Fans of The Big Bang Theory know the theme song by heart. Well, at least most will know the first line, after which the pace speeds up a bit and it is a bit difficult to track. For a show about scientists, the theme had to capture the essence of scientific information or discovery, or one would think. The catchy tune is the work of the Canadian band The Barenaked Ladies, and as People pointed out in its list of “Big Bang Theory Trivia” as season eight was set to kick off, one line has a “purposeful error/joke.”
The error? “[a]utotrophs began to drool,” which, strictly speaking, is impossible. As many might remember from high school Biology and as the Barenaked Ladies scribes likely know, autotrophs are self-feeders who do not eat. Since they do not eat, they do not have mouths or, consequently, a need to drool. As People points out, autotrophs are generally plants or algae that create their own energy.
As for the song’s creation, Yahoo TV reported last year that Barenaked Ladies singer Ed Robertson improvised a song onstage in Los Angeles after reading a book about The Big Bang. The creators of the television show, Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady, happened to be in the audience. The show was already under development and they were already considering tasking the Barenaked Ladies with the theme song.
The benefit was obvious for The Big Bang Theory, which eventually got a great theme song. But Robertson and fellow Barenaked Lady Tyler Stewart told CBS last year that the show has been welcoming to them as artists.
“They’ve been so great with us, too — Chuck and Bill. First of all, Chuck Lorre is a great musician, too, and Bill Prady has been probably involved in all the sitcoms I ever liked.”
It seems the theme is infectious, even for the cast and members of the scientific community. Last year Glamour got Jim Parsons to do a version of the theme on camera. Famed physicist Stephen Hawking even did his bit to honor the tune during a surprise Comic-Con appearance in 2013.
Some other pieces of trivia revealed by People included that the actors learned how to play the instruments their characters do on the series. Sheldon’s comfort song “Soft Kitty” was based on a song from Prady’s daughter’s preschool. And Penny has been using the same prop purse since early in the first season.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, The Big Bang Theory is offering up two shows on Monday nights for the first part of October.
[Image: Big Bang Theory / CBS]