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The Viewing Party Combustion

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'The Viewing Party Combustion' is the twenty-first episode of the ninth season of the American sitcom The Big Bang Theory. The episode aired on Thursday, April 21, 2016.

Summary

Everyone must choose sides when a small argument between Leonard and Sheldon erupts into a heated fight during a group get-together.

Extended Plot

At the comic book store Sheldon gets the guys in a discussion about Batman and Manbat. If Manbat wore Batman's costume, what would he be called? Raj gets a call from Claire and has to run. Leonard thought he was back together with Emily, but he is really dating both women. Leonard is astonished that the guy who couldn't talk to women for years, now is dating two of them. now and Leonard struggles to believe it.
Gt7

We don't need a quarterly meeting!

Sheldon comes in and wonders why Leonard got a party sub when the gang is getting together to watch "Game of Thrones" and they are not having a party. He also reminds Leonard there is a quarterly The Roommate Agreement meeting is the next day. Leonard does not want to have one. Sheldon exclaims that that sounds like something that should be brought up at the next meeting, that happens to be tomorrow. Also, it's Penny's first chance to lead the Pledge of Allegiance. Penny arrives and learns about Leonard's problem. She complains that she learned the Pledge just for the meeting. And if they decide to not have a meeting, Sheldon still wants them to have a vote on it. Leonard wants Penny to talk to him; however, she is still planning on attending. The meeting is important to Sheldon and they both did sign the Roommate Agreement. Sheldon appreciates Penny's attitude which may allow her to make the Color Guard, which causes Penny to smile.

Howard and Raj are playing a video game and Howard complains that it is exhausting. Raj knows how he feels since he is now dating two women. Raj thinks Howard is lucky being at home every night with the woman he loves. Raj never knows which apartment he is waking up in since he is dating Claire and Emily. Bernadette comes in and Raj asks how she feels. She's a little tired. Raj knows how she feels since he is dating two women. Bernadette tells Howard to go watch the she is going to snuggle up in bed with a good book. Raj wishes he knew what it was like being in bed alone since he is.....

Sheldon wants to know if Penny is up on the "Game of Thrones" storyline. Dragons, snow zombies and all the hot guys are dead. Leonard is still pouting about their argument and that Penny took Sheldon's side. He feels he's the only adult in the room. Sheldon still insists that if they are going to talk about it, it should be brought up at the meeting. Meeting. Meeting. Meeting. Amy arrives with her famous spinach dip.

Howard is driving Raj over and it talking about whether their child is a boy or a girl. If it's a boy he'll have to teach him how to play catch after he learns himself. And if it's a girl, he'll have to worry about guys. Raj knows what he means since he is dating two women. He left one woman's leftovers in the other's refrigerator. He's a bad boy. Howard is angry that even though Raj claims to be complaining, he is really constantly bragging.

Amy wonders what is wrong with Leonard. They tell her about his complaining about the Roommate Agreement meeting and she understands. Amy never enjoyed their Relationship Agreement meetings. Sheldon thinks that she is kidding. Amy then sarcastically says that she never thought that re-filing a matter in a standing committee could be so fascinating. Sheldon then asks Penny what she thinks of Amy's comment.
Gt28

Sheldon we'll watch in my apartment!

Raj is following Howard up the stairs and wants to know if something is wrong. Raj claims that Howard is jealous because of the number he has. Penny marches out of Apartment 4A carrying part of the sandwich telling Sheldon that they'll watch the show in her apartment. Leonard is calling to Sheldon that it'll be nice to watch the show without Sheldon complaining that it doesn't follow the book. Howard learns about how their arguing and Raj joins the group heading to 4B since he is not talking to Howard.

