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6.12 The Egg Salad Equivalency (Jan. 3)

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78 members have voted

  1. 1. What did you think of this episode?

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No argument its one of the best shows on TV. On a normal Thursday we get 40-45% of viewership, so when there is virtually no competition programming its unsurprising we get 19 million or 66%. Given that L+3 ratings are 19 million normally. Next week we wont get 19 million but I hope we stay in the 18 million range cause when we hit 17 we didnt turn back.

Ahhhhhhhhhh, OK. I fully agree with you now that your point is clear to me. Your original statement, it appears, was open to different interpretations.

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Is January third a real problem? You can watch it online at the CBS website, they post it within a couple of days. If you can't wait that long there are free tv websites that post the episodes within a couple of hours after they air. The timing on the CBS website may be off, I usually watch on one of the free sites later that night. in either case no commercials to interrupt the story.
The CBS site has geo-locking switched on I think. Commercial sites do this to maintain the territiorial sales regions for which they have contracted. There are grey work arounds. Some people set up vpns so that they look like they are really within the territory. Or they can torrent. For instance, the Australian local broadcaster does have a catchup site but they stopped running TBBT before The 43 Peculiarity on air and web. That broadcaster is now 5 eps behind.

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Sorry for copy pasting again:

 

Hey all.. I'm late to the party as usual. I've been going through some tough times from the last few days, and seeing this episode was such a welcome relief for a while. It made me laugh quite a bit.. no mood lightener like our show!

I loved the Sheldon/Leonard bonding moment over Giant Jenga in the cold open, and also the warm little touch of Sheldon 'hosting' with tea at Amy's place. The Leonard/Penny scenes were supremely cute, especially the cello. The 'sexual harassment' storyline was quite funny, too, and I didn't find it offensive or out-of-character at all. We've seen Sheldon gradually develop more of a familiarity (curiosity?) with matters sexual, and we've also seen him grow more caring and considerate towards Amy's needs and feelings. But nowhere was it implied that he's any better than before in understanding social protocol, appropriateness and boundaries of speech and behavior. (Neither is Amy, for that matter). His lecture to Alex wasn't really that different in spirit from his advising Amy about Kolinahr, and probably no more inappropriate than some of the weird things he ends up saying to the president of the university (hernia, anyone?). Add to that his famed propensity for referring to menses, and his favorite phrase 'slave to the baser urges', and we have the perfect recipe for a disastrous misunderstanding where Sheldon is actually just being Sheldon. Honestly, I was wondering how he didn't end up being hauled into HR much earlier - Leslie Winkle could have built a fairly strong case!


Regarding why he felt the need to talk to Alex at all, I do feel that it was mostly comedic license, just to create that situation. Apart from his selfish motive, an urge to keep his assistant out of such 'weaknesses' may have been a part of it. And from what we saw in Decoupling Fluctuation, I'm sure his subliminal affection towards Leonard and desire to protect his relationship with Penny must have also played its role.
But as a dog-lover, my favorite moment was the return of Raj's Yorkie. :)

 

Regarding the issue of Sheldon's sexism - I think most of the 'classically' sexist comments he occasionally comes up with are courtesy his father, for obvious reasons, and he just doesn't seem to have given them much thought. His theories of menses and hormones help him out in social or emotional situations which make him uncomfortable. As far as respect for female intellect is concerned, I was prepared to dislike Sheldon for his attitude towards Leslie in season 1, but in season 2 it was clarified that his issue was the perfectly legitimate one of String Theory vs Loop Theory (I've seen worse battles on that topic). Later on, it struck me that the only two people he knew whom he seemed to consider his intellectual equals (or near-equals) were Beverly and Plimpton. And this was before his 'meeting of the mind' with Amy. He also seems to respect Bernadette for her academic achievements, and while he's supercilious and bossy with Alex and Ramona because they're grad students, he obviously regards their scientific capabilities highly, or he wouldn't trust them to work with him/for him. So I think it's clear that Sheldon has no intellectual bias against women. He just resorts to 'hormonal speak' when he's struggling to understand their emotional complexities, i.e. 'delightfully mysterious or bat-crap crazy'. :)

