The Big Bang Theory Recap: Adventures in Intimacy

by Alan Eggleston / February 26, 2015

Adventures abound in this week’s new episode of The Big Bang Theory, “The Intimacy Acceleration.”

The fun begins when Amy Farrah Fowler announces to the group in Sheldon Cooper and Leonard Hofstadter’s apartment that she has learned of a new experiment that will make a couple fall in love in two hours. After everyone compares their experiences in falling in love, Sheldon proposes to test the experiment. Penny can’t resist the challenge and begs – oh, please; oh, please – to be his partner.

Meanwhile, Howard Wolowitz and Bernadette are at the airport on their way home from his mother’s funeral, and the airline has lost their luggage containing the vase with Mrs. Wolowitz’s ashes.

While Penny and Sheldon retreat to Penny’s apartment to try the “intimacy” experiment, Leonard and Amy decide to give it try in Leonard and Sheldon’s apartment, with Raj asking the questions. It’s immediately apparent the experiment doesn’t work. Along with Raj’s girlfriend Emily, they decide to go out for dinner and on the way elect to try a mystery dinner theater featuring an evening locked in a lab with a zombie.

The Intimacy Experiment

Penny and Sheldon sit on Penny’s sofa facing each other. Sheldon supplies the series of experiment questions on cards, which each will answer in an attempt to get to know each other better, to become more intimate. As it begins, Sheldon is too analytical over the questions, but over time becomes less analytical but no less the geek in answering them. Penny begins honestly answering, then toys with Sheldon when his answers seem silly, but then begins to respond more openly to him.

They trade answers back forth on questions about who most in the world they would like to have dinner with, what would make the perfect date, what would be their amazing ability, and if one day you couldn’t communicate with someone what would you regret not telling them. In the last question, Sheldon says he regrets not telling anyone that today is his birthday. Penny is amazed that no one knows – why wouldn’t he tell anyone? Sheldon explains that it’s because he hates surprises.

With each question, Penny and Sheldon learn something new and more endearing about the other person.

After the final question, they must stare into each others’ eyes for four minutes without talking. It’s not long before Penny can’t resist. “This is creepy.” Sheldon quickly responds, “You’re not supposed to talk …  this is kind of creepy.” Ultimately, they can’t not talk.

Penny and Sheldon conclude they feel intimate, but not in a love sense, more in a brother and sister sense. Penny becomes sentimental about her eight years with Sheldon and Leonard. “I can’t remember a time when you two weren’t in my life,” she says. Sheldon isn’t the least bit moved. “I remember it perfectly,” he says and then even reminds her about all the times she stopped over to eat their food and even offers to tabulate a bill.

Bringing Home the Ashes

Back at the airport, Howard and Bernadette aren’t having much luck with the airline. The airline employee thinks the luggage could have been removed at the wrong airport or might have been diverted to an international flight. Howard is distraught that they have lost the ashes of the only woman who ever loved him – uh, the first woman who ever loved him (sorry, Bernadette). He shares with Bernadette the guilt he feels that when his mother asked for a ride to the airport for her trip to Florida, he made her take a cab.

To make Howard feel better, Bernadette approaches the airline employee and threatens that she’d better find the luggage because, “one way or another, we’re walking out of this airport with a dead woman!” It seems to work, because the airline soon locates the luggage. Howard pulls out the vase and apologizes to his mother and promises to keep her forever. “Great! Now she’s going to be in my bedroom,” quips Bernadette.

Dinner with a Side of Zombie

Arriving at the dinner theater Raj, Emily, Leonard, and Amy are escorted to their theater room and the door is slammed shut behind them.

Various clues have been scattered around a lab and their job is to solve them to find the key that unlocks the door to let them out of the room. All the while, they face a “zombie” whose job is to threaten to eat their brains. But Raj, Emily, Leonard, and Amy are so focused on solving the clues, they ignore the zombie, who is a bit put out. He moans that there’s no refund for solving the riddle early, which makes them moan that the dinner for four is a bit pricey at $200. Yet, solve it early they do. Poor, hungry zombie!

As Penny and Sheldon complete the experiment, Penny walks Sheldon home (across the hall). Sheldon opens the door to his apartment and is unpleasantly greeted by the gang, back from their dinner theater, who yell “Surprise!” Sheldon gets the birthday shock he’s always never wanted.

Some Afterthoughts

Question: Sheldon told Penny he would regret not telling anyone that today was his birthday. Penny said she was surprised that no one knew. So, why did everyone yell “Surprise!” when Sheldon entered the room at the end? (Plot hole?)

Question: I thought the dinner theater locked in a room with a zombie was interesting, but not hilarious. I would like to have seen the zombie more active, chasing the others or moving around the room more. What’s the fun of being locked in a room with a zombie if all he is going to do is stand there, moan, and just make the occasional one-liner?

It was a good episode, but not nearly the best. There’s a new episode next week – let’s hope for the best.

Alan Eggleston A writer from the boomer generation, I was among the first Americans to grow up with television and even got my bachelors degree in broadcasting. My first professional job was working in a television station, working camera and then writing copy and promotions. A few years later I turned to writing for print and then adapted to the Internet. I love writing and I love good television and film - I hope it shows in my reviews.