyone else he had also done crazy stuff, Raj going overboard with his speech, Stuart being pathetic, Kripke being a pervert and Wheaton being an ass. it was a great way to show contrast. Because that`'s what they were, as I said before.. this episode was ALL about Howard, and that's the reason why the rest of the chracters were not even supposed to stand out.

It also serverd as a statement on how much Howard really wants to marry Bernadette and how much he is commited to her. It served as a very good response to all the people around saying they miss old Howard and how he would make a horrible husband. Old Howard is no more, and honestly, if there is still someone out there who doesn't want them married, I'm sorry to say, but I think those people have no heart.

I really loved this episode. I only laughed out loud at the girls scene with the "stop and go" bottles and Stuart stealing the dollar from Raj, is true, but this episode did leave a LOT behind, a lot more than just laughs.-

just my opinion (but let's face it, I'm usually right... bazinga!)

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@Sursonica; Well said. The episode was about Howard, and it was great for him. It's his wedding and it's his time to shine, not anyone else's.

As everyone else said, Simon did an AMAZING job.

On another front, I feel like too many people blame the change in Sheldon's mannerisms on Jim.

I find this unfair. It's not like the actors have free reign over how they portray the characters. I'm not saying I know everything, but I've been to a couple tapings which was enough to realize that sometimes they have to stop the actors and say, "Do that differently" or "you need to over act a little bit more."

The blame falls in more than one place, so don't blame Jim. Remember it's his job, and he does what he's told. Sheldon's "downward spiral" is going to start becoming a self fulfilling prophecy and that's all people are going to focus on.

I hope season 6 is more well thought out because they have time to think about it. With the hiatus, he doesn't have to be ready with material weekly. He knows he has the most popular show on television and I don't think he wants it to be bad just as much as we don't. I'm hopeful, and I look forward to the next two episodes. I'm sure I'll rewatch this one and I'll think it's okay.

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Leonard, Raj and especially Sheldon came across as very unfunny and unlikable in this episode. My wife and I looked at each after the episode and said "That wasn't very good". We usually watch one of the season 1-4 reruns every night and it's striking how far the show has fallen this season. Sheldon has been absolutely awful and unfunny and he IS the show. If the show had started out like this I wouldn't be watching it anymore. They seem to have lost the "magic" that made it so entertaining.

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I agree with you sursonica. the howard/bernie storyline was a very heartfelt and mature storyline and I was glad to see it. But I don't think that excuses the lack of good writing for the rest of the characters. I have been trying to see the bright side for a while now, but after this episode, I just feel sad. I don't know if they have new writers, directors, or what, but something definitely isn't right.

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I still haven't watched this episode in one piece, hence didn't comment till now. I saw Howard's apology scene and I must say it brought tears to my eyes - and almost nothing on TBBT ever does. It was a truly touching moment, and I agree with all of you that Simon shone brightly. I tend to think Sursonica is absolutely right about Howard and his growth being the principal focus of this episode. Certainly that scene was a series highlight for me.

On another front, I feel like too many people blame the change in Sheldon's mannerisms on Jim.

I find this unfair. It's not like the actors have free reign over how they portray the characters. I'm not saying I know everything, but I've been to a couple tapings which was enough to realize that sometimes they have to stop the actors and say, "Do that differently" or "you need to over act a little bit more."

The blame falls in more than one place, so don't blame Jim. Remember it's his job, and he does what he's told. Sheldon's "downward spiral" is going to start becoming a self fulfilling prophecy and that's all people are going to focus on.

I was about to say this, you did it before me. Looking at the kind of meticulous detail and dedication to retakes that comes across in taping reports, I find it hard to believe that any actor on this show could follow their own sweet will and play their character against the wishes of the writers/directors. Yes, Jim is playing Sheldon differently - for anyone who has been observing, it's a gradual process of change that has followed an arc over this season - and it's clearly planned and intentional. If Jim does a certain expression, it means the writers wanted that expression. And if they are directing him to do things differently, there has to be a reason why.

Now, one can say (like the old Sheldon) 'change is never good', but as Howard clearly demonstrated in this episode, change can be good, even among weird nerds. For Sheldon, the change is so far just noticeable, not necessarily good. But it might be building up to something. Some of us have the theory that he's secretly in love - and like even ordinary people get a little crazy when that happens, Sheldon is getting a little hyper and crazy in his own odd way. If the show intends him to get more intimate with Amy than he has so far, that certainly needs a gradual build-up, since the old Sheldon would never go that way.