Leonard, Amy and Howard are still in 4A. Both Leonard and Howard are sick of the nonsense they get from Sheldon and Raj. Stuart arrives in costume because Howard told him it was a costume party, He goes over to Penny's because he is mad at Howard. Penny's takes his fur cloak that kept getting caught in his bicycle chain. Sheldon explains who is mad at whom. Raj explains to Stuart about him constantly talking about his dating life and that he called him jealous. Stuart is jealous because the closest he came to dating two women was the time he dated one woman.

Leonard doesn't know how she puts up with Sheldon. They don't need a meeting to decide which breakfast cereal to eat. He thanks Amy for sticking up for him. Amy could care less. She just wanted to take his side because she is annoyed because Penny and Sheldon are so close. Leonard challenges her. She retorts: Who always comforts him? Who get him to take his medicine? Who has Sheldon add things to the Roommate Agreement so she can have her way and not fight with her husband? Son of a bitch! Howard laughs at Leonard's problem even though Leonard explains that Bernadette does the same thing between him and Raj.
Gt40

How do you put up with him?

In 4B Raj tells them that it's almost game time. "Game of Thrones". Get it? Leonard comes over and tells Penny that she doesn't have to use the Roommate Agreement to get her way. How did he know that? Amy told Leonard and now Penny is mad at Amy. Amy retorts that she always defends Sheldon. Leonard cites the weird brother-sister-Elliot-E.T. relationship they have. Penny thinks that his relationship with Sheldon is just as weird, though thinks that he is like the little girl in "Poltergeist"

and Sheldon is the weird thing on the television. Howard comes in wondering about nuts in the food and is obviously having an allergic reaction to them.
Gt52

Howard has a reaction to the sandwich.

At the emergency room, Leonard apologized and did not know there were pistachio nuts in the party sub. Bernadette comes in and reassure everyone that Howard is going to be fine. Stuart feels that that experience puts everything in prospective. He mentions why he is in costume and Bernadette doesn't think that Howard was nice. Because Howard had a brush with death, Stuart is still cool about it. Raj tries to equate their night with a real "Game of Thrones", though none really sees his analogies. Howard comes out embarrassed and apologizes to everyone including Penny who had to carry him down the stairs like a baby. Amy exclaims that the whole experience was scary. Sheldon thinks that the important thing to remember is that the party sandwich ruined their night just how he predicted.

Stuart is getting on his bike at the guys are making fun of him and his girl's bike from the apartment window. He is also wearing a helmet unlike the horse riders in the show. Sheldon applauds his safety stance. Stuart bans their bathroom privileges at the comic book store and rides off pissed until his cloak gets caught in the chain and he flips over the handlebars.

Finally, Sheldon knocks on the Hofstadters' bedroom door because he still hasn't asked his Bat/man-Bat question. Penny responses asking him a question showing a knowledge of comics that stuns Sheldon and sends him away.

Credits

Notes

  • Title Reference: Refers to the party organized by the group to watch Game of Thrones and how it results in in heated arguments.
  • Taping date: March 22, 2016
  • This episode was watched by 14.16 million people with a rating of 3.2 (adults 18-49).
  • Total viewers including DVR users 19.07 million.
  • The Big Bang Theory was ranked #2 for the week ending April 24, 2016.
  • This episode aired in Canada on April 14, 2016.
  • In Australia, it aired on Wednesday, April 20, 2016.
  • Chuck Lorre's vanity card [1]
  • Episode transcript [2]

Critics

  • Jesse Schedeen of IGN - "The Viewing Party Combustion" had a good thing going for a while, blending humor with a little deep insight into the core character relationships that drive the series. Sadly, this show has a habit of finding quick and lazy resolutions to its conflicts, and this episode was no exception. The characters weren't forced to work through their differences and patch things up. Instead, Howard's medical emergency brought a swift end to the civil war. Nothing actually felt resolved, and it's not clear if we'll see this conflict renew in future episodes or if one evening of complaining was all the catharsis these characters needed. There was another flaw with this episode that bears mention. Raj has become insufferable lately. His ongoing relationship drama with Emily and Claire has managed to bring out the worst in Raj. His constant bragging about dating two women was obnoxious and repetitive, to say the least. To be fair, it was certainly easy to understand why Howard would need a break from his best friend, and it did lead to an amusing moment where he mocked Raj with a dead-on impression. [3]
  • IMDb user reviews [4]

