The Big Bang Theory

Why Leonard & Penny’s First Big Bang Theory Wedding Episode Is So Unpopular

While The Big Bang Theory had its fair share of disliked episodes, one particularly infamous episode had a confluence of factors working against it. No matter how faithful a given show’s fan base is, every series has one or two episodes that viewers just don’t like. Whether it is The Simpsons episode where the people of Springfield find out Seymour Skinner is an impostor or the much-hated Friends clip show, some episodes simply can’t please their fan base. However, The Big Bang Theory’s most hated episode did more than most to earn the ire of its viewers.

The Big Bang Theory season 9, episode 1, “The Matrimonial Momentum,” arrived with a lot of expectation attached to its meager twenty-minute runtime. As the season premiere, it was one of The Big Bang Theory’s most-watched episodes ever. The outing also promised that, after eight years of never-ending breakups and makeups, Leonard and Penny would finally tie the knot by the episode’s ending. Meanwhile, the series promised resolution after The Big Bang Theory season 8 finale ended with a fight that implied Sheldon and Amy’s relationship might have come to an end. Unfortunately, this storyline was where the show’s problems began.

Why The Big Bang Theory Season 9 Episode 1’s Plot Didn’t Work

Credit where it is due, “The Matrimonial Momentum” did wrap up both of these plots by marrying Leonard and Penny and breaking up Sheldon and Amy. The only problem was that the show handled both of these stories terribly. Leonard and Penny got married far away from home in haste without any of their friends or loved ones present, only to almost break up when Penny learned that Leonard kissed someone else two years earlier. The stakes in this plot were almost non-existent since, at this point in the series, Leonard and Penny fighting for the umpteenth time wasn’t a surprise and everyone knew they would stay together.

Meanwhile, although The Big Bang Theory’s Sheldon was the show’s breakout character, his bitter breakup with Amy was just unpleasant. Amy’s naivete sometimes clashed with Sheldon’s coldness in a way that wasn’t particularly funny and this episode’s plot was a prime example of this. Sheldon goading Amy into revealing their breakup in the middle of Leonard and Penny’s live-streamed wedding seemed like it was intended to be a comedic highlight of the outing, but the move instead felt petty and callous. Luckily, Young Sheldon changed The Big Bang Theory’s hero enough to make his antics more palatable, since episodes like this proved that watching Sheldon could be a slog.

The Big Bang Theory Season 9 Episode 1 Lacked Comedy

Sheldon and Amy sitting on a couch in The Big Bang Theory

As implied by the unpleasant aftertaste that the wedding scene left, very little of “The Matrimonial Momentum” was actually funny. Per Den of Geek, the episode was “Devoid of any laughs at all,” while IGN called the outing “Uncharacteristically depressing.” It’s easy to see why since Penny and Leonard’s long-awaited wedding could reasonably have been expected to be a series highlight. After the show spent so long building up to this moment, it was sad to see the occasion prove unfunny, unromantic, and uninteresting. Luckily, their next wedding made up for this.

The Big Bang Theory Season 9 Episode 1 Set Up A Hated Arc

Sheldon and Amy talking in The Big Bang Theory.

For all of Young Sheldon’s The Big Bang Theory inconsistencies, the spinoff maintained Sheldon’s trademark obstinacy. It was this character element that began to truly grate on viewers in The Big Bang Theory season 9 as “The Matrimonial Momentum” set up what remains one of the show’s most hated character arcs. Much to the surprise of viewers, Sheldon and Amy did remain broken up for far longer than anticipated. The season premiere set Amy and Sheldon’s breakup in stone, leading to a half-season of tired “will they, won’t they” subplots as Sheldon grew some humility at a punishing pace. By their reunion, it was hard to even root for him.

The problem with this plot was not that Sheldon and Amy broke up in the first place. Like Leonard and Penny, they were one of the show’s central couples, so the pair were bound to go through a few tough times. However, it was the fact that their conflict was rooted in Sheldon’s unchanging character that proved frustrating. The Big Bang Theory’s Sheldon was lovable precisely because of how stubborn he was, so his refusal to commit to Amy fit with his established character. Even so, The Big Bang Theory season 9 spent episode after episode slowly wearing down this attribute until eventually Sheldon reunited with Amy.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button