Warning: Spoilers ahead for the latest episode of The Big Bang Theory. Feel free to hop on over to one of our other lovely articles until you’ve caught up!
Sheldon and Bernadette have never been very close on The Big Bang Theory, but the last season of the show may have just changed that. After some hurt feelings get spread around that have Amy and Sheldon facing off against Howard and Bernadette, the two, seemingly very different characters, have actually found some very real common ground. Here’s what happened.
The episode starts with everyone gathered at Penny and Leonard’s for dinner, and Penny asks if the guys are dressing up for Halloween at work again, like they usually do. It’s clear that Penny wants an excuse to dress up, especially since she held Halloween parties every year for the first few years after she moved to California, so she and Leonard decide to have their own party in the apartment.
The next day, at Caltech, Sheldon is walking down the hall, dressed as Doc Brown from the Back to the Future franchise, when he runs into Howard, who’s obviously dressed at Sheldon for Halloween. And, not only that, but he’s even emulating his movements, speech patterns and attitudes to complete the effect. As Howard mimics Sheldon back to him during their conversation, though, Sheldon doesn’t see anything unusual about Howard, only noticing that he seems to have changed his hair, which surprises Howard.
When Raj, Leonard, Sheldon and Howard convene for lunch in the cafeteria, Howard shows off his Sheldon shtick for the guys. Knowing their slightly odd friend as well as they do, Leonard and Raj think the combined look and performance that Howard is putting on is amazing, and they laugh every time he cuts Sheldon off to regale him with random facts about something he just said or to correct him. After Sheldon tells Howard he’s being annoying, he asks Raj and Leonard why they keep laughing at everything he does. But, when Leonard points out that Howard has, clearly, decided to go as Sheldon for Halloween, Sheldon points out that the guys aren’t laughing at Howard, they’re actually laughing at him.
As we all know, Sheldon is a paragon of self-confidence, but having his friends so directly laugh at him and his behavior when it’s portrayed by someone else, actually really hurt his feelings, to the point where he took off his own costume to sulk. Later, when Amy gets to his office dressed for Halloween, and asks why he’s doffed his costume (especially since she’s wearing an unbelievably restrictive corset as part of her outfit for the day) he first wants to know if he really corrects people all the time, and then explains what Howard did, saying that the guys hurt his feelings because they laughed at him in a derisive way.
Well, even though Amy knows Sheldon can be a lot to handle even in relatively easy circumstances, she is not a fan of the fact that the guys actually made him feel bad. So, she goes to Bernadette and asks if she saw Howard’s costume, to which Bernadette replies that she made it. When Amy tells her that Sheldon was hurt by it and that she thinks Howard should apologize, Bernadette isn’t sold. She brings up the fact that Sheldon always makes fun of Howard being an engineer and where he went to school, and has even called baby Halley Winston Churchill, all without apologizing. Bernadette believes Sheldon shouldn’t dish it out if he can’t take it, and she and Amy end the conversation at a tension-filled impasse.
Well, since this is The Big Bang Theory, you can bet that the situation doesn’t end with Amy and Bernadette simply not speaking to each other for a while before making up. Oh, no. When we join the gang at Leonard and Penny’s Halloween party, Howard and Bernadette have come as Mary Poppins and Bert in his chimney sweep getup, but the big shock is that when Amy and Sheldon walk in, they are dressed as Howard and Bernadette; complete with a blonde wig/head band/tiny cardigan combo for Amy and a bowl haircut/super tight pants/ridiculous belt buckle situation for Sheldon.
When Bernadette asks just what they think they’re doing, Amy replies in a high pitched voice that she’s “being unnecessarily hurtful, but with a sweet voice,” and Sheldon says, “I don’t know what’s going on, because I went to MIT.” Shots have definitely been fired.
When Howard and Bernadette are in the car after the party, it’s obvious that he’s gotten over whatever initial shock or displeasure he may have had at seeing Amy and Sheldon at the party, but Bernadette is still plenty pissed. Howard mentions that she thought it was funny when he dressed as Sheldon, but Bernadette says this is different because they were actually trying to hurt their feelings, and it worked on her.
At work the next day, Howard goes over to Amy and Sheldon as they’re eating and tells them that Bernadette is still mad, asking if they could apologize for hurting her feelings. When Amy says (follow the logic here closely) that she won’t apologize until Bernadette apologizes for not making Howard apologize to Sheldon, it seems like there will be no immediate end to the situation.
Luckily, hearing that he really hurt Bernadette was enough to make Sheldon go over and talk to her. Bernadette reveals that people have been making fun of her voice since she was a little kid, and that she also got made fun of for being so short, with kids at school calling her Bernadette the Marionette. And, this is where The Big Bang Theory gives us a newly deepened friendship between the two characters, because Sheldon tells her he totally understands that as someone who went to high school at 9-years-old. He notes that they had an embarrassing nickname for him, as well, and the kids called him Egghead. Of course, this was frequently because there was real egg on his head, since they threw them at him.