Trivia

  • This is the second time Howard has had an allergic reaction to nuts, the first was in "The Peanut Reaction" (S1E16). 
  • Penny knew enough about comic books to stump Sheldon and send him away. 
  • Raj's bragging about dating two women to annoy Howard could be his revenge on Howard for seeing Suicide Squad without him, then tweeting Raj to mock him about it, and promise to spoil the film for him.
  • Howard had his annoying and obnoxious moments in The Holographic Excitation. Leonard and Sheldon even hypothesise that Howard would connect his trip into outer space with any subject and tested their theory bringing up lemons to which Howard compared to the rocket used on his space trip.
  • Third episode (after The Celebration Experimentation) where all of the main characters (excluding Emily) share a scene together. 
  • This episode aired three days before the Season 6 Premiere of Game of Thrones. This indicated that the episode of Game of Thrones that the gang was gathering to see was the Season 6 Premiere of Game of Thrones "The Red Woman". 
  • When the gang separates to two apartments, Leonard complains that Sheldon always spoils the episodes by mentioning details from the books, like how Sheldon reveals that Bran Stark is in a forest with tree people. However, this is no longer the case, as the show has now caught up to the books, meaning that the books will no longer spoil the show. Sheldon even points this out to Stuart, claiming that he's upset at George R.R. Martin because there's no new books for Sheldon to spoil to Leonard. This is a reference to many fans frustration at Martin for the long delay in releasing the 6th book in the series, The Winds of Winter

Quotes

Sheldon: I have a question about Batman. Batman is a man who dresses up like a bat. Man-bat is a part man, part bat hybrid. If Man-Bat dressed up as a man to fight crime, would he be Man-Batman?

Sheldon: What, why did you get a party sub?
Leonard: People are coming over; it looked fun.
Sheldon: Well, we’re only watching Game of Thrones. A party sub implies it’s a party.
Leonard: Your attendance implies it’s not.
Sheldon: I like a party as much as the next man, as long as the next man doesn’t like a party.

Raj: But, dude, you’re so lucky. Getting to stay home at night with the woman you love.
Howard: I guess I am lucky.
Raj: You are, because dating two women, I mean, I can’t even remember the last time I slept in my own apartment. I wake up and I’m like: “Am I at Claire’s or am I at Emily’s?” Is there a third girl I’ve forgotten about? Like… Where am I?

Amy: Well, I get why he’s annoyed.
Sheldon: Well, then you don’t understand what’s happening. See. Leonard refused to participate in a mandatory quarterly roommate agreement meeting. This is what a generation raise on Bart Simpson looks like.
Leonard: You love the Simpsons.
Sheldon: I love Lisa Simpson.
Amy: Well, I know how he feels. I never enjoyed our Relationship Agreement meetings.
Sheldon: Wait. You were pretending?
Amy: Sorry.
Sheldon: No! I don’t believe you. I could tell.
Amy: (Sexily) Oh, Sheldon. I never thought re-filing a matter in a standing subcommittee could be so fascinating.

Raj: Did Amy make her spinach dip?
Sheldon: She did.
Howard: And I'm gonna enjoy it all!

Leonard: I don’t know how you put up with it. He’s impossible. I mean holding a meeting to decide what breakfast cereal we should buy.
Howard: Yeah. Cap’n Crunch with Crunch Berries., move on.
Leonard: Anyway, Amy, thank you for sticking up for me.
Amy: Oh, I honestly couldn’t care less.
Leonard: Sorry.
Amy: Well, I just took your side ‘cause sometimes I get annoyed at how close Sheldon and Penny are.
Leonard: They argue all the time. They aren't that close.

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