By the time children reach young adulthood, they are eager to move out of their parents’ house and be on their own. However, once out in the real world, they often find that living alone is expensive and just plain boring. The obvious solution to this problem is for the individual to find a roommate, but that poses a number of questions such as compatibility, cleaning charts, financial conversations, and many other factors. These things may be daunting in the real world, but they make for great entertainment within the best modern sitcoms.
In The Big Bang Theory, the apartment shared by Leonard and Sheldon becomes one of the main sets where all the characters gather. The gang’s living situations all become a topic of conversation during different points in the series, but the living agreement between Leonard and Sheldon is brought up nearly every episode. With each character having their own quirks, check out the good and bad of each individual to decide who would make the best roommate.
In almost every episode, Leonard or one of his friends questions why he chooses to live with Sheldon. Though “I don’t know” tends to be the answer, years of watching the pair together would prove that it is because Leonard sympathizes with his roommate. He wants to help Sheldon be a better person, and through strategic conversations and routines, he is able to fill their apartment with friendship.
Leonard is the one who essentially established the group by bringing all of the friends together. Though he is insecure at times when it comes to women, he is one of the most considerate characters within the series. He goes out of his way to help his friends in need even when that means putting himself in possible danger. As a roommate, Leonard seems like he could get along with just about anyone who has a sense of humor and an open mind.
When Leonard applied to be Sheldon’s roommate, he presented different “tests” for Leonard before he even considered having him move in. After passing the tasks, Sheldon brought out The Roommate Agreement that broke down everything Leonard was allowed and expected to do in the apartment and for Sheldon. The contract favored his lifestyle and needs, but Leonard signed anyway.
Sheldon was a nightmare in some aspects such as having to follow a routine each day, needing to be driven everywhere, and constantly putting down his own friends, but some of his quirks played in their favor. His routines made him predictable, so when the group wanted to do something without Sheldon, it was fairly easy. Unbeknownst to Sheldon, his friends thought he was quite comical due to his social awkwardness and lack of emotional awareness. In all, Sheldon seems like a roommate nearly anyone could get used to with patience and subtle manipulation.
Every stereotypical blonde woman character seems to have skeletons in their closet. For Penny, that could prove to be true if one could climb over the piles of clothes and miscellaneous objects to get to her closet. Though Penny is a bit messy and disorganized, any roommate of hers would be happy to know there is always wine in the fridge. To make up for the fact that she cannot always pay her bills on time, Penny does have a sweet job at the Cheesecake Factory which brings in the possibility of great discounts and leftover food brought home at the end of a shift.
In comparison to the guys, Penny is very welcoming of people’s differences. She accepts Sheldon’s strange habits, she often puts Howard in his place without overly offending him, and she encourages Raj to overcome his selective mutism. If someone can handle an outgoing woman who is slightly unstable with work, Penny would be a great choice for a roommate.
Aside from Penny who has Leonard and Sheldon just right across the hall, Raj is the only one from the group who did not have someone living with him that could fill his need to regularly socialize. Raj is a thoughtful and sentimental guy, especially towards his best friend and the women he falls in love with, but his kindness often turns creepy because he lacks some proper social skills.
As a roommate, he is very well put together and organized, and he tends to go with the flow of what his friends want to do. When he moved in with Sheldon for a short period of time, Raj made sure to have a fancy dinner laid out for his new roommate. He does break their temporary contract by sleeping with Penny in Leonard’s bed, but that does not create conflict between them for long. If someone can get past his creepy phrases and try-hard stage, he could be a very sweet roommate.
On the surface, Howard seems like a more socially acceptable guy than the others. He does not mind change, he can talk to women without alcohol, and he knows how to hold a conversation. His biggest downfall is that 30 years of living with his mother has turned him into a stereotypical “momma’s boy.” He does not cook for himself or even do his own laundry. When he moved in with his wife, she quickly discovered how Howard had grown use to being cared for rather than contributing to his share of chores and housework.
If given the opportunity to live on his own and have no one cater to his needs, Howard has the potential to be a great roommate. He is intelligent without being cocky, and he is unapologetically himself. Aside from being quite a bit of a pervert, Howard seems like a genuine guy and decent friend to share an apartment with, but only after boundaries are clearly established.