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The Big Bang Theory Watch: The Love Car Displacement

It’s strange that The Big Bang Theory rarely implements the technique of farce in its catalog of episodes. The show’s already outlandish premise encourages the use of awkward scenarios, but to our surprise, the show has only stagnated over the course of four seasons, primarily adhering to one style of comedy. In tonight’s “The Love Car Displacement,” the series aimed for something new. By fluctuating the dynamic of everyone in the talented cast, we received an episode of wit and hilarity–all the while maintaining a farcical spirit.

“The Love Car Displacement” simply took the form of a road trip. We followed the gang to a Science and Society Convention where they would speak on a panel for a specific committee. Getting to this convention was only just the beginning of their impending nightmare; in one car, we had Leonard, Sheldon, Amy, and Penny, all in their own exclusive world. The other car had Bernadette, Raj, and a sexually charged Howard. Despite the physical distance that divided the entire group, they maintained communication through walkie talkies. They paid a playful homage to Star Wars , articulating the dynamic of their friendship perfectly, and Penny’s antithetical regard for everything, specifically Sheldon’s lame road trip games, further illustrated who they are as people related to one another. In just a few minutes, they captured the essence of travelling long distance with friends. They had moments of miscommunication, irritability, aloofness, and overall enjoyment.

Finally arriving at their destination, they only collided into more complications. Howard stumbled into one of Bernadette’s debonair ex-boyfriends, inevitably diminishing his sexual drive and self-esteem. Amy’s persistently annoying bowel movements irked Penny to sleep elsewhere for the night. Sheldon had his beauty rest interrupted by the possibility that Leonard and Penny would partake in having coitus. And Raj couldn’t take the hint that he is sometimes unwanted and annoying. Seeing the characters hopscotch from room to room not only punctuated the calamity of the entire trip, but also tipped into motion some interesting story arcs.

Firstly, “The Love Car Displacement” pit Howard against the insecurities that come with being in a relationship. His idealistic perception of what it means to have a significant other never included the notion that perhaps Bernadette dated someone before him. This shattered reality now enters Howard into a more honest and realistic vision of having a girlfriend, and it’ll be interesting to see how he handles it. From tonight’s episode, we know he can’t deal with competition well. However, his discomfort only deepens his character, for it means he wants to be a perfect partner for Bernadette.

Contrastingly, Leonard admitted to accepting Penny’s underlying grievances with their past relationship. Although he had expressed growth and maturity, he still isn’t over her. Penny, too, seemed unsettled with the matter, and their future seems rather bright. I have mentioned in the past how impressed I have been with the way the writers have been handling Leonard and Penny. Their relationship may not be popular, but I do appreciate that they are at least attempting to salvage the dynamic that was initially ruined by their courtship in season three.

Everyone’s qualms merged in the final act when the cast had to speak at their panel. With Penny in the audience, everyone had a verbal bout in front of a public audience. Riddled with irony, this particular scene has ended up being one of the best moments of season four so far. It optimized the strength that the entire cast has when everyone is in the scene together. Again, it was a rarity for The Big Bang Theory, but as tonight’s audacious episode proved, they can achieve great material when trying new things.