TV Show Review

TV Review: THE BIG BANG THEORY: Season 8, Episode 14: The Troll Manifestation [CBS]

Melissa Rauch Amy Mayim Bialik Kaley Cuoco The Big Bang Theory The Troll Manifestation

CBS The Big Bang Theory The Troll Manifestation TV Show Review. The Big Bang Theory, Season 8, Episode 14: The Troll Manifestation was one of the series’ better efforts as Sheldon (Jim Parsons) and Leonard (Johnny Galecki) endure heat from an online heckler who takes issue with a scientific paper they co-published in which they tout the beneficial properties of something called viscosity density super fluid helium.

The two combine to take credit for the hypothesis, although Leonard thought it up and Sheldon merely attested to its brilliance, pinning a sticker on Leonard in congratulations.

“A sticker?” Leonard complains.

“It’s a kitty saying Me-Wow!” Sheldon explains.

Leonard frowns.

“Okay, I’ll take it back,” Sheldon says.

“I earned this,” Leonard defends, changing his mind. “Back off!”

The pair, in what must rank as one of the great symbolic moments of the cyber age, share a computer mouse together with their hands to simultaneously place their findings on the web in much the same way The Three Musketeers once crossed swords.

Meanwhile the girls, Bernadette (Melissa Rauch), Amy (Mayim Bialik) and Penny (Kaley Cuoco) try to explain away embarrassing moments in their past lives. Penny has been an actress in a terrible ape movie while Bernadette endures a film clip in which she competed in a 1999 beauty contest to become Miss California Quiznos (Sub Sandwiches).

Watching the filmed clip, Amy and Penny laugh and deride Bernadette as a “talking cupcake.”

Bernadette is so blondish cute you just want to hug her, but when she talks her squeaky voice is like scratching nails on a blackboard and makes me want to scream at the TV screen “Stop, stop please you’re killing me!” Rauch is a good actress though, portraying a debutante airhead type who has never apparently had a serious idea in her head.

If you asked her what she thought about troubles in Latin America she might respond—“What’s that?”

Amy also takes amused scorn from her female pals when it’s learned she writes Little House on the Prairie fan fiction, but eventually spices it up with plenty of suggestive sexual fantasy by working caricatures of herself and her boyfriend Sheldon into the literature.

Responding to Bernadette and Penny’s mocking laughter Amy says, “Once I had no friends. I’m starting to miss that.”

By now Sheldon and Leonard’s treatise has generated praise from online readers, but one responder describes them as a couple of publicity seeking dullards and to add salt into the wound describes the California Institute of Technology (Cal Tech in Pasadena) as a repository for mere engineers, not scientists.

Infuriated, Sheldon sends the culprit over the internet a photo of a bored disgusted cat with the caption over its ears, “Oh really?”

A threat to video chat face to face sends Sheldon and Leonard scurrying for cover until Sheldon works up his nerve and determines to face down his accuser and find out what “This loser has ever accomplished?”

He turns out to be world renowned English physicist Stephen Hawking. Hawking, who has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, admits he liked the paper’s premise and found it intriguing. Asked why he attacked the paper over the internet, he says, “If you sat in a chair for 40 years, you would too.”

Penny and Bernadette have become so engrossed in Amy’s frontier time travel story with its steamy suggestive romance that when Leonard barges in to tell them about Hawking they collectively yell “Get out!”

The show’s end shows a scene from Amy’s Western opus in which she sports frontier Old West dress and gives Sheldon a hot bath in a tub filled with well-drawn water as he confides to her the benefits of his Spiderman underwear.

The episode is kooky enough and off-the-wall to be a memorable season entry.

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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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