Caught between popularity and authenticity
February 16th, 2012
01:58 PM ET

Caught between popularity and authenticity

Steven Molaro's workspace is filled with paraphernalia familiar to any geeky fan of science fiction.

"In my office, I’ve got a lot of robot paintings," he said. One of Molaro's co-workers, Bill Prady, often fiddles with a "Star Trek" phaser and will occasionally "shoot" some of his colleagues.

When he and his co-workers gather, they are surrounded by a statue of Spock, a massive painting of DC Comics' "Justice League of America," and a Cylon standee from "Battlestar: Galactica."

All of this is actually quite appropriate for their office, because Molaro is an executive producer for "The Big Bang Theory."

Now in its fifth season on CBS, the show is more popular than ever, airing in reruns on local TV, as well as on TBS (owned by Turner, which also owns CNN). It has recently boasted of beating "American Idol" head-to-head in the coveted 18-49 demographic.

This means that new people are discovering the show all the time, some of whom may originally have been hesitant to watch a show about a bunch of science nerds who collect comic books.

In keeping with the show, Molaro has a theory of his own as well: "There could be some resistance, here and there, from people who are living a geeky or nerdy life, who thought we might be making fun of it or trying to emulate it without knowing what we’re talking about," he said. "But it really does come from a place of love. I’m not a scientist, but I certainly grew up a nerd who was on the outside and didn’t have a lot of friends. A lot of these references come from our personal knowledge."

At the same time (and this being a sitcom, after all), Molaro admits that the show will sometimes have the characters poke fun at each other. "I’d be lying if we sometimes don’t goof on it, but I think people who are nerds who are friends tend to goof on each other as well in certain areas," he said. "I don’t think there’s a need for everyone to love everything geek, and walk in lockstep. I think it’s okay that here and there, as much as we embrace it, that we have fun with it at the same time."

Over the years, there has been something of a split in the nerd community over what to think about the show.

Molaro said, "Mostly we get nice feedback, and sometimes people have specific things they’re upset about. They’re absolutely entitled to those opinions."

At the same time, its supporters are devoted to it, snatching up "Big Bang Theory" merchandise at conventions and elsewhere.

Molaro and co-creators Prady and Chuck Lorre got their first hint that the show was growing a fan base at San Diego Comic-Con in 2008. According to Molaro, Lorre was fully expecting the room to be nearly empty. Instead, they got the rock star treatment (and have every year since): "That was the first time we looked at each other and realized, this might be tapping into something way bigger than we thought it was."

Molaro (who, by the way, prides himself on his "Empire Strikes Back"-inspired Tauntaun sleeping bag) has been with the show since its second episode in 2007.

“I watched the pilot, and I thought, well, that’s pretty interesting," he said. "As a potential writer on the show, I was concerned that I wasn’t going to be able to pitch any science. I don’t have a deep science background. It was hard for me to know how this show would be received. We try to keep it as smart as we can and accessible at the same time. That aspect of the show has paid off."

As Molaro saw it, "The basic idea (early on) was to embrace the science and nerd culture, and try and tap into the element of these characters who tend to feel like they’re on the outside. And I think that’s something that a lot of people who watch the show can relate to, whether they’re one of the ‘cool kids’ or not."

Despite his lack of science knowledge, Molaro said, there are plenty of resources around to make sure the show gets the science right.

"Bill Prady has a fairly deep general science knowledge, along with Eric Kaplan, another writer on the show," he said. "For the hardcore science, David Salzberg, a UCLA physics professor, is on call for us to go over our science and make sure it’s accurate. Sometimes we know the general area of what we’re talking about but don’t know the specifics. Sometimes we literally write ‘science to come’ and have David fill that in for us."

It doesn't hurt that the show's newest cast member is also a neuroscientist.

“We have called on (Mayim Bialik, who plays protagonist Sheldon Cooper's female counterpart, Amy Farrah-Fowler) to help us time to time," he said. "She is very good at keeping her dialogue accurate. On more than one occasion, we thought we had it right and she corrected us, which we were thrilled to have. We want to be accurate, so we’re totally fine to have that happen. We’ve also called her at home on more than one occasion, to say ‘we want a part of the brain that Amy would be looking for,' and she is very quick with those answers."

Molaro said that there are more examples than he can count of stories that were based on actual events. "Without a doubt, every writer has had nerdy things in their lives make their way onto that TV screen in one form or another."

The show's rise in the ratings has been nearly simultaneous with the mainstreaming of nerd culture. "I don’t know why that explosion took place, but it’s been great for the show, that’s for sure," Molaro says.

Even so, being a network show, the creators strive to appeal to the broadest audience possible.

"In every episode, we have come up against wanting to make a deeper, lesser-known, nerdy, geeky reference, and we have to show some restraint because not everyone in the audience is going to get it," he admitted. "We refer to them as 'five percenter' jokes (five percent of the audience will get it). However, as these kind of memes have gone more mainstream, it has made it easier for us to go deeper into those references."

One part of the show that is definitely aiming for the geeks is having guest stars like Wil Wheaton (who has played himself multiple times, as Sheldon's nemesis), Steve Wozniak, George Takei, and astronaut Mike Massimino.

One guest star Molaro would still like to see on the show is Stephen Hawking.

And ever since Sheldon hugged Penny for giving him the gift of Leonard Nimoy's DNA, fans have been clamoring for the "Star Trek" actor to appear, something the producers would also welcome.

However, Molaro warned, "(Sheldon's) head might explode. We may not want that to happen."

Filed under: Brainiac • Fandom
soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. Spike

    Spike A Love Story TOO:

    March 17, 2012 at 6:57 pm |
  2. Buzzzzzz

    You all look like bees.

    March 7, 2012 at 8:12 am |
  3. Sheldon

    Soft kitty...Warm kitty...Little ball of fur..............Happy kitty...sleepy kitty...pur...pur...pur...

    March 6, 2012 at 5:44 pm |
    • Kitty

      That song is only for when your sick!

      March 16, 2012 at 8:47 am |
  4. John

    I used to watch The Big Bang Theory, then I took an arrow to the knee

    February 24, 2012 at 9:33 am |
  5. Henry Hanks

    My nerd penance –

    February 23, 2012 at 6:29 pm |
  6. Chaim Paddaman

    Cuoco likes nerds as much as turkey's like xmas. She has always liked hard and ready guys. "The whole nerd thing" is nothing but a mock. Declaring her love of nerds in Playboy magazine "says it all." Kaley Cuoco and showrunner Chuck Lorre are laughing all the way to the bank.

    February 22, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • kc10boom

      You poor thing, did she break up with you too ? I'm still heartbroken.

      March 10, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
  7. The_Mick

    It may surprise some to learn that much of the language in TBBT is dumbed-down for the general audience. In one episode, Sheldon remarks to Amy how well Brian Greene dumbs-down language for his non-technical audiences using Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principal as an example. But in an earlier episode, Sheldon himself mentions "speed" in reference the H.U.P. and that's incorrect – it's velocity (speed with a direction, including objects spinning like a top), not speed, that makes up the momentum where Heisenberg determined you can only know both momentum and position to within a certain degree of error (i.e., you can't know both an object's position and momentum perfectly).

    February 20, 2012 at 7:36 am |
    • M

      But, you're not funny.

      March 6, 2012 at 12:26 am |
      • jojotakesawalk

        hahaha so true M ! lol that made my day – thanks! lol

        March 16, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
  8. IJ Dee-Vo

    "It takes one to know one. When it comes to topics of interest to nerds, geeks, and superfans, we know how true that is. Geek Out! features stories from a nerd's perspective that you can still share with your "normal" friends and family." Actually this is pretty much what my friends/family is like. For me Penny is the outsider

    February 20, 2012 at 1:02 am |
  9. Abby

    I don't like this show because the token "attractive" female can't also be smart. Really? Are we in the stone age? I'm a smart, sassy, doctoral student in the sciences. I've learned that although I used to wear crazy stuff in high school, in the real world, people judge you initially based on your looks. So, I've adapted, and I can now dress myself in a flattering manner (most of the time). Would it kill them to show a girl who can do differential equations in heels? Also I find the laugh track too cheesy.

    February 19, 2012 at 11:51 pm |
    • IJ Dee-Vo

      Well attractiveness is in the eye of the beholder, Amy is far more attractive to me then Penny. I think it is just to contrast the other main characters.

