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S12.E18: The Laureate Accumulation

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When competitors Pemberton and Campbell charm America on a publicity tour, Sheldon and Amy try to bring Nobel laureates Kip Thorne, George Smoot and Frances Arnold to their side. Also, Halley’s fear of the dark leads to opportunity and conflict for Howard, Bernadette and Stuart.

Airdate: Thursday, April 4, 2019

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Probably there are two kinds of astronauts: those who admit they are frightened, and those who don't.

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Wow, Stuart's art was really good!

Only Sheldon could alienate so many scientists. Had to laugh at how they used the cookies he sent to spell "fuck you".

I love Kal Penn and Sean Astin but those guys are dicks. I don't blame Amy for losing it at the reception.

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Geez, Leonard, how did it take you so long to come up with that “shut up” code word for Sheldon? That would’ve been useful a loooooong time ago.

Howard and Bernadette’s storyline was really sweet.

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The reaction by Sheldon after watching Amy lose it and realizing how he looks when he overreacts to things was hysterical.  Sheldon: "Wow!  Is that how I would've looked?"  Leonard:  "Yep!"

I was hoping for a Mike Massimino appearance in regards to Bernadette's book, but seeing how it wasn't published yet, I guess that wouldn't make sense.  You know he'd give 'Fruit Loops' a hard time over it.  

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YES AMY, THANK YOU!

I still say they have got to make it public that one of the original discoverers of Super-Assymetry is a female scientist who's being nudged out of the spotlight and having her credit stolen. The internet would explode.

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11 minutes ago, PinkRibbons said:

I still say they have got to make it public that one of the original discoverers of Super-Assymetry is a female scientist who's being nudged out of the spotlight and having her credit stolen. The internet would explode.

I was glad that Amy did what she did.  It needed to be said!  It was just so funny because that's what we would expect out of Sheldon, so to see Amy come undone (rightfully so) was pretty funny.  I was impressed that Leonard was actually able to make Sheldon quit talking!  That's a feat in and of itself! 

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I loved that they managed to get three actual Nobel Laureates for the episode.  This show and its parade of real-life scientists and celebrities over the years is like the “Friends” roster of high-level one-shot guests.  

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8 hours ago, ChitChat said:

I was hoping for a Mike Massimino appearance in regards to Bernadette's book, but seeing how it wasn't published yet, I guess that wouldn't make sense.  You know he'd give 'Fruit Loops' a hard time over it.  

Is there a chance Mike Massimino could still do a cameo when the book makes the NY Times best seller list or wins a Caldecott for illustration? Or I could imagine a mention of him writing a sweet forward in the book about the real Little Astronaut being an inspiration for children of all ages who are afraid of something.

BTW, the show Powers That Be should really publish that book for both those fans who will be going through TBBT withdrawal, and so the perhaps soon-to-be unemployed set illustrator/artist can get their second act launched.

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13 hours ago, Driad said:

Probably there are two kinds of astronauts: those who admit they are frightened, and those who don't.

And, just because IRL I often make out-loud observations as obnoxiously inappropriate and unnecessary as Sheldon's: There would also be a third type of astronaut who only admits to him or herself that they're scared poopless.

Edited by shapeshifter
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Wouldn't it be nice if this is the book that launches Stuart's art/illustration career?  

1 hour ago, shapeshifter said:

Or I could imagine a mention of him writing a sweet forward in the book about the real Little Astronaut being an inspiration for children of all ages who are afraid of something.

I like that idea!  I always enjoyed his cameos on the show. 

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Geez, Leonard, how did it take you so long to come up with that “shut up” code word for Sheldon? That would’ve been useful a loooooong time ago.

I don't believe Sheldon would have believed he needed it before.  He is finally realizing it because of all the scientific bridges he's burned.  It was great that he saw that his actions were hurting Amy.

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I liked Sheldon's approach to exposing the idiotic but social media savvy scientists during the reception, but I couldn't believe he or Amy didn't immediately have a 'defend' response when the guy just said he agreed without any kind of follow up.  Don't they remember their Counterfactuals game?  

