“The Big Bang Theory” season seven finale was all about change. Much has remained the same over the course of its seven seasons on the air, during which time the show has captured the hearts of millions of people and become the most popular comedy on television. One thing is certain, Sheldon (Jim Parsons) does not like change in his life. More to the point, change drives him over the edge, especially when those changes have to do with things he loves. We got to see that first in the season finale, when he is forced to deal with a couple of major changes at the same time.
The episode begins with a bang, so to speak, when Leonard (Johnny Galecki) and Penny (Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting) officially announce their engagement. Since the couple has been seeing each other for quite some time, the announcement itself is not what sends Sheldon’s world into a tailspin. Leonard then has a discussion with Sheldon about their living arrangements. Leonard mentions that he and Penny will want to live alone, without Sheldon. Sheldon then replies, in a completely sincere manner, “How could we all live together if I’m not there?” The idea of change is so foreign to him that he is unable to wrap his genius brain around it. This conversation is one of the funnier moments this season. It is also quite touching, as it shows Sheldon vulnerable at the prospect of losing his best friend to marriage.
As if the idea of possibly having to find a new place to live wasn’t bad enough, Sheldon was in for another shock. Upon visiting his beloved comic book store, he finds that it has been destroyed by a fire. Indeed, the idea of his favorite place being destroyed, coupled with the idea of not living with his best friend anymore, causes Sheldon to reassess his life. He tells Penny and Leonard at the train station that he needs to get away and think. This scene is a critical one in the history of the show. For seven years, we have watched Leonard treat Sheldon like a son, shielding him from life’s harsh realities. Now, Leonard finally has the strength to let Sheldon go. Where Sheldon’s journey will take him remains to be seen.