It’s no secret that a show that has ran for many seasons is prone to inconsistencies and The Big Bang Theory is no different. Although its 12 seasons are filled with humor, pop-culture references, and big science words, fans found a couple of plot holes from time to time. The introduction of Young Sheldon, the show’s spin-off, also brought up some serious plot holes in the parent show.
While some of these plot holes were difficult to overlook, like Sheldon’s father from Young Sheldon being the same person who was Leonard’s childhood bully in The Big Bang Theory, a few of these plot holes are easily forgivable. Most of them aren’t really plot holes because they are explained in the show, however fleetingly.
The Financial Conundrum
Fans often wondered how Penny could afford to live in the same building as Leonard and Sheldon. Especially since she was a waitress with endless financial woes and the two guys were scientists that had to share an apartment and pay rent together.
However, fans seemed to find a solution that worked. Since Penny’s was a 1-bedroom while the guys shared a larger 2-bedroom one, it stands to reason that their rent was higher than hers. Also, on several occasions, the characters joked about Penny being dependent on the guys for food and WiFi. In one episode, Leonard even added up the money she was owing to him for the month, which included her rent.
The Astronaut Implausibility
One plot point fans had issues with was Howard’s trip to Space. In seasons prior to his Space expedition, Howard’s medical issues were the subject of many jokes, like his heart arrhythmia and peanut allergy. With so many health concerns, did it make sense for Howard to go to Space?
While this plot point was questionable, the show did mention and show Howard being evaluated and going for survival training before the trip. Since he went to Space, it meant he passed his medical evaluations and training well enough to guarantee a seat in the rocket and dismissal of this plot hole.
The Debatable Sales Rep Attainment
Penny went from being a struggling actor and waitress to a wildly successful pharmaceuticals sales representative in 8 seasons. This made some fans wonder how she got that job when she had no prior knowledge of pharmaceuticals or sales experience.
What fans may have missed was that Penny raised these same concerns to Bernadette before her interview, and she assured her the job was like waitressing. In addition, Penny went through training for 5 episodes, which involved her memorizing the names of the different medications, how they worked, and their side effects before she started working.
The “Spot” Irregularity
One inconsistency that people often point out is about Sheldon’s spot on the couch in the apartment he used to share with Leonard. He was seen to love that spot and refused to allow anyone else to sit in it, even after he had moved across the hall with Amy. However, some fans have noticed that other people have sat on Sheldon’s spot a few times and he didn’t have an issue with it.
In “The Meemaw Materialization,” Sheldon’s grandmother sat on his spot when she came to visit. When Amy mentioned this, Sheldon said he didn’t mind because it was her. While fans didn’t understand it at the time, it has sort of resolved itself due to the fact that fans can see how close he is to his MeeMaw on Young Sheldon.
The Birthday Mix-Up
In season 1, Penny called Sheldon a typical Taurus, which implied his birthday was between April 20 and May 20. Later, in “The Intimacy Acceleration,” Sheldon revealed that it was his birthday and Penny expressed her surprise that he was a Pisces, implying his birthday was between February 19 and March 20. Given how Sheldon loved to correct people when they were wrong, fans wondered why he didn’t say anything when Penny got his birthday wrong.
As it turns out, the answer was in that episode. Before Sheldon told Penny it was his birthday, no one else knew the date. He had kept it secret because of the terrible experiences he had at birthday parties as a child. So, Penny had no way of knowing his actual birthday before then and Sheldon let her get away with the wrong assumption so he wouldn’t have to reveal the truth.
The Wedding Recurrence
After a year-long engagement, Leonard and Penny finally got married in Vegas, which Beverly said she was grateful for in “The Celebration Experimentation.” However, later in “The Line Substitution Solution,” Beverly said the complete opposite and told Penny she was offended that she wasn’t invited or told that the wedding was happening.
Initially, this felt like it came from nowhere and Penny argued that she didn’t think Beverly would care about the wedding. But, Beverly explained that she’d have loved an invite at least, even though she believed they were making a mistake at the time. Her change of heart may have also been because she realized how happy her son was with Penny and she wanted the opportunity to be part of that, hence their second wedding.
The Forgotten Kiss
Sheldon was notorious for his aversion to any kind of physical contact. It was a major defining point of the development of his relationship with Amy. In “The Agreement Dissection,” Penny asked him if he had ever kissed a girl and Sheldon said he hadn’t kissed anyone apart from his family members and a nun he had saved on a bus. Strangely, they both neglected to mention the night Leonard’s mother kissed him.
While that may look like a plot hole itself, it was easily resolved in the same episode when Penny, Beverly, and Sheldon all agreed that they would never speak of the kiss again. So Penny and Sheldon skipping over it in a later episode may be because of that.
The Thought Process Application
During “The Wiggly Finger Catalyst,” Sheldon left all his decisions to Dungeons and Dragons dice so he could free up mental room for bigger science issues. Whenever he rolled the dice, he would consult a list of items to see what he should do. Fans took issue with this because Sheldon had an eidetic memory, which meant he could recall the craziest amount of things, including the list he seemed to keep needing to consult.
However, this neglects the fact that the reason why Sheldon was using the dice in the first place was that he didn’t want to exercise his brain on menial things and decisions. So, it actually makes sense for him to consult the list rather than memorize it.
The Greek Food Implementation
During Leonard’s relationship with Raj’s sister, Priya, Leonard and Sheldon had an argument over the roommate agreement. Using her knowledge of contracts and law, Priya poked holes in every argument Sheldon brought up. Later in the episode, Leonard and the crew ordered Greek food, which was a violation of the agreement. When Sheldon mentioned this, Priya countered his argument with one of her own on how they had changed their preferred pizza place without due diligence.
Given how Sheldon was thorough about everything, it seemed out of character for him to miss something that big. However, as later episodes showed, Sheldon often manipulated the agreement to suit his needs. It’s not too far-fetched to conclude that he deliberately skipped over the requirements because he was happy with their new pizzeria.
The Friends Reduction
Penny was very outgoing in the first few seasons, had many friends and hosted several parties. By the fourth season, viewers hardly saw any of those friends. In fact, if she wasn’t with Amy and Bernadette or the boys, the only social gathering she was going out to was a work function.
This isn’t really a plot hole because it’s clear Penny outgrew her friends as her character evolved. She traded parties and drinking games for fairly quiet nights at home with her close friends, watching movies and even discussing science. In season 12, she even told Leonard that her life felt fulfilled as long as she had him.