Comic-Con: The Big Bang Theory

bigbangtheoryWhile other shows struggled to stay on the air last year, The Big Bang Theory earned itself a 2-season renewal thanks to increased ratings, the quality of the show, and fan response.  Its reruns, which were fortunately not Tweet-peats, regularly placed in the top 10 shows of the week this summer, beating out plenty of new programming.  The show’s success was due in large part to the support of fans at last year’s Comic-Con.  In July, the executive producers and stars of the show — Chuck Lorre, Bill Prady, Johnny Galecki, Jim Parsons, Kaley Cuoco, Simon Helberg, and Kunal Nayyar — took time out of their busy schedules again to speak with the public and members of the press at Comic-Con.

The Fans

The Big Bang Theory has a larger and more diverse fanbase than the average show.  Helberg noted that they are as likely to be approached by a 6-year-old fan as they are an 80-year-old one.   Parsons, the breakout star of the show, described them as being “kind” and “sweet” overall, and not “weird” in a way that made him uncomfortable.  Moments later, a man approached him on behalf of his sister with a napkin and asked for his DNA.  With a healthy ovum, she could be growing her own Jim Parsons right now, as Cuoco took the napkin and wiped his brow with it before handing it back.  Parsons enthusiastically said that he would still love the show if he were not on it.  Helberg then jokingly asked why Parsons fast-forwards through all the scenes he is not in.

Their attitude towards their loyal fans goes beyond mere appreciation.  They film in front of a live studio audience, which they find exciting and gives them a special kind of energy, particularly when people start laughing before the characters even speak.  And if the audience does not find a scene funny, Lorre stated that they will try to rework it and will not blame them because they know that the writers cannot always get it right.

The RomanceIMG_1839big bangtheory

When the boys return from their polar expedition, romance will bloom.  But it will not be between Penny and Sheldon, though the writers and actors are aware that many fans want to see a “Peldon” pairing.  According to Lorre, Sheldon’s heart and soul are with science and sci fi and the only things he is in love with are himself, his brain, and physics.  Plus, Penny would eat him alive, claimed Cuoco.  Prady let his geek flag fly and suggested that Sheldon might go into Pon Farr every 7 years to take care of those pesky reproductive needs.

Instead, Leonard, Sheldon’s long-suffering roommate, will finally get another chance with Penny, the down to earth girl next door.  Galecki hopes he gets the girl, but noted that Leonard, despite being a socially awkward nerd, has gotten more action than other characters he has portrayed.  Do not expect things to go smoothly for them, however, as Prady said that there are many different avenues they can explore with this relationship.  There are countless awkward breakup stories they can tell, he explained, but it would not necessarily be the end of the story.  He cited Sam and Diane from Cheers as an example of a non-traditional relationship and pointed out that not all couples meet, get together, and marry.  Furthermore, despite the new and later time slot, the romances on this show will not be as risqué as those on other programs, including Lorre’s Two and a Half Men. The writers want these characters to remain innocent, which is one of the most endearing aspects of the show.

Dr. Sheldon Cooper For the Win

Although Parsons did not win an Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series this year, he has promised that if he ever wins one, he will put it on display somewhere where visitors can play with it.  He swore that he would never give it to another actor even if the other man deserved it.  He also had thoughts about how his alter ego, Dr. Sheldon Cooper, would react if he won an Emmy Award.  After first saying that Sheldon might not deign to speak, he then slipped effortlessly into character, ranting about how the process is nonsense and that the other nominees must have been drawn out of a hat.

Random NotesIMG_1846bigbangtheory

  • According to Nayyar, everybody knows a Sheldon.  “But it’s never them,” added Helberg.
  • The Christmas episode is a cast favorite, although Parsons prefers the Vegas episode.
  • Parsons wanted to be a meteorologist when he was younger.
  • Helberg used to carry a Luke Skywalker figurine with him that he called “My Man.”
  • Nayyar used to play badminton, which he considered a nerd sport.
  • Cuoco wants Penny to play more video games and put Cheetos in her hair.
  • Parsons hates the vaudevillian aspect of filming car scenes, but Cuoco enjoys it.
  • As much as they and the characters love Comic-Con, they cannot film there because of trademark and copyright issues.
  • Everyone who visits the set sits in Sheldon’s seat.

The Big Bang Theory returns to CBS on Monday, September 21 at 9:30/8:30c.

For more from Comic-Con, click here.

For more television reviews, click here.

Photographs courtesy of Poptimal.com

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