This review contains spoilers.
12.2 The Wedding Gift Wormhole
The gulf between the season’s first outing and this couldn’t be bigger. While The Conjugal Configuration opted for reestablishing the status quo without much wit or humour to speak of, The Wedding Gift Wormhole packs a huge amount of plot and hijinks into twenty-one minutes while also managing to put a smile on your face and a laugh in your belly.
The main thrust of the episode involves, as it should, the interplay between Sheldon, Amy, Penny and Leonard. When the latter couple gifts the former with a mysterious glass cylinder, it slowly becomes apparent that its mystery was part of the gift and Leonard and Penny are simply treating their friends to same maddening curiosity that they experienced when handed it by Howard and Bernadette.
The wand, which Amy theorises might be a ‘marital aid’ (nothing like a butt plug joke to liven up an episode), actually originates from Raj, who gave it to Howard as a genuine wedding gift. The game of hot potato led Penny and Leonard to torture their friends, but it’s them who come out looking silly when Amy and Sheldon have a wonderful time searching for clues.
There are several great things about this storyline, but the main one is the nostalgia tour that it sneaks in. No one owns up to the game at the end, and Sheldon and Amy are happier than ever thinking that they’ve won some grand scavenger hunt. The cherry on top – they’ve locked Leonard and Penny out of their Wi-Fi and written down their new password in a code they now have to solve.
But the thing everyone’s talking about is Raj. Finally – finally! – the show appears to be taking Raj’s love life seriously, and not treating it as an excuse to invite various guest stars into the show for its final season. For too long the poor lad has drawn the narrative short straw, and its rarely led to anything good, funny or impactful. Now, Raj is getting married, and it promises to be a huge boost for the season.
He comes to the realisation that he’s had enough of being single in his late-thirties, and decides that an arranged marriage might not be the worst thing after all. It’s done sensitively and without judgement, which is nice, and I’m as excited to meet Anu as everyone else. Special points to Kaley Cuoco for her delivery of a simple ‘no’ when Raj makes the announcement.
Even Stuart gets his turn to shine in this episode, finally asking Denise on a date but completely overcompensating beforehand by getting his hair dyed, a spray tan and a third thing that’s hidden by his pants (I dread to think). She doesn’t mind, and that’s the nicest anyone’s ever been to Stuart.
The Big Bang Theory always benefits when the characters are being kind to one another, and maybe, just maybe, everyone on the show can end up happy, in love and fulfilled. Best of all, The Wedding Gift Wormhole suggests that we might have a whale of a time getting there, and this much-maligned series can redeem itself in its eleventh hour.
Read Caroline’s review of the previous episode, The Conjugal Configuration, here.