The Big Bang Theory

Season 1 Episode 13

The Bat Jar Conjecture

Aired Monday 8:00 PM Apr 21, 2008 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
493 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Sheldon finds himself booted from the gang's Physics Bowl team and replaced with Leslie, so he forms his own team, hoping to prove he's superior.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • Very amusing episode with some minor yet MAJOR inconsistencies to the Big Bang "mythology"

    Often a hilariously joyful episode, with an excellent final scene and some hilarious Howard moments but this episode does provide us with some mind boggling inconsistencies to the Big Bang Theory.

    - During the Physics Bowl trial at Leonard and Sheldon's apartment, Sheldon sits on a seat rather than his regular seat.

    - I understand the idea that Raj can talk to women when they are disguised into an audience, but there is a woman (Leslie Winkle) seated right next to him during the Physics Bowl

    - At the end of the episode, I'm not sure that Sheldon would sit on that seat. I understand that Leonard won't let him sit in his seat, because "someone's" already sitting there, but I don't think he'd sit just anywhere else.

    We also get a very interesting moment when Raj accidentally speaks in front of Penny without being under the influence of alcohol!moreless
  • Bowled Over

    And we're back to feeling very disconnected from the world of the show. I think that's actually the biggest issue I have with Big Bang - it hasn't given the viewer a world in which the characters exist. There's the apartment and the hallway and there's the university? college? someplace where everyone except Penny? works. Needs more physical grounding. Beyond that, I was glad to see Sheldon lose, even if I would have been more happy to have him admit the janitor was right. Disappointed with the reappearance of Leslie, too.moreless
  • 113

    Although we haven't gotten much plot development in a couple weeks, this was a hilarious episode of TBBT regardless. I have never laughed as hard as I did when Howard ripped off his shirt to "We Are The Champions" We got so many funny one liners, way too many too mention.

    From Penny slowly drifting off in to sleep when the Physics Bowl was going on to Leslie continuously referring back to her one night with Leonard, that's the subtle humor that makes this show so great. Sheldon was amazing as usual, with him always asking for a formal protest, he was hilarious in this episode.

    The plot was very intriguing too, was anyone else really excited and intrigued to see who would win the Physics Bowl, the janitor saying took me as much of a surprise as everyone else. Overall great episode of TBBT with some great funny one liners, and a great tie in at the end there.moreless
  • Sheldon is carrying the show, and his back is breaking

    Sheldon is getting to be a tiresome carrier. Utterly selfish, utterly narcissistic, he can't understand why answering all the questions by himself in the Physics Bowl prepartory is not a good idea. I like Penny, let's have more interactons between her and Leonard, and get back to the original framework of the show. This episode did have some funny moments, such as when Wolowitz ripped off his shirt at the end when the 'PMS' boys won the Physics Bowl. But in the end this episode was just a one-note Sheldon extravaganza, and this is getting tiring and wornout. Still, the nerdish referneces to "Star Trek' and Spock's last words was funny and in keeping with the show's theme. All in all, a dissapointing episode.moreless
  • Nerds. ♥

    Sheldon finds himself booted from the gang's Physics Bowl team and replaced with Leslie, so he forms his own team, hoping to prove he's superior. As always I love the start, The Big Bang Theory is far too clever and funny - got to love it. I love the way Raj slips up with saying something infront of Penny. I love the storyline in this episode, I love the way Sheldon is so selfish, got to love him for everything he does. I lvoe the scene where Penny is asking the nerds questions. I love the way Leslie joins Leonards team because they kicked Sheldon out for ruining all the fun. I feel sorry for Sheldon when that happens though. I also love the way Sheldon is so stubborn in everything he does. I love Sheldons' facial expressions - hilarious. Epic ending. another Awesome episode.moreless
Adam Gregor

Adam Gregor


Guest Star

Sandra Marquez

Sandra Marquez


Guest Star

Sergio Enrique

Sergio Enrique


Guest Star

Sara Gilbert

Sara Gilbert

Leslie Winkle

Recurring Role

Mark Harelik

Mark Harelik

Dr. Eric Gablehauser

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (6)

    • Goof: At the end of the episode, Leonard is sitting in Sheldon's "spot". Not only does Sheldon not make him move, but he doesn't mention that it is "my spot". Sheldon also just sits in another chair. In other episodes, he cannot sit in another chair.

    • In the cafeteria while discussing who to ask to be on their Physics bowl team, Raj suggests, "the girl who played TV's Blossom. She got a PhD. in Neuroscience or something," referring to Mayim Bialik, who would later join the cast as Amy Farrah-Fowler.
      Raj also suggests "the girl from The Wonder Years", referring to Danica McKellar, who would later guest-star in the season 3 episode "The Psychic Vortex" (as a love interest for Raj).

