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Season 6 spoilers


Pomita
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First, thank you infinitely, Monique. Absolutely fantastic job, as always. And don't feel bad for not remembering everything, please. Not only is it perfectly normal, it is good, ultimately. It leaves us with enough info to be content and enough doubt to be properly surprised when the show is broadcast. Best of two worlds, really !

 

So the turbulence is about who's going to get tenure. I am ok with that; it sounds good.

 

I have to say, I love the darkness of this episode. There is something so delightfully gruesome about a professor dying in his office and nobody noticing until his corpse starts smelling. I am very partial to these little peeks into the academic world : Crawley being dismissed in spite of being the ultimate expert in his field gave way to a superb scene and an amazing Lewis Black cameo; Dr. what's-his-name whose office was given to Sheldon and who would hang around the place stark naked made me laugh very hard; the head of something or other telling Leonard that he too had to do certain unsavoury things to get funding, etc. I adore how the whole of Caltech is completely bonkers and desperate in so many ways. It is such a contrast to how the world of academia is usually portrayed : ethereal, solely concerned with research and intellectual conundrums. The reality is actually much closer to what depicted on the show : odd, competitive, crual and darkly funny.

 

Sheldon... Roots ? Secret handshake ? Really ? You've simply got to love this man-child. He is just so cluelessly offensive and adorable ("you're black, right ?"). I cannot wait to see that. Just like I cannot wait to see Leonard's eyes popping out his skull, Tex Avery Wolf style, when Penny "ties up her shoes".  Nice redux of the smart glasses scene !

 

The competition may be an arc for the rest of the season, since they all are on the shortlist at the end of the episode. What are the writers going for, I wonder. A Survivor-style, one elimination per week, thing ? It could work out : there are four episodes left and if Kripke made it to the finals (since Sheldon in one of the maybes, Kripke should be too, I guess, since his research is ahaead of Sheldon's), there are enough contestants for that. 

 

Let's play a little game of "what are their chances", shall we ? 

 

Raj : the underdog. Giving him the position would certainly be a shock for the audience because I don't think anybody expects him to get it. But aside from the surprise such a decision would cause, I don't see how that could add to the show in the long run. Don't get me wrong, I love Raj very much : he is a funny and incredibly sweet character. Nevertheless, there is not enough of a cloud of tension around him to make his professional advancement particularly dramatic.

 

Kripke : the golden boy. If anything we've heard about him is true, he seems like the natural choice. His research is more advanced than Sheldon's and for all his despicable attitude, he is an incredibly talented scientist. Him getting tenure would certainly upset Sheldon to the nth degree and would probably give way to another round of revenge pranking. I enjoy that tremendously but wonder if it wouldn't be a bit repetitive, especially since their last confrontation was no so long ago. 

 

Sheldon and Leonard : the Remus and Romulus of Caltech. I put them together because I guess they'll be at the center of it. On the one hand, Sheldon is supremely gifted, intelligent and eager to leave his mark in his field. On the other, Leonard is equally competent and, in spite of what his roommate asserts, enough of a noted scientist to get grants, even without the help of his sexy bod' ! From a purely technical standpoint, they are both extremely strong contenders. But from a narrative viewpoint, Leonard has the advantage. Not only is he the hero of the show, he is also the one who out of the two, least expects it. If Sheldon got tenure, it would only be a confirmation of their respective statuses, as they both see them : Sheldon as the head honcho and Leonard as Santa's little helper. Don Quixote and Sancho Pansa. Conversely, if Leonard gets tenure over Sheldon, it is a threat to the status quo. It complexifies the hitherto hierarchy and may impact their relationship in the future. 

 

Therefore, my bet (but it is a very small one, like him) is on Leonard. Narratively, it is what makes most sense. It presents the two friends with a genuine cause for confrontation; it reshuffles the cards of their relationship in a way that is quite new to the show's structure; it provides Leonard with an opportunity to feel confident about himself (which is rare enough an occurrence to be noted); it gives Amy a chance to console Sheldon; and it may lead to even further drama... 

For I cannot quite shake the feeling that it all leads to something potentially big. First, Leonard realises that he never really chose to be a scientist. Then a tenured professor dies in his office without anybody noticing for days/weeks and Leonard gets offered his job; the dead, lonely, sad scientist's job. For life.

 

I sense trouble.

