The Big Bang Theory: 5.03 Recap

If the characters in relationships on The Big Bang Theory had a collective Facebook status setting it would definitely be: it’s complicated. Tonight’s episode gave us an idea of how much that’s true by focusing on the couplings of Howard, Bernadette (and Howard’s mother who’s remained a condition of dating Wolowitz) as well as the interesting new development of no-sided Leonard and Amy. I’ll explain what that means in a minute, but the great thing about this is it starts to put a ‘kind of, sort of’ name to what it is exactly that Sheldon and Amy have now.

The episode started off in typical TBBT fashion with the gang hanging out at Sheldon and Leonard’s apartment surrounded by the takeout food choice of the week. Following the parting of the ways for the evening we were left with the very atypical pairing of Amy and Leonard. The fact that these two characters haven’t spent much time outside of group gatherings was apparent with their awkward chemistry. But the main outcome of this shared time together was Amy asking Leonard to accompany her to a wedding. I could sit here and say I never expected they’d toy with Leonard and Amy except for Leonard is a bit of a man-whore if you will, and Amy definitely has an active libido which she’ll remind people of at any time.

When I referred to it as a no-sided coupling earlier, well, it’s because it’s clear at this point that neither side has feelings for the other but at least Amy believes Leonard to be smitten. But by the end of the episode Sheldon is staking claim on Leonard not staking claim on Amy all while earlier on Amy refers to Sheldon as her ‘kind of, sort of’ boyfriend at one point. Nice to see the folks at TBBT putting part of a label on this thing she and Sheldon have engaged in over the last two seasons. They’re unconventional people socially, it only figures that their accepted idea of dating wouldn’t fit something more mainstream. And I get why Sheldon chopped at Leonard, reprimanding him for saying he had a fun time with Amy. Look at what the Penny thing did and still manages to do to their group dynamic, which Sheldon holds onto like a security blanket. It’s no shock he wouldn’t want that to happen again. Or, he could possibly be starting to put his own label on he and Amy’s relationship. After four full seasons, who knows? This could be the next step in Sheldon’s social development.

Elsewhere, we got to revisit Howard’s ever-present mother issues as Bernadette realizes he has no intention of moving out of his mom’s house when they get married. Instead, he expects Bernie to move in with them and become a second-string nurturer for him. It wasn’t a shock that Howard couldn’t let go of being there for his mom and vice-versa–he’s easily the most immature of the four boys and Bernadette is incredibly patient for even staying the whole weekend on her ‘trial run’. The highlight of these scenes had to be the normally soft-spoken Melissa Rauch getting to bust out her shouting voice, which is wonderfully similar to that of Mrs. Wolowitz herself, to fantastic comedic effect. It’s the little reminders like that which show us that Bernadette is more than capable of handling Howard’s childish ways when they do tie the knot, (and hopefully move out anyway because that woman and her son have zero idea about concepts like personal space and boundaries.)

Quote Highlights

  • Of course we know it’s O-Gauge or no gauge.– Sheldon about his preferred size of model train.
  • Raj take me to the train store and then I don’t care what you people do–Sheldon’s typical response to anything that detracts from his intended goal.
  • Self-respect and a hymen are better than friends, love mom– How Amy’s mother signed her yearbook. She was the only one to do so.
  • Frankly after all your little sleep-overs with the brown boy, a girl is a big relief!–Mrs. Wolowitz joking about the very close friendship of Howard and Raj.

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