Fun fact: if you google “The Big Bang Theory,” the first page of results is filled with links for the hit CBS sitcom of the same name. You have to add “science” to the search term in order to find the original cosmic concept. Which proves that entertainment trumps knowledge every damn day. Bazinga!
It also proves that TV audiences love sitcoms based on socially inept smartypants. The real Big Bang Theory states that the universe started with a little singularity, which then inflated over the next 13.8 billion years to become the glorious cosmos we see today. This theory has yet to be cancelled.
So it was only natural that Chuck Lorre would distill such a complex scientific concept into a fluffy, fun half-hour centered around Sheldon and Leonard—genius physicists in the lab, but socially challenged in every other aspect of life that doesn’t include a constant stream of Star Trek references. Luckily for old Shel and Len (and their fellow scientist pals Wolowitz and Koothrappali), they’re befriended by “beautiful, street-smart neighbor Penny, who aims to teach them a thing or two about life.” Except her last name, apparently.
Taking 13.8 billion years to form the cosmos sounds impressive, but try staying on network TV for 12 seasons. And since Sheldon and his CalTech nerd herd are ending their ridiculously successful run, we figured it’s time to mine the world of Scientific Concepts for the next big thing. So get those $1 million per episode actor salaries ready, CBS…
First up is a single-camera half-hour called States of Matter. In this mockumentary-style comedy, we follow intrepid convention podcaster Barb Barbison and her best pal and cosplay master “the Notorious 2-1B,” as they explore the comic-con dating scene. We all know love can be tricky, but Barb is determined to prove that love does exist, as a solid, liquid, gas, plasma, and the elusive Bose-Einstein condensate.
Next up is Kepler’s Laws of Planetary Motion! In this darkly comedic detective series, we follow Thaddeus G. Kepler, Intergalactic Investigator, as he solves a series of quirky planetary murders. Detective Kep has uncovered a strange elliptical pattern in the deaths — they’ve all taken place around a seedy jazz nightclub called The Sun.
Will Kep figure out the squares of the sidereal periods (of revolution) of the victims are directly proportional to the cubes of their mean distances from The Sun before the murderer strikes again? Fingers crossed!
Lastly, we have STEVE. The “telescope heads” among us know “STEVE” as a mysterious atmospheric light phenomena, commonly referred to as “Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement.” That STEVE appears as a mauve band of light that stretches across the night sky, accompanied by a row of vertical green stripes called “the picket fence.” It’s a beautiful sight that makes you think about that old saying: “God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement.”
Our STEVE is a multi-cam workplace comedy, of course. In it we follow Steve, an eternally cheerful office worker at an insurance company. Steve’s new cubicle mate is wet blanket Herb Spidermann from Accounting. Herb only sees the world in black and white. But Steve is determined to add a lively purple smear to Herb’s humdrum life. Getting through Herb’s “picket fence of nope” will be harder than Steve thinks. Wacky hijinks ensue!
Sounds like a potential 12-season ratings juggernaut to us. We can already hear the theme song. “Math, science, history / unraveling the mysteries / that all started with the big STEVE / Hey!”
But don’t think we’ve forgotten about the need to educate whilst we entertain. We’re also working on our new pitch for Bill Nye the Sarcastic Guy…
Science is such a vast and wonderful treasure trove of theories and discoveries. Which means TV always has a never-ending source for future People’s Choice Award winners. Looks like Chuck Lorre’s vanity cards will never be empty.