      February 20, 2012 at 1:00 am |
    • John

      Uhh, Bernadette is super hot and very intelligent... And Penny isn't stupid by any means. She has more common sense than most of the males.

      February 24, 2012 at 9:21 am |
      • Bob

        Exactly. Penny is the "street-smart" one of the group. Pretty smart actually... And she understands Schrodinger's cat... 😉

        February 24, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
      • kc10boom

        You forgot to mention she has the largest breasts of them all, which is the most important thing for the geeks.

        March 10, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
      • kc10boom

        Referring to Bernadette of course, though I haven't seen Howard's mother...nor would I want to.

        March 10, 2012 at 9:54 pm |
    • Marla

      It's not a laugh track. It's a studio audience.

      February 24, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
      • PinkPrincess

        I don't think that's the case......there may be a studio audience when they're filming it but they have certainly dubbed in some laugh tracks. *All* the laughter stops too suddenly to be otherwise.

        February 26, 2012 at 11:32 am |
    • Robby

      If you think Penny is stupid, then you don't really get the show. It's the clash of nerd world versus the rest of us, represented by Penny, that makes it funny. You don't seem to get that, but then again, Sheldon wouldn't get it either.

      March 1, 2012 at 7:22 pm |
  10. Tom

    I get at least one or two good laughs out of every episode of BigBang. We gave our son (PhD Physics UCLA) a DVD set of the first season (he hadn't seen it) for Christmas, and he had great fun watching it. So did his wife.....

    February 19, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
  11. Vicklbet

    I am retired and can't believe how much I love The Big Bang Theory. I laugh out loud at least twice during every show. Leonard is so understated and his facial expressions are wonderful. Penny is so funny and sweet to the boys. Sheldon is .. so Sheldon. The addition of Amy Farrah-Fowler is a hoot. Raj and Howard are like no one I've ever met, but are likeable in spite of their awkwardness.The actresses who play Sheldon's and Leonard's mothers are truly inspired. I'm sure this isn't everyone's cup of tea – hey, I don't watch any of the reality shows – but apparently there are lots of us who adore this show and love to laugh at all the shenanigans these kids get into.

    February 19, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
  12. Christopher

    I watch all of my television from either Netflix or Hulu. If it's not on either one of those services forget it! I don't pay $60 to $100 a month for cable. As for the nerd culture; attractive or unattractive, nerd or cool person–it makes no difference. Each of us live and then we die. The same fate awaits all of us. People just like to place themselves as well as others into groups and categories so that they can either feel special or at least know their own place. All of this is meaningless.

    February 19, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
    • petz

      Say, uhh Christopher? Just an observation, K? By the way you speak of yourself, you place yourself in a special group as well. Your words – "People just like to place themselves as well as others into groups and categories so that they can either feel special or at least know their own place. All of this is meaningless." Taking that comment, you seem to have elevated yourself into an elite group of people who spurn commonplace activities such as watching TV. Not so meaningless then, is it? Feeling pretty special there, aren't ya?

      February 19, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
      • Kevin

        Bravo. Excellent retort and observation.

        March 16, 2012 at 11:06 pm |
    • Bob

      So, Christopher, you've placed yourself in the sanctimonious"I am above the Great Unwashed" group, have you? Be sure to enjoy your time with your girlfriend tonight, Rosie Palms... 😛

      February 24, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
  13. Stacy J

    I watch most of these shows and do not consider myself a nerd! maybe the on,y nerdy thing about this is that I watch all my TV online through different services like the TVDevo website for TV shows and sometimes Netflix for movies.

    February 19, 2012 at 10:52 am |
    • Christopher

      The moment you've asked yourself whether you are a nerd or cool you've already been defeated. None of us truly care what you think of yourself.

      February 19, 2012 at 12:32 pm |
      • petz

        Again, Christopher? You have quite a high opinion of yourself, at the expense of others. Get a grip buddy. You're doing exactly the same thing here as the rest of us. I hope you don't treat flesh and blood people this way...but that would help you build that superiority thing you're grooming. We are all the same, except you?

        February 19, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  14. Mike

    Nerds might have a place but the gays have taken over television. Nothing against them. Just annoying to listen to.

    February 19, 2012 at 7:37 am |
    • Christopher


      February 19, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
  15. Blessed Geek

    Please, for goodness' sake, DON'T EVER confuse a nerd with a geek.

    Difference between a Geek and a Nerd

    A geek has no sense of fashion.
    A nerd has the wrong sense of fashion.

    A geek believes in relative good and evil
    A nerd believes in absolute good and evil.

    A geek has no problem calling a spade a broom.
    A nerd finds it hard calling a broom a broom.

    A geek goes to the bathroom to have a bath or shower.
    A nerd goes to the bathroom for digestive relief

    February 18, 2012 at 11:11 pm |
  16. Craig

    I understand some are not going to love or even like the show but why post comments on stories like this mocking the show and those who do find it entertaining.

    And yes they don't use a laugh track, Chuck Lorre even posted a picture of the studio audience on one of his vanity cards a few years ago.

    February 18, 2012 at 8:03 am |
    • Gordon

      They do use a laugh track, even though they shoot before a live audience. It's standard practice in the industry. Without the track, that and other shows would be at the mercy of the audiences' actual response, which is rarely as enthusiastic as the track makes it appear. No production company can take that chance. To see genuine and unaugmented audience response, watch an old episode of The Honeymooners. They didn't have or need laugh tracks.

      February 18, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  17. Craig

    I understand some are not going to love or even like the show but why post comments on stories like this mocking the show and those who do find it entertaining.

    And yes they don't use a laugh track, Chuck Lorre even posted a picture of the studio audience on one of his vanity cards a few years ago.

    February 18, 2012 at 7:52 am |
    • Christopher

      Who cares if people mock the show? Love it or hate it. It's just a show. I personally haven't ever seen it but based on fans' extreme defense of the show it's not something I'm likely to try out anytime soon. I'm a huge fan of Psych, Monk, White Collar, Castle, The Finder, Star Trek and the X-Files. I don't watch television that attracts an audience that takes itself too seriously.

      February 19, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
      • Craig

        Star Trek and The X-Files have some of the most seriously crazy fans around.

        February 19, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
  18. guest

    CBS, Very Funny. Keep on showing.

    February 18, 2012 at 7:46 am |
    • Christopher


      February 19, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
  19. Meg

    I love the show because I grok it. At times I see myself in the nerds/geeks, especially since Amy came on (I'm female). I have long been one of few women in a male dominated field. Many of my co-workers and I talk about sci-fi things. I own many computer geek t-shirts and enjoy watching people try to understand what they say. I took physics in college for a science credit because I found it interesting. I read about quarks, calculus and algorithms for fun. I'm not as brilliant as the characters on the show, nor am I as dysfunctional, but it's still a fun show to watch (and try to predict what is going to happen.)

    February 18, 2012 at 3:52 am |
  20. L.T. Fang

    The science they talk about on the show is remarkably good.
    Not saying they're accurate, but they are *not* complete nonsense like some of the movies you see, e.g., The Core, the Day After Tomorrow, etc.

    February 17, 2012 at 6:43 pm |
  21. jj

    AFF is getting out of control. 3 grand for that painting?

    February 17, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
  22. Susan

    I watched reruns back-to-back that my son was watching. I love it, love it, love it. I just wish they'd trash the laugh track. The show doesn't need it.

    February 17, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Chris Ph.D.

      It might.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
      • CJ

        This is the greatest reply in the history of the internet.

        Seriously, we might have to shut it down after that. Well done.

        February 17, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
    • Marie

      Big Bang doesn't use a laugh track. It is filmed, screened to an audience, audience's reactions are recorded, and that is what is heard on TV. I do agree that the laughter can, at times, be too loud, but it is all real laughter from real people.

      February 17, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
  23. Guess

    One of the best sit-coms on TV, my wife and I never miss it. The writing is great, the cast is perfect. While I can see it might not be for some people, the humor can't be denied. Long live the geek-squad!

    February 17, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
  24. Rocket Scientist

    Frustrating show because it can be funny sometimes but with that said... the geeks that this show gets are largely non scientific geeks I am guessing because as an Aerospace Engineer I can tell you that the science references are frustrating and often wrong. Love that they try real hard with guests though, I wrote a 50 page paper using Neil DeGrasse Tyson's (main guy behind renaming Pluto) works primarily and I was excited to see him on the show.