Edited by Pomita
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I find my thoughts after watching the episode very different from what I read above :) :

1. Maybe it's because I'm not from the States and different countries have different customs, but... Wasn't Alex's complaint, Sheldon's remarks about his friends and the way they were dealt with by Human Resources Department much exaggerated? I mean, Sheldon did not harassed Alex sexually (he was just sexist, which is a different matter), nor did Howard by building a sex robot (though he used the university's resources to do it, so technically he's guilty of defraudation). The only crime of Leonard and Raj was to speak about their own sexual life and desires in more or less public place. Can you really be sent to a compulsory sexual harrassment course by university's authorities for such things in USA? (On the other hand, I'm surprised that they let Sheldon use Alex for such things as Sheldon After Dark project - it seems to me he can tell her to do anything and everything and she's obligated to obey.) It seems to me that even talking about menstruation or STDs (if done by men) is considered sexual harrassment according to the laws at the university where Sheldon and Leonard work. Sheldon's sexist remarks to Alex and the HRD lady (about their "slavery to their urgers" and "currently menstruating") were simply rude, but they were not sexual harrassment and did not deserve to be treated so seriously. (In this light, I consider Sheldon's making Alex to do the course in his stead a clever and appropriate answer.) Would you agree?

2. All that being said - the only trait of Sheldon which I really dislike is his attitude towards women intellectuals (luckily for Amy, he apparently considers her to be an exception). And that's why I miss Leslie Winkle, who liked to show him he's WRONG :) .

I too doubt the veracity but regardless ...

Sheldon played the system like a cello to deliver natural justice. I like to believe he plotted out exactly where this would end up on his own, after his council of ladies disappointed him. We just didn't see the whiteboards. Genius.

Edited by Nogravitasatall
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OK so i have rewatched the episode and i think I have to agree with the poor timing poor placement theory that's gone around the thread for the L/P scene.  I think it was just an uncomfortable position and awkward way to hold someone in order to get the correct shot from the camera.  That being said i still feel like their lines were a little rushed during that part but on the whole i think I liked it much better the second time through,

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I liked the first half. Leonard collapsing the jenga was funny, his shocked reaction to Alex's proposal was great. The second half got a bit much for me. Sheldon was such an ass, normally they are careful not to take it too far and leave him with some innocent charm, not this episode. 
 
One thing I will say though… Sheldon is so jealous of Leonard. The moment he finds out his assistant was not 100% focused on him he starts with the insults. "you're pasty androgynous brand of sexuality" Where the hell did that come from? and why would he care a hoot? Alex liking Leonard won't affect him other than his damaged ego because we know Sheldon was aware that Leonard has no intention of taking her up on it.
 
"You can't tell a uterus from a unicycle"  :icon_rolleyes: says Sheldon to a guy who has been having sex solidly for years, when he's never even tried it! 
 
Does Sheldon have a thing for Alex? she hates him though. 
Edited by Moonbase

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I liked the first half. Leonard collapsing the jenga was funny, his shocked reaction to Alex's proposal was great. The second half got a bit much for me. Sheldon was such an ass, normally they are careful not to take it too far and leave him with some innocent charm, not this episode. 
 
One thing I will say though… Sheldon is so jealous of Leonard. The moment he finds out his assistant was not 100% focused on him he starts with the insults. "you're pasty androgynous brand of sexuality" Where the hell did that come from? and why would he care a hoot? Alex liking Leonard won't affect him other than his damaged ego because we know Sheldon was aware that Leonard has no intention of taking her up on her on it.
 
"You can't tell a uterus from a unicycle"  :icon_rolleyes: says Sheldon to a guy who has been having sex solidly for years, when he's never even tried it! 
 
Does Sheldon have a thing for Alex? she hates him though. 

 

Sheldon said to Alex -- "Yeah, you and me both, sister"  -- So he has no thing for Alex . Sheldon's selfishness was the sole reason for his jealous of Leonard

 

"You can't tell a uterus from a unicycle" -- can any one explain what does this line mean??

