The Big Bang Theory – The Occupation Recalibration

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by Kevin Rigdon (@pralix1138)


In the newest episode of The Big Bang Theory “The Occupation Recalibration,” we see the aftermath of Penny’s momentary loss of faith in herself. I think we all knew that, in a moment of clarity after last week’s drunken proposal, Penny would come to her senses and realize that Leonard’s “no” was the right call. But she still needs to take action. She needs to do something, so she decides to go all in on acting. She quits her job at the Cheesecake Factory in order to devote of her time to her craft. Leonard responds as he always does. That is to say that he says he supports but he really doesn’t.


While Leonard and Penny are dealing with what kind of relationship they’re actually in, Sheldon is forced yet again to take a vacation from work. He begs Leonard to take him to work. After Leonard refuses and tells Sheldon to stay, Sheldon gets a bit of a reprieve from his forced relaxation in the form of Penny who lets him tag along with her while she returns her uniform to her now former employer. Along the way, Leonard makes an ass of himself by calling Penny while she’s there and assumes that Penny is there to get her job back. He tells her that the whole idea is pretty much insane. But he supports her.


A pissed off Penny asking Sheldon for affirmation yields some really Sheldonly wonderful advice. According to the man with a Master’s and two PhD’s, the best way to pursue a goal is to devote 100 percent of your time to it. Sheldon is also right about the reason that Leonard doesn’t get it. Leonard isn’t a dreamer. He’s too afraid to dream. Many of us are. Dreams are scary. Passions and talents can be unnerving for the timid. Penny has taken a leap of faith, a daring move to chase a dream. Leonard is going to have to learn to keep up.


Meanwhile, back at Stuart’s comic shop, Bernadette is in need of assistance because she destroyed one of Howard’s comics via a cunning use of a curling iron. There’s Stuart, alone in his shop, waiting for the apocalypse. At least with a good old fashioned apocalypse, there’s something going on. It’s not going to be boring. I mean, you’re bound to run into people even if they’re going after your brains, or having their flesh stripped off by hordes of locusts. Ah, apocalypses. Anyway, although Stuart doesn’t have a copy of the rare book, he finds one at the store of his arch-nemesis.


Upon entering the lair of the villainous comic shop owner, Bernadette discovers what an ass the guy is by how badly he treats Stuart, and so she refuses to buy the comic, at least while Stuart’s there. She comes back later, sans Stuart, to pick it up. Another fine example of well-adjusted friendship and support. And she’s a good girl, remember?


With the main humor being provided by the main storyline (i.e. Leonard, Penny, and, for some reason, Sheldon, who seems to be stubbornly set on them all living together forever), the secondary and tertiary plot lines are a bit weak. Amy gets hit on by an awkward geologist, and has Howard and Raj let the guy down gently because she’s not interested. Howard and Raj end up accompanying the guy to a rock show. And a “cool” dude making fun of Stuart is just too easy. Yes, we know he’s depressed and has all the medicines, but having the cool, successful guy with great hair making fun of him seems a bit…eh.


All in all, however, even with the weaker moments of the secondary and tertiary lines, it was funnier than last week’s episode. Looking forward to more.


Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars


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