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pepsiadikt

The Entire Premise Is Changing, Not Sure How To Feel.

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What you've been saying repeatedly is that the show has been dumbed down in order to appeal to the wider "ordinary" audience, which implies that that ordinary audience is too dumb to understand whatever it is you thought they were writing before.  Which, in turn, means that the wider audience watching the show now is dumber than the audience that was watching before, implying that those of us who enjoy it must somehow be part of that dumber audience.

 

I'm saying that just because more people have found the show and are enjoying it doesn't mean the show is somehow dumbed down or that the wider audience must be dumber otherwise TPTB wouldn't have "changed" the show--as you see it--in order to reel them in.  What I'm saying is that more and more people are catching on to how good the show is--through finding it in syndication and then coming to the first run episodes.  You don't know whether or not the people watching the show now in greater numbers are any smarter or dumber than the first few people who watched in the early seasons.

 

Unless you take some kind of poll and ask those 20 million people about their education level or their IQ numbers or something, you're just making the assumption that because the audience is bigger that the show has to have dumbed down in order to appeal to them, or that whatever it is that you don't like is dumb and therefore it is the thing that appeals to the wider audience.

 

Quote.

 

The whole idea that a larger audience is inherently a dumber audience doesn't make sense. We don't have any statistics about the demographics of the audience. What makes the "original" audience disproportionately better able to understand the "head scratching moments" than this one? It's a proportion. The audience might have grown, but the proportion of AI watchers vs scientists (just to make an example) might very well be the same. Also, what makes the people that are entertained by AI auditions inherently unable to understand science jargon and jokes? You should come around here and meet my current and former roommates. All doctorates in the sciences and addicted to reality television. 

 

I remember The X-Files in S4-5 was hitting the same numbers as TBBT now and those were the best seasons. The show was in no way "dumber" than in S1-2, if anything it got more complicated with the addition of the mythology. It was just a slow burner, like TBBT

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You can include me as a fourth there Sursonica. Both as having a science background and loving it now as much as before.

 

Me too. Chemist turning Engineer here. Show is as good as ever. 

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Me too, I used to be "one of the Ooopa-Lumpas of science". I started watching the show because I wanted to see someone who had even fewer social skills than me. I'm happy to watch them evolve into more or less functional people (while still clinging to their geek roots).

Edited by eirwinrommel

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I love all the science amigos popping up here. :)

 

And I also loved the episode where he bonded with his father-in-law--a very important thing for Howard who had essentially no real relationship with his own father.  That little conversation on the tailgate was fantastic and almost had me in tears when Bernie's dad told Howard to call him by his first name.  It was a really amazing moment for "just a sitcom".  I mean, the show is a comedy and they do have silly throw-away moments, because the show is supposed to be funny, but we still get nice little "real" moments like this.

 

True. And there have been more such moments lately. This one wasn't even a romantic relationship moment. Unless all kinds of relationships are forbidden territory for a nerdy show?

 

Spook - you and Phanta make a good statistical point. Where is the proof that (a) less nerdy people and (B) more dumb people are watching it now?

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Don't talk to me about stats because I was going to go and make a statistical analysis of the amount of science across seasons, if it weren't for the fact that I have enough work to do as it is. LOL.

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Seriously? I'm not even a fan of the character all that much, but sometimes I have to wonder whether people are even watching the same show.

 

I thought it's pretty obvious that Howard's character is MUCH more complex and central to the show now. In the earlier seasons, he was pretty much on the sidelines and his only individual speciality was creepily and unsuccessfully hitting on girls and being a mama's boy. In the last 2 seasons and this one, he has got any number of deep psychological moments, a relationship and marriage, a space trip (and conflict related to that), very slowly working his way out of being a mama's boy while still hanging on to the bond between them, negotiating his friendship with Raj, ego issues after his professional achievement.. the older creepy perv Howard couldn't even have dreamed of all the things going on in his life today. Not to mention Simon is getting more more screen time and more material to work with than ever before.

 

Yeah but he was funny. He's not even that anymore. They can throw all the 'growth' at him they like but most fans are still preferring the other less 'developed' characters because I think people that watch the show want something different. Not the regular mainstream characters. I watch no other American sitcoms. Howard aside, Big Bang is in a league of it's own.

