320 - The Spaghetti Catalyst
Aired May 3, 2010

The Spaghetti Catalyst

Leonard and Penny aren't talking to each other following their break-up, leaving Sheldon unsure how he to be friends with them both. Sheldon feels guilty about spending time with Penny, thinking it's a betrayal of his friendship with Leonard.

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Writers: Chuck Lorre, Bill Prady, Lee Aronsohn, Steven Molaro

Director: Anthony Rich

Viewers: 11.63 million Households Rating: 7/11 Adults 18-49 Rating: 4.6/12

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Episode Notes

  • The title refers to the spaghetti Sheldon had with Penny which lead to a series of lies and excuses as Sheldon tried to please Leonard and Penny, eventually resulting in Leonard and Penny talking to each other again.

> Bazinga

When Penny asks Sheldon how he's been, he tells her "Well, my existence is a continuum, so I've been what I am at each point in the implied time period". After Penny asks him if he's just "coitusing" with her, Sheldon says Bazinga.

> Sheldon's Knock

Sheldon uses his knock on Penny's door when he finally gets to her apartment with his last remaining hot dog, after trading the others for his life.

Quotes (19)

Raj: Hey, Leonard?
Leonard: Yeah?
Raj: I haven't had sex in a year.
Leonard: Where are you going with this, Raj?
Raj: Don't flatter yourself, dude.

Leonard: Hey, where've you been?
Sheldon: I was talking with Penny.
Howard: What's wrong with you? You can't hang out with your roommate's ex. That's totally uncool.
Leonard: No, it's fine. I don't care. I'm over it.
Raj: Yeah, he's over it; that's why he's been whining all day about trying to invent that memory-wiper gizmo from Men in Black.
Sheldon: Is he making any progress? Because I'd like to erase Ben Affleck as Daredevil.
Howard: So would Ben Affleck.

Penny: So, how've you been?
Sheldon: Well, my existence is a continuum, so I've been what I am at each point in the implied time period.

Leonard: What do you want?
Sheldon: You may wanna sit down.
Leonard: I'm in bed.
Sheldon: Point taken. You may wanna sit up.

Leonard: I'm not going out tonight, Raj.
Raj: All right. Would you mind if I went to your room and downloaded some Asian pornography?
Leonard: Very much.
Raj: Doesn't have to be Asian.

News Stories

Title Date Posted
Episode 3.20 Ratings May 4, 2010

Big Bang Theory places strong second in 9pm slot.  Full story

CBS Announces Episode 3.20 March 30, 2010

When Leonard and Penny aren't speaking, Sheldon goes to extremes to keep them both happy. Airs Monday May 3rd.  Full story


When Sheldon asks Penny about protocol to follow now that Leonard and Penny have broken up, Penny tells Sheldon that they are still friends. After Sheldon notices Penny bought spaghetti space, Sheldon invites himself for dinner. Sheldon returns to his apartment to find the guys have got Chinese food. When Sheldon mentions he spoke with Penny, Howard tells him he should pick sides: Leonard or Penny.

So as not to arouse suspicions about his upcoming meal with Penny, Sheldon eats at the apartment and then sneaks a tin of hot dogs out of the refrigerator. When Howard walks out at the same time as Sheldon, he lies about going for a walk. Sheldon walks out of the building with Howard and, after Howard drives off, gets chased by a dog who smells the hot dogs. A dishevelled Sheldon turns up at Penny's apartment with just one hot dog. He eats dinner with her, but gets stomach cramp from eating too much.

When Sheldon returns from his "dinner walk", he admits to Leonard that he lied and had dinner with Penny. Leonard claims he doesn't care if they spend time together. When Leonard and Penny run into each other in the laundry room, Leonard tells her he's fine with her socializing with Sheldon. Penny says she's going to take Sheldon to Disney Land the next Saturday. When Sheldon and Penny return from Disneyland, they have a minor argument about Sheldon as Penny brought him back late. After putting Sheldon to bed, they both realize they can be friends.

Comments (37)

Deborah  United Kingdom, 18:41 Jun 2 2012.
Quoting Precious Leonard & Penny are a divorced couple and sheldon is their son. Though Penny is more of the lax parent
Precious New Zealand, 15:54 Jan 13 2011.
think about it this way, leonard and penny are a divorced couple and sheldon is their son.
reza Iran, 05:26 Oct 25 2010.
if the realationship between penny and sheldon as a couple keep to countinue;we see more fun.because these charecters have no agreement.
Aussie Australia, 06:40 May 31 2010.
Just get Leonard and Penny back together and get on with the show... for crying out loud who needs all this drama.
GRUMPY United States, 00:59 May 4 2010.
Well played BBT. I missed the new episode. Next time, show THE RERUN during the earlier time slot.
tbbt_fans United States, 22:24 May 3 2010.
Annie, as a girl perspective, what will be the means to you when a girl said to a guy, "Means I wish you didn't go" and when a guy(Leonard) express a genuine feeling to a girl(Penny), "I love you"...
demonica jones United States, 21:25 May 2 2010.
this episode sound awesome.penny and leneord should get back together and stay together forever.
demonica jones United States, 21:21 May 2 2010.
this episode sound awesome.penny and leneord should get back together and stay together forever.
Marcos Peru, 08:55 Apr 27 2010.
I quote Annie. It's the Rachel-Ross pattern all over again...
Annie Czech Republic, 11:23 Apr 25 2010.
There's a pattern, you know. I think that what happens is Leonard and Penny are going to break up. Not saying forever, but certainly for the time being = to the end of the 3rd season. Leonard's going to be desperate and there's going to be a nice girl who will stun him momentarily and he will forget about Penny - momentarily. You know, just like Missy in s1 and Alicia in s2... It's a pattern, guys! oD I still don't quite like the way the show's been getting all serious and touchy-feely these last few episodes! I mean, I like emotions and stuff, but Big Bang isn't HIMYM - it's all about the Nerd in the name Leonard, and about Sheldon being a Whackadoodle and about Howard being a kink and about Raj being unable to talk to women and about Penny being the unreachable sexy girl next door... I'm not saying break Penny and Leonard up forever. I like them together. I'm just saying don't forget what keeps this show running. I mean, do you remember the end of season 2, when Leonard demands explanation about the hug from Penny, and then goes away and Penny bumps her head on the closed door and says something sad like "Means I wish you didn't go." ? This was like the first really serious scene in the show and I was really surprised to see it. The second was when Penny told Leonard she wasn't being honest with him and ran away in the last episode. Those scenes are supposed to be rare. PLease just keep them coming once in a season and solve the problems that popped up with the last ep in a funny and unexpected way... That's all I wish for!

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