About The Big Bang Theory

Group PictureThe Big Bang Theory is a popular American sitcom from Chuck Lorre Productions and Warner Bros. Television, which airs on the CBS television network in the United States. The Big Bang Theory premiered on September 24, 2007 and is currently in its seventh season. The Big Bang Theory was renewed for three seasons in March 2014, taking the show through to its tenth season in 2016/17.

The Big Bang Theory is now one of the most popular shows on U.S. television, ranking as the #1 sitcom during the 2012/13 season. The Big Bang Theory stars Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki, Kaley Cuoco, Simon Helberg, Kunal Nayyar, Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch. The Big Bang Theory was created by Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady, both of whom serve as executive producers along with showrunner Steven Molaro. Bill Prady was the showrunner for the first five seasons.

The Big Bang Theory is centered on physicists Sheldon Cooper and Leonard Hofstadter, whose geeky and introverted lives are changed when Penny, an attractive waitress and aspiring actress, moves into the apartment across from theirs. Penny quickly becomes a part of Sheldon and Leonard's social group, which includes the equally geeky engineer Howard Wolowitz and astrophysicist Raj Koothrappali, with Penny's common sense and social skills and the guys' geeky interests expanding each other's worlds. The newest additions to the group are Howard's wife Bernadette Rostenkowski-Wolowitz and Sheldon's girlfriend Amy Farrah Fowler.

Jump to: Leonard & Penny | Sheldon & Amy | Howard & Bernadette | Broadcast History

Leonard & Penny's Relationship

Leonard became infatuated with Penny in their very first encounter and, at the end of the first season, they finally went out on a date. Penny quickly broke things off as she feared she wasn't smart enough for Leonard, and the two characters again started dating other people.

Their relationship was rekindled in Season 3 when Leonard returned from three months in the Arctic. Penny broke up with Leonard when he told her that he loved her and she could not say the same back. Leonard and Penny's on-again/off-again relationship remained in the off state for the rest of the season. In Season 4, Leonard had a significant relationship with Raj's sister Priya, which would last until early in the fifth season. 

 On the 100th episode of The Big Bang Theory, Leonard spontaneously asked Penny out, to which she said yes. Following a beta test stage of their newly reformed relationship, Leonard and Penny got back together and have remained so since. Penny finally told Leonard she loved him during the sixth season episode, "The 43 Peculiarity". At the end of the sixth season, Leonard leaves for a fourth month expedition in the North Sea, with their relationship seeming to be strong.

After a career setback, Penny proposed to Leonard while drunk and Leonard hesitated to answer. Leonard feared it would end their relationship, but Penny reassured him he made the right decision. After leaving her job at the Cheesecake Factory to focus on her acting career, Penny was devastated when she was fired from a part in a low-budget movie. Penny resolved to start making better decisions in her life, which she said could include her and Leonard getting married. Although Leonard initially thought Penny only brought this up because of her career problems, she told him that getting fired made her reconsider what's really important. Leonard and Penny finally agreed to get married after Leonard grabbed an engagement ring he's had in his wallet for years, geot down on one knee and formally proposed to Penny.

Sheldon & Amy's Relationship

Sheldon met Amy Farrah Fowler, a neurobiologist whose Internet dating profile matched the one Howard and Raj set up for Sheldon without his permission, in the third season finale after Howard blackmailed him. When Amy revealed she is there only because she has an agreement with her mother to date once a year, and informed him that all forms of physical contact, up to and including coitus, are off the table, Sheldon offered to buy her a beverage.

In the Season 4 premiere, Sheldon and Amy, who had been texting each other over the preceding four months, go on a date at the suggestion of Penny. Sheldon and Amy continued to bond throughout the fourth season, though Sheldon was always clear to point out that she was "a girl who is a friend" but she was not his "girlfriend". After Sheldon discovered feelings of jealousy when Amy went on a date with Stuart, from the comic book store, Sheldon and Amy officially became boyfriend and girlfriend. Sheldon and Amy's relationship progressed when he cuddled Amy, comforting her after Bernadette and Penny left her out of wedding dress shopping. While watching Howard's space launch on TV, in one small step for Sheldon he grabbed hold of Amy's hand.

After Sheldon lied about his and Amy's sex life to Barry Kripke, Penny asked Sheldon whether he would ever consider having a sexual relationship with Amy. Sheldon admitted he's always been uncomfortable with the sort of physical contact that comes easily to others, but said he's working on it and that it's a possibility. For Valentine's Day, Sheldon made Amy his "In Case of Emergency" contact at the university. While the gang were playing Dungeons and Dragons, Amy got upset that they were mocking Sheldon & Amy's relationship and asked Sheldon if he thought their relationship will ever get intimate. Sheldon told Amy he doesn't consider their relationship a joke and that he would not rule intimacy out. Sheldon then played out the love potion scenario of the game with Amy, much to her pleasure.

