The Big Bang Theory, Season 8 Episode 16 Review: “The Intimacy Acceleration”

(Beware, spoilers below!)

Amy tells the gang she’s read a study where the participants can be convinced to fall in love in a matter of hours under the right circumstances. Penny and Sheldon offer to take the experiment with one another and Raj wonders how they aren’t nervous. Howard isn’t having a great night though, because they airline has lost his mother’s ashes.

Raj, Emily, Leonard and Amy decide to go to performance theater where they’re meant to try and escape from a room with a zombie in. Back in Penny’s apartment the duo actually bond some more as Sheldon confesses to Penny that trying to work out social cues is extremely stressful for him. He also reveals that today is his birthday – which he had never told anyone.

In the airport Howard’s luggage is finally found whilst Sheldon and Penny have to stare into each others’ eyes for four minutes in order to complete the experiment. The duo might not have fallen in love but they have ended up closer as a result. As Sheldon walks back into his apartment the rest of the gang jump out in surprise – for his birthday!

We’ve ended up with a pretty great episode this week, which manages to incorporate the sweeter parts of the show via both Sheldon, Penny and Howard whilst also getting us a tad more used to Emily. She might be at odds with Penny but there’s no doubt she’s a fun addition to the team and a good balance against the other girls. Howard’s story with his mom was pretty much wrapped up this episode as he retrieves his mum’s ashes, giving us a short but heartwarming insight into the situation whilst also wrapping it up so it doesn’t plague future episodes unnecessarily. There were some lovely laughs jammed in (most notably near the end) and whilst it might not have been the most consistently solid episode it was still very enjoyable to watch.

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