 

And no offense science ladies (I won't call you biatches) but how come you are in to science but you never seem that interested in perserving that part of the show? All you seem to care about is the ships? Defending the ships for all you are worth. ....don't flame me. *hiding*

Edited by Moonbase

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Unless you take some kind of poll and ask those 20 million people about their education level or their IQ numbers or something, you're just making the assumption that because the audience is bigger that the show has to have dumbed down in order to appeal to them, or that whatever it is that you don't like is dumb and therefore it is the thing that appeals to the wider audience.

 

 

Don't need a poll.  A sampling that size would be on par with national averages.  It is safe to assume that around 70 percent of the audience has an associates degree or less.  The IQ of the audience would average out to be average.

 

To be fair though it has been that way since early in the show.  It is not like there has been a dramatic decline in the intelligence of the audience just more of an audience.

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The only reason why people defend the ships and not the science is because the science never comes under attack on these boards. Nobody is saying, less science, more ships. Everyone would be happy with more science. Ships and science aren't mutually exclusive. 

 

If you want I can re-start my rant about the Shamy project on neural networks that I DEMAND goddamit! LOL.

 

eta: Re: Howard. Where do you get that "most fans" figure from? How do you know "most" fans prefer the old Howard? I much prefer the newer Howard, the only thing I agree on is that they need to give him more storylines with techy stuff that he steals/build/messes up. But as far as his ladies-days being gone, good riddance. 

Edited by spook

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And no offense science ladies (I won't call you biatches) but how come you are in to science but you never seem that interested in perserving that part of the show? All you seem to care about is the ships? Defending the ships for all you are worth. ....don't flame me. *hiding*

 

 

Psssst.  I think that is why they call romantic comedies chick flicks.

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Why must I defend science? It is being attacked? No...so it doesn't need any defense from me. Its good to know I get the "inside" jokes they pull but I watch TBBT for the totality of the experience and the SHIPS are a special part of that whole package. 

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The only reason why people defend the ships and not the science is because the science never comes under attack on these boards. Nobody is saying, less science, more ships. Everyone would be happy with more science. Ships and science aren't mutually exclusive. 

 

If you want I can re-start my rant about the Shamy project on neural networks that I DEMAND goddamit! LOL.

 

eta: Re: Howard. Where do you get that "most fans" figure from? How do you know "most" fans prefer the old Howard? I much prefer the newer Howard, the only thing I agree on is that they need to give him more storylines with techy stuff that he steals/build/messes up. But as far as his ladies-days being gone, good riddance. 

 

The ships have nothing to fear. It's the science which will diminish as the seasons roll on. I know there are those who blame the decline of the show on the relationships, so I do understand what you are saying. But there are also those who defend the ships to the exclusion of all else.

 

The shows ratings are high but I agree with those who say the show is probably in decline now. This is not an attack on the ships at all. It's where the show is within it's potential life span. The jokes are becoming old, fans are complaining about stagnant characters and they are running out of fresh ideas. Even I managed to come up with the GPS thing. While the writers are really talented I think the peak may have passed. There's little nerdy stuff they can use now, that won't just seem repetitive to a more mainstream audience. Each character is solving their biggests 'hurdle' and once this is complete there's no story left to tell.

 

Howard is a prime example of this. His scenes are less appealing than the others because aside from a few details to iron out, there's nowhere to go with him. If developing the characters was going to take the show into the future, his and Bernadette's story would be sizzling hot and the most exciting factor on the show. It's not. Developing the characters is going to close the show down, not lenghten it and this is why I have moaned and resisted. (Sheldonite and proud!) If Raj loses his mutism and finds a partner his story is also done. Once Penny commits to Leonard completely and once Sheldon gets over his human intimacy issue it's the same thing. There's very little to do with them after that and it would get repetitive. We are seeing signs that all of these things are not too far away now. Then the show winds down. It will not survive marriage and children like they tried to do with Friends. They may try it, but I'm sure a lot of us will end up wishing they hadn't.

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The ships have nothing to fear. It's the science which will diminish as the seasons roll on. I know there are those who blame the decline of the show on the relationships, so I do understand what you are saying. But there are also those who defend the ships to the exclusion of all else.

