Big Bang Theory – The Workplace Proximity


By Kevin Rigdon (@pralix1138)

“You sure your moth-like personality won’t be drawn to this blazing fire that is myself?”

Age old questions about friends, relationships, and the workplace get addressed in the newest episode of The Big Bang Theory, “The Workplace Proximity.” It seems that Amy has the opportunity to work at Cal Tech for a few months, and wants Sheldon’s opinion before she starts. Sheldon, being Sheldon, sees the advantages of it, like Amy taking him to work because Leonard’s become tedious on the drive in. Even after Amy explains the euphemism of not “defecating where you eat,” Sheldon still sees it as a good thing. Of course, that might be because spending time with Amy at work will count towards their weekly time quota. Always looking at the positive side of things is our Sheldon Cooper.

The advantages become less apparent, however, when Howard becomes the voice of disparagement, which begins a whole new problem as Sheldon points out to Bernadette how Howard thinks that too much of her would be mind-numbingly tedious. Needless to say, Bernadette finds this a tad on the offensive side of things and gets a bit irate. So, here’s the set up: Sheldon and Amy will be working at the same place, and Bernadette puts Howard in time out by telling him to find other sleeping arrangements because he doesn’t want to work for her. Raj, along with Penny and Leonard, play the role of supportive, and innocent, bystanders. Hilarity ensues.

Sheldon’s attempts to reconcile with Amy at work don’t go well as he winds up embarrassing her on her first day via a stunning combination of awkward social interaction and ethnic humor (the best kind) involving Amy’s new colleagues. He does his best, however, to make things right. After a brief encounter with the couch-sitting sidebar of Leonard and Penny, Sheldon tells Amy that it’s hard to be in a relationship when one of the partners is socially inept, and considered weird. Of course, he’s not speaking about himself, you understand.

The big bowl of awkward that is the Shamy is insignificant next to the gaping chasm of stupid that Howard has managed to dig for himself. After discovering that Howard would find working with her to be the definition of hell itself, Bernadette is understandably hurt and angry. How does Howard respond to his own ineptitude? Like Howard, of course. That is to say, he gets a bigger shovel and keeps digging. As a result of his inability to properly communicate with his wife, she does go off the deep end and tells him to not come home.

After a couple nights apart, Bernadette comes to bystander Raj’s house where Howard has been staying in an attempt to make up. She’s hurt, but she comes to him and Howard is given the opportunity to prove that he’d rather spend time with his wife than with anyone else. Remember the chasm that he’s dug? At this opportunity to climb out, he gets the shovel out again and goes full on down towards the Earth’s core. He wants to make spending time with Bernadette a priority, but tomorrow, after they beat the new Batman game. Face, meet palm. Maybe one day he’ll learn.

A stronger overall episode than last week. The innocent arrogance of Sheldon is still fresh and going strong. The writing is still really good, and it was nice to move Leonard and Penny to the sidelines and let the other couples to take center stage. Now, if we can get Raj into an awkward relationship, the circle will be complete.

Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

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