Thursday, October 14, 2010


Last Thursday I had the good fortune to head down to the CTV building in downtown Toronto and see Sheldon, Howard, and Raj live on stage... or their real-life personas, Jim Parsons, Simon Helberg, and Kunal Nayyar, the stars of The Big Bang Theory. (I'm sure everyone else has blogged on this already, and I actually started this blog last Thursday, and it's taken me THIS LONG to get around to finishing it!!) BBT is one of my favourite shows on television (the other day I was bemoaning the state of TV to someone, and said the only two network shows I adore are Fringe and The Big Bang Theory... although I'd probably add Modern Family to that). The three guys were at the CTV building talking to Canadian fans, and marveling at the massive audience that had turned up to the event, screaming and begging them to say (or sing) certain things. People had come from all over Ontario, some had lined up as early as 6 a.m. to get a prime spot.

The show began with Teddy and Ajay of Space, the cohosts of Innerspace (I appeared on the show with them to discuss the finale of Lost) who warmed up the audience for a couple of hours before. The guys had done an interview with Space that morning on a closed set, and Teddy and Ajay, in adorably matching sweaters, chatted up the audience and kept everyone pumped for the main event.

Then the Barenaked Ladies came out to sing the show's theme song, and it was so cool to see it done live. When they ended on, "And it all started with the big bang -- BANG!" the whole audience shouted the last word. (BNL stood on the stage like the in-house studio band for the entire show, with the drummer occasionally playing rimshots when the guys would make a joke, or Ed Robertson interjecting with his own joke every once in a while.)They continued playing background music while eTalk host Ben Mulroney introduced the three stars of the show, and the audience went nuts. (And then, as you can see, Jim Parsons looked right at me.... OK, probably not, but that's my story and I'm sticking to it!)

So here were my favourite moments of the show:
• When host Ben Mulroney came out ahead of the actors, he was asked by his co-host if he could prove his geek cred (this guy was born into privilege, with a wealthy father who eventually became the Prime Minister of Canada...) and he somehow managed to do it. He said he believed there was a geek in all of us, which is why the Big Bang Theory is so popular, and he said that his wife had bought him a flux capacitor for his birthday once. When the co-host looked baffled and asked if that had something to do with time travel, he groaned, "UGH, it's only what made time travel POSSIBLE!! You know? Back to the Fu... you know what, you don't know ANYthing." HA!!
• The boys came out and Ben asked Simon (Howard) about the fact that he's a musician, and asked him if he'd ever consider giving up acting for music. To which Jim Parsons (Sheldon) answered, "He SHOULD!" (I wasn't sure if that was a diss on his acting or praise for his music, but it was funny either way!)
• When Ben asked a question that had been tweeted to the show -- How does Sheldon speak without taking a breath? -- Parsons couldn't answer right away, so Kunal (Raj) answered, "He has amazing abs."
• When asked where he keeps his Emmy in his home, Parsons responded, "When I'm not carrying it around at work making sure every single person has seen it, I keep it at home on a used piano."
• Simon had tweeted that he felt like he needed a Canadian interpreter to understand what the hell we were talking about, and when Ben asked if that was true, he said, "I actually haven't understood a single word you've said to me yet." HAHAHA!! Ah, getouttahere, ya hoser, eh?
• On the first commercial break, the pregnant woman behind me stood up and yelled, "Sheldon, will you sign my belly??!!"
• Ed Robertson, lead singer of the Barenaked Ladies, asked the audience on the same break to put their hands up if they thought the second half of the interview should be pants-off.
• And then someone behind me did a pitch-perfect, "HOOOWWWWAAAAAAD!" just like Howard's mom. I could NOT stop laughing. It was GENIUS. I'm not sure if he heard it, though.
• When Ben referred to Howard's clothes as little boys' clothes, Simon got huffy and said, "I will have you know I wear an extra-large... in boys' clothes." Then he explained that the purpose of Howard's clothing was to draw the eye downwards. HAHAHA!!! (He added that there are 3 women on set whose sole purpose was to dress Howard and get him into and out of those clothes. Much screaming from the females in the crowd.)
• Ben revealed that he owned a Toaster toaster (the Cylon toaster they have on the show) because he'd seen it on the show and immediately jumped on eBay to get one. Jim Parsons admitted he didn't know what the heck a Cylon was before they filmed that episode. (I'll admit my heart sank in disappointment to hear that.)
• "Bazinga" was a word that Jim Parsons came up with, along with one of the writers, when they were saying they had to come up with a word that Sheldon would use a lot.
• And then the best part of the show happened for me. On the next commercial break, a few people behind me began yelling, "SHELDON!! SING SOFT KITTY!" He couldn't hear them because Ben was talking to him. Kunal, on the other hand, was listening, and he nudged Jim when they yelled it a third time and told him what they were saying. Jim looked out and smiled at the audience. So they yelled it again. Nothing. So then there was some commotion and "pass it along" happening behind me until someone shouted, "One! Two! Three!" and the whole row sang, "Soft kitty, warm kitty" and then the entire audience went "Little ball of fur..." to which Jim Parsons turned, lifted the mike, and sang the rest of it with us, "Happy kitty, sleepy kitty, purr purr purr..." It was AWESOME.
• When everyone was talking about what an amazing ping-pong player Kunal is (Jim said he made dives for the ball that were just silly, that no one else would make... apparently Kaley is also an excellent player), Kunal said, "I'm Indian so I play all racquet sports." Jim replied, "Really? I didn't realize that was a trait of your people." It was like listening to Raj and Sheldon on the couch.
• The staircase, as most of us probably already assumed (I know I did because I noticed one brick was exactly the same every time) is actually one stair case just dressed up differently for each floor as they walk past it. Behind the elevator there's almost no room and it becomes this cramped space. So they said they nonchalantly walk around behind it and all run into each other and have their faces pressed against the wall. They said the wall is full of gum that people have been sticking there for 3 years, so not only are they crammed in with the other actors, but their cheeks are usually pressed into a piece of old chewed gum.

