This fall, television's most lovable physicists and one hot, wacky neighbor are expanding their geektastic hilarity to five nights a week. In honor of this exciting news, let's do a roll call of the brainiac/maniacs you'll come to know and love. And click here to see when The Big Bang Theory is on in your area!
Sheldon (Jim Parsons) is an East Texas child prodigy who entered college at age 11 and earned his first Ph.D. in theoretical physics by age 16. He claims that his IQ is too great to be accurately measured. Sheldon's a strict creature of habit with what some suspect is a high-functioning strain of Asperger's Syndrome. So obviously, he's popular, cuddly, and a sexual machine.
Leonard (Johnny Galecki) is an experimental physicist with an IQ of 173. He is Sheldon's roommate and closest friend, despite the fact that Sheldon disparages him for not being a theoretical physicist. He has mommy issues and a crush on the cute neighbor girl (see Penny, below).
Raj (Kunal Nayyar) is an astrophysicist from New Delhi. He often describes his childhood as a poor boy growing up in India—when he does, his friends remind him that his father is a Bentley-driving gynecologist. Despite his wistful false memories, he dislikes most things about India and can't even stomach Indian food. Raj's most pronounced trait is his inability to speak to women unless he's drinking alcohol. Even non-alcoholic beer does the trick.
Howard (Simon Helberg), an aerospace engineer, is incessantly teased by the others for not having a Ph.D. He invites even more derision by still living with his mother. Leonard's neuroscientist mother describes his friendship with Raj as an "ersatz homosexual marriage". He rides a Vespa and flirts with every woman he meets—very poorly.
Penny (Kaley Cuoco) is an aspiring actress living across the hall from Leonard and Sheldon. She gets the occasional casting call, but primarily works as a waitress at The Cheesecake Factory. More frequently than not, her active lifestyle is the impetus that gets the astrophysicsts to try new things.
So since your friends are on TV, hang out with the smartest people you'll ever know, the nerd posse extraordinaire of The Big Bang Theory-now on five nights a week!