One of the most recent best-rated sitcoms, Big Bang Theory posted over 20 million views at the height of its popularity. As a show about four nerds and a much-less nerdy aspiring actress, the show brought about numerous instances of situational comedy in the context of real-life issues. Many critics judged the show harshly, but fans raved about it. Big Bang Theory relied on a fairly old-fashioned multi-camera setup and live audience. While some considered this to be unoriginal and bland, others said that it set the stage for a truly unique angle on comedy.
It featured real science
This might seem as a misplaced point about a show that includes scientists, but in comparison to other popular shows, such as forensic investigation dramas, it’s actually quite relevant. Although the common viewer might not be interested in the academic details, the effort put in by the production team to include scientific consultants reaches a broader audience and shows attention to detail.
Each of the physics equations seen on the show relates to proven theories or topics under debate that are especially relevant to the actual episode. It was also probably a great help that Mayim Bialik, who plays Amy Farrah Fowler, is a qualified neuroscientist.
And genius female scientists too
Aside from Mayim Bialik, Big Bang Theory featured several female scientists without making a big deal about it. It challenged stereotypes by focusing on their role as scientists and not just their femininity and capacity as a love interest. The later seasons of the show also focused on the individual lives of these characters and allowed them to develop. It seems Big Bang Theory wasn't necessarily pushing an agenda, but simply normalizing the idea of women just being themselves, even in a male-dominated career.
There was real character development
One of the biggest downfalls of many sitcoms is character stagnation. Jokes and situations are funny the first few times around but eventually they become tedious. Some might say that after a few seasons the ideas and Big Bang Theory became a little overused, but if you binge the series from beginning to end, you might notice that there’s a gradual change in character behavior. Simply put, the characters grow in a logical and relatable way from awkward nerds to successful individuals with flourishing love lives. It might seem like a fairytale progression, but in reality, is this not what most people want with their lives?
The cast was close
It seems the Big Bang Theory was more than just another job for its cast. Off set, each member was quite close to the other. Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco actually dated in the early seasons, which was excellent for the chemistry on screen. Luckily, when it didn't work out in real-life, they were still able to make a convincing couple on the show. With all of the cast members remaining friends, there was a tangible friendship that viewers could relate to, which made the show all the more genuine.
And of course, the actors were accomplished
One should never forget that the best-written shows also require some really accomplished actors and actresses. And this was certainly the case in Big Bang Theory. Before Big Bang Theory even started, the three main actors had featured in several films and television series. Jim Parsons also appeared in several stage productions. It's no surprise, then, that the show was nominated for numerous awards, with Jim Parsons actually winning an Emmy.