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[Spoilers] Season 12 Discussion Thread


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29 minutes ago, djsurrey said:

Having said that the writers do seem to take a trait and kind of move it around a bit.

Like asthma. First, in 1X03, Sheldon had asthma, but then they gave it to Leonard. 

And the snoring, it "transfered" from Penny to Leonard, LOL...

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So ive just typed up what feels like a essay but i figure this is my last taping i go to so might as well do the spoilers right lol here you go and if its too much sorry in advance 😂😂😂 Cold open

Here you go anyone wanting spoilers 😄 The opening scene is so cute its sheldon waking Amy up in bed saying good morning wife and she says good morning husband, then he makes a comment about how i

"The Laureate Accumulation" The gang is watching Campbell/Pemberton on Ellen. Sheldon is just waiting for Ellen to ask them what exactly Super Asymmetry is so the world can see what big frauds th

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2 hours ago, serena_1995 said:

I agree with @veejay and completely disagree with you. You may disagree but Jim succeeded in giving Sheldon a wonderful personality, a very strong one actually, from the start. It may seem like a caricature to you , but not to me.  IMO, very early on,  he won multiple Emmys and Golden Globes because of the oddness, the emotions, the quirks, the physical comedy , the innocence,  the one-of-a-kind mannerisms and brilliant dialogue. There were plenty of heart warming scenes and equally funny ones and in no way were the characters interchangable. Leonard was always more likable, grounded and able to converse with  Penny more than the other guys. And on what planet was Howard's sleazy dialogue interchangable with Sheldon or Leonard ?? Penny was also not at all ditzy. She had shown plenty of street smarts, patience,  kindness and tolerance towards Leonard and surprisingly intuitive towards Sheldon as well , even in the early seasons. 

On the contrary, I think right now, I feel all the guys (and even the girls) are interchangeable. They all come across as man children who annoy their bored wives with their "childish" interests and antics and it usually follows the same old tropes. It might seem like exaggerating and generalizing on my part, but I see plenty of exaggeration and generalization in your declarartion that "the characters had no personality". 

Now that I read your post I know why I didn't answer April's post: because you said exactly what I wanted to tell her much better than I would have managed to express. IMO, your post deserves 1,000,000 likes.

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TBBT has relied on sitcom tropes and clichies over the years yes. I would say Sheldon was more of a caricature now, than earlier on. The whole show feels bored. 

Edited by 3ku11
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11 hours ago, serena_1995 said:

I agree with @veejay and completely disagree with you. You may disagree but Jim succeeded in giving Sheldon a wonderful personality, a very strong one actually, from the start. It may seem like a caricature to you , but not to me.  IMO, very early on,  he won multiple Emmys and Golden Globes because of the oddness, the emotions, the quirks, the physical comedy , the innocence,  the one-of-a-kind mannerisms and brilliant dialogue. There were plenty of heart warming scenes and equally funny ones and in no way were the characters interchangable. Leonard was always more likable, grounded and able to converse with  Penny more than the other guys. And on what planet was Howard's sleazy dialogue interchangable with Sheldon or Leonard ?? Penny was also not at all ditzy. She had shown plenty of street smarts, patience,  kindness and tolerance towards Leonard and surprisingly intuitive towards Sheldon as well , even in the early seasons. 

Most of what you described was already a few seasons in - like the awards started coming in 2010 and the following years. So that basically only proves my point.

And I didn't say "literally every line was interchangeable" but they had "interchangeable dialogue patterns", in that all of the guys' did have a lot more technical and nerdy dialogue similar to what Sheldon would become famous for. When I rewatched the show a while ago I was a bit baffled when Penny wondered if she'd ever understand a word Sheldon says even though at this point in the show barely any of the guys has spoken a normal word to her.

And yes, she was way more ditzy at the beginning. People only remember the "street smarts" but that in itself was a bit of a revamp (with the old Penny still slipping in sometimes when they make her bone dead stupid for no reason ugh)

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On the contrary, I think right now, I feel all the guys (and even the girls) are interchangeable. They all come across as man children who annoy their bored wives with their "childish" interests and antics and it usually follows the same old tropes. It might seem like exaggerating and generalizing on my part, but I see plenty of exaggeration and generalization in your declarartion that "the characters had no personality". 

The whole man-child thing was there from the beginning, too, as djsurrey already pointed out. I can't imagine anything more man-childish than literally wanting your mom and even your friends to treat you like an 8 year old! Don't get me started on Howard or Raj! The whole dynamic you described was part of Lenny from the beginning as well (and I fear it was their success that made them copy the template to the other couples).

