Amy Farrah Fowler is often times the voice of reason for her husband, Sheldon, and her best friend, Penny. After joining The Big Bang Theory in the third season, Amy has transformed into an important member of the friend group. She keeps Sheldon grounded and encourages Penny to think broader about the world.
As a neurobiologist, Amy is a genius in her field and is well-respected by her colleagues. But when it comes to her best friends and husband, Amy’s advice isn’t always taken seriously. Whether it’s sarcastic or out of character, Amy’s a beloved member of the group but her advice doesn’t always reflect that.
Best: Baby Steps
In “The Solder Excursion Diversion,” Sheldon opens up and shows Amy his “fortress of shame.” He had a storage unit filled with everything he’s ever owned. He was ashamed to admit that he had a hard time letting go of things but thought it was time for Amy to see the real him. Amy was taken back by what she saw but suggested that Sheldon took baby steps to get over his hoarding issue. They both agreed that throwing out a golf ball was the beginning of letting go of his past. Sheldon had a hard time throwing it out but without Amy’s guidance and warmth, who knows if Sheldon would have opened up to her.
Worst: Gossiping For Her Own Delight
When Bernadette helped Penny get a job at her company, Penny had a short time to study and prepare for her first day. Instead of studying, Penny took it easy and didn’t seem to care too much about getting a head start on the competition.
With Penny and Amy at odds, they vented to Amy about each other separately. Amy loved being in the middle of a disagreement between fans and gave advice that would only continue the drama. As their so-called friend, that was pretty low of Amy.
Best: Having Empathy Is A Strength
In “The Empathy Optimization,” Sheldon skypes Amy for help when he gets into an argument with his friends. Sheldon was recently ill and, as per usual, treated his friends like they were at his disposal. As he was venting, Amy pointed out where he went wrong and gave great advice. “Maybe you could try apologizing because you actually feel bad. It’s called empathy. It’s something you could work on.” Sheldon tried being empathetic and as much as he hated it, it worked. He soon felt bad for his actions with Amy’s help.
Worst: Make Your Date Feel Unsafe
In the sixth season, Raj crashed girls night because he needed some love advice. He was about to take Lucy out on their first date but didn’t know where to take her. Amy used science as her guide and advised him to take Lucy somewhere she felt threatened based on evolutionary biology.
If science was any indication, women loved a man who was steady in the face of danger. That description, however, didn’t describe Raj in any capacity. Suggesting a dangerous first day for Lucy and Raj was dangerous in itself.
Best: Women In Science Can Do Anything They Set Their Minds On
When the guys go back to Howard’s former high school to give a speech on STEM to young minds, they realized it’s hard to talk about women in science without actual women in science by their sides. Sheldon called Bernadette and Amy for advice for the young women and Amy’s words hit home. “The world of science needs more women but from a young age, we girls are encouraged to care more about the way we look than about the power of our minds,” she said. Years later when Amy won a Nobel Prize, her advice for young girls who loved science was influential.
Worst: Ostracize Those We’re Jealous Of
When Leonard became more serious with Priya, Penny relied on Amy and Bernadette for support. She was slowly losing Leonard and knew she had to act fast. After Amy had some ice cream and alcohol, her advice was more aggressive than sober Amy’s advice. She told Penny that they could follow in chimpanzees’ footsteps and ostracize “ill-mannered members of the group.” By the three of them shunning Priya, they easily would have come up on top as queen bees. The advice was a little too mean girl-esque for Penny (not to mention out of character for Amy!).
Best: Closure Isn’t Always An Option
Sheldon got lucky with Amy. She had been incredibly patient and kind to him for years — even when he didn’t always deserve it. Amy had a soft spot for Sheldon and knew that he meant well when he was misunderstood. To further Sheldon’s growth, Amy advised Sheldon to come to grips with his issues surrounding closure. She reminded him that closure wasn’t always an option and to become comfortable with being uncomfortable. Completion wasn’t always going to be accomplished. Sheldon hated every second of Amy’s advice but she wasn’t wrong.
Worst: Always Mark Your Territory
When it comes to science and the brain, Amy doesn’t miss a chance to use her knowledge in everyday settings. In one scene, Penny and Amy stopped by Sheldon’s office to meet his new assistant, Alex. Sheldon and Alex weren’t there but Amy used her time in his office to mark her territory. She showed Penny how it was done by rubbing his phone under her armpit and even licked his stapler to spread her scent! When Penny told her spreading her scent wouldn’t work, Amy let her know that she did this all over Penny’s apartment and now they’re best friends.
Best: Being Moody Is A Waste Of Time
When Priya went back to India, Leonard was lonely and feeling glum. In an attempt to lift his spirits, Amy asked him to accompany her to a friend’s wedding. Leonard hesitantly went but had an awful time because he was heartbroken. Amy continued to be her optimistic self and gave Leonard some advice that he needed to hear. She bluntly stated, “Moody self-obsession is only attractive in men who can play guitar and are considerably taller than you are.” The frank advice did the trick. Leonard snapped out of it and hopped on the dance floor with Amy shortly after.
Worst: Advice That’s Insulting
Sometimes the worst advice is when it’s accompanied by a side of condescension. On an episode of Fun with Flags, Sheldon and Amy had Wil Wheaton on as a guest. Sheldon was excited about Wil’s addition to the show but Amy wasn’t sold. She kept calling “cut!” during takes and insulted Wil’s performance. As a professional actor, Wil was insulted and didn’t appreciate her giving him advice. The day ended with Amy storming out of the living room when Wil didn’t take her advice, which only proved that she was out of line. (Even Sheldon was #TeamWheaton.)