 

The shows ratings are high but I agree with those who say the show is probably in decline now. This is not an attack on the ships at all. It's where the show is within it's potential life span. The jokes are becoming old, fans are complaining about stagnant characters and they are running out of fresh ideas. Even I managed to come up with the GPS thing. While the writers are really talented I think the peak may have passed. There's little nerdy stuff they can use now, that won't just seem repetitive to a more mainstream audience. Each character is solving their biggest 'hurdle' and once this is complete there's no story left to tell.

 

Howard is a prime example of this. His scenes are less appealing than the others because aside from a few details to iron out, there's nowhere to go with him. If developing the characters was going to take the show into the future, his and Bernadette's story would be sizzling hot and the most exciting factor on the show. It's not. Developing the characters is going to close the show down, not lenghten it and this is why I have moaned and resisted. (Sheldonite and proud!) If Raj loses his mutism and finds a partner his story is also done. Once Penny commits to Leonard completely and once Sheldon gets over his human intimacy issue it's the same thing. There's very little to do with them after that and it would get repetitive. We are seeing signs that all of these things are not too far away now. Then the show winds down. It will not survive marriage and children like they tried to do with Friends. They may try it, but I'm sure a lot of us will end up wishing they hadn't.

 

Wow! You made some pretty blanket statements as if they are excepted by all but I noticed that you did not say this was your opinion. Are there any metrics that you can provide that prove your statements represent the great majority of the viewers? How can you demonstrate that there is a marked decline in the quality this season? Any accumulation of critical reviews from media professionals?

 

Do you have any evidence that bolster your argument that this is the only accepted interpretation and truth?

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Guest I'm not dead Cheryl

I would want to know what do you guys consider as "science" since I don't see the drastic reduction of that element on the show, and I've been watching since the beginning. And. actually, I could argue that there is even more variety now, by including a neurobiologist who is usually quoting phyisiological and brain anatomy terms. Or it doesn't count because it is biology?

 

The science it's still there. On the boards, on the dialogs, on the guy's work. We even had Steven Hawking twice in these last two seasons. We had Leonard a couple of episodes ago explaining the Holographic Principle, that was HUGE for this Physicist here, who squealed when it was mentioned. And it was explained beautifully, better than any other science explanation on the show ever.

 

The big "science" talk I remember from Season 1 was Schroedinger's Cat, and not much more, at least not more than what we've seen the last few seasons. And since I have mentioned Hawking, let me quote him by saying "whenever I hear about Schroedinger's cat, I reach for my gun"

Edited by Sursonica

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Wow! You made some pretty blanket statements as if they are excepted by all but I noticed that you did not say this was your opinion. Are there any metrics that you can provide that prove your statements represent the great majority of the viewers? How can you demonstrate that there is a marked decline in the quality this season? Any accumulation of critical reviews from media professionals?

 

Do you have any evidence that bolster your argument that this is the only accepted interpretation and truth?

 

Right here:

 

The shows ratings are high but I agree with those who say the show is probably in decline now.

 

Surely you can see that this is worded as an opinion, and then I go on to state my opinion. Do I have to put IMHO beside everything? Its pretty clear that's what it is.

Edited by Moonbase

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The ships have nothing to fear. It's the science which will diminish as the seasons roll on. I know there are those who blame the decline of the show on the relationships, so I do understand what you are saying. But there are also those who defend the ships to the exclusion of all else.

 

The shows ratings are high but I agree with those who say the show is probably in decline now. This is not an attack on the ships at all. It's where the show is within it's potential life span. The jokes are becoming old, fans are complaining about stagnant characters and they are running out of fresh ideas. Even I managed to come up with the GPS thing. While the writers are really talented I think the peak may have passed. There's little nerdy stuff they can use now, that won't just seem repetitive to a more mainstream audience. Each character is solving their biggests 'hurdle' and once this is complete there's no story left to tell.

 

Howard is a prime example of this. His scenes are less appealing than the others because aside from a few details to iron out, there's nowhere to go with him. If developing the characters was going to take the show into the future, his and Bernadette's story would be sizzling hot and the most exciting factor on the show. It's not. Developing the characters is going to close the show down, not lenghten it and this is why I have moaned and resisted. (Sheldonite and proud!) If Raj loses his mutism and finds a partner his story is also done. Once Penny commits to Leonard completely and once Sheldon gets over his human intimacy issue it's the same thing. There's very little to do with them after that and it would get repetitive. We are seeing signs that all of these things are not too far away now. Then the show winds down. It will not survive marriage and children like they tried to do with Friends. They may try it, but I'm sure a lot of us will end up wishing they hadn't.

