The Big Bang Theory season 6 episode 14 review: The Cooper/Kripke Inversion
The divisive Barry Kripke returns to The Big Bang Theory in this week's enjoyable episode...
This review contains spoilers.
6.14 The Cooper/Kripke Inversion
I think it's fair to say that there's probably not a more polarizing figure on The Big Bang Theory than Barry Kripke. As far as I can tell, there's not really a middle ground with this character; people either love him and think he's hilarious or they can't stand him at all. I can certainly understand why he might grate on some people's nerves, but I've always been in the former category, particularly since I enjoy Sheldon facing off against various nemeses and, well, Evil Wil Wheaton can't be around all the time, now can he?
It starts with Sheldon being forced to work with Kripke on a proposal, only to find out that Kripke's work is far more advanced than his own. To save face when next fronted with Kripke, he allows Kripke to think that his work has suffered because of his relationship with Amy. Specifically, a wild and adventurous physical relationship that he's definitely not having.
For all that I've nitpicked at this show and probably will continue to do so, the one thing I've always thought The Big Bang Theory did pretty well was the character development on Sheldon, and this episode featured a double-dose of it. First, he willingly accepts a hug from Amy (and then prompts her to hug him a second time once she stops the first), and then when Penny confronts him outright about the fact that Amy wants a physical relationship and Sheldon doesn't seem to, he admits that he's working on it and that it's a possibility that it will happen at some point in the future.
Considering who Sheldon was not only in the beginning of the series, but even further back as we saw in the flashback episode that took place before the series began, it's a pretty huge deal that Sheldon is actually trying to work on his physical intimacy issues and isn't ruling out the possibility of a physical relationship with Amy. I'm not going to lie to you, Penny's reaction to that statement was pretty much my reaction as well.
Meanwhile, Howard and Raj waste quite a bit of money in their quest to own action figure likenesses of themselves, which leads to a confrontation with Bernadette about how Howard can't just spend a lot of money without consulting with her first, especially since she brings in more money than he does. It's a pretty uncomfortable scene to watch, to be honest, but I hope it comes up again and we actually get to see the two of them work through it. Considering Howard's myriad of issues, it seems like something they'll need to actually talk about at some point.
I really enjoyed this episode, although people who dislike Kripke may want to fast-forward through his scenes.