Is that what they plan? Let's see. While for some, the whole process would 'ruin his character', for many of us it would just add an interesting new aspect to it, like some weird alien flower unfolding. Because whatever happens, he'll still remain Sheldon.. he'll never become normal, or do things in a normal way. Not even romance.

I've read posts explaining this idea much more eloquently than I can, am almost tempted to quote multiple essays here but that may not be appropriate.

I did see a clip of Sheldon's stag party speech, and I must say he was certainly OOC there, for the obvious reason that he was tipsy - like in Pants Alternative. The difference is that this time he got drunk on purpose. I thought the whole point of his speech was that it was so bad and unfunny as to be funny. He attempted this kind of thing for the first time in his life - trying to let his hair down, stand up and speak in a party - and while he did make a miserable mess of it (being what he is), at least he was a sport about it. Sheldon's getting into experimenting - and it may all be leading up to agreeing to experiment with Amy.

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The focus of this episode (stag parties) was a necessary episode because of the direction the show is going with Howard and Bernadette but the show wasn't executed very well, I thought.

Sheldon's character has always been sort of condescending to others but it had bee portrayed as more or less unintentional because Sheldon and his advanced state of knowledge actually thinks he's helping people by pointing out their flaws. But the way it was done in this episode, him drinking voluntarily and taking pot shots at Howard like he's always been the intentional jokester of the pack is just wrong and makes me wonder if the writers have ANY intention of keeping characters true to themselves instead of making them like any other character any time they want.

Yes, Simon did a great job playing Howard and he is a very good actor and that was a nice heartfelt part of the episode.

Though I wish I didn't keep getting the feeling the writers are more and more making the show into that 'lowest common denominator' type comedy. This should NOT be anything like Two and a Half Men but sometimes it seems like it.

I'd like to see less intentional and mean spirited jabs, less concern about everyone's sexual lifestyle and more focus on adorable nerd life and the difficulties we can all understand in relating to different people in everyday life and I'd be happy.

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I haven’t laughed once this episode. I don’t know what was worse: Raj talking about Howard the same way Amy talks about Penny or Sheldon’s speech. I understand it was supposed to be “so unfunny it’s funnyâ€, but it was a complete failure. Those random bazingas didn’t help either. Anyway, those jokes about Stuart being poor were dragged on way too long. Stuart isn’t funny when he’s pathetic loser imo, I hope he bounces back quick.

The scenes with the girls weren’t any better. I’ve never been a fan of those scenes anyway, I always find them so boring.

Nope, didn’t enjoy the episode at all.

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Everyone except Simon Hedberg was a one joke character tonight

But he really sold it despite having the most uncreative diatribe "Made me a better man"

I did laugh once this episode, I believe that is the 2nd laugh since season 4. A dog's hindquarters and the sun come into play.

On a site note, I am amazed that it took until page 20 (don't know skipped alot of pages) to actually talk about the episode itself...

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I am good with character development and I am good with sheldon changing, if it is done right, but the writing in this episode, particulary for sheldon, was just bad. They need to remember that sheldon is the most popular character on this show, so does it make sense to change something drastically that was already working? No.

My humble opinion. Hopefully the next episode will be better.

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Hello, everybody. I've been lurking for a while now, and I decided to finally register to give my two cents about this episode.

All in all, it was alright, but not worth the build-up I subconsciously gave it given the long wait. Don't get me wrong--Simon's performance was just brilliant, but the rest of the episode was a real let-down.

Let's go character-by-character.

Sheldon: Eh, the drinking and his seemingly greater alcohol tolerance didn't bother me as much as they might have, but it still seemed off. Normally, he's kind of a jerk to everybody because he's just incapable of telling a lie even by omission--he says what he thinks. His speech at the stag party was just mean-spirited at times, as was the cup of chicken broth (I also refuse to believe that a germophobe like Sheldon would keep a block of chicken in his refrigerator for eight years). Generally, it's in line with what I view as his overall decay in the past few seasons, but I expected some real comedic or personal gold out of him after a three week period of no new episodes.

Leonard: Can't remember much of him from this episode.

Raj: Honestly, I think he was handled well here. Through the inebriation and his own 'off-ness,' it is plausible that he did not see the implications of his speech at the Stag Party--I derived humor from this speech. I especially liked his offer to combat-roll out of the car.

Stuart: They're playing up his poverty too much--if Penny can maintain an apartment on a Cheesecake Factory waitress's wages, then surely Stuart would have sold the comic book store and done something else if he's reduced to sleeping in it. It might be played for comedic effect, but it just defies the suspension of disbelief.

