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S12.E16: The D & D Vortex

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The gang finds out Wil Wheaton hosts a celebrity Dungeons and Dragons game involving William Shatner, Joe Manganiello, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Kevin Smith. Deception and betrayal are the path to make it to the one open seat.

Airdate: Thursday, February 21, 2019

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Sheldon to Wil Wheaton:  "If it makes you feel any better, I don't even really consider you a celebrity."

Sheldon may be an ass, but I laughed at that one.

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I felt so bad for Stuart. His friends are such jerks to him.  

And would it kill Penny to not be so obviously uninterested in Leonard's stories.

Wil was right.  They were using him and it's time he finally called them out on it.  

And, I liked that someone finally called Amy on her creepiness.

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First off, after all of the "ad-libs" from "original recipe" Professor Proton, there would be no way

that they would film the new show live.

When Penny said "the hot guy from Magic Mike", they should have had BOTH Bernie and Amy  say "Which one???" immediately after -----  that's how you make a joke, writers!!!!!

and speaking of missed jokes----

Bernie:   I loved you in Magic Mike.

Joe:   Switch seats with me,

Shatner:   Come on, let's play.

Penny:   Yeah, let's smash that ogre.

Shatner:   I like your moxie.

Penny:    Switch seats with me.

Edited by Twilight Man
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1 minute ago, Twilight Man said:

Shatner:   I like your moxie.

Penny:    Switch seats with me.

I liked that they didn't go for the obvious joke.  Penny knew he was (sort of) hitting on her, and she shut that shit down with her Grandpa comment.

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12 minutes ago, Twilight Man said:

First off, after all of the "ad-libs" from "original recipe" Professor Proton, there would be no way that they would film the new show live.

That bugged me. They'd likely be able to film a few shows at once since there's no audience. I liked Wil's comment about his audience being "this many" as he held up nine fingers.

Wil's house number was 1701. 😊

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37 minutes ago, SoMuchTV said:

Wil Wheaton 's porch seemed really familiar. From 2and a half men maybe?

Is it because we saw Wheaton's porch back in season 6, "The Habitation Configuration"?

I enjoyed the episode, although I thought it was kind of mean spirited.

Penny shutting down "grandpa" Shatner, but he was no more flirty with her than Professor Proton, and she was very sweet to him.  Penny not being interested in Leonard's stories.

Stuart's friends ganging up on him.  All the guys wanting a seat at the D&D table at the others expense.

The girls all going gaga over a celebrity who played a stripper in a movie.  All three getting invited to the D&D game, when none had any real interest in D&D, while the guys had to maintain silence and could only be present one at a time.

Still, it was entertaining.

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35 minutes ago, SmithW6079 said:

Wil's house number was 1701. 😊

"No Bloody A, B, C, or D." - Captain Montgomery Scott.

11 minutes ago, rmontro said:

I enjoyed the episode, although I thought it was kind of mean spirited.

Still, it was entertaining.

Agreed on both fronts.  It reminded me of some of the early season episodes, a bit mean spirited, with lots of nerdy, scientific goofiness.  No Anu, but that was kind of ok.  Here's hoping the show runners can duplicate this magic eight more times this season.

Edited by Winston Wolfe
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48 minutes ago, Winston Wolfe said:

It reminded me of some of the early season episodes, a bit mean spirited, with lots of nerdy, scientific goofiness. 

You're right, now that you mention it.  A lot of the older, classic era Big Bang shows were kind of mean spirited.  For instance, Penny used to be much more half hearted about Leonard - you could tell that she didn't fully appreciate him, if you know what I mean.  But that's what kept the tension and made it seem real.  Now they're married and they've established she loves him, so there's no more tension unless they get divorced, which no one wants to see.

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Who took the picture? Stuart? I didn't have time to notice who was missing from it, but he seems the most likely. Because...Stuart.

ETA: Oops he wasn't there. So who took it?

Edited by Starchild

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6 minutes ago, Starchild said:

Who took the picture? Stuart? I didn't have time to notice who was missing from it, but he seems the most likely. Because...Stuart.

ETA: Oops he wasn't there. So who took it?

You can set a phone to take pictures on a timer.

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The regulars conveyed such sincere fandom that I felt excited for them.

I assumed Penny acting bored about Leonard's evening of D&Ding with the Stars was a fakeout to get him to spill more.

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I have to admit, it wasn't as funny as I was hoping.  Maybe I expected too much with the amount of celebs.

Is Kareem and Shanter into D&D?  I know Joe is.  And Kevin.  I think it may have been better with some of the old cast from TNG but then we wouldn't have had the women caring about joining the game.

I still laughing at the back and forth bargaining between Lenoard and Brent Spiner back from season ... i dont remember.

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OK, that was awesome.