The book storyline was adorable but I can definitely see why Howard would be reluctant to have it out in the world.  It would be pretty humiliating unless he was able to spin it as exaggeration for the sake of the book.  Which would be difficult because it probably wasn't exaggerated at all!  This is a great send off for Stuart the artist/comic book store owner as well.  Good job by the writer's to come up with an organic way for Stuart to end up successful by the finale.

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I don't care if Amy and Sheldon don't win a Nobel but the end game for this plot line better not be that Amy gets no recognition!  I will not be happy.  And I don't believe that Mayim Bialek will let them do that so I'm probably worrying for nothing.  I hope.

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13 minutes ago, Homily said:

I don't care if Amy and Sheldon don't win a Nobel but the end game for this plot line better not be that Amy gets no recognition!  I will not be happy.  And I don't believe that Mayim Bialek will let them do that so I'm probably worrying for nothing.  I hope.

Now I'm wondering if there will be some sort of compromise in which one each of the scientist pairs is awarded the Nobel, with Amy representing the Cooper-Fowler contingent.

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37 minutes ago, shapeshifter said:

Now I'm wondering if there will be some sort of compromise in which one each of the scientist pairs is awarded the Nobel, with Amy representing the Cooper-Fowler contingent.

That would piss me off.  The show has been very clear that the other two guys don't know what the hell they're talking about and just stumbled into the whole thing.  Sheldon and Amy collaborated on super asymmetry and should get the Nobel together.  Especially since it all began during their wedding episode which is one of my favorites during the entire run of the series.

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Just now, Frost said:

That would piss me off.  The show has been very clear that the other two guys don't know what the hell they're talking about and just stumbled into the whole thing.  Sheldon and Amy collaborated on super asymmetry and should get the Nobel together.  Especially since it all began during their wedding episode which is one of my favorites during the entire run of the series.

Absolutely.  If they don't get the Nobel I can live with that - if they lose it to those two creeps I will be furious,  If Sheldon gets it with the other two and Amy loses out I will be livid.  I just keep telling myself they won't end the show on that note.  They just won't...well they better not!

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5 minutes ago, Quark said:

Amy's meltdown was the funniest scene in years. Just brilliant.

It was brilliant!  What really sold it was how she calmly smoothed her hair after she was finished ranting.

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Of course, in real life it takes ... decades... to get a Nobel Prize. Just approximating from wikipedia:

Thorne 1984 work  - 2017 award (33 years)

Smoot - 1989 work - 2006 award (17 years)

Arnold 1993 work - 2018 award (25 years)

If any of them get a Nobel Prize, I'll be mad!

But I do want to see Stuart's other illustrations! And loved Howard's Columbus joke.

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It was an OK episode and I enjoyed the cameos by real life Nobel prize winners. Also liked Howard's reaction to "The Frightened Little Astronaut," LOL. However, it still feels like the show is All About Sheldon, all the time. 

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The Ig Nobel awards ceremony every year includes several Nobel Laureates from the Boston area, so it doesn't surprise me the show found some. I imagine a lot of the things you get asked to do aren't as much fun.

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41 minutes ago, highway61 said:

Of course, in real life it takes ... decades... to get a Nobel Prize.

While that's undeniably true there have been exceptions.  Just had some fun going down the rabbit hole of google and wiki searching.  Yes, I'm home with a bad cold and I have time on my hands 🙂.  Anyway Sheldon and Amy would be a rarity if they got the Nobel so quickly but they wouldn't be the first.

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3 hours ago, Frost said:

This is a great send off for Stuart the artist/comic book store owner as well.  Good job by the writer's to come up with an organic way for Stuart to end up successful by the finale.

Yes! It seems like the writers and production team are working hard to give all the characters good but believable endings to their stories (unlike some other sitcoms cough*ModernFamily* cough). I would not be surprised to see The Frightened Little Astronaut actually get published IRL (the closest parallel I can think of offhand is Where's My Cow?, a children's book repeatedly mentioned in Sir Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels, actually getting published as a standalone book of its own). And it would be wonderfully appropriate for Mike Massimo to do an introduction.