    February 17, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
    • Chris Ph.D.


      February 17, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • jj

      Sorry, Pluto has not been renamed. It is still called Pluto.

      February 17, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
      • Dr. B

        ^^^win. Kind of puts the orig. poster's cred in doubt, yes?

        February 17, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • Kevin

      Lighten up already.

      March 16, 2012 at 11:10 pm |
  25. LennyD

    Seriously? The most poorly written jokes in the history of television. Not remotely funny. I watched 9 – 10 minutes of this garbage show and wanted to scratch my own eyes out. Terrible. I cant believe this is what we've dumbed-down to.

    February 17, 2012 at 12:43 pm |
    • Guess

      Wow. Someone needs a hobby.....

      February 17, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • beelzabarber

      obviously a self hating nerd still in denial.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Craig

      So for the 100 plus episode they have made you've judged the show on watching just 10 minutes of it?

      I love the show even if I don't get much of the science or even a lot of the scifi references.

      February 17, 2012 at 7:55 pm |
    • wavejump1100

      this is a wonderful show. of course not everyone will like everything. its nice to see hollywood making an effort to spotlight education. it used to be that school and cool did not go together.

      February 17, 2012 at 9:19 pm |
    • guest


      February 18, 2012 at 7:43 am |
  26. lgwelsh1

    The funniest show on TV. The show will definitly be around for years.

    February 17, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Bob Roberts

      Funny, that's somewhat similar to how Sheldon described "Firefly"....

      February 17, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
      • Craig

        Well TBBT has been around a lot longer than FireFly and had at least 2 more seasons already signed for. So that's 7 years at least.

        BTW I enjoyed FireFly, it was taken from us before it's time!

        February 17, 2012 at 7:59 pm |
  27. Nikki

    Love this show - it manages to convey the brillance of scientists while showing the off-center side (HALO, paint-ball, etc.) of their personalities. The Soft Kitty song is a perfect example! Although that song and the Yoko Ono song did get stuck in my brain for awhile.

    It's just a sit-com, guys - not real rocket science (yes, slight pun intended). It's entertainment as much as Seinfeld was and not intended to be more than that. All the actors are so good that it is easy to forget they're acting.

    The show has managed to get Wil Wheaton and LaVar Burton on it. Now, if Sheldon could run into Leonard Nimoy . . .

    February 17, 2012 at 11:39 am |
  28. humtake

    I tried watching that show. I'm a nerd and I like absurd sarcasm. I just can't get into that show because the girl isn't that hot. She's a 6 or 7 at best. The absurdity factor is very low, which makes the show just about a bunch of nerds and plain girl who they all idolize. The theme of the show is ruined because of that.

    February 17, 2012 at 9:01 am |
    • LL

      And you are probably a 1 or 2 right? What a ridiculous comment and ridiculous reason not to watch a show....

      February 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
      • Dr. B

        ^^THIS x1000

        February 17, 2012 at 5:43 pm |
    • L.T. Fang

      Bernadette may be a 6 or 7. Penny is a solid 9!

      February 17, 2012 at 6:31 pm |
      • John

        LOL right.

        February 24, 2012 at 9:26 am |
  29. Jeff

    I didn't catch the Big Bang Theory show until 3 months ago. I was hooked and we had to get all 4 seasons asap and watched them all in the span of 2 weekends. My only hope is that none of the cast gets a big head ala C. Sheen.. Knock.. Knock.. Knock.. Penny.... So funny.

    February 17, 2012 at 8:02 am |
  30. WWRRD

    Who's laughing now! NERDS have JOBS!

    February 17, 2012 at 7:50 am |
  31. Benzin

    Let the muggles believe that nerds are anti-social shut ins who only care about obscure video games and sci-fi TV. All the more unprepared they will be when we unleash our Y2K12 virus on all Windows and Macintosh machines, leaving only delicious open source Linux in its wake.

    February 17, 2012 at 7:33 am |
    • L.T. Fang

      ... if they displease us, we won't set up their printers for them.
      Now suck up to us!

      February 17, 2012 at 6:34 pm |
  32. ME

    Are you kidding me? Most pathetic show EVER!

    February 17, 2012 at 7:11 am |
    • Thomas

      I know that the big words might be scary for you, but they can't hurt you. It's okay. Don't be afraid.

      February 17, 2012 at 11:25 am |
  33. Sam

    Geek rule the world and here we are just smiling at them.

    February 17, 2012 at 7:08 am |
  34. johnt

    It's no surprise that, at a time when tv programming has hit rock bottom, with 9 out of 10 shows are fake reality shows about garbage men, parking attendants and trailer trash, anything else looks like it's a work of genius in comparison. I don't know about nerds, but BBT is mildly offensive to real scientists. It is typical Lorre fluff with continuoysly recycled material, same formula as 2 1/2 men. The last sitcom that had opinions worth hearing and with a story to tell in each episode was Seinfeld. It's shows like BBT and 2 1/2 Men that are about nothing. You may smirt at the same one liners or caricaturized behaviour during the show, but once the 20 minutes are over, you have gained nothing and lost half an hour.

    February 17, 2012 at 6:14 am |
    • nerd

      smirt? get over yourself.

      February 17, 2012 at 6:27 am |
    • wait, what?

      20 minutes is not half an hour. get over yourself.

      February 17, 2012 at 6:28 am |
    • cc007

      Geez, go crawl back inside your petri dish. It's a sit-com, if you don't like it, don't watch it.

      February 17, 2012 at 7:12 am |
    • Thenextstep

      Did I hear you say Seinfield was worth the reviews ?? Oh Geeze, now you lost me....... You probably like Mash too....
      I do atleast agree with you on the relativity of how some shows can look good simply because of the crap thats out there now.......

      February 17, 2012 at 7:33 am |
    • Jeff

      Far better than the "un-reality" garbage and guess what, sometimes just like going to the movies, people are looking for a 20 minute escape from their humdrum days and if they can get a laugh or smile than the show has served it's pupose. The show both hits the 20-somethings and it pulls in the 40 + with it's references to old shows. If you are a person that sits a looks at everything that seriously then this show is not for you so go stay on the History channel fo it's total seriousness. Some folks just need to relax and take the show for what it is.. a T.V. show.

      February 17, 2012 at 8:12 am |
    • Thomas

      It's a SITCOM, not friggin' Nova. Get over yourself already.

      February 17, 2012 at 11:27 am |
    • Jerkface

      DId anyone else catch the grand irony of this kid calling Seinfeld ("The show about nothing") "The last sitcom that had opinions worth hearing and with a story to tell in each episode"?

      February 18, 2012 at 12:33 am |
    • M

      Does anyone know how to remove smirt from my trousers?

      March 6, 2012 at 12:38 am |
  35. Wolverine

    Love this show. I knew plenty of these types of people growing up. I can see alot of the format in this show from those experiences with people with exceptional smarts. I LAUGH ALOT when watching these characters and the stories. And any show that can bring some humor into people's life is great. In a time when things look so bleak its good to sit back, laugh and just have some good old fun. Its great for the human spirit. So thanks to Sheldon, Leonard, Howard, Raj and Penny and all the other characters for bringing some laughter and fun to people's lives. Carry on with your mission.

    February 17, 2012 at 6:10 am |
  36. Mark M

    Takes one to know one. Of course nerd shows will be popular, the non nerds are out playing sports, dating girls, seeing the world. The target audience is inside captive to their personalities typing away, using their thumbs 90% more than their legs, and watching Sheldon. That is if they can find their glasses.

    February 17, 2012 at 5:46 am |
    • Brahm

      ...says the guy taking time to comment on CNN stories.

      February 17, 2012 at 7:28 am |
      • Mark M

        Good point..Friday afternoon, I think I'll go ride 25 miles on my bike while Sheldon Brahm sits at home trying to figure out ways to endure social activities.

        February 17, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
      • M

        Mark M- running/riding is for thieves and children.

        March 6, 2012 at 12:41 am |
    • Thomas

      Actually, they're lamenting their old sports injuries, regretting getting married and standing in unemployment lines.

      February 17, 2012 at 11:29 am |
      • Mark M

        As opposed to never knowing true love, accept from across the cafeteria dreaming about the homecoming queen. Staring at a screen all day waiting for,"Where's the tech guy." from the corner office guy. And, whimpering over a paper cut.

