The Thespian Catalyst Season 4, Episode 14 -  Aired February 3, 2011

The Thespian Catalyst

Sheldon is inundated with negative feedback when he teaches a class. To improve his communication skills, Sheldon gets acting lessons from Penny. Meanwhile, Raj has a series of romantic daydreams about his best friend's girl.

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Writers: Chuck Lorre (Story), Lee Aronsohn (Story), Jim Reynolds (Story), Bill Prady (Teleplay), Steven Molaro (Teleplay), Maria Ferrari (Teleplay)

Director: Mark Cendrowski

Viewers: 13.83 million Households Rating: 8/13 Adults 18-49 Rating: 4.3/12

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Episode Notes

  • The title refers to the acting lessons Sheldon was taking. The catalyst to become a "Thespian" being the negative feedback from his class.

> Sheldon's Knock

Sheldon uses his knock twice, both on Penny's apartment door. The second time, as he goes to Penny's apartment for acting lessons, Sheldon frantically knocks and shouts her name. When Penny wonders what's wrong, Sheldon says he's acting.

Episode Quotes

Raj: Dance number aside, I'm so not gay.

Penny: Mrs. Cooper? Hey, it's Penny. I think I broke your son. Hold on. Talk to your mother.
Sheldon: (Crying) Mommy, I love you. Don't let Spock take me to the future!

Raj: I know the feeling. It's like accidentally walking into a gay bar and then having no one hit on you. It happened to a friend of mine.

Raj: Cute is for bunnies. I want to be something with sex appeal. Like a labradoodle.

Penny: Okay, that's fine, but let's try and get you out of your comfort zone.
Sheldon: Why would we want to do that? It's called the comfort zone for a reason.

News Stories

Title Date Posted
Episode 4.14 Ratings February 4, 2011

The ratings for the February 3rd episode of The Big Bang Theory are out.  Full story

CBS Announces Episode 4.14 January 11, 2011

CBS has announced the details for the February 3rd episode of The Big Bang Theory.  Full story


Sheldon is giving a lecture to a class and his condescending manner does not win over the students. Back at the apartment, the rest of the guys are reading the desperate tweets of students in Sheldon's class. When Sheldon arrives home, he is shocked by the reaction to his lecture, which he expected to be extremely positive.

When Raj shows signs of loneliness, Bernadette attempts to comfort and reassure him, but Raj starts to get the wrong idea. Elsewhere, Amy tries to encourage Sheldon after his dismal reception as a teacher. Amy suggests Sheldon should take acting lessons, so he goes over to Penny's and asks her to teach him. Sheldon's first lesson on improvisation stresses out Penny, while the second one breaks Sheldon after he acts out a scence from a Star Trek fan-fiction he wrote as a child.

Raj has a daydream that Howard is offered a fellowship outside the country and requests that Raj fulfil Bernadette's "needs" in his absence. In another day dream, Raj imagines that Howard has been hit by a truck and, for his last wish, wants Raj to take care of Bernadette sexually. His final dream sees an angry Bernadette confront him about his feelings for her, only to descend into a Bollywood dance sequence.