Edited by vasu

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Sheldon said to Alex -- "Yeah, you and me both, sister"  -- So he has no thing for Alex . Sheldon's selfishness was the sole reason for his jealous of Leonard

 

"You can't tell a uterus from a unicycle" -- can any one explain what does this line mean??

 

 

I take it to mean Leonard knows nothing about women.... this from a guy who truly knows nothing about women. 
 
Sheldon acted hell bent and jealous. Thats what he acts like when he's in denial. I'm shipping them...  :icon_cheesygrin:
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Sheldon acted hell bent and jealous. Thats what he acts like when he's in denial. I'm shipping them...  :icon_cheesygrin:

So how you naming this? Shelex or Aldon? Or how about Shel-Al. That sounds Supermannyesque, doesn't it?

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So how you naming this? Shelex or Aldon? Or how about Shel-Al. That sounds Supermannyesque, doesn't it?

 

Shel-Al does have a nice ring to it :D and it does sounds supermannyesue.... where as Shamy sounds shameful..no wonder Sheldon and Amy don't like it :p

Edited by vasu
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I loved this episode. The single plot throughout the show was a relief from all of the subplots in recent episodes. Although I liked most all of the episodes so far this year, this is the only one that had me audibly laughing hard  when Sheldon was in the  Human Resources office.

 Penny is really beginning to open up her feelings with Leonard and that is good. I like how they are getting along now, although I did feel some sort of uncomfortableness also when they were on the couch. I couldn't exactly pin what it was until I read some of the comments here. Now I understand that it had to do mostly with the directors and cameramen..

 

BTW, I think Alex is fitting in pretty well in this show. Her facial expressions are priceless. I for one think there is more to come between her, Leonard and Sheldon. She is most definitely more entertaining than Priya.

Edited by Grasshopper

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I thought the androgynous and bee-stung lips remark was a hoot; as that describes Jim Parsons to a T. Just the writers having a bit of fun. Shel-Al is genius; I'd ship them just for the name.

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BTW, I think Alex is fitting in pretty well in this show. Her facial expressions are priceless. I for one think there is more to come between her, Leonard and Sheldon. She is most definitely more entertaining than Priya.

 

ITA with this. She should become some sort of Patrice from HIMYM :) lol. 

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I also did enjoy this episode. It was okay, but to me not the best one of the season so far. Although it definitely revealed some interesting things between Leonard and Penny. It was funny to see Leonard enjoying the attention Alex is giving him and I definitely would expect Penny to feel a little bit uncomfortable about it, but not this serious. A couple of years ago, she did wonder if Leonard ever dated 'regular' people, when she and Leonard went on their first date, but she definitely didn't seem insecure about it. The last few years, we've seen Penny getting (or at least 'showing') even more and more self-esteem than in early seasons. Sometimes even in a 'bitchy' way (for lack of a better word at the moment). Not that I have anything against her, but for example in episode 5-13, Leonard asks Penny "What if I would dump you?", in which she responded "Come on, be serious.". This is just one small example of course, but she definitely never seemed insecure to me, so that was kind of a surprise. Anyhow, it's nice to see everything is going better and better between the two of them.

 

I'm also liking Alex more and more and I definitely agree with anyone saying she fits perfectly in the show. Her facial expressions are priceless. :icon_mrgreen:

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I also did enjoy this episode. It was okay, but to me not the best one of the season so far. Although it definitely revealed some interesting things between Leonard and Penny. It was funny to see Leonard enjoying the attention Alex is giving him and I definitely would expect Penny to feel a little bit uncomfortable about it, but not this serious. A couple of years ago, she did wonder if Leonard ever dated 'regular' people, when she and Leonard went on their first date, but she definitely didn't seem insecure about it. The last few years, we've seen Penny getting (or at least 'showing') even more and more self-esteem than in early seasons. Sometimes even in a 'bitchy' way (for lack of a better word at the moment). Not that I have anything against her, but for example in episode 5-13, Leonard asks Penny "What if I would dump you?", in which she responded "Come on, be serious.". This is just one small example of course, but she definitely never seemed insecure to me, so that was kind of a surprise. Anyhow, it's nice to see everything is going better and better between the two of them.

