Welcome to the season finale recap of ‘The Big Bang Theory!’ In an episode chalk full of laughs, awkwardness, and some sadness, the show manages to keep its winning streak going from the past couple of weeks, and leave us in a cliff-hanger that will definitely bring me back to watch when the show returns in the fall.
The episode opens with Sheldon and Amy making out on the couch, an activity interrupted by Sheldon pulling back and asking Amy whether she thinks he should start watching the new “Flash” TV show (sidenote – he definitely SHOULD). Amy is annoyed, as Sheldon is clearly not paying that much attention to her, especially insulting as it is their 5 year anniversary. They get into a fight about how slow their relationship is progressing, with Amy pointing out the irony of Sheldon liking the Flash when he cannot move that fast with her. Sheldon doesn’t understand her anger, and the fight goes unresolved.
Later, Penny and Leonard return home after a terrifying trip the Farmer’s Market where Leonard was bitten by a goat (which caused him to wonder whether he could now have goat powers). Sheldon asks them about his fight with Amy, and Penny and Leonard side with Amy, though Leonard understand’s Sheldon’s reluctance to start a new show and the commitment that entails, as he remembers the 10 years of ‘Smallville‘ that almost ruined Sheldon’s life.
Meanwhile, Raj and Emily are visiting the comic book store, discussing a skull lamp she wants to buy for her bedroom, once again displaying her twisted sense of humor and apparent fascination with death. Raj visits Howard and Bernadette, discussing how Emily wants to have sex at a graveyard (because “Avengers: Age of Ultron” tickets were sold out), and Raj begins to wonder whether or not he wants to stay in the relationship, as Emily scares him slightly. Howard and Bernie laugh at the idea of Raj breaking up with a girl having sex with him, and Raj points out they don’t like to hurt people either, which is why they haven’t asked Stuart to move out yet after almost a year of living with them.
Back at Sheldon and Leonard’s, the group eats dinner, with Sheldon perplexed that Amy still has not talked to him or apologized. Penny and Leonard remind him how slow he has been moving with Amy over the past 5 years, and Sheldon shoots back that they are not making much progress either, as they’ve been enagaged for over a year and haven’t set a wedding date yet. Which of course starts an uncomfortable non-argument with the couple, with Sheldon butting in repeatedly to remind them that even though they might have decided on a small indoor wedding, black tie, with no butterflies, they’ve yet to actually set a date. The discussion ends with Penny telling Leonard that she’s “free tonight,” and they excitedly decide to elope in Las Vegas. Along the way however, Leonard, in an effort to make sure there are no secrets between them, tells Penny that when he was on the science expedition boat a few years back he made out with someone in a drunken stupor, which he still feels guilty about. Penny accuses him of sabotaging their wedding, but in the end they both claim that they still want to get married, and continue on their drive. As this is the last we see of them for the episode/season, I’m not sure they’ll actually be married when the show returns in the fall.
We next find Raj and Emily at the aforementioned graveyard, and clearly Raj is steeling himself up for breaking up with her. Intercut with these scenes are Bernie and Howard at the house, awaiting Stuart’s arrival home when they are going to kick him out (and not just because he ate Bernadette’s lady yogurt). Emily immediately senses something is wrong (especially after the awkward comment from Raj that basically pointed out their differences by saying she’s dark on the inside, he’s dark on the outside), and she demands that Raj break up with her if that’s his plan, as she is not going to do it for him. Meanwhile at the Wolowitz house, Stuart comes home bringing gifts, more lady-yogurt for Bernadette and cereal for Howard, and right before they kick him out he receives a Happy Birthday phone call from his father. So in the end, Raj lies to Emily and says that he was about to say “I love you,” and we learn he’d rather make love in a graveyard than hurt someone’s feelings, while Howard and Bernadette find Stuart a birthday cap and stick a candle in a cupcake, and we realize Stuart isn’t going anywhere.
Lastly, Amy finally video chats with Sheldon, and in an emotional scene wherein she makes her case about the problems in their relationship, including her patiently waiting for him for all these years (a point Sheldon “strongly disagrees” with), Amy tells Sheldon she needs to take a break from them. Sheldon sadly has nothing more to say than “Ok,” never having been in that situation before, and after Amy signs off, he pulls out an engagement ring from his desk drawer, and mournfully asks his Gollum statue for advice on dealing with the ring.
QUOTES OF THE NIGHT:
SHELDON: (on deciding whether or not to start watching “The Flash”) I’m wrestling with a big commitment issue here!
AMY: Really? That’s the commitment issue you’re wrestling with!?!
SHELDON: Irony isn’t really my strong suit. I have been getting better with sarcasm if you wanna give that a try.
AMY: Oh sure I’d LOVE to!
SHELDON: (not getting it) ….Whenever you’re ready.
LEONARD: That was really intense!
PENNY: (eyeing the massacred grocery bag) Well, now we know. Next time we go to the Farmer’s Market the order is: Petting Zoo first, then we buy vegetables.
HOWARD: (after hearing Emily wanted to have sex with Raj on a gravestone) Like a random person? Or somebody you knew?
RAJ: (perplexed) What difference does it make!?!
PENNY: (as Sheldon eyes his phone) Still haven’t heard from her [Amy]?
SHELDON: No, and I’m confused. It’s been nearly 24 hours. Amy should have figured out she was wrong by now.
HOWARD: (on Stuart’s “sickness”) He didn’t have jaundice, he just looks like that.
Despite criticisms I’ve heard for the show ending on a more bittersweet notion this season, I thought it was a pretty stellar finale, attempting to move all the characters forward, at least a little, while also servicing all of said characters (not to mention last season ended a little bittersweetly as well, with Sheldon’s running away to ride the rails). I enjoyed all the stories, and like how they’ve been setting up how uncomfortable Emily’s obsession with death has been making Raj, so it wasn’t out of the blue that he wanted to break up with her. I only hope they don’t draw out the relationship too long now that we know he doesn’t love her, though as for the Wolowitz/ Stuart problem, I hope Stuart lives there forever, as I love his interactions with Bernadette and Howard. As for Penny and Leonard, I doubt they’ll end up eloping, but I don’t think they’ll break up either. Part of me is hoping for a kind of double-wedding with Leonard and Penny and Sheldon and Amy, which I think would work nicely (and awkwardly, which is Sheldon’s wheelhouse.)
Anyway, hope you’ve enjoyed the recaps this season, we’ll see you in the fall!