Why The Big Bang Theory Season 9 Episode 1’s Plot Didn’t Work
Credit where it is due, “The Matrimonial Momentum” did wrap up both of these plots by marrying Leonard and Penny and breaking up Sheldon and Amy. The only problem was that the show handled both of these stories terribly. Leonard and Penny got married far away from home in haste without any of their friends or loved ones present, only to almost break up when Penny learned that Leonard kissed someone else two years earlier. The stakes in this plot were almost non-existent since, at this point in the series, Leonard and Penny fighting for the umpteenth time wasn’t a surprise and everyone knew they would stay together.
Meanwhile, although The Big Bang Theory’s Sheldon was the show’s breakout character, his bitter breakup with Amy was just unpleasant. Amy’s naivete sometimes clashed with Sheldon’s coldness in a way that wasn’t particularly funny and this episode’s plot was a prime example of this. Sheldon goading Amy into revealing their breakup in the middle of Leonard and Penny’s live-streamed wedding seemed like it was intended to be a comedic highlight of the outing, but the move instead felt petty and callous. Luckily, Young Sheldon changed The Big Bang Theory’s hero enough to make his antics more palatable, since episodes like this proved that watching Sheldon could be a slog.
The Big Bang Theory Season 9 Episode 1 Lacked Comedy
As implied by the unpleasant aftertaste that the wedding scene left, very little of “The Matrimonial Momentum” was actually funny. Per Den of Geek, the episode was “Devoid of any laughs at all,” while IGN called the outing “Uncharacteristically depressing.” It’s easy to see why since Penny and Leonard’s long-awaited wedding could reasonably have been expected to be a series highlight. After the show spent so long building up to this moment, it was sad to see the occasion prove unfunny, unromantic, and uninteresting. Luckily, their next wedding made up for this.
The Big Bang Theory Season 9 Episode 1 Set Up A Hated Arc
For all of Young Sheldon’s The Big Bang Theory inconsistencies, the spinoff maintained Sheldon’s trademark obstinacy. It was this character element that began to truly grate on viewers in The Big Bang Theory season 9 as “The Matrimonial Momentum” set up what remains one of the show’s most hated character arcs. Much to the surprise of viewers, Sheldon and Amy did remain broken up for far longer than anticipated. The season premiere set Amy and Sheldon’s breakup in stone, leading to a half-season of tired “will they, won’t they” subplots as Sheldon grew some humility at a punishing pace. By their reunion, it was hard to even root for him.
The problem with this plot was not that Sheldon and Amy broke up in the first place. Like Leonard and Penny, they were one of the show’s central couples, so the pair were bound to go through a few tough times. However, it was the fact that their conflict was rooted in Sheldon’s unchanging character that proved frustrating. The Big Bang Theory’s Sheldon was lovable precisely because of how stubborn he was, so his refusal to commit to Amy fit with his established character. Even so, The Big Bang Theory season 9 spent episode after episode slowly wearing down this attribute until eventually Sheldon reunited with Amy.