 

PS Once again, that post is way too long. Sorry, sorry, sorry. It's like a disease or something.

I also felt  this is a set up for future drama.  I know Leonard would be the logical choice, but really we have seen "turbelence" already in Sheldon's career.  I really hope that Sheldon is chosen, or Kripke or Raj....Leonard getting tenure before Sheldon would be a real blow to that relationship.

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@chiara great post! Don't apologize for its length!

I think you make a great case for Leonard becoming tenured if it comes back up again. Your post also made me connect with how this episode related to another idea too: since The Egg Salad Equivalency Sheldon has been learning that he can no longer completely ignore other people's opinion of him. Previously, he only cared that people respect him for his genius, how they felt about his social or personal interactions he cared very little because he felt it completely unimportant.

In this episode he understands what people think of him can affect his chances at work and attempts (hilariously) to make things right with insensitive gifts and has Amy coach him on responses for the memorial service. The same concern came up in the Bakersfield diner. He cared what complete strangers thought about him. I think that scene was even more revealing because it had no consequences at all.

I think Leonard getting tenured before Sheldon might make this lesson stick. I know people are fond of saying you shouldn't care what other people think of you and should be yourself. That's fine, but you should also accept that if you care too little you invite other problems. It's not enough to conform to social convention on occasion; I think Sheldon is learning that he needs to at least try to understand and navigate it himself.

Edited by bostrich
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Maybe Sheldon should have let Amy coach him not only on his responses at the funeral, but also on appropriate gifts for colleagues.  :wacko:

 

A couple of other thoughts:  Raj must have been drinking either at the funeral or just before because he was talking in front of Amy.  They really need to do away with the selective mutism to avoid this kind of situation.  Also, if Howard wasn't competing for the tenure spot, why was he at the funeral?

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Maybe Sheldon should have let Amy coach him not only on his responses at the funeral, but also on appropriate gifts for colleagues.  :wacko:

 

A couple of other thoughts:  Raj must have been drinking either at the funeral or just before because he was talking in front of Amy.  They really need to do away with the selective mutism to avoid this kind of situation.  Also, if Howard wasn't competing for the tenure spot, why was he at the funeral?

 

I think that's one thing that made me assume earlier that he was also competing for the spot.  Maybe he decided to go out of respect?  I'll have to go back and re-read it, but I know that they originally said that none of them were going to go to the funeral, so were they all surprised to see each other there or did they know before the service that everyone had changed their minds?

 

I don't know--but on the technical side, I suppose they wanted the whole gang there at the end...

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Maybe Sheldon should have let Amy coach him not only on his responses at the funeral, but also on appropriate gifts for colleagues.  :wacko:

 

A couple of other thoughts:  Raj must have been drinking either at the funeral or just before because he was talking in front of Amy.  They really need to do away with the selective mutism to avoid this kind of situation.  Also, if Howard wasn't competing for the tenure spot, why was he at the funeral?

That's the problem with basing opinions on taping reports. No matter how much they try, they can't be expected to do a perfect job. They are there to enjoy the show, the taping report is a secondary concern. Plus there's no way to know how a show's going to be edited until it airs. As a result subtleties will fall through the cracks, and/or be altered by the POV of the reporter and/or the reader. 

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That's the problem with basing opinions on taping reports. No matter how much they try, they can't be expected to do a perfect job. They are there to enjoy the show, the taping report is a secondary concern. Plus there's no way to know how a show's going to be edited until it airs. As a result subtleties will fall through the cracks, and/or be altered by the POV of the reporter and/or the reader. 

 

Oh, I absolutely get it.  Taping reports are imperfect, if only for the fact that they can't put into words all the actors' intonations, facial expressions, etc.  I don't have an opinion yet of this episode, just a few ponderings that may or may not be settled when the episode actually airs.  What I generally do with the taping reports is read them once and only quickly.  That way I get the gist of the story but by the time it airs I've forgotten much of it so there's plenty to surprise and enjoy.

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Oh, I absolutely get it.  Taping reports are imperfect, if only for the fact that they can't put into words all the actors' intonations, facial expressions, etc.  I don't have an opinion yet of this episode, just a few ponderings that may or may not be settled when the episode actually airs.  What I generally do with the taping reports is read them once and only quickly.  That way I get the gist of the story but by the time it airs I've forgotten much of it so there's plenty to surprise and enjoy.

