|The Monopolar Expedition|
|Writers||Eric Kaplan, Richard Rosenstock|
|Starring||Carol Ann Susi as Mrs. Wolowitz, Brian George as Dr. Koothrappali, Alice Amter as Mrs. Koothrappali|
|Air Date||11 May 2009|
Season 2, Episode 23 (0223)
Penny is conflicted when Leonard and his friends decide to spend the summer working - at the North Pole.
(Full summary, from Wikipedia:)
Sheldon wins a National Science Foundation grant to pay for a three-month expedition to the Magnetic North Pole. His plan is to detect the magnetic monopoles in a way that would prove the validity of string theory. After some hesitation, he decides to go, and wants his three friends to join him. Howard is the most reluctant, as it means three months with Sheldon. Raj believes three months with Sheldon will earn him a better reincarnation life per his Hindu beliefs. Leonard wants to go because he believes it will be a worthwhile experience. To prepare for the trip, the guys spend some time in the freezer at the Cheesecake Factory. When Penny learns about Leonard's trip, she is seemingly upset. She gives Leonard a blanket with sleeves as a gift saying she'd miss him and gives him a hug that Leonard feels lasts a long time. When, on the morning of his departure, Leonard asks Penny about what the long hug and the blanket mean, she tells him it only means she is going to miss him and wishes him a good trip. However, after she closes the door, Penny whispers to herself "It means I wish you weren't going."
I. Living room, evening
Titles and opening theme
III. Stairway, hallway in front of apartment
IV. Living room
V. hallway in front of apartments
VI. Living room
VII. Walk-in freezer of the Cheesecake Factory
- Sheldon wants the guys to practice the setting up of equipment in arctic temperatures.
VIII. Living room
IX. hallway in front of apartments
X. Sheldon's bedroom, at night
XI. hallway in front of apartments
XII. Penny's apartment
- Penny leans on the door and talks to herself.
XIII. Hut at the North Pole
- The guys have dinner.
The events of this episode occur over a couple of days that cannot be accurately timed. Sheldon gets the e-mail on one evening and accepts the following day. A few days later (the guys have had time to organise things), Sheldon asks Penny if they could use the freezer room at the Cheesecake Factory, which they do another few days later. The episode ends with Penny giving Leonard the Snuggie on an evening and the guys leaving (probably) the next morning.
As usual, the title has several layers of meaning. The expedition Sheldon plans to lead to the North Pole is intended to detect magnetic monopoles, theoretical particles which, if discovered, would confirm string theory. The term "monopolar", however, could also suggest the idea of a single person (mono- being a Greek prefix indicating the number one), which alludes to the fact that Penny is going to be alone for the three months that the boys are gone.