        February 17, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • Dr. B

      Wow, stereotype much? I'm a nerd. I have 3 children, I volunteer in the community, I have a social life with friends, and a husband who owns a successful business. I'm also good at my university job and not bad looking (according to others). And yet, I don't feel the need to indulge in stereotypes to make myself feel better about my life choices. I feel sorry for you.

      Unless obvious troll is just being obvious. In which case.... nope, still feel sorry for you.

      February 17, 2012 at 5:47 pm |
      • Jerkface

        SS or it didn't happen...;)

        February 18, 2012 at 12:35 am |
      • Mark M

        Wow you're a "Dr." and don't realize that: The term stereotype derives from the Greek words στερεός (stereos), "firm, solid"[2] and τύπος (typos), "impression,"[3] hence "solid impression". Nobody is arguing that there not exceptions to every stereotype. I'm glad you're are such a beautiful nerd, and your husband is a successful nerd lover. The irony, look at the post assuming my post was from a monosyllabic athlete who drools over young women. Nothing in my life could further from the truth. As I embrace seeking out intellectual endeavors including traveling several continents via bicycle and listening to the people to form opinion, understanding multiple psychological models via my degree, and loving my one and only wife, and fully adjusted children I just implore the nerd stereotype to get outside and quit watching more nerds do whiny nerd things. I'd say the same thing to overly zealous sports guy. Get off the couch and go see a play, and walk the streets of an arts festival. Thanks for your retort though!

        February 20, 2012 at 9:06 am |
      • M

        Mark M- you are the ultimate in self- absorbed. I'm so sorry the rest of the world isn't just like you.

        March 6, 2012 at 12:34 am |
    • Chris

      I feel sorry for you.

      February 18, 2012 at 10:09 am |
    • Chris

      What you should have said was.. the non nerds are out watching sports, drinking beer, divorced, dating girls half their age, and playing fantasy football while pretending it's not just a cleverly disguised version of dungeons and dragons.

      February 18, 2012 at 10:13 am |
      • Stacey

        Chris: "the non nerds are out watching sports, drinking beer, divorced, dating girls half their age, and playing fantasy football while pretending it's not just a cleverly disguised version of dungeons and dragons." LOVE IT! You nailed that one on the head, and I find that way more pathetic than a nerd staying at home doing his thing. BTW, my wonderful, caring, selfless, romantic, intelligent, self-professed nerd hubby routinely tells everyone that he is the geek who got the prom queen. Brains are much more attractive than brawn anyday 🙂

        February 19, 2012 at 7:27 am |
    • Kevin

      Mark, You are a bit of a ass.

      March 16, 2012 at 11:16 pm |
  37. SofaLofa

    Sitcoms stop being funny when the main guy and girl start/stop/start dating each other for the third time – a phenomenon I call Sitcom-Incest. I'm sure by now there is money in the budget to cast different guys/girls for them to go out with.

    February 17, 2012 at 5:33 am |
  38. SofaLofa

    I loved the first season, but honestly how long are we expected to put up with Sheldon's spoiled-brat routine? I love his eccentricities, but why doesnt anyone say "no" to him when he's being a whiney pain in the as s?

    February 17, 2012 at 5:25 am |
    • Dennis

      I think that is what Amy is for, someone to say no to Sheldon.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • Person.

      Oh Amy doesn't take any of that man's crap.

      February 17, 2012 at 9:45 pm |
  39. McGuffin

    Way to promote the show airing on your other network. Good job. Not obvious at all.

    Not that it's not a good show - but come on. A tiny little disclaimer that Turner owns both CNN and TBS, and that's supposed to make us think that this article is anything other than a way to promote The Big Bang Theory and thereby increase the ratings of its reruns on TBS?

    February 17, 2012 at 4:48 am |
  40. Bob Bone

    At 80, love the show. Wife thinks I'm crazy. I have to record it and watch after my sweetheart goes to bed.

    February 17, 2012 at 3:55 am |
    • TheMendicantBias

      HAHA, that's hilarious!

      February 17, 2012 at 4:31 am |
      • thebigfan

        I loved it!!! 😉

        February 17, 2012 at 6:28 am |
    • jj

      You go, guy!

      February 17, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  41. Benny Lava

    These guys aren't nerds or outcast in the true high school sense of the characterization.. They are actors with perfect skin, lean bodies, straight teeth,stylish hair and well paying jobs who live in an amazing apartment... They would be like the coolest people you know. More like hipsters rather than nerds.

    February 17, 2012 at 3:23 am |
    • jj

      Well, except for Howard

      February 17, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  42. Mykinco

    That's no nerd, It's a space station.

    February 17, 2012 at 1:51 am |
    • Thomas

      It's too big to be a space station.

      February 17, 2012 at 11:30 am |
  43. Ellen

    After watching a few episodes of BBT, I asked my daughter who works at a university if she liked the show. She replied no, because she has to actually work with these people!

    February 17, 2012 at 1:35 am |
  44. You're a geek if you complained.

    Geeks are men who refuse to grow up. They have to stick to childish things much to the delight of the gaming, tech-social-fad and toy, movie cgi industries.

    February 17, 2012 at 1:34 am |
    • Lauren


      All men refuse to grow up.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:37 am |
      • SofaLofa

        NEWSFLASH! All women say that. And my statement is just as true as yours.

        February 17, 2012 at 5:26 am |
      • Wolverine

        My girlfriend says that but she still loves me.. She knows my passion for comic books and sports, especially baseball. but those are just some of the quirks she loves. Dont let them fool you women are right up there with us when it comes to this stuff.

        February 17, 2012 at 6:20 am |
    • dom

      hey lauren wanna go on a hawt date? I know a sweet place in ashenvale where we could get to know each other

      February 17, 2012 at 1:47 am |
    • JenniferUCD

      Hey, not all geek's are men.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:59 am |
    • Anne

      Sorry, your comment doesn't hold up, I'm a woman, 43 years old, a mother, I have a career and I am proud of being a geek!

      February 17, 2012 at 2:37 am |
    • Dr. B

      I think that people stereotyping others are the ones who haven't grown up yet.

      February 17, 2012 at 5:49 pm |
      • Mark M

        You are a one trick pony! Not unlike a nerd! Dr. Stereotype police.

        February 20, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • Person.

      Slow down there, Penny!

      February 17, 2012 at 9:48 pm |
  45. Sweetenedtea

    I watch the show on occasion, always in re-runs on TBS. It's an amusing show and I do enjoy the dynamics. That said, many of the comments here are expression personal opinion (valid) without the usual reservations of unbiased commentators. The Big Bang theory is certainly something I'll watch if it comes on, but it has its fair share of trite jokes, failed storylines and standard sitcom cliches. There are quite a few jokes I see coming a mile away because, well, I've seen them on countless inferior sitcoms over the years. What distinguishes BBT for me isn't pure brilliance, but the way it does allow itself the freedom to laugh with and at nerd culture simultaneously, and rarely (but occasionally) getting boring in the process.

    February 17, 2012 at 12:43 am |
    • Marty McFly

      Since when does rarely equal occasionally? It's one or the other, pick one.

      February 17, 2012 at 8:06 am |
      • Sweetenedtea

        Go back to making out with your mother, Marty, and stop nitpicking on CNN.

        Seriously, though, the "occasionally" was simply meant to emphasize that it does, in fact happen.

        February 17, 2012 at 9:22 am |

    All these comments are a reflection of the shows popularity. My wife is a computer scientist, who's first job, out of school was sotware engineer for the DOD (1979). When apple ll came out, I was working on voice synthetizers (yeah..sheldon was too young for his Apple lle, in that wozniak show...but we forgive him). This show is great fun. my wife and I don't even miss the re-runs. But don't get too heavy, nerds. its all just fun. Plus life is good, in the nerdy neck of the woods.

    February 16, 2012 at 11:59 pm |
    • JenniferUCD

      I played the original Wolfenstein on my Apple IIe till my eyes saw purple all around me. Good times!

      February 17, 2012 at 12:49 am |
      • Syndrome Zed

        Heh, I did too – only I had one of those fascinating rarities, a pre-crackdown Franklin Ace 1200 Apple clone. 64 kilobytes of Nazi-killin' RAM in a heavy plastic box with integrated keyboard that made you wish you had a forklift whenever you had to move it. 😀

        February 17, 2012 at 1:25 am |
      • Thomas

        Hard Hat Mack RULES!!