For Valentine's Day, Amy arranged a romantic weekend trip to Napa Valley aboard a vintage train. After Sheldon spent the journey with a fellow train enthuiast, Amy confronted him about his behavior. Sheldon made Amy admit she manipulated him with the perfect trip in pursuit of romance, so Sheldon sarcastically gave her the romance she wanted. Sheldon drank wine, stared into her eyes and then kissed her. Though he intended the kiss to be short and sarcastic, Sheldon lingered and seemed like he may have enjoyed it. When Sheldon spendt Anything Can Happen Thursday with Penny, she took him to see a psychic. As Sheldon was struggling with career changes, the psychic told him all his issues personally and professionally would be solved if he commits completely to Amy.

Howard & Bernadette's relationship

After Howard called in a deal he had with Leonard, Penny set Howard up with Bernadette Rostenkowski, a microbiologist who also works at the Cheesecake Factory with Penny. Though Howard and Bernadette initially appeared to have little in common, they soon bonded over their overbearing mothers and began dating. When Howard realised this could become a lasting relationship, he suddenly proposed to Bernadette. She did not accept the proposal, but the pair continued to date. 

Towards the end of Season 3, Bernadette abruptly broke up with Howard. It was later revealed she dumped Howard when she caught him having cyber sex with "Glacinda the Troll" on World of Warcraft. Howard and Bernadette got back together early in Season 4. 

Howard proposed to Bernadette near the end of Season 4 and this time Bernadette accepted. As the engaged couple prepared for marriage, Howard began to accept Bernadette might be the breadwinner in their relationship and agreed he would stay at home if they had kids. After Wil Wheaton uploaded a video of Raj drunkenly describing some of Howard's sexual conquests, Bernadette questioned their impending nuptials. A heart-felt apology from Howard for his past behavior won Bernadette over.

As Howard's space mission approached, Bernadette decided that they should get married before he goes into space. After the couple were unable to wed at City Hall, they agreed to marry on the roof of the guys' apartment as the Google Earth satellite passed above. Sheldon, Leonard, Penny, Raj and Amy became ministers and performed the wedding.

Broadcast History

The Big Bang Theory was originally developed for the 2006/07 season, though the pilot did not get picked up. The pilot was markedly different from the pilot which would eventually air. Only Jim Parsons and Johnny Galecki were part of the unaired pilot, which featured a much tougher character in the role that would become Penny in the second pilot. The pilot was rewritten and Kaley Cuoco, Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar were cast. The retooled show was picked up by CBS in May 2007 with a thirteen-episode order for the 2007/08 season and given the 8:30 time slot on CBS's popular Monday night comedy block, sandwiched between How I Met Your Mother and Two and a Half Men.

The Big Bang Theory premiered on September 24, 2007 and ran eight episodes before the 2007/8 Writers' Strike halted production. Following its modest ratings success in the Fall, CBS renewed the show for a second season in February 2008. The Big Bang Theory moved to Mondays at 8:00 in March 2008 when new episodes resumed following the strike. The show finished the 2007/08 season ranked #68 in the ratings. The Big Bang Theory returned for its second season on September 22, 2008 and saw its ratings continue to rise. The show got a two season pick-up in March 2009, taking it through to its fourth season in 2010/11. The Big Bang Theory finished its second season at #44 in the ratings.

CBS moved The Big Bang Theory to Mondays at 9:30, following the then-#1 sitcom Two and a Half Men, for its third season. The show would finish the season as the #12 ranked show on TV. For its fourth season, CBS moved The Big Bang Theory to Thursdays at 8:00 where it would lead a new comedy block. The Big Bang Theory was renewed for a further three seasons in January 2011, taking it through to its seventh season in 2013/14. The show finished its fourth season as the 13th most-watched show on TV.

The Big Bang Theory's popularity continued to rise in its fifth season, during which it reached 100 episodes and started airing in syndication. The Big Bang Theory became the US's top-rated sitcom in the 2011/12 season and was the 8th most-watched program on TV. The sixth season saw ratings rise further, hitting twenty million viewers for the first tme. The Big Bang Theory averaged 18.68 million viewers during its sixth season and was the 3rd highest-rated program on TV.

The Big Bang Theory was renewed for another three seasons in March 2014, taking the show through to its tenth season in 2016/17. During The Big Bang Theory's seventh season, the show ranked as the top-rated scripted program on U.S. television, overtaking CBS drama NCIS. Before production on the eighth season of the show began, the five original cast members all signed new contracts to return to the show for the next three years. Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch had already signed new contracts in September 2013.

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