 

Same here. I try to avoid nitpicking on the report, or even thinking too much about it, as far as possible. I read it just for the sugar rush of having an overall mental picture of the episode, and getting to fantasize about how some of the enjoyable lines/scenes will play out. These fantastic actors just take everything to another level!

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I think that's one thing that made me assume earlier that he was also competing for the spot.  Maybe he decided to go out of respect?  I'll have to go back and re-read it, but I know that they originally said that none of them were going to go to the funeral, so were they all surprised to see each other there or did they know before the service that everyone had changed their minds?

 

I don't know--but on the technical side, I suppose they wanted the whole gang there at the end...

Maybe the entire faculty was invited ? So they could all pay their respects to a guy whose absence went unnoticed by them for days/weeks...

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I don't know how many of you have seen this already, but I found this sneak peak for those who can't wait :p

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfk2gZ7bbFg

 

Oh and if the video isn't showing up (which is isn't for me for some reason) then here's the url you can copy and paste:

 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfk2gZ7bbFg

Edited by Razberrypie
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I don't know how many of you have seen this already, but I found this sneak peak for those who can't wait :p

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfk2gZ7bbFg

 

Oh and if the video isn't showing up (which is isn't for me for some reason) then here's the url you can copy and paste:

 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfk2gZ7bbFg

 

It's funny--it showed up for me yesterday, but today all the places it was linked or copied have the message "This content cannot be displayed in a frame" ???

 

But just now when I quoted you, the youtube link showed up in the quoted portion...

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You're very welcome, everyone. For the record, I'd like to clarify that they were simply trash talking and brought each others mom's into the mix. They didn't actually start with, "Yo' momma..." Haha.

At one point, Sheldon even said, "for one dollar" when he talked about having coitus with Raj's mom but we'll see if they leave that in. LOL.

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You're very welcome, everyone. For the record, I'd like to clarify that they were simply trash talking and brought each others mom's into the mix. They didn't actually start with, "Yo' momma..." Haha.

At one point, Sheldon even said, "for one dollar" when he talked about having coitus with Raj's mom but we'll see if they leave that in. LOL.

:icon_lol: I can't wait to see it and I hope they leave the coitus with Raj's mom bit into the scene as well.

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Changing the subject, tonight's show sounds great and I can't wait to see the girls dressed up as Disney characters. I only thing I think I'm not going to like is the ending, because it seems a little too crude, the guys all wanting sex because the girls look so pretty. It would have been nicer if when Howard saw Cinderella he turned the radio on and danced with her like she was at that princes ball. Penny/Sleeping Beauty should have fell asleep on the couch, so when Leonard came in, he would be so entralled with her beauty he walked over, knelt, and kissed her to wake her up. Sheldon could have come back to find Amy with 7 midgets talking and when she sees him, she invites him over to meet her new friends/admirerers.

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Changing the subject, tonight's show sounds great and I can't wait to see the girls dressed up as Disney characters. I only thing I think I'm not going to like is the ending, because it seems a little too crude, the guys all wanting sex because the girls look so pretty. It would have been nicer if when Howard saw Cinderella he turned the radio on and danced with her like she was at that princes ball. Penny/Sleeping Beauty should have fell asleep on the couch, so when Leonard came in, he would be so entralled with her beauty he walked over, knelt, and kissed her to wake her up. Sheldon could have come back to find Amy with 7 midgets talking and when she sees him, she invites him over to meet her new friends/admirerers.

 

Yeah, well, I don't think they ever intended to play out any fairy tales with the endings.

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Changing the subject, tonight's show sounds great and I can't wait to see the girls dressed up as Disney characters. I only thing I think I'm not going to like is the ending, because it seems a little too crude, the guys all wanting sex because the girls look so pretty. It would have been nicer if when Howard saw Cinderella he turned the radio on and danced with her like she was at that princes ball. Penny/Sleeping Beauty should have fell asleep on the couch, so when Leonard came in, he would be so entralled with her beauty he walked over, knelt, and kissed her to wake her up. Sheldon could have come back to find Amy with 7 midgets talking and when she sees him, she invites him over to meet her new friends/admirerers.

I like the current ending better.

