Serious Issues Tackled In Sitcom 'The Big Bang Theory'

Hit Sitcom ‘The Big Bang Theory’ Tackles Serious Issues Alongside The Comedy

The Big Bang Theory has of late been showing its more serious side. The hit comedy show honored the late Leonard Nimoy at the end of February, and continues to remember its own late actress, Carol Ann Susi.

In “The Leftover Thermalization” (Season 8 Episode 18), The Big Bang Theory yet again remembered the actress who played the mother of Howard Wolowitz (Simon Helberg). Carol Ann Susi died in November last year. The episode, due to be aired this Thursday March 12, has the group preparing and sharing the final meal of Debbie Wolowitz, after a power outage defrosts the freezer. The Big Bang Theory has been praised for its unusual, dispersed way of commemorating the actress’ passing, as Christian Today reports.

In last week’s Episode 17, “The Colonization Application”, The Big Bang Theory‘s co-creator, Chuck Lorre, ended the half-hour run with a black and white photograph of Star Trek actor Leonard Nimoy, who passed away on February 27 at the age of 83 years old. As the Inquisitr reported, accompanying the image were the words, “The impact you had on our show and on our lives is everlasting.” The reason for doing so, as fans of The Big Bang Theory of course know, was that Nimoy was Sheldon’s hero, at one point in Season 5 becoming part of his voiced imagination. Being pre-filmed, no scenes could be added to evidence Jim Parsons’ character’s grief at the loss of his idol and the written dedication had to suffice.

As Den Of Geek has reported, that the No. 1 U.S. sitcom is electing to tackle “the absurdity of grief” is fitting, given The Big Bang Theory‘s available platform as such for exploring the extremes of emotion. The words of American humorist Erma Bombeck put it plainly.

“There is a thin line that separates laughter and pain, comedy and tragedy, humor and hurt.”

Setting aside the more serious human issues of recent episodes, The Big Bang Theory‘s leading trio of stars are otherwise smiling. As the Hollywood Reporter wrote recently, when the show went for renewal of its contract on CBS, Jim Parsons (Sheldon), Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting (Penny), and Johnny Galecki (Leonard) also requested pay rises. From an original fee of $325,000 per episode, the leading cast members have now been granted around $1 million (a salary on a par with what the stars of Friends were once paid). Given that The Big Bang Theory averages 19.8 million viewers per week, perhaps they do deserve the raise. The show has been renewed for 10 seasons and – not that it was necessary, given the stats – CBS Entertainment Chairman Nina Tassler gave her reasoning.

“Comedy is a big part of our schedule, and The Big Bang Theory is the biggest comedy force on television.”

[Image courtesy of Mark Davis/Getty Images]

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