‘The Big Bang Theory’ ended its popular 12-season run last month. While the CBS primetime hit could have continued for at least another season, show co-creator Chuck Lorre was probably right not to force it forward by strong-arming Jim Parsons.
At least we still have ‘Young Sheldon’ with Jim Parsons narrating on CBS for the foreseeable future.
Speaking of Mr. Lorre — the veritable sitcom (though he hates the word sitcom) king of the modern era — I thought I’d throw it back to an interview he gave about seven years ago in which he described how ‘The Big Bang Theory’ came to be for its TV premiere in 2007.
For 12 years, ‘The Big Bang Theory’ was — to quote a memorable expression of optimism by Leonard in the pilot involving his crush on beautiful new neighbor Penny — smart and beautiful…
and, thankfully, not imaginary.
Spoiler Alert: Content below features a few spoilers (of sorts) from last night’s ‘Big Bang Theory’ series finale.
With last night’s series finale of ‘The Big Bang Theory,’ it seems appropriate to post a video with the show’s cast expressing gratitude for their dedicated fans who watched them for 12 seasons from all around the country and the world.
The hour-long series finale was fantastic, filled with hilarious punchlines coupled with heartwarming moments as was the tradition on the show. It was great. However, there are still a few lingering questions:
- What caused the immediate change of heart with Penny having a baby?
- Why didn’t Penny have a last name?
- Where were Sheldon’s final three knocks? No “Soft Kitty” or reference to “Soft Kitty”? No bazinga?
- Why didn’t Howard’s dad make an appearance or why wasn’t that mystery — which was teased in an earlier season — firmly resolved on camera?
- Why did Howard wear an alien pin in every single episode of the series?
Maybe I’m being too picky. Too mired in the details? An hour sounds like a long time, but the writers did a great job of crafting a cohesive story in about 42 minutes of actual air time to cram in a lot of things for a lot of characters to wrap the series up in a nice way. My questions above aren’t meant as massive critiques of the final show as a whole — they aren’t — but instead, highlight a few missing classic ‘Big Bang Theory’ shout-outs and what seemed like must-see revelations.
Above all, I really thought the writers would reveal why Howard wore an alien pin in every single episode (279 of them). It was there every time yet it was never mentioned or explained as what could have been revealed as a profound characteristic of the character?
Perhaps series co-creator Chuck Lorre put it best on his famous pause-worthy vanity card after the series finale last night:
Lingering questions aside, ‘The Big Bang Theory’ had a Nobel ending as one of the great sitcoms.
P.S. The ending of ‘Young Sheldon’ last night was yet another perfect synchronization with its parent show…and its characters.
September 24, 2007 – May 16, 2019.
Thanks to my dad’s comedic instinct of a new television show about a group of socially awkward scientists working and living in southern California whose world is turned upside down (in the best ways) because of a new beautiful blonde neighbor, he and I attended the pilot episode of ‘The Big Bang Theory’ back in early 2007.
Even some of the best sitcoms of all-time struggle in the pilot episodes. The first season can be an uphill climb of sorts.
But that wasn’t the case with ‘The Big Bang Theory.’
It was great from the get-go, which includes a scene my dad and I saw live that has, for some reason, been cut from the rerun.
The series opens with Sheldon and Leonard visiting a high-IQ sperm bank. Yes. That’s right. The nurse returned later in the series when Howard needed a, um, hand. One of the punchlines in the sperm bank scene was Leonard helping the nurse with a crossword puzzle by saying “Port-au-Prince.”
And then there was arguably the funniest character intro involving the hilariously politically incorrect Howard Wolowitz.
Back in January of this year, my parents and I miraculously scored tickets to one of the final 10 episodes of this beloved series titled “The Donation Oscillation” to bookend the series experience. This episode, which included Penny’s old boyfriend Zack and his wife, fully delivered on the laughs with fulfilling dramatic moments that fit perfectly with the story. To make things better, there was an electric atmosphere with the audience. Incredibly, there were fans who drove from far away and some who flew from all over the world just to see a live taping of ‘The Big Bang Theory.’
The show undeniably means a lot to its fans.
It also happens that I met a pretty girl, Theresa, while waiting in line who was from Germany and temporarily living in LA. Perhaps we’ll cross paths again.
Hey, if Leonard won Penny over against all odds…
It would be easy to simply include my favorite scenes from the science-centric series. However, that list would be too long. Ultimately, ‘The Big Bang Theory’ was/is a brilliant show featuring brilliant characters who were surprisingly relatable for their social awkwardness, in no small part because of their nerd-caliber love of movies, TV and pop culture all while trying to be cool.
But like the Phoenix, they figured out ways to rise from the ashes of constant failure to win the day and the girl.
And these were feelings excitedly and heartwarmingly revealed by my fellow audience members back in January when given the chance to speak to everyone, which added a level of camaraderie between all of us who have been watching ‘The Big Bang Theory’ for more than a decade.
Before the show ends, there are some specific mysteries that will hopefully get resolved later tonight:
- Does the elevator get fixed?
- Will Raj meet a girl with a promising beginning?
- Does Howard meet his father? There were five lies and one truth in letters that Raj (Kunal Nayyar), Sheldon (Jim Parsons), Amy (Mayim Bialik), Penny (Kaley Cuoco), Leonard (Johnny Galecki), and Bernadette (Melissa Rauch) read to Howard (Simon Helberg) about his dad who left when he was young. If his dad shows up, what actor plays Howard’s dad?
- What is Penny’s last name?
- Why does Howard wear an alien pin in every single episode in the series?
Millions of fans cannot wait to see how the show ends. While sad, at least we know from the past 12 seasons that the cast, writers, and producers of the show know how to get laugh-out-loud punchlines as well as mix in heartwarming moments like when Penny gave Sheldon a napkin signed by his hero Leonard Nimoy (Spock).
Thank you to the ‘Big Bang Theory’ television universe for everything you gave us for, what the late Stephen Hawking would say, that brief history of time.
The hour-long series finale of ‘The Big Bang Theory’ airs tonight at 8 p.m. ET. on CBS.
P.S. Will sitcom legend and recurring ‘Big Bang’ character Bob Newhart as Professor Neutron appear near the end of the hour-long finale and yell “Bazinga!” with Sheldon and the entire cast and crew? If he does, it won’t be a dream. The past 12 seasons happened. And they were awesome.
Since tomorrow’s blog post will be filled with personal anecdotes connected to ‘The Big Bang Theory’ — beginning with the pilot episode in 2007 — it seems right to keep it concise today.
12 years of Sheldon, Leonard, Penny, Howard, Raj, Bernadette and Amy (plus Stuart) is sadly ending. And the show will surely conclude with a special pause-worthy vanity card by show co-creator Chuck Lorre after the credits roll. It will be interesting to see the final-final note on ‘The Big Bang Theory.’
In preparation for tomorrow’s main event…
The hour-long series finale of the global hit ‘The Big Bang Theory’ airs tomorrow at 8 p.m. ET. on CBS.