        February 17, 2012 at 11:33 am |
      • dom

        wolfenstein man I loved that game

        February 18, 2012 at 12:22 am |
  47. dom

    Being a web programmer, I've watched the show a few times. My main complaint is the fact that it sort of propogates the "nerd" scene where people dress as stereotypically nerd as possible like it's some fashion trend you can be a part of. Sorry but it's not something you can pick up at hot topic you actually have to do this thing called thought and have a legitimate skill in order to be a part of it.

    February 16, 2012 at 11:12 pm |
  48. D

    BBT is an entertaining show but really it has the usual Chuck Lorre faults.
    They make the characters more and more irrational caricatures of their core concepts.
    Sheldon is like some sort of uber-mash-up of various nerd parts, layered with the irrationality of a child.
    Completely unbelievable and somewhat offensive.

    February 16, 2012 at 10:35 pm |
    • Planixl

      It's a comedy.

      February 16, 2012 at 11:30 pm |
      • D

        Indeed, but the ridiculousness makes it less-funny.

        February 16, 2012 at 11:32 pm |
    • sharky

      Sheldon has undeclared Asperger's Syndrome. Look it all up. Sheldon fits perfectly for having the Syndrome, but also given he is a supergenius, pretty much they usually have disorders.

      February 16, 2012 at 11:32 pm |
      • D

        Yes, familiar with that syndrome. Just been too polite to suggest that the character has mental/medical problems. Somehow I suspect that matching those symptoms isn't exactly intentional, if you know what I mean.

        February 16, 2012 at 11:51 pm |
    • Syndrome Zed

      Why would you assume it wasn't intentional? I didn't start watching right away, but as soon as I did, my first thought was "Sheldon's the perfect high-functioning autistic", right down to the OCD-like routines and extreme but overly-focused intellect. Personally, I'm more connected to Amy Farrah-Fowler, being a neuroscientist myself – and I've had some of the same ideas about "fun" experiments to try that she (and Bernadette) have actually mentioned in the show.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:30 am |
    • svann

      Yea its stereotypical. Its just a tv show though.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:47 am |
  49. Mo

    Nerds have taken over. Look around you. All the women want nerds now, and the funny thing is that these nerds now think they are 'cool'. These nerds now think they can play sports and do things nerds were never able to do.
    When you think about it, most of these nerds worked their way up the corporate ladder, and now have money, and believe their money will erase their 'nerdishness'... what a joke.
    From a non-nerd, I say "Oh well, we alpha males ran the world for so long, let these beta and charlie nerd males have their chance". Soon these women will wake up and realize they miss REAL men.

    February 16, 2012 at 10:19 pm |
    • trollistroll


      February 16, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • JoJo

      In my opinion, the REAL men are the ones who start all the unnecessary wars (but don't necessarily serve in them themselves). It's time to let intelligent people run things, the ones whom bigots refer to as "nerds".

      February 16, 2012 at 10:32 pm |
    • D

      ah yes, women really do love d-bags!

      February 16, 2012 at 10:32 pm |
      • D

        (sarcasm intended)

        February 16, 2012 at 10:59 pm |
    • Michelle

      No, we really don't. "Real Men" don't know when to admit their mistakes. "Real Men" can't take it when their women are more educated and earn more money than they do. And "Real Men" think they know what women want, when in reality, they don't. Kthxbye.

      February 16, 2012 at 10:43 pm |
      • ben

        a gross stereotype.

        February 16, 2012 at 11:27 pm |
    • JenniferUCD

      alpha, beta and GAMMA... Who's Charlie?

      February 16, 2012 at 11:03 pm |
      • kevin

        THANK YOU

        February 17, 2012 at 12:13 am |
      • Death's Choice

        Id have to assume he mixed up alpha, bravo, charlie (the military letter call signs) with alpha, beta, gamma, (the greek alphabet)... the problem comes in when gamma doesnt start with a "c" which both scared and confused him. He gets an alpha for effort but a big ole foxtrot for execution.

        February 17, 2012 at 1:18 am |
      • Syndrome Zed

        I'm guessing Sheen – he sounds like he idolized Sheen's "2 and a half men" character. Who was funny in a cynical sort of way, but certainly no one I'd ever want to idolize. 🙂

        February 17, 2012 at 1:33 am |
    • Death's Choice

      As a nerd with a hot wife and insane job all I can say is... make sure you remember to put that 2nd coat of wax on this time ace..

      February 17, 2012 at 1:14 am |
    • dom

      trolls trolling non trolls trolling trolls.. Regardless you're full on e-tard herp derp

      February 17, 2012 at 1:43 am |
    • No Mo


      February 17, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • ozmodius

      Thanks for the laugh! Hey to "clue" you in, there is no such thing as "Alpha males" when it comes to human beings etc.............only certain types of behavior that mimic the "Alpha" behavior of certain lower species. And those behaviors change according to cultural norms.

      Nice try though! You might want to turn off ESPN, quit polishing whatever over-priced "babe mobile" vehicle you probably own, quit painting your face at sporting events, stop "drooling" over UFC fighters, and put down the booze!

      You probably think that the Charlie Sheen character on 2 and a half men is a "Alpha Male!"


      February 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • Person.

      XD LMAO! STOP! STOP! YOU'RE MAKING MY SIDES HURT! Oh dearGod.....I can't even....

      February 17, 2012 at 9:54 pm |
  50. judyblue

    My son IS Sheldon....obsessive compulsive, social anxiety, doesn't chit-chat, high IQ, has a "spot", speaks in a monotone, tall and thin, not athletic, very small social group, etc., etc.... And he HATES the show. He will not come in the room if it is on. So many people have told him to watch it, and when he did he didn't believe he was anything like Sheldon. I don't think people like this see themselves this way. And if they do, the laughing may hurt. For the parents who had to raise a Sheldon, this show is a great stress reducer! It helps to laugh off some the quirks.

    February 16, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
  51. Sheldon

    Knock..knock..knock..Penny Knock..knock..knock..Penny Knock..knock..knock..Penny

    February 16, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
    • Sheldon Lee Cooper, B.S., M.S., M.A., Ph.D., Sc.D.

      THIS is the one aspect of the show that grows a bit tiresome. Much earlier in the show's life, he didn't do the triple knock. However, it seems that once they got a laugh from it, they decided to milk it, and milk it, and milk it. The writers finding new ways to try and make this gag funny are a bit reminiscent of the "It's gonna by legen....wait for it....DARY" gag from HIMYM. It just gets a bit less funny with each new episode.

      February 16, 2012 at 10:28 pm |
      • Guitar Girl

        It is not only the "nerdy" aspects that make this interesting; it is also the psychological issues. Cooper is brilliant. He also has severe O.C.D. Raj has social anxiety issues, etc. Then we can talk about the Oedipus complex of Howard. The triple knock plays into that. In an age and time were every one seems to have some sort of psychological disorder it probably is a good thing that we laugh at that also. I'm NOT saying let's make fun of people with disorders; but, humor always has been a reaction to pain. Slap stick; embarrassment; etc. It's just the nature of the humor. How awful terrorism; how awful is death and Jeff Dunham makes millions with a Achmed, the dead terrorist. So, keep the triple knock...yes, it's still funny and we are expecting it. Plus, its stays true to Sheldon's character.

        February 17, 2012 at 9:59 am |
  52. Chuck fan

    At least your nerd herd is still on tv. 🙁

    February 16, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
    • Over 50, Love BBT

      II hear you, Chuck fan. You're right.

      February 16, 2012 at 10:28 pm |
  53. Sheldon Cooper

    No one calls me moonpie but Memaw!!!

    February 16, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
  54. btldriver

    I think it would be cool for the group to return to Las Vegas and maybe bump into some Star Trek/Star Wars personalities, maybe even a trip to a convention (I know that would really be logistically difficult to set up but it would still be cool). My favorite line is "today a pretty girl is girl is going to touch you in your special place" then wham! a kick to the groin for the big bully who stole Sheldon's virtual stuff.

    February 16, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
  55. Haha

    What is a nerd?

