It seems like ‘The Big Bang Theory’ writers had some major trouble while writing the sitcom’s last few seasons. But if there’s any plotline that makes us want to rip our hair out, it’s their decision to make Penny pregnant.
There’s a lot to love about Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady’s comedy sitcom series ‘The Big Bang Theory’. TBBT introduced us to Sheldon Cooper, Leonard, Raj, and Howard, four dysfunctional, socially-inept geniuses who loved science and comic books. Leonard and Sheldon’s neighbour Penny too went on to become an integral part of the series, as the story progressed. Penny was Leonard’s designated love-interest right from the beginning, and their romance was one of the sitcom’s underlying themes. The writers banked on the character’s ‘will they, won’t they’ relationship, while fans longed to see them become a couple. Their wish is fulfilled at last, when Penny and Leonard finally tie the knot ten years later.
- The Big Bang Theory’s Penny never wanted to have children
- The pregnancy is put across as a ‘happy mistake’ that she’s just supposed to accept
- Did the writers believe the pregnancy to be imperative for her and Leonard’s relationship?
Penny and Leonard get married in season 10 after a somewhat rocky relationship, a cheating scandal, and a strange elopement incident. Everything was the way it was supposed to be, and fans seemed to enjoy the life these characters were sharing. Right then, the writers decided to make Penny pregnant, an unexpected plotline that was absolutely uncalled for.
Keep reading as we try to uncover why ‘The Big Bang Theory’ chose to make Penny pregnant!
Penny never wanted to have children
A long-standing dilemma in the Hofstadter household has been Penny’s wish to not have children with Leonard. Since the final season premiered, she repeatedly reminded Leonard that she does not want to get pregnant and have children. What we can’t understand, however. is why no one, including the sitcom’s writers, decided to honour her decision.
Penny informs Leonard about her aversion towards getting pregnant in the first episode of the final season. She does it yet again when Zac asks Leonard to be a sperm donor, and again and again. Penny doesn’t want to get pregnant and made it crystal clear to Leonard throughout the season. She has always stayed true to herself and is a great aunt to Bernadette and Howard’s children. She even treated Sheldon with patience and love, no matter how much he infuriated her. But she just wasn’t comfortable with the idea of having children at that point in her life.
Penny not wanting to get pregnant in the first place was the writers’ decision, so why’d they change their mind? Understandably, her character could have suddenly felt differently about being a mother, but no such explanation is given.
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The pregnancy is put across as a ‘happy mistake’ that she’s just supposed to accept
Penny has repeatedly expressed her disinclination towards getting pregnant and starting a family but is later on seen accepting it. It’s understandable that she changed her mind and got excited about becoming a mother, but that’s all viewers were told! There’s no instance where we see Penny realizing she’s pregnant, and no dialogue explaining that her feelings have changed. She doesn’t discuss it with her husband Leonard or get time to ponder over the life-altering change she’ll soon experience.
Penny tells the gang that the pregnancy was an accident, but she’s happy about it. When her best friends Bernadette and Amy express their concerns and mention they thought she didn’t want kids, Penny elaborates. She says that she got drunk while she was out with Sheldon, and went home and slept with her husband. The pregnancy was a complete accident but she’s going to move forward with it anyway.
We understand that she’s entitled to her opinion, but it felt as if Penny felt pressured by those around her. And even if she wasn’t, we’ll never know because the writers never let us know the complete picture!
Did the writers believe the pregnancy to be imperative for her and Leonard’s relationship?
Penny’s decision must have been heart-breaking for Leonard, but there’s nothing wrong with a woman not wanting to have kids. The show believed otherwise, and their decision to make Penny pregnant seemed like a ploy to bring the story full-circle. We’ve often wondered why Penny and Leonard didn’t talk through things as a couple, especially with decisions concerning their family.
When Leonard sees Penny for the first time, he tells Sheldon that their babies would be both ‘smart and beautiful’. So maybe the writers altered the plot to fit this narrative, without paying attention to her previous choices. If the writers had offered instances where viewers saw Penny change her mind about starting a family, it would’ve been a fitting end. But to randomly implore a new pregnancy storyline, to bring their romance full-circle, was pretty unrealistic.
How do you feel about the writers deciding to make Penny pregnant? Do you think it’s justified? Let us know in the comments.