I can see what you're talking about. The problem is that if the show doesn't evolve people will get tired of it anyway.  Leonard, Sheldon, and Penny are good examples of this. Their characters can stay the same for only so long before they become boring and pathetic. JIm says he doesn't want to play Sheldon till he's 50. Can you imagine just how lame it would be for these characters to stay the same for more than a couple of more years? There comes a time for the characters to change or go away, perhaps both. They could do a spin off show (like Frasier) and allow guest shots and update things with the other characters. The question is who and would it turn out to be another Joey?

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Thinking about it I could see H/B along with Raj getting their own show. However something would have to be done about Raj's  trouble with women fairly soon. Raj is the character who's shown the least progress in the show and he's becoming redundant.

I could also see L/P and S/A splitting off into a separate show as long as it was as two couples, not as four separate people.

Sorry the cat's decided I need to pay more attention to him so I'll shut up now

Edited by eirwinrommel

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I can see what you're talking about. The problem is that if the show doesn't evolve people will get tired of it anyway.  Leonard, Sheldon, and Penny are good examples of this. Their characters can stay the same for only so long before they become boring and pathetic. JIm says he doesn't want to play Sheldon till he's 50. Can you imagine just how lame it would be for these characters to stay the same for more than a couple of more years? There comes a time for the characters to change or go away, perhaps both. They could do a spin off show (like Frasier) and allow guest shots and update things with the other characters. The question is who and would it turn out to be another Joey?

 

Maybe I like boring and pathetic. :icon_biggrin:

 

It is true though, I am getting tired of Sheldon now and he's been my favourite character for such a long time. My point is I see the end looming even if I don't want too. It will be interesting to see if they take on more season after 7. They would have to make changes to get the show to go to 10, like so many people want. Any ideas?

Edited by Moonbase

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Right here:

 

The shows ratings are high but I agree with those who say the show is probably in decline now.

 

Surely you can see that this is worded as an opinion, and then I go on to state my opinion. Do I have to put IMHO beside everything? Its pretty clear that's what it is.

 

It would be helpful if you said IMHO. What you quoted comes off as a statement of fact: I agree with those who say the show is probably in decline now. Not "those who feel".

 

But you are right, what you said was only an opinion.

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It would be helpful if you said IMHO. What you quoted comes off as a statement of fact: I agree with those who say the show is probably in decline now. Not "those who feel".

 

But you are right, what you said was only an opinion.

Very well I accept the additonal words of those who think, or feel was an oversight but...

 

Do you have no other points to make on any all the things I mentioned? Do you think solving these characters problems will mean the show winds down?

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The only reason why people defend the ships and not the science is because the science never comes under attack on these boards. Nobody is saying, less science, more ships. Everyone would be happy with more science. Ships and science aren't mutually exclusive.

 

This. We all love the science on the show. That's why Holographic Excitation was one of my favorite episodes this season, and Russian Rocket Reaction in season 5, with the whole play on Heisenberg uncertainty principle. I love Sheldon and Amy's Physics vs Neurobiology debates (Vacation Solution was entirely based on that issue). I've said all this many times - and Spook, I once actually compiled and posted here a list of all the science references in every season. Season 3 had the most (more than Seasons 1 and 2), there was less in Season 5, but again more in Season 6. Season 4 had a lot of non-science geekiness. (No one even replied to that post). Also, as Sursonica says, why aren't Amy's frequent comments about brain dynamics and primate behavior to be counted as science references? Because it's yucky and squishy?

 

But I think we're all agreed on enjoying the science/geek references on the show. It's the relationships that get the snarkiness and the allegations of dumbing down. You can't expect to make the allegations and not get the replies.

 

It's not at all obvious to me, and I suspect to the majority of people, that the show is in a decline. I think Season 6 is actually better than Season 5 on many counts - again, that's just my opinion, but the ratings seem to corroborate it. 