    February 16, 2012 at 9:25 pm |
  56. Sean


    February 16, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
  57. Sean


    February 16, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
  58. narrator

    Having Leonard Nemoy on the show would be the greatest. Lately the story lines and dialogue have gotten stale. There are hundreds of stories that could be told yet the writers just rehashing some of the same old, same old.

    February 16, 2012 at 9:04 pm |
    • Syndrome Zed

      As good as it would be to see Nimoy, I'd pay for a pay-per-view episode that included either a re-creation/homage to the Flash Gordon movie (Hiss...COOPER'S ALIIIVE!??!?), or some Dr. Who action like Sheldon buying K-9, or Tom Baker recovering his scarf. I wouldn't complain if the guys were ogling Freema Agyeman or Karen Gillan either. 😉

      February 17, 2012 at 1:40 am |
  59. glu

    Best sitcom in history.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
    • narrator

      Far from it. Probably if you were to rank it , it would probably wouldn't even make the top #50 all time. It is probably in the top 3 sitcoms currently on TV.

      February 16, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
      • Russ

        Really??? Who are you to say what is on the list or not? If this person ranks it #1 of all Time. You can't just say. No, it is not. It's #1 on HIS list. Just not yours. Quit being a jerk.

        February 16, 2012 at 10:04 pm |
      • Bill Clay

        Probably if I were to rank you, you would probably wouldn't even make the top #5,000,000,000 all time. BAZINGA!

        February 16, 2012 at 10:16 pm |
  60. rmtaks

    I guess everyone has had enough sitcoms with a wise-cracking wife and whipped, buffoonish, but good-hearted husband.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
  61. Jim

    Of course geeks are cool. Look at the prescription glasses. Nintendo DS is the rage. Everyone has a cell phone. The White House is urging kids to go out and play. Sad isn't it.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:27 pm |
    • tony

      couldn't agree more

      February 16, 2012 at 8:54 pm |
    • Paul B

      Hold up There's a difference between So called "Nerd's" and gamers . gamers are what most kids are. all they do is play video games and IM friends on facebook. Nerds are intellectuals who are intelligent people that engage in learning more then what there taught. Gamers like most of humility these days are complete idiots

      February 16, 2012 at 9:29 pm |
      • JenniferUCD

        I think we need to define our terms...

        February 16, 2012 at 10:13 pm |
      • spamalot

        more THAN what THEY'RE worth

        February 17, 2012 at 1:59 am |
  62. A

    Yes, nerds have conquered TV, and I'm surprised this subject is just coming up now. Think 'The Office', 'The IT Crowd', 'It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia', 'South Park'. I can go on.

    Ironically, I watch none of these shows, including 'The Big Bang Theory'.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:27 pm |
    • narrator

      So why do you think you are qualified to talk about these shows?

      February 16, 2012 at 9:14 pm |
  63. svann

    In the guest star list you forgot Katee Sackhoff (Starbuck).
    Im often noticing the equipment in their labs. I believe this is the real stuff – worth many thousands of dollars.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:18 pm |
    • Thanos3784

      Technically she's been on the show in Howard's fantasy.

      February 16, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
      • Thanos3784

        Whoops misunderstood your comment......IGNORE ME *searches for a delete option.*

        February 16, 2012 at 9:52 pm |
  64. Andrew

    As a physics major I wanted to hate the show. Really, I did, I wanted to loath everything about it.

    ... I'm now an ardent fan and with a screenwriter dad, I'm somewhat tempted to write a script to submit, on the off chance the two of us can come up with something funny.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:13 pm |
    • dieyoung

      If I were you I would write the script. Everything you want to happen do it.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:24 pm |
  65. Ron

    Loved this show since the first episode, being a science nerd myself. I'm happy for its success, but I haven't been able to get audience tickets again now that it has become so popular. No laugh track is used! I did get to be there for the first Wil Wheaton episode and got his autograph after the taping. Too bad they temporarily confiscate cameras (including phones). BTW, there is no eating or drinking while taping, but they do feed the audience pizza during a break about half way through. Interesting factoid: The comic book shop set is located on the other side of the boys' kitchen wall.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:13 pm |
  66. Chemistry PhD

    I've seen two episodes and from what I saw, this show portrays scientists as a bunch of prepubescent bully magnets that wouldn't have made through year 1 of grad school. It is every bit as anti-science as everything else I've seen on television.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:12 pm |
    • JenniferUCD

      I tend to describe myself as a female version of Leonard and have managed my way through 4.5 years of grad school. Theory blown.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:41 pm |
      • Mrfitz

        (knock, knock, knock) Jenny, (knock, knock, knock) Jenny, (knock, knock, knock) Jenny.

        February 16, 2012 at 9:54 pm |
      • JenniferUCD

        What's the gist physicist??

        February 16, 2012 at 10:17 pm |
    • Hands Down

      BBT is the funniest thing to hit the airwaves since Seinfeld and Everybody Loves Raymond. It will be in reruns for decades.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:50 pm |
    • Chemgeek

      I tend to view myself as a female version of Sheldon. I made it through grad school at UCSD!

      February 16, 2012 at 8:58 pm |
      • Chemistry PhD

        Then there is an outside chance we are acquainted. The primary characteristic I get out of Sheldon is immaturity, and that is not a characteristic that leads to good outcomes in graduate school. No doubt, exceptions exist.

        February 16, 2012 at 10:09 pm |
    • Theoretical Physicist

      I agree with chemistry Phd. My fellow physics grad students were much more normal and hard working than Sheldon and company. I can't remember a single scifi fan, though there were a lot of classical musicians.

      February 16, 2012 at 9:43 pm |
    • Dr. B

      I don't know... given the ridiculous immaturity I see at faculty meetings, I'm thinking that the behavior of the BBT gang is right on target.

      February 17, 2012 at 5:57 pm |
  67. Dan

    Man, I remember when nerds were cool.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:11 pm |
  68. tess

    Love the show. If you don't, don't watch. Taking the time to criticize doesn't make you sound smart. It just makes you seem like a bitter, pretentious loser with way too much time on your hands.

    February 16, 2012 at 8:05 pm |
    • BearinDown

      I think you need to re-read and process what you just wrote.

      February 16, 2012 at 10:37 pm |
  69. lance corporal

    I don't watch much TV and strongly resist actually following a show, especially a sit-com but.... I love this show. anyone who is smart and quirky and has decided to just live it and not worry can relate, sheldon is an exaggerated version but still very relatable and yes in my home, on my couch I have a spot and no you can't sit there

    February 16, 2012 at 8:02 pm |
  70. Joe

    I've never seen the show before, but after reading this article, I have to say, it's a pretty funny show! I can't believe some of these comments, do you not get the jokes or something? Or do you just hate nerds and love jocks? Sheldon's the funniest character, I would imagine. Again, I've never seen the show. haha 😉 To all the naysayers: lighten up!

    February 16, 2012 at 7:58 pm |
  71. Over 50, Love BBT

    The accolades that this show has won speak for themselves. The list is long. CBS eagerly offered to guarantee 2 additional seasons rather than the usual one – that's huge.

    Again, there is no "laugh track", but a live audience, as other posters have mentioned. Did you hear the audience when Leonard pulled the light saber out of the closet? When he told Sheldon, "No, thanks, I'm playing Grand Theft Auto later."? Those are real people laughing and I hope they didn't spill their drinks/popcorn.

    Macphile, you make a lot of good points about many television shows. I'm glad your friends got you to watch BBT and see that someone's out there trying to be accurate, even if it didn't turn out to be a favorite.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:54 pm |
  72. Lindalou

    As the mother-in-law of a geek, I find this show to be hilarious. There are time my husband and I look at each saying that's something our son-in-law would say or do. There are lines that are over our heads but the relationships are a nice mix on the show..not tired of it yet..hope it keeps it's quality going.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:53 pm |
  73. grworne1

    My wife is a math Ph.D. and works with all the other science Ph.D.s at a University. We sit and laugh through most of the show. Many of the people who don't get it ARE Sheldon. He wouldn't get it either.
    Funniest show I have seen in YEARS.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:52 pm |
    • JenniferUCD

      LOVED that line! Best Amy episode ever.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:11 pm |
  74. sameeker

    Don't make fun of the nerds. You may be working for one someday.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:46 pm |
  75. Suz

    I've never watched it but I'd rather watch BBT than reality crap anyday! Some of the best shows IMO are Mary Tyler Moore, Gomer Pyle, Laverne & Shirley, Happy Days etc etc Ya'll need to watch more of that! :p

    February 16, 2012 at 7:45 pm |
  76. Burbank

    This is the freshest, funniest sitcom I have ever seen in my entire life! Love it!