I have avoided spoilers this season like the plague so I had no idea who was going to be in this episode. Can't believe I forgot about Wil Wheaton, - I'm glad we got at least one more Wil-centric episode. 

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2 hours ago, SmithW6079 said:

Wil's house number was 1701. 😊

Yep, and there was a Stand by Me poster in the background of Wil's living room.  😉  

Best episode of the season.  It felt like old school BBT, when the show was about 4 sci-fi nerds being sci-fi nerds.  It's come full circle for Sheldon who has now puked on the Shat and "possseses the DNA of Leonard Nimoy."  😁

Edited by Magnumfangirl
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This reminded me of old school BBT.  The whole gang involved in the same plot, no relationship angst, just the gang being funny. A bit mean and selfish, but funny. Loved the way they used Wil’s D&D game to get in some great cameos, and Shatner ruled.  A “filler” episode to be sure, but I enjoyed it a lot. 

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6 hours ago, Katy M said:

I felt so bad for Stuart. His friends are such jerks to him.  

I feel bad for him, too. My all-time favorite episode was one of the reruns today (The Scavenger Vortex) and they were leaving him out of things back then, too. I laughed that he didn't think to say he was with his girlfriend, but instead said that he was hanging out at the pharmacy. 

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I didn't enjoy this episode.  There are too many commercials, which are taking away from the show. I switch channels more because of the long interruptions, and sometimes almost forget to switch back. 

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1 hour ago, madfortv said:

I didn't enjoy this episode.  There are too many commercials, which are taking away from the show. I switch channels more because of the long interruptions, and sometimes almost forget to switch back. 

I only watch it on the DVR so I can fast forward through the commercials. I think there are more commercials then show

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10 minutes ago, ProfCrash said:

I only watch it on the DVR so I can fast forward through the commercials. I think there are more commercials then show

Not quite. It's 18 of show, 12 of commercial.

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6 hours ago, Iguana said:

The whole gang involved in the same plot, no relationship angst, just the gang being funny. A bit mean and selfish, but funny.

I thought their scene with Stuart was funny.  When Stuart first entered the kitchen, the guys were all standing there looking tough and giving him the stink eye.  I found it amusing because it's so out of character for them.  They're never the tough guys!!  (Not that I condone bullying, but it's just a sitcom and watching these guys go from nerd to thug was funny.)  It was actually nice to know that Stuart has been in Wil's inner circle without the guys knowing about it.  He can always hold that over them. 

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3 minutes ago, ChitChat said:

I thought their scene with Stuart was funny.  When Stuart first entered the kitchen, the guys were all standing there looking tough and giving him the stink eye.  I found it amusing because it's so out of character for them.  They're never the tough guys!!  (Not that I condone bullying, but it's just a sitcom and watching these guys go from nerd to thug was funny.)  It was actually nice to know that Stuart has been in Wil's inner circle without the guys knowing about it.  He can always hold that over them. 

They were "thugs" about a nerd thing, and that made it funnier. 

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1 hour ago, Katy M said:

Not quite. It's 18 of show, 12 of commercial.

My stationary bike workouts have gotten more intense since I ran out of BBT theory episodes and switched to old Frasier episodes on the DVD player.  

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1 hour ago, nora1992 said:

My stationary bike workouts have gotten more intense since I ran out of BBT theory episodes and switched to old Frasier episodes on the DVD player.  

One of my cable stations plays Frasier every night for about 3 hours. I forgot how much I love this show and how funny it is. 

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14 hours ago, Spartan Girl said:

I have to feel bad for Sheldon: throwing up on your childhood idol is humiliating,

I did too, and yet, it was funny to me because my best friend and I have a long-running joke about meeting famous people we admire and barfing on their shoes.  Patrick Stewart doesn't know how lucky he was that night he appeared at the College of Notre Dame in Towson.

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13 hours ago, rmontro said:

The girls all going gaga over a celebrity who played a stripper in a movie. 

This was very believable - although the other women in my office all go gaga over Channing Tatum.  (I didn't find any of the men in Magic Mike particularly attractive.  Matthew McConaughey was the closest, but he's so off-putting in real life.)

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27 minutes ago, proserpina65 said:

This was very believable - although the other women in my office all go gaga over Channing Tatum.  (I didn't find any of the men in Magic Mike particularly attractive.  Matthew McConaughey was the closest, but he's so off-putting in real life.)

Oh, it's completely believable.  Still a little mean spirited though.  I wonder how the girls would act if all the men had slipped out to spend time drooling over some actress, and send them a picture to rub their nose in it?

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I seem to be in the minority but this episode bummed me out so much that I haven't even been able to get all the way through it.  I've seen every episode of the series at least 5 times (except this year and last year's seasons) and you're right that some of the older episodes were more mean spirited, but I never liked that.  Maybe I can stomach watching the rest of the episode tonight.  I really hate it so far. 

