TV Show Review

TV Review: THE BIG BANG THEORY: Season 8, Episode 21: The Communication Deterioration [CBS]

johnny galecki kunal nayyar the big bang theory the communication deterioration

CBS The Big Bang Theory The Communication Deterioration TV Show Review. The Big Bang Theory, Season 8, Episode 21: The Communication Deterioration gave audiences a treat, as there were fewer competing story lines (two instead of the usual three). The show was also memorable in that it got all the science nerds together in one place, Sheldon (Jim Parsons), Leonard (Johnny Galecki), Raj (Kunal Nayyar) and Howard (Simon Helberg), to compare geek notes on a science project and to engage in almost simultaneous technological oxymoronic mumbo-jumbo-type over-educated banter.

Exclamations like, “The space probe realization emasculazation of the hydro-interactive quasi-institutional liquified resonance antidisestablishmentarianism  retroactively applied should provide adequate compensation of the aforementioned whimsical terpsichore.”

Those are my words because the four nerds were speaking this scientific jargon nonsense so quickly I couldn’t copy it with my pen, and no other internet reviewers I’ve seen accurately reproduced this dialog either. But you get the idea. By the way, if you think this is easy, memorizing brain-numbing script passages like this and reciting them spot-on perfect in front of cameras, crew members and a demanding director, try standing on your head and saying “Peter Piper picked a pickle peppers” a 100 miles an hour over and over perfectly.

These are pro actors and they’re pretty good at this.

Oh, where were we? Yes the review.

The premise is that Raj picks Leonard to help him create an outer space message to be seen by possible aliens from a space probe after determining that Sheldon and Howard should not take part because they are too bossy. However, the duo of Raj and Leonard get nowhere.

“How do you want to start?” Raj asks.

“I don’t know. How do you want to start?” Leonard responds.

The two are hopelessly brain-locked.

Meanwhile, Sheldon is re-writing songs to try and get children interested in science, like, “The itsy bitsy spider is not an insect at all, because it has eight legs and two body parts.”

Sheldon then asks, “Do either of you know Beyonce (pop singer)? I’d love her to get behind this.”

Sheldon receives a visit from Penny (Kaley Cuoco), who asks him whether she should audition for a part in a movie.

Raj and Leonard are still getting nowhere without the creative juice of Sheldon and Howard. When the two start talking about the Movie ET (The Extra-Terrestrial), and the tearjerker scenes in the film where the little adorable alien suffers, they are themselves both reduced to tears remembering. This scene is effective only for viewers who are old enough to remember the now-dated (1982) film or younger fans who have seen it in repeats on TV.

The problem with generating humor off old movies is that millions more viewers go, “Huh? What’s ET?”

Penny goes to her audition based on Sheldon’s advice to see what must be considered the classic nightmare of the acting business, 50 other hopefuls who look exactly like her.

“Why didn’t I give this (acting) up?” Penny asks herself at the sight of the roomful of blondes.

When told one of the competitors is 40 years old and her physical equipment is fake, Penny responds, “Yeah, I started that rumor.”

Raj and Leonard finally give up and sheepishly ask Sheldon and Howard to help them design the take-me-to-your-leader message to be delivered to aliens in space, to Sheldon’s gloating arrogant I-told-you-so response, “Well, well well!”

The best of the show comes at the very end just before the credits when we see the completed space message with a televised Sheldon offering insipid greetings in his boorish pompous manner. An alien crab monster viewing it says he finds Sheldon to be a potential delicious “Soft pink alien” meal to eat.

This episode contained enough imaginative off-center one-upmanship lines and interactions between more of the cast members than usual—in a group setting—-to be an enjoyable outing.

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About the author

John Sammon

John Sammon is a writer whose experience includes newspaper reporting, magazine writing, personality profiles, interviews, celebrity interviews (Clint Eastwood), historical pieces, investigative and crime. He was selected “Most Valuable Reporter” for California’s oldest continually operating newspaper, and covered the weekend crime beat for a daily newspaper in Nevada. If you beat your wife on Friday, he wrote about it and got you in deep trouble on Saturday.

He covered the Nevada brothel beat and did stories on wild horses. The publication of his investigative pieces led to a dishonest political candidate withdrawing from a statewide elective campaign, while another politician unsuccessfully sued him because he didn’t like an article Mr. Sammon produced. His articles led to government reforms, including a school district performing its first-ever financial audit, and a Nevada State Law rolling back home heating oil prices for fixed-income seniors who depended on it.

Mr. Sammon is also a humor writer of the website Sammonsays, a professional script writer, an actor and member of the Screen Actor’s Guild, a film narrator for the California State Parks system, a standup comedian, and the author of three novels and one nonfiction book.

He worked in his spare time with sick and wounded animals at the SPCA.

Mr. Sammon's latest book, "Sammon Says: Exposing American Empire," a compilation of over 100 political opinion columns written over several years and recounting America's involvement in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, was released in October 2013 by Dictus Publishing of Germany.

He is working on a new historical romance novel.

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