Look, I know ppl like to glorify the early years and everything and by all means you do you but that won't change my opinion that those early years had a lot warts and an ugly underbelly, too.

This isn't to discredit the work of the actors. I do think everyone did a fine job with the material they've been given. I just think the material wasn't stellar at all times (and no I also don't think it is now, for that matter).

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15 minutes ago, April said:

People only remember the "street smarts" but that in itself was a bit of a revamp (with the old Penny still slipping in sometimes when they make her bone dead stupid for no reason ugh)

I thought Penny's "street smart" "died" when she didn't know that when people get married in Las Vegas, they are married for real.

LMAO. 

 

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2 hours ago, April said:

The whole man-child thing was there from the beginning, too, as djsurrey already pointed out. I can't imagine anything more man-childish than literally wanting your mom and even your friends to treat you like an 8 year old! Don't get me started on Howard or Raj! The whole dynamic you described was part of Lenny from the beginning as well (and I fear it was their success that made them copy the template to the other couples).

While there is something into this, I don't exactly agree with it. Yes, Sheldon was always a man-child, yes they all had aspects of being men-children (arguably, Leonard mostly ended up being the most mature among them, not that the competition was too hard). But this man-child-groaning-wife dynamic wasn't that emphasized. In the beginning they used to make the point that Penny also had her own "immature" or ill habits, and I didn't see the Lenny dynamic as being mostly about that. Were there parts when Penny was embarrased or tired of some of Leonard's behavior? Yes, but the balance was different than what it is most of the time in the later seasons. Howardette started with this dynamic later and it had its ups and downs, Shamy started later although it is less continous with them. Overall the man-child-groaning-wife dynamic is IMO much more characteristic of later seasons.

In general, most of the time they use a "putting up with" logic in the writing of the relationships in the show, be it romantic relationships or friendships. I'm not saying everybody should be lovey-dovey and awesome to each other all of the time, but for me it's too much. I enjoy it much more when they show us these characters enjoying each other and working together (e.g., Leonard and Sheldon working to get the wedding venue, Penny liking Leonard's costume, Bernadette enjoying Howard's chimney sweep, Howard and Raj complementing each other instead of trying to upstage one another...). 

Edited by bfm
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1 hour ago, bfm said:

I'm not saying everybody should be lovey-dovey and awesome to each other all of the time

Totally agree! They don't have to be all over themselves being hot and making out all the time. Leonard standing at the island bar behind Penny with his arms around her, or sitting on the couch, leaning over placing a kiss on the top her head. Little things like those to show their love for each other. This goes for all the couples not just Lenny, even the "Cool Operator" and Denise!

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1 hour ago, bfm said:

In general, most of the time they use a "putting up with" logic in the writing of the relationships in the show, be it romantic relationships or friendships. I'm not saying everybody should be lovey-dovey and awesome to each other all of the time, but for me it's too much. I enjoy it much more when they show us these characters enjoying each other and working together (e.g., Leonard and Sheldon working to get the wedding venue, Penny liking Leonard's costume, Bernadette enjoying Howard's chimney sweep, Howard and Raj complementing each other instead of trying to upstage one another...). 

This!

And I think with it being the final season of an iconic show with huge global appeal I think it's fair to want to see more of this, perhaps more than you usually get in a season.

I believe they could do that and I think it would be well received, I don't think people would complain.

Edited by Jonny
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23 minutes ago, Jonny said:

This!

And I think with it being the final season of an iconic show with huge global appeal I think it's fair to want to see more of this, perhaps more than you usually get in a season.

I think they could do that and I think it would be well received, I don't think people would complain.

Don't mess with the authorities...

n_557.gif.c8b655e69f77246c4e166e0894747762.gif

:icon_cheesygrin:

Edited by veejay
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1 hour ago, bfm said:

While there is something into this, I don't exactly agree with it. Yes, Sheldon was always a man-child, yes they all had aspects of being men-children (arguably, Leonard mostly ended up being the most mature among them, not that the competition was too hard). But this man-child-groaning-wife dynamic wasn't that emphasized. In the beginning they used to make the point that Penny also had her own "immature" or ill habits, and I didn't see the Lenny dynamic as being mostly about that. Were there parts when Penny was embarrased or tired of some of Leonard's behavior? Yes, but the balance was different than what it is most of the time in the later seasons. Howardette started with this dynamic later and it had its ups and downs, Shamy started later although it is less continous with them. Overall the man-child-groaning-wife dynamic is IMO much more characteristic of later seasons.