 

I'm also liking Alex more and more and I definitely agree with anyone saying she fits perfectly in the show. Her facial expressions are priceless. :icon_mrgreen:

"What if I dump you" was in the dream/over thinking sequence, Penny never said "come on,be serious". It was all in Leonard's head

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I agree about Alex's expressions. Her look of wide-eyed horror at Sheldon's comments was hilarious!

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After another viewing, I'm giving this episode an okay. I liked a couple of Penny lines "okay, whats happening?" and some of her interaction with Leonard. There was also a few good lines from Raj outside the human resources office, but that was it for me.

The rest of it, Sheldon was whiny and intellectually stupid. His ruse to fool the girls by using fake names was dumb and predictable. I've seen that exact type of scene on other sitcoms. Boy, they are really running out of ideas with this character. The human resources scene didn't even raise a smile in me. I see some people found this hilarious, I really don't get that. Ah well...

Edited by Moonbase

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I've watched the episode about 3 or 4 times now--downloaded it onto my iPad and watched it on the plane and then again at my parents house. :)

 

In reading through some of the posts in this thread, I have a few more thoughts.

 

Someone mentioned Kaley looking at the camera--I think there's a mistaken perception here.  In The Re-Entry Minimalization, she really did look at the camera for a second, which was something of a nervious gesture, I think.  But in this episode, she wasn't looking at the camera out of character.  I think it was a camera choice--showing her face full on because she was reacting to various things.  There's a big difference in having the camera focused on an actor's face--especially when they're doing a sort of startled expression, for instance--and having the actor look at the camera out of character.

I didn't see any out-of-character moments from Kaley.

 

Sheldon's "jealousy" of Alex--I think I mentioned earlier that his point about her focusing on his needs was about wanting her to focus on the work she's supposed to be doing for him, not about romantic/sexual interests.

In her first episode, he told her something about saving her chitchatting or whatever for her breaks--and then said there would be no breaks.  When she met Penny and mentioned that she was nice, Sheldon told her, "notice people on your own time--we're working here."

He treats Alex like a personal lackey--not only is she reading through his early work, but she has to fetch his dessert, buy him a hardhat, screen his calls, listen to his "Sheldon After Dark" tapes in case he mumbles something brilliant in his sleep, and so forth.  His comments that she's supposed to be focused on his needs is more of the same.  He doesn't want her to be distracted from the work she's doing for him.

I think that he still does consider sexual activity to be a distraction and that's the approach he takes with her.  I think that as others have mentioned, it's not that he has no respect for intellect in women, but he does consider biological urges to be a weakness, and since women get PMS and often want to have children, etc., he considers that more of a weakness.  To be fair, he also considers the male desire for sex to be a distraction, and has so far apparently suppressed any such need in himself...so far... :p

 

While he was more overt in his approach to Alex in this episode, I don't think it was out of line with the sort of remarks he's made before, though they're usually aimed a Penny or maybe Leslie Winkle.  In this regard he is clueless in that he doesn't take into consideration that it might be inappropriate.  To him it's just discussion of biology, not anything personal.  As he said, he wasn't singling Alex out personally, just pointing out that as a woman she is susceptible to this weakness.

 

Sheldon has always been a funny combination of genius and idiot.  He's a genius in his field of expertise, but he often has no common sense--which isn't unusual in very smart people.  And given the combination of his personality, his odd childhood and his upbringing, it's not surprising that he would say and do some of the things he does.

His social skills have always been lacking in certain areas.  He may know how to eat the table properly, for example--napkin on his lap, not talking with food in his mouth, or whatever (most likely due to his mother's influence)--but that doesn't mean that he won't talk about bowel movements or menses or checking someone's anal area for pinworms while he's at the table.

 

As for Alex's storyline, just like at the beginning, I think they've left it open-ended because she's a handy character to use for various purposes.  I doubt that she'd do any more hitting on Leonard because of Sheldon't reaction to it this time, but that doesn't mean they won't use her for some other reason--like unearthing more of Sheldon's early work, or whatever.