Kripke: I liked him here.

Wheaton: I honestly can't figure out why he was in this episode--there's no reason Kripke couldn't have uploaded the Youtube video, and Wheaton wasn't used much at all here.

Penny: I enjoyed her character here--especially the "that's the most beautiful thing I've ever heard, and it came out of you!" line. No complaints.

Bernadette: Good performance. She mainly served as a catalyst for Raj's lines about leaving the car, and Howard's great apology at the end.

Amy: I didn't like her at all here. Her 'girl-crush' is getting really creepy, like Wollowitz's creepiest lines taken to the tenth power, but without his endearing nature.

Which brings us to:

Howard: His apology blew me away. It was brilliantly written, and Simon did a great job of delivering it. In fact, it might have been too good--I get the feeling that the writers devoted so much effort into making his apology that good that they put less effort into the other characters. I hope Simon gets an Emmy for this--he's earned it.

Miscellaneous: Liked the vanity card, and for whatever reason I got a chuckle out of seeing Captain Sweatpants at the stag party.

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I'm with a lot of you here.

The episode wasn't worth the waiting ... it was okay, but not very well written.

I understand that it may be necessary for the whole Bernadette/Howard-wedding to bring these to characters forward, but that's no excuse for not having the other character's be funny as always.

Laughs were really rare this epsiode and actually came up on this whole Leonard/Penny thing when they talked about crazy sexual experiences and on their final scene that i liked. But all over the writers aren't developing this whole L/P thing in the last epsiodes, it's always Leonard trying to go faster and Penny holding him back ... but as spoilers say, hopefully there will be something on that case in the next episode :)

But it's quite annoying that so many people always complain about the current season, it had a lot of great episodes with funny moments and it also had some of these "okay" epsiodes that weren't as good as the others. But somehow a lot of people seem to forget that every season had those kind of episodes, here in Germany we are still having season 1 - 4 reruns and there are quite a few episodes i saw through the last weeks that weren't any better than this one.

But overall i'll go with BazingaFan :) Hopefully the next 2 episodes will be better.

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Just as a generalisation - re American and UK comedy, I think one of the double edged swords of good American comedies (and dramas), is they don't know when to quit. They end up running a ridiculous amount of seasons well past the shows greatness - a good example being Two and a Half Men. The double edged sword is the fans never want it to end - and I am the same with TBBT!

When you look at UK comedy, much of it runs a short/er spell and then finishes while still on top. Most famously something like Faulty Towers...twelve incredible episodes and then gone!

I am being devil's advocate, because I really do love TBBT, but maybe this will be another one of these shows that doesn't know/wont know when to quit.

Matt

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Matt's got a point here. Being constantly funny over 24 episodes per season is a bit much to ask. 

Only just managed to see this episode and it's okay, not amazing. It answered a question I was having about Howard getting married and why Bernadette would want to marry him at all. Very important to note he made his apology in front of Penny, who needed to hear it, in order to see him in a new light.

I do not like Sheldon drunk, never have. He has a bad reaction to alcohol. The Pants Alternative makes me cringe as well even though his acting is great. Also in The Grasshopper Experiment when he gets on the piano after Penny spikes his cola, horrible. So as soon as Sheldon picked up that whiskey I thought 'oh boy, here we go!'.

On the whole, not a standout episode. They seem to be syncing up the couples. Giving each pair their own distinction. Leonard has become nerdier again which is working better with Penny. Amy and Sheldon are just oddballs. Raj is an unknown quantity. I agree with much of HeWolf's post, where did the threesome come from? And they missed a great opportunity with the stag party scene. I've made a few posts over the changes to Sheldon this season so I won't repeat here. He is attempting to fit in, something he never would have considered in the past.

At least we won't have to wait three weeks for the next one. Hence the long thread. 

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Is it just me, or is this episode/show reaaalllllllllyyyyyy unfunny?

Seriously, I almost feel like there's something wrong with me, this episode was so boring and unrelatable and overall unentertaining.

(Too many sex jokes too.)

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I agree, this episode wasn't as funny as usual. I laughed at Penny saying 'what are you and the lost boys doing?' But I love that film. It would have been funnier if Sheldon had been his usual self and not been drunk. I was pleased to see Stuart, he has no money and he's got the blues. :( I hope he wins the lottery and becomes super rich.

They didn't make the most of having the guys in one place, as some of the other people have said. With everyone, including Caption Sweatpants and co., all together, it should turned in to a gaming event. Or even karaoke. I would have liked to see seen silly dancing or something. Sword fighting with the chairs. It could have been a fun event.