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Is Kareem and Shanter into D&D?  I know Joe is. 

Is he? That seemed like such a random cameo to me. I also didn't recognize him at first. His hair looks awful.

Good episode though. I was kind of hoping for some kind of reference to Travelosity with Kaley and Shatner together.

It's usually kind of depressing how Stuart is such a sad sack all the time (Chuck Lorre thinks "pathetic" is hysterical), but he was better utilized in this episode. The scene where he's on the phone with Wil telling him he can't play anymore because it's too much pressure showed how he's sort of a creature of his own making. 

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Joe Magliano runs an D&D game and has a game room in his basement. I swore he was talking about it on Colbert but I can't find the clip.

I loved this episode, probably because it revolved around D&D. I'm a woman who plays D&D and our group has more women than men.

13 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

The regulars conveyed such sincere fandom that I felt excited for them.

I assumed Penny acting bored about Leonard's evening of D&Ding with the Stars was a fakeout to get him to spill more.

Yes! The casts general fandom. Shooting that week must have been a blast.

I think Penny didn't actually care about the evening until she heard who was there. She knows he was out doing some nerdy things, not having an affair.

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3 hours ago, ChitChat said:

I thought their scene with Stuart was funny.  When Stuart first entered the kitchen, the guys were all standing there looking tough and giving him the stink eye.  I found it amusing because it's so out of character for them.  They're never the tough guys!!  (Not that I condone bullying, but it's just a sitcom and watching these guys go from nerd to thug was funny.) 

Leonard trying to look menacing while holding a dish-washing wand was hilarious.

9 minutes ago, iMonrey said:

It's usually kind of depressing how Stuart is such a sad sack all the time (Chuck Lorre thinks "pathetic" is hysterical), but he was better utilized in this episode.

Yep, it's definitely a Lorre thing.  In reality, Stuart's life has never really been all that pathetic.  His store struggled a bit (hard to understand since he always had a stream of regular customers), but now it's successful, and he has a cute-ish girlfriend with a great personality who definitely seems to "get" him.  A lot of real-life folks aren't doing that well, lol.

51 minutes ago, rmontro said:

I wonder how the girls would act if all the men had slipped out to spend time drooling over some actress, and send them a picture to rub their nose in it? 

Well the guys do it all the time (the Katie Sackhoff and Summer Glau episodes come to mind).  Oddly enough, the ladies come off creepier and more lascivious than the guys.  Which kind of makes sense if you've ever been to a women's strip club.

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5 minutes ago, Winston Wolfe said:

Well the guys do it all the time (the Katie Sackhoff and Summer Glau episodes come to mind).  Oddly enough, the ladies come off creepier and more lascivious than the guys.  Which kind of makes sense if you've ever been to a women's strip club.

Sackhoff and Glau were before the guys were married though.  In fact, Howard hadn't even met Bernadette yet when they saw Glau on the train.  And Sackhoff was just a figment of Howard's imagination.  

Regarding your comment about women:  If you put Sackhoff and Glau in a room, the guys would likely divide their attention between the two.  With the girls, they will likely all focus on the one guy they deem the sexiest (in this case, Manganiello).

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2 minutes ago, rmontro said:

Regarding your comment about women:  If you put Sackhoff and Glau in a room, the guys would likely divide their attention between the two.  With the girls, they will likely all focus on the one guy they deem the sexiest (in this case, Manganiello).

Both points taken, particularly the first (which dawned on me immediately after posting).  On the second point, now that I think about it, you're probably right - women do tend to gravitate towards the "hottest" alpha male in the room, which Joe M was.

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56 minutes ago, iMonrey said:

Is he? That seemed like such a random cameo to me. I also didn't recognize him at first. His hair looks awful.

Good episode though. I was kind of hoping for some kind of reference to Travelosity with Kaley and Shatner together.

It's usually kind of depressing how Stuart is such a sad sack all the time (Chuck Lorre thinks "pathetic" is hysterical), but he was better utilized in this episode. The scene where he's on the phone with Wil telling him he can't play anymore because it's too much pressure showed how he's sort of a creature of his own making. 

I wanted a mention of that too. 

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48 minutes ago, Winston Wolfe said:

you're probably right - women do tend to gravitate towards the "hottest" alpha male in the room, which Joe M was.

Poor Shatner.  If it had been a Star Trek episode, he would have gotten the girls.

I love Star Trek, and I'm a big fan of Captain Kirk, but I probably would have found Kevin Smith the most interesting to talk to.

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I have to admit, it wasn't as funny as I was hoping.  Maybe I expected too much with the amount of celebs.

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 It felt like old school BBT, when the show was about 4 sci-fi nerds being sci-fi nerds. 