In general, most of the time they use a "putting up with" logic in the writing of the relationships in the show, be it romantic relationships or friendships. I'm not saying everybody should be lovey-dovey and awesome to each other all of the time, but for me it's too much. I enjoy it much more when they show us these characters enjoying each other and working together (e.g., Leonard and Sheldon working to get the wedding venue, Penny liking Leonard's costume, Bernadette enjoying Howard's chimney sweep, Howard and Raj complementing each other instead of trying to upstage one another...). 

I didn't say it was "all that" but "part of" so I'm not sure why you're framing your post as a big disagreement when there's not that much to disagree with.

I think think the "man-child-groaning-wife*" (*or simply female neighbour/friend/girlfriend/fiancée) dynamic is a fundamental writing flaw in pretty much all the relationships on the show. It's tiresome and outdated and I hate it. I hated in early seasons and I hate it now. The thing I will concede is that it may have come across as not so prominent in early seasons but the main reason for that is IMHO that there simply were not enough women around back then and often times Penny was the only one there to roll her eyes. Heck "hot chick who puts up with the nerds next door" is how I've heard the show described many times. Then they threw Bernadette into the mix who had a completely different personality in the beginning just to be brought back to morph into Howard's mother-ersatz for some inexplicable reason. Similarly, Shamy suddenly went through this phase the moment they became an official item in S5 - and again for no good reason at all. We even had episodes where Penny taught Amy how to properly roll your eyes at your boyfriends nerdy man child nonsense.

Sure, we could go into the details of why such and such scene or episode isn't actually meant to be seen like that but in the end of the day it doesn't really matter cause the jokes are constructed around that cliché which gave us so much material we as fans on this forum don't like. Or to put it differently: As much as we like to analyse the process and progress of the character development and growth the frustrating truth is that all those wonderful changes for the better will be thrown under the bus for some basic jokes that have always been part of the show since day 1.

Is it lazy writing? Well, I guess it is to some extend because in it's very nature these things are writing shortcuts. But I think it's probably also simply efficient writing for a sitcom that has to produce 24 episodes a year in quick succession with an extremely high joke-density. Not to mention all the on-the-fly changes during tape nights cause the audience preferred one joke over the other. So all in all I'm less eager to throw out the "the writers are just laaaaazyy" card too quickly despite all my criticism. I see the writing and its shortcomings as a result of the way the show is produced. After all if this were a show with only 10 episodes per year it probably would look very different. Maybe better, who knows. Or maybe it would have been cancelled after S2. We don't know.

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11 hours ago, serena_1995 said:

I agree with @veejay and completely disagree with you. You may disagree but Jim succeeded in giving Sheldon a wonderful personality, a very strong one actually, from the start. It may seem like a caricature to you , but not to me.  IMO, very early on,  he won multiple Emmys and Golden Globes because of the oddness, the emotions, the quirks, the physical comedy , the innocence,  the one-of-a-kind mannerisms and brilliant dialogue. There were plenty of heart warming scenes and equally funny ones and in no way were the characters interchangable. Leonard was always more likable, grounded and able to converse with  Penny more than the other guys. And on what planet was Howard's sleazy dialogue interchangable with Sheldon or Leonard ?? Penny was also not at all ditzy. She had shown plenty of street smarts, patience,  kindness and tolerance towards Leonard and surprisingly intuitive towards Sheldon as well , even in the early seasons. 

On the contrary, I think right now, I feel all the guys (and even the girls) are interchangeable. They all come across as man children who annoy their bored wives with their "childish" interests and antics and it usually follows the same old tropes. It might seem like exaggerating and generalizing on my part, but I see plenty of exaggeration and generalization in your declarartion that "the characters had no personality". 

This post is perfect from my point of view. I hated most of the first season, even quit watching for awhile, but it was Sheldon who drew me back and made me catch up. I'd seen plenty of nerdy guys fantasizing about dimwitted, big busted blonds on TV (yes, there is no question in my mind she was written as dimwitted) and sleazy losers like Howard before but Sheldon was what was unique. The others developed the personalities they have today later. And Jim is still my hero for knowing it was time to walk away and move on.

6 hours ago, April said:

And yes, she was way more ditzy at the beginning. People only remember the "street smarts" but that in itself was a bit of a revamp (with the old Penny still slipping in sometimes when they make her bone dead stupid for no reason ugh)

THANK YOU!

6 hours ago, April said:

Look, I know ppl like to glorify the early years and everything and by all means you do you but that won't change my opinion that those early years had a lot warts and an ugly underbelly, too.

Fat Debbie jokes anyone? Those were cringe worthy,

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1 hour ago, April said:

I didn't say it was "all that" but "part of" so I'm not sure why you're framing your post as a big disagreement when there's not that much to disagree with.