    February 16, 2012 at 7:44 pm |
  77. Burbank

    I am in a profession where I have worked with nerds on a daily basis for the last 17 years. It's that small kernel of nerdy truth beneath all the silliness that makes this show so roll on the floor funny. I can't get enough of it! The only thing I would criticize is that they make the characters seem more like college frat brats than young professionals, but it's still the freshest, funniest sitcom I have ever seen!

    February 16, 2012 at 7:42 pm |
  78. macphile

    I'm constantly being told I should watch this, and I've done so and find it decent enough, I's not a "thing" with me, though. It's never grabbed me that way (ooh!). I can't really relate to any of the characters, despite what people think about me. I'm more Sheldon than anyone else, but god, he never smiles. Anyway, I'd much rather see the other shows on TV get it right than worry about what this show is doing. So much of Hollywood still produces absolute garbage when it comes to technological issues. I can understand that being OK back in the '80s when it was new and "weird," but it's normal now. They still depict hacking as some sort of graphical video game. They still throw around buzzwords they don't understand, producing nonsense sentences. I really don't think it flies any more, not with more and more of the American public actually knowing what some of these words and acronyms mean and having a basic understanding of how computers work. I realize a lot of scriptwriters probably have no clue, but they could find a consultant–namely anyone off the street–to tell them how basic things in their lives operate. It's pathetic. Once the generations move up one or two, they're going to find themselves out in the cold. One day, the technologically ignorant will die off. Of course, they'll still make their shows and movies horrible in every other way, as we expect.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:40 pm |
    • stagger72

      You sound like a joy to be around.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:49 pm |
      • macphile

        I am, yes!

        February 16, 2012 at 7:55 pm |
    • mimi_nef

      I think I've figured out why you don't have any friends.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:05 pm |
    • Jesse

      That's one of the longest comments on the board. Funny, coming from someone who claims to have little interest in it.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
    • PCphile

      "One day, the technologically ignorant will die off."

      Judging from your screen name, I'm going to take a slight leap of faith and assume you're an Apple lover. If so, you've just predicted your own demise, as the majority of Apple customers (AKA sheeple) truly ARE "technologically ignorant".

      February 16, 2012 at 9:42 pm |
      • Shepherd

        I love it when the Apple haterz come off their bandwagon to say "look at me, I'm hip, I hate Apple too!!!" I hear the Facebook wagon will be leaving shortly...don't miss it!

        February 16, 2012 at 10:18 pm |
  79. DB

    I have to agree with the naysayers. I have tried to like this show, but I can't. The jokes just don't hit the mark for me. I feel guilty as a nerd for not being a fan, but the fact remains that the show just doesn't make me laugh. I'd much rather watch How I Met Your Mother (with the possible exception of this season) or Episodes or Archer or South Park. I feel like Big Bang Theory expects that I will laugh at "Nerd explained simple process with big words that Blond girl of average intelligence didn't understand" jokes or "Nerd is uncomfortable around women/normal guys/any social situation" jokes far too much. Now, everyone feel free to pile on and accuse me of not having a sense of humor.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:40 pm |
    • macphile

      South Park is always a winner.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:42 pm |
    • Burbank

      South Park is great year after year, How I Met Your Mother is a major yawn. How do you stay awake through it? No originality at all, it's a copy cat sitcom about serial relationships that has been done dozens and dozens of times since the late 50/60"s with only the characters updated a bit for each new generation. Doesn't get any more stale than that! I would rather watch old Dobie Gillis episodes, at least they were original for their day.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
      • DB

        Same can be said about BBT. Insert nerdy comments into same old story lines from sitcoms past. There's nothing fresh about most sitcoms because they follow a formula and/or reflect life, which doesn't actually have many variations despite all our beliefs that we are special or unique. At the end of the day it comes down to this: there are lots of shows on tv so that all of our tastes can hopefully be catered to. My best friend and I sit straight faced staring ahead watching BBT, while you crack up. Vice versa for other shows.

        February 16, 2012 at 8:04 pm |
  80. AdmrlAckbar

    The BBC show, "IT Crowd" is sooo much better than BBT.. sooooo much

    February 16, 2012 at 7:40 pm |
    • DB

      Totally agree!!

      February 16, 2012 at 7:41 pm |
    • macphile

      So many British shows are awesome...that's why we steal so many of them.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:43 pm |
  81. Heidi

    I like this show but the laugh track get on my nerves. Is it really needed...

    February 16, 2012 at 7:39 pm |
    • twentysomething

      Thank you! I cannot stand laugh tracks. It's like the writers think we're too dumb to know when to laugh.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:46 pm |
    • Thanos3784

      BBT doesn't have a laugh track.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:47 pm |
  82. Oldjedi

    I am an old geek and it is one show that can make me laugh.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:36 pm |
  83. JL

    That show is terrible. The jokes aren't original and therefore aren't smart. BTW, believing in the Big Bang Theory and Darwinism doesn't make you intelligent. It makes you a sucker.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:28 pm |
    • Lila

      Awww you don't sound well, let me help you out....

      Soft Kitty, Warm Kitty, Little Ball of Fur
      Happy Kitty, Sleepy Kitty, Purr Purr Purr.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:32 pm |
      • stagger72


        February 16, 2012 at 7:44 pm |
      • JenniferUCD


        February 16, 2012 at 8:14 pm |
      • PCphile

        Penny, sing 'Soft Kitty'.

        LOVE Soft Kitty.

        February 16, 2012 at 9:47 pm |
      • btldriver

        Nope, you need to start again...

        February 16, 2012 at 10:17 pm |
    • UncommonSense

      Ahh, the Original Joke. You go, girl.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:37 pm |
    • Burbank

      That's your opinion, most of us think this show is very funny, including the geeks. Just don't watch it if you don't like it, maybe Jersey Shore is more to your taste.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:37 pm |
      • Markymarc


        February 16, 2012 at 7:43 pm |
    • MW

      I really hope that was sarcasm. If it wasn't, I can only assume you don't get the jokes because they go over your head. And just so there's no misinterpretation, yes, I am in fact saying that you aren't intelligent.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:44 pm |
    • Sid Airfoil

      Let me paraphrase JL. "I refuse to believe in things for which there is enormous objective evidence because they make me feel small and stupid! But I DO believe in things for which there is NO evidence and which contradict every experience I have as a human being because those beliefs make me feel happy and significant"

      Think what you want JL, but stop pretending that you know what you're talking about.


      February 16, 2012 at 7:53 pm |
    • lance corporal

      why are christians so threatened????

      February 16, 2012 at 7:54 pm |
      • Lowell Thomson

        That fear is why they're in addictive groups in the first place. All ideology - whether religious, economic, political - is based in the fact that the human brain adapts from an early age to requiring group affirmation to reduce the anxiety that comes from insecurity. Obviously, the more ignorant you are, the more insecure you'll feel, and the more you'll cleave to magical explanations.

        February 16, 2012 at 8:09 pm |
      • dani

        I believe in God and I absolutely love this show. It's fresh and clever and just hilarious. =)

        February 16, 2012 at 8:18 pm |
    • John

      Finally. I was wondering where all the id!ot posters were hiding.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:37 pm |
      • John

        I guess I'm one of those id!ots because my above comment didn't go under the one for which I intended.

        February 16, 2012 at 8:39 pm |
    • ACbyTesla

      Seriously believing that Darwin's theory that natural selection is accurate makes you a sucker? Seriously? I can see why you don't like the show. I guess you think Genesis is accurate then?

      Sometimes you can't convince people no matter how much scientific fact is available.

      Time to go back to the dark ages JL.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:49 pm |
  84. betty

    I love, love, love this show! Best comedy sitcom in a very long time!

    February 16, 2012 at 7:18 pm |
  85. George

    It is the same re-hashed plots from sitcoms of the past few decades. They just dress it up 'nerdy' and pretend they have something new.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:09 pm |
  86. Henry

    I watched a few episodes. Never laughed. The characters are cliches of cliches.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:07 pm |
  87. A

    Penny...Penny...Penny... This show is pretty funny. I'm currently raising a six year old Sheldon.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:05 pm |
  88. tim

    Very funny show. Never heard of it before TBS started running it. I think i have seen every episode now. I work in IT and love Star Wars and Star Trek so I can relate. Jim Parson is one of the funniest people on TV since Jerry Seinfeld.

