The Engagement Reaction Season 4, Episode 23 -  Aired May 12, 2011

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After Howard finally tells his mother he's engaged to Bernadette, she ends up in the hospital. Meanwhile, Leonard is concerned when Penny and Priya bond.

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Guest Stars: Carol Ann Susi as Mrs. Wolowitz, Aarti Mann as Priya, Phil Abrams as Dr. Bernstein, Sharon Omi as Nurse in Biohazard Suit

Writers: Bill Prady (Story), Eric Kaplan (Story), Jim Reynolds (Story), Chuck Lorre (Teleplay), Steven Molaro (Teleplay), Steve Holland (Teleplay)

Director: Howard Murray

Viewers: 10.78 million Households Rating: 6.5/11 Adults 18-49 Rating: 3.4/11

Available on iTunes

Episode Notes

  • The title simply refers to Mrs. Wolowitz' reaction to the news of Howard's engagement.

Episode Quotes

Sheldon: Oh, what fresh hell is this?
Biosuit Nurse: Wait, you can't leave here, you've been exposed.
Sheldon: (Covering his face with his shirt) No, I haven't. It's all good.

Howard: Hell hound.
Raj: Who let the satanic dogs out?

Raj: Sheldon, that's my water.
Sheldon: Oh, dear Lord!
Leonard: That's not your water.
Raj: I know.

Priya: What happened?
Bernadette: Howard's mother had a heart attack because I have sex with him and she can't.

Priya: Indian parents are very protective of their children.
Howard: Right. Whereas Jewish mothers take a casual la-di-da approach to their sons.

News Stories

Title Date Posted
Episode 4.23 Ratings May 13, 2011

The May 12, 2011 episode of The Big Bang Theory finished a solid second behind Fox's American Idol.  Full story

CBS Announces Episode 4.23 April 30, 2011

CBS has announced the penultimate episode of Season 4.  Full story


As the gang eats at the Cheesecake Factory, Penny asks Bernadette to wait the table as she doesn't want to speak to Priya. Sheldon is concerned when he accidentally drinks from Leonard's cup. When Bernadette comes to take everybody's order, Priya asks if they have started planning their wedding yet and if they have told Howard's mother. Bernadette says they're waiting for the right time, which Howard jokes would be after his mother's funeral.

Back at the apartment, the guys are playing Mystic Warlords of Ka'a with Raj annoyingly commenting on every card. Howard gets a text saying his mother has arrived at the deli to have lunch with Bernadette in a bid to get to know her better. Later, Howard arrives home and looks for his mother. Howard finds Mrs. Wolowitz in the bathroom and asks how dinner went. Mrs. Wolowitz says Bernadette's a lovely girl, so Howard tells her they're engaged. Mrs. Wolowitz doesn't respond and Howard then hears a large thud, so he tries to break the door down.

While Penny and Sheldonchat in the laundy room, Leonard interrupts to say Mrs. Wolowitz has been taken to the hospital. Sheldon is reluctant to go with Leonard and Penny to the hospital, but Penny points out he should try emulating the superheroes whose t-shirts he wears. At the hospital waiting room, Howard explains he carried his mother out of the bathroom, put her in his car and drove like crazy to get her to the emergency room. Bernadette worries that the news of Howard revealing their engagement caused Mrs. Wolowitz's health scare.

Priya and Penny start bonding in the hospital waiting room, causing concern for Leonard who worries that they're talking about the intimate details of their relationships with him. On his way back from the bathroom, Sheldon sees a man coughing. In order to escape the coughing man's germs, Sheldon backs into a room, only to realize it's a biohazard isolation room which he can't leave as he's now been exposed. Back in the waiting room, a doctor arrives to tell Howard that it wasn't a heart attack, and that Mrs. Wolowitz would like to see "the little Catholic girl" first.

Bernadette returns to the waiting room and criticizes Howard for making her feel like she could be responsible for Mrs. Wolowitz's health scare. Bernadette explains it was just food poisoning from the restaurant where they had lunch, and Mrs. Wolowitz just wanted to make sure Bernadette didn't have it too. Later, Leonard, Howard and Raj are wearing hazmat suits as they play Mystic Warlords of Ka'a with Sheldon, who is in quarantine.