I said I didn't exactly agree, so in fact I framed my post as not a big disagreement.

We agree on the general idea, and disagree on some of the nuances (what's new?).

I think that "putting up with" dynamic is very old and tired. I guess this dynamic is easy for these writers to write, and they easily fall onto man-child-groaning-woman (which is a case of the general "putting up with" style). I do think there is laziness to it, but since the show has been as such an amazing success there may also be a desire to stick to what they know mixed in there. I think in some ways the same logic that IMO drives (what for me is) the Sheldon overdose applies here. The show is a success, these jokes do get laughs, so let's stick with it or turn it up. The problem in both cases is, at least for some people, it has passed a certain threshold (different for every person) and became too much. When you have a succesful show you know some things are working, but you don't know exactly what and how this changes over time because you can't interview every viewer at length and in various times. They may have done focus groups at a certain point(s) but these groups may not represent all of the opinions out there. Also, it seems like they mostly rely on the live audience, which is not very representative, as many big fans cannot attend and there's also the excitement of being there, and wanting to help the showmakers, that has its effects. 

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On 10/31/2018 at 5:29 AM, chucky said:

I don't see it that way anymore. At one time he was most definitely an original, but now TPTB have decided to make him a normal guy. He's now just a husband like Leonard and Howard. No more, no less than that!

Yeah I have to agree. Churning out so many seasons probably didn't help.

Edited by Spaced_up
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54 minutes ago, bfm said:

I said I didn't exactly agree, so in fact I framed my post as not a big disagreement.

We agree on the general idea, and disagree on some of the nuances (what's new?).

TBBTgirlshighfive.gif.f2bab5bcd1badec301e962f9411a4e50.gif

54 minutes ago, bfm said:

I think that "putting up with" dynamic is very old and tired. I guess this dynamic is easy for these writers to write, and they easily fall onto man-child-groaning-woman (which is a case of the general "putting up with" style).

Yeah, it's been a standard of sitcoms for decades now so there's something that provides familiarity for the general audience. I fear it's also a bit of a failure to promote a positive female presence in that it's putting women on a pedestal as the smart grown up in the room but it's missing the mark and you end up with this warped idea that men never grow up and women inevitably become a sort of mother figure to them. If this trope dies a horrible death I wouldn't miss it one bit.

54 minutes ago, bfm said:

I do think there is laziness to it, but since the show has been as such an amazing success there may also be a desire to stick to what they know mixed in there. I think in some ways the same logic that IMO drives (what for me is) the Sheldon overdose applies here. The show is a success, these jokes do get laughs, so let's stick with it or turn it up. The problem in both cases is, at least for some people, it has passed a certain threshold (different for every person) and became too much. When you have a succesful show you know some things are working, but you don't know exactly what and how this changes over time because you can't interview every viewer at length and in various times. They may have done focus groups at a certain point(s) but these groups may not represent all of the opinions out there. Also, it seems like they mostly rely on the live audience, which is not very representative, as many big fans cannot attend and there's also the excitement of being there, and wanting to help the showmakers, that has its effects. 

Yes, it's a super small sample size they are working with each episode and the results are a bit skewed in their favour cause the people there just want to have a good time. Nobody in the audience is sitting there analysing a scene they see for the first time in the same way we would here and only then reacting to what the actors do. To expect that would be a bit absurd anyway so what we get is largely a sense of humour that is guided by gut reaction. There are advantages and disadvantages to that but I guess in the end the success of the show proved them right.

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3 hours ago, April said:

Yes, it's a super small sample size they are working with each episode and the results are a bit skewed in their favour cause the people there just want to have a good time. Nobody in the audience is sitting there analysing a scene they see for the first time in the same way we would here and only then reacting to what the actors do. To expect that would be a bit absurd anyway so what we get is largely a sense of humour that is guided by gut reaction. There are advantages and disadvantages to that but I guess in the end the success of the show proved them right.

I think it works well for tired people half watching reruns and getting a laugh. On cable TBBT reruns are all over the place.

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14 minutes ago, djsurrey said:

I think it works well for tired people half watching reruns and getting a laugh. On cable TBBT reruns are all over the place.

A highly plausible supposition. I'm into large words for some reason.

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5 hours ago, April said:

Yeah, it's been a standard of sitcoms for decades now so there's something that provides familiarity for the general audience. I fear it's also a bit of a failure to promote a positive female presence in that it's putting women on a pedestal as the smart grown up in the room but it's missing the mark and you end up with this warped idea that men never grow up and women inevitably become a sort of mother figure to them. If this trope dies a horrible death I wouldn't miss it one bit.

Couldn't agree more. This really does no good to both genders. 

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