    February 16, 2012 at 7:04 pm |
    • JenniferUCD

      Jim Parsons IS amazing. I suggest you check out his interviews with Craig Ferguson.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:17 pm |
  89. jj

    Love BBT and never miss it. Best thing on TV!

    February 16, 2012 at 6:57 pm |
  90. mg

    I've loved the show since the beginning! I've watched every episode. This is the only show I absolutely HAVE TO WATCH each week. My family knows that for 30 minutes I am in NO WAY AVAILABLE to them (unless there is a geek emergency). Hope the show continues for many more seasons. Thank God for geeks!

    February 16, 2012 at 6:54 pm |
  91. Lila

    I only discovered the show with the reruns on TBS this past year, now it's my favorite comedy. Wish the newer episodes would go back to the geeky science stuff from a few years ago and that it was less about relationships. Yeah nerds need love too but I can't remember the last time they were at the comic book store, built a robot or worked on an equation. Stuff like the podcast about flags is kinda lame, but overall the show is terrific.

    February 16, 2012 at 6:52 pm |
  92. David the Great

    I bloody can't stand that stupid show. Who watches this crap?

    February 16, 2012 at 6:48 pm |
    • Sheldon

      Not David the Great

      February 16, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
    • Jon

      Agreed. I once saw an episode online without the laugh track, and it was painfully unfunny. Add to that the fact that the characters are basically just negative, effete "nerd" stereotypes, and I don't see how any actual geeks (like myself) would like it. As a socially competent, emotionally mature, somewhat athletic geek, I see little in these characters that I can identify with. I'm guessing that most of the fans of this show are just getting a laugh out of their feeling of superiority over these clumsily-drawn negative stereotypes. Sad, really.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:07 pm |
      • Lila

        They have other types of nerds. Michael Trucco from Battlestar Galactica played Dr. David Underhill, a hot athletic bad boy nerd.

        February 16, 2012 at 7:17 pm |
      • Jon

        I did not know that Lila. That's good to hear. I've only seen a half-dozen episodes myself. It's not quite enough for me to like it though 🙂

        February 16, 2012 at 7:19 pm |
      • betty

        Ok so Jon and David have no sense of humor. The show is hugely popular, that should tell you something.

        February 16, 2012 at 7:21 pm |
      • Jon

        Oh come on, Betty. That's not fair. I have a sense of humor, just not the same one as you. I LOVE Futurama, for example. Also, popularity doesn't really mean anything to a geek. In fact, that's kinda the definition of a geek...

        February 16, 2012 at 7:24 pm |
      • JenniferUCD

        socially competent? emotionally mature? This show isn't for you. Seriously, you lose all nerd cred when you use geek and athletic in the the same sentence, except when separated by "...was hoisted to his locker from his underwear by someone..."

        February 16, 2012 at 8:30 pm |
      • Shepherd

        I think I'm going to have to see your geek credentials there Jon. There are moles among us and you have brought your qualifications into question...Athletic? Socially competent? Emotionally mature? We care not for such things. Table top role playing, MMORPG's, ancient programming languages (BASIC, COBOL, PASCAL), the Force and solitude are but a few of what nerds identify with.

        February 16, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
      • JenniferUCD

        Fortran 4evR!!

        February 16, 2012 at 10:22 pm |
      • s5je5je5jetjhedjsdfhgsd

        'Table top role playing, MMORPG's, ancient programming languages (BASIC, COBOL, PASCAL), the Force and solitude are but a few of what nerds identify with.'

        No, those are things retards identify with.

        February 19, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Joystick

      People with brains.

      February 16, 2012 at 7:25 pm |
    • Joe in Pittsburgh

      @David the Great: "Who watches this crap?"

      Um, apparently 16.54 MILLION VIEWERS - making it run neck-and-neck with American Idol (currently the most popular show on Thursday nights).

      February 16, 2012 at 7:33 pm |
      • David the Greatest

        Where do I begin with this show? Bad acting. Dumb storylines. Weak charachters. Laugh track. My enjoyment of a program isn't based on statistics. This is a terrible, painfully unfunny show.

        February 16, 2012 at 9:08 pm |
      • PCphile

        David, I'm not sure how many episodes you've actually watched (I think you mentioned 6), but BBT doesn't use a laugh track. They film in front of an audience made up of real, live people. They know not this "laugh track" of which you speak.

        There is an unaired "original" (No Kelly Cuoco, and a completely different female scientist) pilot floating out there on the interwebz that has an alternate audio version with no laughter. This may have been what you were referring to, but you would have had to have specifically tracked it down. I don't know whether that pilot was filmed in front of an audience, but I presume not.

        February 16, 2012 at 9:58 pm |
      • PCphile

        Actually David, I apologize. I was slightly confusing you with Jon, so some of my comments were not meant to directed at you.

        February 16, 2012 at 10:01 pm |
      • PCphile

        Actually David, I apologize. I was slightly confusing you with Jon, so some of my comments were incorrectly directed at you.

        February 16, 2012 at 10:02 pm |
  93. Roger Ogilvy Thornhill

    I'm a nerd. I work in the electronics industry for a fortune 500 company and I don't have TV. This is the first time I have heard of this show. How popular can it be?

    February 16, 2012 at 6:42 pm |
    • Larry

      You don't have a TV. Why are you asking a dumb question like "why haven't I heard of this show"?

      February 16, 2012 at 6:57 pm |
      • Jim D.

        Actually he didn't say "why haven't I heard of this before". He said "I have never heard of this before" and then asked "How popular can it be?" So there was no dumb question, just a dumb answer to a question that was never asked...

        February 16, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
    • Thanos3784

      Very popular.

      You may in fact live under a rock. :/

      February 16, 2012 at 7:06 pm |
    • Shepherd

      Nerd cred check! Can you tell me what 1d20 means without google? If not, your cred is suspect.

      February 16, 2012 at 9:14 pm |
      • JenniferUCD

        1d20 +5

        February 16, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • Eve Kendall

      Roger really is a sharply dressed, twice-divorced Madison Avenue advertising executive who tries to travel incognito.

      February 17, 2012 at 7:39 am |
  94. Susan

    Fun funny show! My (non-geek) 15 year old introduced me to it and now it's on "record series" on my DVR. They can remove the laugh track – totally not needed.

    February 16, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • MikeM

      The show is taped in front of a live audience – that's the laughter you hear.

      February 16, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
  95. Levi


    February 16, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  96. Mike

    If this show is so great, why does it constantly use a laugh track? Most jokes are mediocre. Even Saturday Night Live regularly uses a laugh track now – all to convince us writing quality is getting better, when its clearly much worse than 30 years ago.

    February 16, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • J.B.B.

      Solution for YOU: Don't watch it !!!

      February 16, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
    • KENNY

      referencing 30 years makes you 50 ish so you are out of the 18-49 demo and don't matter anymore... sorry... it musta been funny as he-ll when you first saw color TV huh???

      February 16, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
      • Over 50, Love BBT

        Whoa! I'm over 50, identify with and greatly enjoy Big Bang Theory, and I think geeks as young as you MUST BE, Kenny, in order not to know that, are wannabees. Do you think you are the first geek? Bless your heart, as Sheldon's mom would say.

        February 16, 2012 at 7:14 pm |
      • Dr. B

        troglodyte discovering his opposable thumbs says what?

        February 18, 2012 at 10:04 am |
    • Jim D.

      What sit-com show does not use a laugh track nowadays?

      February 16, 2012 at 8:42 pm |
    • ACbyTesla

      It doesn't use a laugh track. There is a studio audience.

      February 16, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
  97. 75GirlGeek

    I love this show! The writers have done a great job of education and sarcastic humor! It's awesome!

    February 16, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • J.B.B.

      Absolutely true !!!

      February 16, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  98. Arista

    Oh, CNN Geek Out. You've just made me sad. That's a Tauntaun sleeping bag. The Wampa is the one that looks like the Yeti.

    February 16, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • ahoevel

      Corrected. Facepalm!

      February 16, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
      • Arista

        You're forgiven. ThinkGeek does make a Wampa throw rug, so...

        February 24, 2012 at 7:33 am |
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