Too often in longstanding series, character growth or change comes at the expense of believability, but the way BBT has handled Sheldon's growth as a person over the years has been remarkably well-done too. He'll always be a self-centered ass, but having a wife and loving friends have slowly but surely brought him a measure of compassion and empathy. Original Sheldon would never have thought about how his actions hurt another person -- Original Sheldon wasn't even capable of such leaps.

I've loved this show since episode one; I'm actually really enjoying the wind-down too.

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Now I'm wondering if there will be some sort of compromise in which one each of the scientist pairs is awarded the Nobel

That would not be just poking fun at the science community but making a mockery of it, and the whole Nobel prize. I don't think the writers would do that.

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25 minutes ago, FinnishViewer said:

That would not be just poking fun at the science community but making a mockery of it, and the whole Nobel prize. I don't think the writers would do that.

True.
I was thinking more broadly of society today honoring the less-worthy as often as the worthy.

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I laughed at Sheldon answering Leonard that he had obtained empathy somewhere in between laughing when Amy got shocked by the string of broken Christmas lights and right now.  

I'm so glad they've finally circled back around to the fact that Stuart started out as an artist.  Remember the great drawing he did of Penny as a super hero when he first met her? It's always kind of bugged me that they never had him pursue art as a side career. 

It was nice to see Leonard and Penny working together to help Shamy.

Edited by Cowgirl
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35 minutes ago, Cowgirl said:

It was nice to see Leonard and Penny working together to help Shamy.

Those are always my favorite scenes.  I like seeing the bond between Leonard and Sheldon.  It was nice just seeing them both talking through what was bugging Sheldon.  For all of Sheldon's annoying habits, Leonard really does care about him.  Mary was very fortunate that Leonard came along and has essentially helped Sheldon as much as he has.  Not many people would stick around for that.  

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5 minutes ago, ChitChat said:

Those are always my favorite scenes.  I like seeing the bond between Leonard and Sheldon.  It was nice just seeing them both talking through what was bugging Sheldon.  For all of Sheldon's annoying habits, Leonard really does care about him.  Mary was very fortunate that Leonard came along and has essentially helped Sheldon as much as he has.  Not many people would stick around for that.  

I would even go so far as to say it was more Penny than anything. Leonard lived with Sheldon for several years, kind of zombie-walking through existence with him until Penny came along and pushed Sheldon out of his comfort zone. Now Leonard does it too.

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I know the three Nobel Prize Laureates and their cameos were the big thing about this episode but I got way more excited about the show finally letting Stuart be an artist - when was the last time we saw one of his drawings? Back in season one when he portrayed Penny? He's supposed to be an artist but we never saw him draw again throughout all these seasons. No wonder he's depressed. Publish that book both in-show and IRL!

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3 hours ago, ChitChat said:

For all of Sheldon's annoying habits, Leonard really does care about him.  Mary was very fortunate that Leonard came along and has essentially helped Sheldon as much as he has.  Not many people would stick around for that.  

I've always believed Leonard cares about Sheldon. For me, it came in an early episode, when Sheldon has a mini breakdown over a physics equation he can't solve, and "escapes" to a ballpit at a gaming center. They call Leonard to come, and when he sees Sheldon, he says, "Oh, Shelly." The depth of his caring came through in those two words.

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54 minutes ago, SmithW6079 said:

I've always believed Leonard cares about Sheldon. For me, it came in an early episode, when Sheldon has a mini breakdown over a physics equation he can't solve, and "escapes" to a ballpit at a gaming center. They call Leonard to come, and when he sees Sheldon, he says, "Oh, Shelly." The depth of his caring came through in those two words.

True.  And it's been shown that Sheldon cares for Leonard too.  Like when he went to Penny and asked her to please not hurt his friend.

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They published Kimmy Schmidt’s book for kids IRL so it’s not out of the realm of possibility that they could publish a book from this show too. I’d also like to see Amy and Bernadette team up for a book about science for young girls. 

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I loved Howard drawing the parallel for Halley between her own and an astronaut's diaper. This episode underscored that you can be funny without being mean. Great episode.

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5 hours ago, Angeleyes said:

it’s not out of the realm of possibility that they could publish a book from this show

It would be cool, IMO, if the writers/author took a pen name/nom de plume of Bernadette Rostenkowski-Wolowitz and if the illustrator took an alias of Stuart Bloom.

