Somewhat surprisingly, ‘The Big Bang Theory’ continued its streak this week with another solid episode, featuring not only a double-dose of ‘Fun With Flags,’ but sizable roles for Bert and Stuart, and a cameo from everyone’s favorite band, ‘Footprints On the Moon.’ As stated before, the best ‘Big Bang Theory’ episodes are when every member of the cast is involved in one of the stories and has something to do, which this episode managed to pull off pretty well.
The episode opens with Sheldon and Amy doing a special episode of ‘Fun With Flags,’ where they delve into the history of the show and how it came to be, even inviting Howard and Raj’s band (the aforementioned ‘Footprints on the Moon’) onboard to do live music as they play clips of Penny and Leonard explaining where the idea for the flag show came from, before they go to live callers. Unfortunately for them, the only call they receive is from their geologist friend Bert, who is only calling in to tell the world he has a girlfriend, and since it is off-topic it annoys Sheldon greatly, especially when he hangs up on Bert and the man calls back just to share the woman’s name.
Eventually the gang decides to have Bert and his new lady over for dinner, and in typical Sheldon fashion he is fascinated by the fact that she is a very attractive, younger blonde woman somehow attracted to Bert, and Amy has to keep sending Sheldon to “time-out” for his rude comments pointing out the oddness of the situation, as well as the similarities between Bert dating a woman clearly out of his league with Leonard having done the same thing years ago (though Penny looks like she enjoys those comments). Of course, Sheldon’s comments are considered rude only until Bert reveals he found her while using online dating, and only after he changed his profile to reveal the grant money he won, letting the gang know the woman is clearly only after Bert’s money, at which point Amy lifts Sheldon’s time-out punishment. The gang later counsels Bert that the woman is clearly only after what he can offer her financially, and Raj especially encourages Bert to find a woman who is interested in him as a person (a topic especially important to Raj since he is on a similar journey of leaving material things behind) and Bert breaks it off with the woman, though he immediately misses her and wonders if he can get her back by offering her a jet-ski.
Meanwhile, the Wolowitz household is preparing to send baby Halley to daycare while everyone goes back to work. Before they do that though, the family (including Stuart) makes a trip to the zoo for one last outing, where Bernadette shares her anxieties about leaving her baby with these “strangers,” even though Howard points out all of their qualifications and background checks, and Stuart points out they left Halley with him often and he had none of those qualifications. In the end, Bernadette relents, especially since the daycare is on the college campus with Howard, and on day 1 Howard visits his daughter and cannot seem leave her alone either. He is a little unnerved when Stuart joins him, clearly uncomfortable with leaving the baby as well. They decide to take Halley out of daycare and go to the aquarium for the day, a fact they try to hide from Bernadette when they get home, not realizing that she was called immediately when they took Halley from the daycare center. The next day, all three take Halley to daycare and say their goodbyes for the day, with Bernadette shouting through the glass her goodbyes and making all the babies cry, forcing the group to make a hasty exit before they get in trouble with the daycare providers.
In the episode close, Sheldon and Amy decide to do a retrospective on their ‘Fun with Flags’ retrospective (due to all the comments they got on the first behind the scenes episode, never-mind the fact that not all the comments were positive), and they open up the phone lines once more. And once again, they get a call from Bert, who joyously announces that the jet-ski idea worked and he got his girlfriend back, much to the exasperation of Sheldon.
QUOTES OF THE NIGHT:
SHELDON: (after Leonard invites Bert and his new girlfriend to dinner) Hold on we don’t know anything about this woman.
BERT: Well what do you want to know?
SHELDON: Is she a geologist?
SHELDON: Great we’ll see you at 7.
BERT: Everyone, this is Rebeccca.
SHELDON: She’s younger and far more attractive than he is… (turning to Penny and Leonard) They’re copying you two!
BERNADETTE: Would be nice to raise Halley to be a little more independent than you were.
HOWARD: I guess… It wasn’t till college that I learned you could put a thermometer in your mouth.
STUART: On that charming note… here’s dinner!
RAJ: That’s nice, I haven’t had much success meeting people online.
BERT: Me neither until I revamped my profile.
SHELDON: What’d you do? Delete your photo?
AMY: (pointing to the stairs to Sheldon’s “time-out” spot) GO.
SHELDON: (walking out) Fine.
AMY: (motherly) Don’t you slam that door.
SHELDON: (under his breath) Ah man.
The only characters who felt like they did not have too much to do were Leonard and Penny (aside from the use of their apartment), but as stated last week, I think that is just fine, as they work great as commentators and hosts for the gang and do not need a lot of stories focused on them this late in the series, especially when most of the first decade of episodes focused on their relationship, and the writers cannot seem to find anything for them to do nowadays but fight and poke holes in their marriage. Once again the Sheldon and Amy relationship was the highlight of the episode, with Amy’s use of “time-out” for Sheldon, and her forcing him to “raise his hand” to speak being some of the best moments seen as the two of them play off each other exceedingly well, and seem to be having a lot of fun with their dynamic. I’m hoping this hot streak continues into next week, as I do want to see the show close the season strong.
See you back here for the next episode!
Nick is a freelance writer based in Los Angeles, who belongs to the privileged few who enjoyed the ending to ‘Lost.’ For more of Nick’s thoughts and articles, follow him on Twitter.