After the next commercial break, it seemed to be over, but they took a few group shots with the hosts (and as charming and lovely as the female host is, I was annoyed she stood front and centre in the pic... people weren't lined up at 6am to get a great shot of her... yeah, let's let Jim Parsons stand in the BACK):

Then they called them together so they could present them with a special gift from the show... Team Canada jerseys! Jim Parsons was particularly excited, and they're all big hockey fans (they were planning on heading to a Leafs game that night). At one point earlier in the show Kunal said, "Go Leafs Go?" and got big screams and Jim said, "Oh my GAWD, you'll do ANYTHING for applause!"

And then a man from the Foundation of Science and Research (or something... I should have probably written that one down) came up and awarded Chuck Lorre and the show's other writer honourary lifetime memberships to the foundation for their furthering of science in popular culture by making it cool through the show. Simon accepted the awards and responded, "We will travel anywhere in the world to accept other people's awards." Which got the following big laugh from the rest of the guys:

And that was that! The Barenaked Ladies performed the song again in its entirety this time (who knew there was a second verse?) and then they stuck around to continue playing while the guys left.

It was an awesome time, and simply made me love that show even more!


sk said...

Nikki ... Very funny observation about Tanya. Ha ha !

LittleMo said...

Thanks Nikki - its great to hear all about and see your photos.
I can't wait till we get the new series here in the UK.

I have just one question - does Jim have his own personality or is he really just like Sheldon ? :-)

Gillian Whitfield said...

I. FREAKING. LOVE. THE BIG BANG THEORY. Just had to get that out :) It looks like it was a lot of fun. I wish I could have gone.

sk said...

Nikki... I heard that etalk received their highest ratings ever with the Big Bang Boys, Sheldon, Raj, and Howard.

Anonymous said...

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this on my phone, but I'm finally here to say THAK YOU!!! I have been referring this brilliant show to all my friends, but few have tried it. Those who have adore it! I wish they would do something like this in my area. (small pout) Thanks again for the "virtual" experience,