The Date Night Variable Season 6, Episode 1 -  Aired September 27, 2012

The Date Night Variable

Amy is not impressed when Sheldon invites a lonely Raj along on their date night. Penny and Leonard's romantic evening together also gets interrupted after Amy sends Raj away. Meanwhile, Howard and his mother are caught in an argument, even as he's 220 miles above earth in the International Space Station.

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Guest Stars: Carol Ann Susi as Mrs. Wolowitz, Pasha Lychnikoff as Dimitri

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

Director: Mark Cendrowski

Viewers: 15.66 million Households Rating: 9.3/16 Adults 18-49 Rating: 5/15

Available on iTunes

Episode Notes

  • The title refers to Raj as the variable turning up on Sheldon and Amy's, and Leonard and Penny's date night.

> Relationship Agreement

Amy tells Penny that her relationship agreement with Sheldon requires him, on the anniversary of their first date, to take her out to dinner, ask about her day and engage in casual intimacy that a disinterested onlooker might mistake for intimacy.

According to Sheldon, although he has a contractual obligation to provide Amy with conversation and casual physical contact, it is not specified that he can't outsource that to an Indian (Raj).

Episode Quotes

Mrs. Wolowitz I'm not going near that fakakta thing. I'll catch a computer virus.
Howard: You can't catch a computer virus.
Mrs. Wolowitz Oh, so now you're an astronaut and a doctor?

Amy: If Sheldon proposed to me during sex, my ovaries would grab onto him and never let go.

Sheldon: Amy, when I look in your eyes and you're looking back in mine, everything feels not quite normal. Because I feel stronger and weaker at the same time. I feel excited and, at the same time, terrified. The truth is, I don't know what I feel, except I know what kind of man I want to be.
Amy: Sheldon, that was beautiful.
Sheldon: I should hope so, that's from the first Spider-Man movie.
Amy: I'll take it.

Mrs. Wolowitz: Wives don't take boys from their mothers.

Leonard: You know, it's not exactly glamorous up there. The water that the astronauts drink is made from each other's recycled urine.
Stuart: Must be nice. Nobody wants anything that comes out of me.

News Stories

Title Date Posted
UK season premiere is E4's most-watched show this year November 16, 2012

The UK premiere of The Big Bang Theory: Season 6 on E4 last night became the channel's most-watched show of the year and The Big Bang Theory's best performance for the station yet.  Full story

Episode 6.01 Final Ratings September 28, 2012

The sixth season premiere of The Big Bang Theory was the night's #1 program in households, viewers, adults 25-54 and adults 18-49. Last night's episode also received the show's largest audience and highest 18-49 demo rating ever for a season premiere.  Full story

Episode 6.01 Ratings September 28, 2012

The sixth season premiere of The Big Bang Theory was Thursday night's top-rated and most-watched program. Compared to last year's hour-long season opener, The Big Bang Theory held steady in the adults 18-49 demographic and added by 1.24 million viewers.  Full story

CBS Announces Sixth Season Premiere August 21, 2012

CBS has issued the press release for the sixth season premiere of The Big Bang Theory. Kevin Sussman (Stuart), Carol Ann Susi (Mrs. Wolowitz) and Pasha Lychnikoff (Dimitri) guest star in the episode.  Full story


Sheldon, Leonard and Raj are at the comic book store wondering what Howard is currently doing in the International Space Station. At that exact moment, Howard is taking a call from his overbearing mother, who is unhappy that Howard will be moving out to go live with his wife. Meanwhile, Penny is helping Amy bleach her upper lip as she prepares for a special date night with Sheldon, marking the anniversary of their first date. Penny admits she isn't really sure where he relationship with Leonard is going after he proposed to her during sex.

Raj meets Sheldon and Leonard in the university cafeteria and wonders whether they want to spend the night with him at a spa. Sheldon has his date with Amy and Leonard is hanging out with Penny. Raj is lonely without Howard so Sheldon invites him along on his date with Amy. Back in space, Howard receives a call from Bernadette who is angry that he didn't tell his mother they'll be moving out.

On her date with Sheldon, Amy is shocked to find Raj at their table, having been invited by Sheldon. When Raj tries to talk to Amy, she tells him to go home and explains this is their anniversary date. Raj didn't know it was a special night and attempts to make it right - by ordering a bottle of champagne and three glasses. Back in his apartment, Leonard is treating Penny to a casual evening of watching sports and eating snacks, but he soon starts asking questions about the state of their relationship. Raj knocks on the door, having left Sheldon and Amy rather than be the third wheel. Leonard tries to explain he wants to spend time with Penny talking through their relationship, but Penny invites Raj in to avoid this.

Howard receives another call from his mother wanting to know what his big news in. Howard begins to explain he will be starting a life with Bernadette, but his mother starts sobbing and Howard immediately backtracks. Back in the apartment, Raj is enjoying spending the night with Penny and Leonard, who tries to send him home. When Leonard reveals Penny has never told him she loves him, Raj starts prodding her to tell him, getting him kicked out of the apartment. Back at the restaurant, Amy is a little tipsy and is disappointed by Sheldon's lack of romance. Amy threatens to leave if Sheldon doesn't say something meaningful and heartfelt, so he recites lines from the first Spider-Man movie.

Raj shows up at Stuart's comic book store as he's closing up. Realizing they're both lonely, Raj asks Stuart if he wants to hang out some time. Elsewhere, Bernadette is video chatting with Howard, who lies and tells her he's told his mother they're moving out. When the other astronaut questions what he'll do when he returns to Earth, Howard says he's never going back.