I think both are right-it felt old school science nerdy....but just wasnt quite as funny as it should have been!

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Leonard trying to look menacing while holding a dish-washing wand was hilarious.

Ok, that was very funny!

This was a solid Will Wheaton victory lap episode and now we are done with him and they probably need a couple more for some of the frequent guest stars who helped the show at the beginning (yes, that means Christine Baranski and Laurie Metcalf are stopping by soon...altho, hilarity often ensued with both)....unless they are showing up for the wedding/baby announcement/Nobel ceremony/etc...finale

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8 hours ago, Katy M said:

Not quite. It's 18 of show, 12 of commercial.

Wow, a whole 6 minutes more!  I can hardly contain my gratitude!

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4 hours ago, Winston Wolfe said:

Both points taken, particularly the first (which dawned on me immediately after posting).  On the second point, now that I think about it, you're probably right - women do tend to gravitate towards the "hottest" alpha male in the room, which Joe M was.

Eh, different women have different tastes in men.  I'd have been planting my butt next to Wil Wheaton.  And I'd never have imagined that when he was on Next Generation.

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7 minutes ago, proserpina65 said:

Eh, different women have different tastes in men.  I'd have been planting my butt next to Wil Wheaton.  And I'd never have imagined that when he was on Next Generation.

I would sit on the other side! 😍

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8 minutes ago, proserpina65 said:

Eh, different women have different tastes in men.  I'd have been planting my butt next to Wil Wheaton.  And I'd never have imagined that when he was on Next Generation.

Plus it was Kareem Abdul-Jabbar who first got Penny’s attention and Bernadette seemed perfectly happy sitting next to him. Amy was the only one who was overly focused on Manganiello at the actual game. 

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13 minutes ago, Dani said:

Plus it was Kareem Abdul-Jabbar who first got Penny’s attention and Bernadette seemed perfectly happy sitting next to him. Amy was the only one who was overly focused on Manganiello at the actual game. 

I was hoping they'd have Bernie standing next to him just to see the contrast and was not disappointed. The best part was his head being out of the frame.

Magnaniello doesn't really do much for me (I hated his hair). I've never even seen him in anything except that Hulu commercial he does with his wife.

I'd pick Wil, too. Or maybe Kevin Smith. 

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21 hours ago, Twilight Man said:

When Penny said "the hot guy from Magic Mike", they should have had BOTH Bernie and Amy  say "Which one???" immediately after -----  that's how you make a joke, writers!!!!!

Yes! That would have been fantastic. Especially because the odds of all three having the same favorite seems slim. 

15 hours ago, Iguana said:

This reminded me of old school BBT.  The whole gang involved in the same plot, no relationship angst, just the gang being funny. A bit mean and selfish, but funny. Loved the way they used Wil’s D&D game to get in some great cameos, and Shatner ruled.  A “filler” episode to be sure, but I enjoyed it a lot. 

I totally agree. I understand it's hard to all of the characters in the same scene together, but at least have them in the same storyline. This felt like everyone was on the same TV show, as opposed to other episodes where it feels like it's two totally different shows. 

5 hours ago, theredhead77 said:

I think Penny didn't actually care about the evening until she heard who was there. She knows he was out doing some nerdy things, not having an affair.

To some extent, I think that's why the relationship works. She knows he's going to go out and do nerdy things, and that's fine with her. She would rather he do them with his friends than drag her to them. 

I loved that of all the three wives, Amy has the most clear-eyed view of the situation. When Leonard, Howard, and Sheldon were trying to figure out who might be part of the game, and Penny or Bernadette asked "Is this going to be the rest of our night?" I think Amy's line was something like "This is the rest of our lives," which is pretty accurate. She understands the men in her life and knows exactly who she married. 

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4 hours ago, rmontro said:

I probably would have found Kevin Smith the most interesting to talk to.

Ditto. Did Kevin Smith even get a line?

__________

I'm assuming Sheldon barfing on Shatner off camera was a condition of Shatner's to do the scene.

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21 hours ago, rmontro said:

 All the guys wanting a seat at the D&D table at the others expense.

Did anyone else think of Molly's Game?

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53 minutes ago, Sarah 103 said:

To some extent, I think that's why the relationship works. She knows he's going to go out and do nerdy things, and that's fine with her. She would rather he do them with his friends than drag her to them. 

Heh.  I think this is one reason I find the Penny Leonard relationship believable.  My husband has some interests that would bore me to tears (think days long games of Risk as one example).  The notion that just because I married the guy has to mean I am interested in every damn thing he does is laughable to me.  And I'm pretty sure he feels the same way about some of the things I care deeply about!  As long as we're not putting each other down (too much 🙂) it's all good.  And that's exactly the balance I see with Penny and Leonard.

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