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23 minutes ago, chitowngirl said:

That was done with Castle. A series of mystery books came out written by “Richard Castle”.

Oh, right! Can I say that they were "very forgettable"? 😉

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Penny's reaction to Amy explaining why one of the physicists was mad at Sheldon was hysterical.  "Daaaaaamn!"  

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On 4/5/2019 at 6:47 AM, iMonrey said:

It was an OK episode and I enjoyed the cameos by real life Nobel prize winners. Also liked Howard's reaction to "The Frightened Little Astronaut," LOL. However, it still feels like the show is All About Sheldon, all the time. 

THIS!!!!!!

Tell me, does the Actor have a clause in his contract stating he has to be onscreen at least 60% of the time or something? All this episode did was make me hate Sheldon that much more.

Loved Stuart's artwork. Loved that whole storyline. HATED the other one cause who are we kidding? Those two aren't getting a Nobel. Not yet. Their theory has to be proven. And successfully reproduced. At least what? three to five times? Before they even get a glance.

But this is TV, and only 7 eps left so, 🤷‍♀️

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Tell me, does the Actor have a clause in his contract stating he has to be onscreen at least 60% of the time or something? All this episode did was make me hate Sheldon that much more.

I think the show just perceives him as the funniest/most popular character, hence the spin-off. Which just exacerbates the issue (if indeed one considers it an issue as I do) because the network is that much more invested in that one character. It's been The Sheldon Show for a long time now.

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I’m glad this show is ending. The “Scared Little Astronaut” plot was great, and it was funny without picking on Howard.

The rest of the story was meh. I just don’t feel the drama in this Nobel Prize plot. I’m sure Amy and Sheldon will get the prize. Giving it to the other guys would be insulting to the real scientific community. It wasn’t funny to me either, so I was just bored. 

Can Sheldon’s warning be a kick to the nuts? That might actually stop him from treating everyone like dirt. I know he sometimes hurts people because he doesn’t know any better, but most of the time, he knows or expects he’ll get away with it.

Edited by Meushell
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I’m sure Amy and Sheldon will get the prize. Giving it to the other guys would be insulting to the real scientific community.

Only inasmuch as this show itself is an insult to the real scientific community. Sheldon and Amy getting passed over in favor of Pemberton and Campbell sounds par for the course on this show.

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It might be more more realistic if someone told Shamy et al. that they might be considered for a Nobel in 10 or 20 years if their work is well confirmed.

The Nobel Foundation would be wise to be cautious about not awarding prizes too soon.  For example, the originator of the frontal lobotomy shared the medicine prize in 1949, but there have been calls for the foundation to rescind the prize.

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21 minutes ago, Driad said:

It might be more more realistic if someone told Shamy et al. that they might be considered for a Nobel in 10 or 20 years if their work is well confirmed.

The Nobel Foundation would be wise to be cautious about not awarding prizes too soon.  For example, the originator of the frontal lobotomy shared the medicine prize in 1949, but there have been calls for the foundation to rescind the prize.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the Nobel storyline is wrapped up with a time jump at the end of the season. If that’s the case they could easily give it a more realistic timeline. 

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Only inasmuch as this show itself is an insult to the real scientific community

Why have they managed to get quite famous scientists over the years to come on the show, if they are insulting the community?

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6 hours ago, FinnishViewer said:

Why have they managed to get quite famous scientists over the years to come on the show, if they are insulting the community?

One person's insult is another person's "poking fun at," which some enjoy, I guess because they like to be part of making others laugh. At least, that's how it works for me.

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On 4/9/2019 at 3:55 PM, iMonrey said:

Sheldon and Amy getting passed over in favor of Pemberton and Campbell sounds par for the course on this show.

Like others I don't think this is the route the show is going to take.  Not when it's counting down to its grand finale.  I really don't care one way or another if Sheldon and Amy end up with a Nobel but I would be very surprised if they write it in such a way that they lose it to those two clowns.  BBT has sometimes gone down paths I wasn't happy with (Howard an astronaut??  Oh please!) but I can't think of a time when they threw any character under the bus the way they'd be throwing Sheldon and Amy under the bus if they were to have that happen.

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