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I don't know how many of you have seen this already, but I found this sneak peak for those who can't wait :p

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfk2gZ7bbFg

 

Oh and if the video isn't showing up (which is isn't for me for some reason) then here's the url you can copy and paste:

 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfk2gZ7bbFg

Thanks for the video. That was hilarious.  I always seem to laugh a lot on these episodes....I guess that's just me.

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From what I gather here and there, quie a few of of us agree that Leonard is the most likely to get tenure, if TPTB intend for this storyline to stick, that is. But there also appears to be a shared perception that if it were to happen, it could cause long-lasting drama between Bert and Ernie. 
 
I wondered about that. Clearly, tenure is an amazingly important step in an academic's career. It goes beyond formal recognition : it means job security and greater freedom for research. So one of our boys getting it while the others are left behind would not be inconsequential, for sure. But I do not think it would require for things to change drastically in the near future. In my opinion, the show is not engineered to work like that. 
 
(quoted from another thread)

Kripke getting tenure is the likely solution though, as even Sheldon has acknowledged that his work on the fusion project was better than his. It would play on their competition, and keep the two roomies even. I doubt they could stay room mates if Leonard got tenure, as Sheldon couldn't tolerate it, and Leonard does tend to gloat when he gets one up on Sheldon. It might even smooth over some of the relationship

I do see where the idea that Sheldon would find it hard to tolerate Leonard's professional success comes from. Let us be fair : our Texan boy is not big on anybody getting ahead, unless it is him. But would it really lead to them no longer being able to live together in the near future ? Could it transform their interaction to such an extent ? I am not sure. 

 

I think it would be a step in that direction, definitely. These two cannot live together forever. They need to grow apart, literally : ultimately, they both have to grow up and abandon this symbiosis of theirs. It obviously does not mean they have to stop being friends (heavens forbid) but it is part of the show's premise that Leonard and Penny will end up togetherjust like Amy and Sheldon. So ultimately, their cohabitation will come to an end someday. 

 

However, I doubt conflict, either professionally or personally motivated, will be the cause for it. To me, the only way this can/will happen is at the end of an incremental growing process. And the tenure thing-y could be a part of it. It has the potential to make them both grow up.

Leonard getting tenure would allow him to feel more confident about himself, about his own abilities. Not just in general but also in relation to Sheldon. It will give him the perfect counter-argument when the two disagree about some obscure scientific concept I cannot spell.  But, like bostrich wrote, it could also be an interesting lesson for Sheldon. It would make him realise that being a boy wonder is sometimes not enough and it may even force him to see his best friend in a different light, ultimately. 

 

Something's got to give, eventually. The show is at the end of its sixth season. There may be as many as another four years to go, sure. Nonetheless, it still means that we're past the halfway line. If, as we are quite a few to suspect, the last episode has many if not all of the characters adjusted to adult life (complete with Star Trek/Wars action figures, of course), there is not that much time left for it to happen organically.

TBBT is now famous for its glacial pace in terms of characters and storylines development, a trait I find very appealing I have to say. But no matter how slowly, things do evolve. One of the boys getting tenure would fit the show's usual tempo : a small change, for it wouldn't necessarily spell overnight disaster/transformation for the characters' chemistry (or even living arrangements), but quite a big step on the road to individual growth, for it would help (re)shape personalities and expectations. 

 

I have to say, if Kripke or some dude/gal we don't know ends up getting tenure, I think I'll be a tad disappointed. Unless it is exceptionally well executed, it will feel like a wasted opportunity.

Edited by Chiara
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I would rather Leonard got tenure if only because he needs another storyline other than his romance with Penny.

 

Aren't all the guys like that except Howard, who had the astronaut thing?  I agree it's time for a good Leonard episode, though.

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Aren't all the guys like that except Howard, who had the astronaut thing?  I agree it's time for a good Leonard episode, though.

Any episode the main focus of which is not romantic relationships will be welcome at that point. Don't get me wrong, I like the romance. Hell, I am an LP 'shipper to the core. But the characters need to do things as individuals, outside of their respective couples. Whether it is about their jobs, hobbies or families, they need to concentrate on other matters. Not only will it make each one of them more interesting, it will also make their relationships more interesting ultimately. Win-win.

Edited by Chiara
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But the characters need to do things as individuals, outside of their respective couples. Whether it is about their jobs, hobbies or families, they need to concentrate on other matters. Not only will it make each one of them more interesting, it will also make their relationships more interesting ultimately. Win-win.

 

This is so true in real life too.

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