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Finally watched the episode. I thought it was a sweet story, and very meaningful for Howard. He's shown an amazing amount of emotional growth and evolving maturity, and his apology to Bernadette choked me up (I'm not even a Howard/Bernadette fan). It was an instance of great acting by Simon.

There weren't that many LOL moments ('stop and go' did it for me, and Stuart's quietly pocketing the money from the table, but not much else). The stag party could certainly have been funnier, but I got the impression that the point of this episode wasn't about being funny, it was more about Howard's character growth and firmly establishing the basis for Howard and Bernadette's connection, prior to leading them into a marriage. On that level, it was successful.

Sheldon being drunk - again, it wasn't wildly funny but I felt this storyline was also more about Sheldon's character evolution. For once, he decided to risk it and try something new, he got drunk on purpose and dared to stand up and speak at a party, and he handled the inevitable hangover sportingly. Even if he did badly at it (that must have been one of the most stilted, awkward stag party speeches ever), he still made an experiment and for him that was big. Probably leading up to further character developments.

I loved Leonard's expressions in reaction to the others, throughout the stag party.

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Finally watched the episode. I thought it was a sweet story, and very meaningful for Howard. He's shown an amazing amount of emotional growth and evolving maturity, and his apology to Bernadette choked me up (I'm not even a Howard/Bernadette fan). It was an instance of great acting by Simon.

There weren't that many LOL moments ('stop and go' did it for me, and Stuart's quietly pocketing the money from the table, but not much else). The stag party could certainly have been funnier, but I got the impression that the point of this episode wasn't about being funny, it was more about Howard's character growth and firmly establishing the basis for Howard and Bernadette's connection, prior to leading them into a marriage. On that level, it was successful.

Sheldon being drunk - again, it wasn't wildly funny but I felt this storyline was also more about Sheldon's character evolution. For once, he decided to risk it and try something new, he got drunk on purpose and dared to stand up and speak at a party, and he handled the inevitable hangover sportingly. Even if he did badly at it (that must have been one of the most stilted, awkward stag party speeches ever), he still made an experiment and for him that was big. Probably leading up to further character developments.

I loved Leonard's expressions in reaction to the others, throughout the stag party.

I have very much the same thoughts on this episode as you and most of the other reviews here. It didn't live up to my expectations as far as having many good laughs. Sheldon's jokes were pretty lame and sub par. What the episode lacked in comedy it made up for with emotional drama with Howard's apology. For a guy, I'm a sucker for tear jerkers.

Also I was disappointed that there was no stwippas at the party,LOL.

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Also I was disappointed that there was no stwippas at the party,LOL.

The strippers could have been cult heroines, wonderwoman, supergirl and catwoman. Sheldon could criticise the inaccuracies of their costumes and Raj could join in. Although I'm not sure that would necessarily be a good thing.

I guess proving Howard is a changed man was the point of the exercise and unless the strippers were completely gnarly looking (which would have worked) it wouldn't have made the point it did. Either way, nerds can have fun and it seemed like a dull evening. The girls included.

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Also I was disappointed that there was no stwippas at the party,LOL.

The strippers could have been cult heroines, wonderwoman, supergirl and catwoman. Sheldon could criticise the inaccuracies of their costumes and Raj could join in. Although I'm not sure that would necessarily be a good thing.

I guess proving Howard is a changed man was the point of the exercise and unless the strippers were completely gnarly looking (which would have worked) it wouldn't have made the point it did. Either way, nerds can have fun and it seemed like a dull evening. The girls included.

That's true, after all it was Howard's decision not to have them. The cult heroines would have been cool though. They kept it real and conservative as you would imagine a group of mostly physicists would through a Bachelor party.

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Also I was disappointed that there was no stwippas at the party,LOL.

The strippers could have been cult heroines, wonderwoman, supergirl and catwoman. Sheldon could criticise the inaccuracies of their costumes and Raj could join in. Although I'm not sure that would necessarily be a good thing.

I guess proving Howard is a changed man was the point of the exercise and unless the strippers were completely gnarly looking (which would have worked) it wouldn't have made the point it did. Either way, nerds can have fun and it seemed like a dull evening. The girls included.

That's true, after all it was Howard's decision not to have them. The cult heroines would have been cool though. They kept it real and conservative as you would imagine a group of mostly physicists would through a Bachelor party.

Yes, it was quite a dignified stag party. Well, relatively. :)

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