I don't think that everything has to be tied up with a bow at the end of every episode and I think it's smart of the writers to leave her character in a spot where they can revisit her if they need to.

If they were really through with her for good and all, I think they would have had some scene where either Sheldon lets her go (which he's unlikely to do, since he seems to enjoy having a lackey) or she quits out of frustration or aggravation.

 

I think that Sheldon's attempt to disquise the identities of Alex and Leonard and himself was in keeping with his approach.  He always overthinks things like that--the way he came up with his drug-addicted cousin or Leonard's fake Irish barmaid.  Again--genius and idiot, focusing on all the wrong things and going over the top.  I thought it was funny.

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"Funny combination of genius and idiot...," well said, phantagrae.  I think of it as Sheldon really has no understanding of social situations whatsoever, though he has learned a few rules to govern specific situations, like bringing someone in distress a hot beverage.  He fastidiously follows those rules but apart from those, he has no idea of appropriate behavior. 

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I agree with Phantagrae's analysis, and that is really the crux of Sheldon's character and has always been. His behavior in this episode struck me as classic Sheldon, and very similar to some of the clueless/rude/inappropriate things we've seen him do earlier.

 

But it does look like the writers have a tricky job with him, because if they let him behave in familiar ways then they're blamed for making him predictable and running out of ideas for him, and if they get him to try new things or ways of behaving then they're blamed for changing him too much, ruining the character and taking him OOC. As I said, thin line to walk.

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I agree with Moonbase, the HR scene didn't do much for me either. I think by that stage it was just too predictable, I don't know. It's not that I disliked it but I didn't find it funny either, and part of me wonders how much of that scene wasn't just an excuse for the writers to see how much they can get away with using Sheldon's cluelessness as an excuse (similarly to the spanking scene). The thing is, I always say that when you emphasize a character's quirks too much you end up turning him into a cartoon and that's the impression I got from that scene, that he was becoming a little bit too cartoonish by that stage in the episode. 

 

I totally get it that Sheldon is incredibly clueless when it comes down to social situations, and I'm not saying I don't enjoy watching that, I'm not a fan of political correctness myself. But I get it he is clueless, I don't need a whole episode centered on that for me to get it. It's funny up to a certain point, then it becomes boring. I think that's the problem I have with the episode... at some point it just became boring to me, it wasn't interesting. It's nothing to do with Sheldon himself, it's the fact that the whole episode centered around him sprouting out inappropriate stuff. One or two jokes like that per episode are great, but a whole episode of it doesn't do much for me.

 

Also, when I read the taping report, for some reason I got the impression that Sheldon getting the other guys out of trouble would play out much better than it did in the end, so that's another thing that let me down a little.

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It wasn't my favorite episode of the season by any stretch, and one reason was that it was a bit 'same old same old' with Sheldon. It felt like an episode which would have suited late season 3, which played a lot on drawing out Sheldon's quirks and eccentricities. Now I enjoy it more when Sheldon gets into unfamiliar situations and has to adjust himself in uncharacteristic ways, like in Habitation Configuration or Fish Guts.

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The thing is, I always say that when you emphasize a character's quirks too much you end up turning him into a cartoon and that's the impression I got from that scene, that he was becoming a little bit too cartoonish by that stage in the episode. 

 

This is one of my annoyances about what they've done to Sheldon in general.  In watching reruns of early season 1 you can see a guy with quirks, but he's not a freakish alien.  He tells Leonard in the very first episode that "that woman is not going to have sex with you" because he recognizes what Leonard's motivation is for attempting to retrieve her television, and moving the box of shelves upstairs.  He knocked on doors normally.  He knew what "oh snap!" meant.  They were going to a sperm bank, for goodness sake; unimaginable with the current Sheldon.

 

Today's Sheldon never moves or carries anything heavy, says coitus for sex, and is oblivious of slang or flirtatious activity around him.

 

I understand that much of the comedy has come from making these changes to Sheldon's character, but at some point it becomes kind of lame.

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