 

It's a fair point that once all the characters and relationships resolve their struggles and reach their logical happy outcomes, some time down the line there may not be enough material left to write for them. I agree that TBBT is not a show which can heavily accommodate kids or family issues. But since the whole premise of the show has always been the social evolution of the nerdy guys while still retaining their geekiness, I'd much rather see that evolution and have the show end in less than 10 seasons, while at the top of its game, than see a frustrated Leonard, creepy Howard and increasingly crazy Sheldon for 15 seasons or something (except that it probably wouldn't even last 7 seasons in that scenario, forget 15). 

Edited by Pomita

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I thought the premise was that the show should be funny  :icon_rolleyes: 

 

Indeed, that's the basic premise of every sitcom, and this show's huge success shows that it's definitely fulfilling that criterion. As I've said before, the vast majority of people (who don't post on forums) watch a sitcom to be entertained, so if more people are watching, it means more people are finding it funny.

 

I think the argument here is because some people feel that the humor in the show nowadays is the 'wrong' or 'dumb' kind of humor, or in other words we're 'having fun wrong'. ;)

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The ships have nothing to fear. It's the science which will diminish as the seasons roll on. I know there are those who blame the decline of the show on the relationships, so I do understand what you are saying. But there are also those who defend the ships to the exclusion of all else.

 

The shows ratings are high but I agree with those who say the show is probably in decline now. This is not an attack on the ships at all. It's where the show is within it's potential life span. The jokes are becoming old, fans are complaining about stagnant characters and they are running out of fresh ideas. Even I managed to come up with the GPS thing. While the writers are really talented I think the peak may have passed. There's little nerdy stuff they can use now, that won't just seem repetitive to a more mainstream audience. Each character is solving their biggests 'hurdle' and once this is complete there's no story left to tell.

 

Howard is a prime example of this. His scenes are less appealing than the others because aside from a few details to iron out, there's nowhere to go with him. If developing the characters was going to take the show into the future, his and Bernadette's story would be sizzling hot and the most exciting factor on the show. It's not. Developing the characters is going to close the show down, not lenghten it and this is why I have moaned and resisted. (Sheldonite and proud!) If Raj loses his mutism and finds a partner his story is also done. Once Penny commits to Leonard completely and once Sheldon gets over his human intimacy issue it's the same thing. There's very little to do with them after that and it would get repetitive. We are seeing signs that all of these things are not too far away now. Then the show winds down. It will not survive marriage and children like they tried to do with Friends. They may try it, but I'm sure a lot of us will end up wishing they hadn't.

 

Of course the show will wind down at some point, nothing lasts forever. I don't understand this obsession that more is better, that longer is better, and that this is the reason why the characters should never change. You are saying that by evolving the characters the story would get repetitive but how on earth are they going to tell new stories without evolving the characters and manage not to be repetitive? If anything, the point of evolution is exactly to tell NEW stories. You say the show is running out of ideas and people are getting bored of stagnant characters and then in the same post you complain that the characters are being developed too much. Your post is one big contradiction, I'm sorry. You do realize you cannot tell a story without change and that once a story is told of course it can't be told again and that even if the characters never changed and just sat around a table sprouting science jokes they would run out of science jokes sooner or later?

 

 

Nobody is afraid for the ships, that's not the reason we are defensive about them. We are just fed up of being looked down upon and being told that because we enjoy them we are part of that audience that somehow is ruining the show for the "pure" viewers who act like they somehow "own" this show more than others. That's why we get defensive of the ships. I do not watch ANYTHING for romance, never have. I've shipped one other couple in my life, for the same reason I ship Shamy: I just happen to really like Sheldon and Amy and their dynamic. I would have enjoyed them just the same if they had stayed friends, but I do find their blossoming romance incredibly interesting. Yet somehow I have to come here and be told that it's people like me who are ruining the show because the writers feel the need to cater to us. And then it always turns inevitably into a men vs women kind of argument of the same kind Sheldon has when he just doesn't want to understand that maybe there are other reasons why one might disagree with him than women being slaves of their hormones, or in this case, romance. That's why I get defensive. I'm sorry they're ruining Sheldon for you, I understand that's annoying. But, not aimed at you necessarily now, I'm going to quote Tina Fey here:

 

“It is an impressively arrogant move to conclude that just because you don’t like something, it is empirically not good."

Edited by spook

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