    • Raj asks, "How come in Star Trek everyone's private parts are the same? No alien lady ever told Captain Kirk, 'Hey, get your thing out my nose,'." forgetting the prison fight scene that ends with the line, "not everyone keeps their genitals in the same place, Captain," in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.

    • Wolowitz gets overexcited upon reading the new Star Trek movie will have a scene depicting Spock's birth, apparently forgetting such a scene was already done in Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.

    • The final question in the physics bowl is the so-called first-order Feynman-diagram for the electromagnetic scattering of an electron with a muon combined with its associated amplitude-formula. The Feynman-formalism is the key-element in modern particle physics, so it is impossible that none of the PMS-guys recognize it and even Sheldon is not able to solve a calculation that could actually be given as homework to a physics student in his third or fourth year. Also, the given answer 8πα is actually not the correct solution to the given formula.

    • The gang recites what they claim are Spock's dying words (taken from Nicholas Meyer's 1982 film, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan): "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." In actuality, Captain Kirk supplied the line "the needs of the few" to a weakened Spock.

  • QUOTES (14)

    • Wolowitz: Oh, more details about the new Star Trek film. There's going to be a scene depicting Spock's birth.
      Koothrappali: I'd be more interested in a scene depicting Spock's conception.
      Sheldon: Oh, please. For Vulcans, mating—or if you will, pon farr—it's an extremely private matter.
      Leonard: Still, I'd like to know the details. His mother was human; his father was Vulcan. They couldn't just conceive.
      Wolowitz: Maybe they had to go to a clinic. Can you imagine Spock's dad in a little room with a copy of Pointy Ears and Shapely Rears?

    • Sheldon: Teams are traditionally named after fierce creatures, thus intimidating one's opponent.
      Koothrappali: Then we could be the Bengal Tigers.
      Sheldon: Poor choice—gram for gram, no animal exceeds the relative fighting strength of the army ant.
      Koothrappali: Maybe so, but you can't incinerate a Bengal tiger with a magnifying glass.

    • Leonard: Check it out. I got you a Batman cookie jar.
      Sheldon: Ohhh, neat, what is the occasion?
      Leonard: Well, you are a friend, and you like Batman and cookies, and you are off the team.

    • Sheldon: Point of order. I move that any vote on team names must be unanimous. No man should be forced to emblazon his chest with a Bengal tiger when common sense dictates it should be an army ant.
      Leonard: Will the gentleman of the great state of denial yield for a question?
      Sheldon: I will yield.
      Leonard: After we go through the exercise of an annoying series of votes, all of witch the gentleman will lose, does he then intend to threaten to quit if he does not get his way?
      Sheldon: He does!
      Leonard: I move we are the Army Ants.

    • (Koothrappali whispers in Wolowitz's ear)
      Penny: What did he say?
      Wolowitz: He compared Sheldon to a disposable feminine cleansing product one might use on a summer's eve.
      Penny: Yeah, and the bag it came in.

    • Sheldon: I've designed the perfect uniforms for our team. The colors are based on Star Trek: The Original Series; the three of you will wear support red, and I will wear command gold.
      Leonard: Why do they say, "AA"?
      Sheldon: Army Ants.
      Leonard: Isn't that confusing? AA might mean something else to certain people.
      Sheldon: Why would a Physics Bowl team be called Anodized Aluminum?

    • Penny: What artificial satellite has seen glimpses of Einstein's predicted frame-dragging?
      (Koothrappali buzzes in)
      Sheldon: And, of course, it's Gravity Probe B.
      Leonard: Sheldon, you have to let somebody else answer.
      Sheldon: Why?
      Penny: Because it's polite.
      Sheldon: What do manners have to do with it? This is war. Were the Romans polite when they salted the ground of Carthage to make sure nothing would ever grow again?
      Penny: Leonard, you said I only had to ask questions.

    • Leslie: Wait, you're going up against Sheldon Cooper?
      Leonard: Yeah.
      Leslie: That arrogant, misogynistic East Texas doorknob that told me I should abandon my work with high-energy particles for laundry and childbearing?

    • Sheldon: Count me out.
      Leonard: What? ...why?
      Sheldon: You want me to use my intelligence in a tawdry competition. Would you ask Picasso to play Pictionary? Would you ask Noah Webster to play Boggle? Would you ask Jacques Cousteau to play Go Fish?

    • Howard: Don't you think I should answer the engineering question? I am an engineer.
      Sheldon: By that logic I should answer all the anthropology questions because I'm a mammal.

    • Penny: What actor holds the record for being named People magazine's Sexiest Man Alive?
      Sheldon: William Shatner!
      Leonard: I don't think it's Shatner.
      Sheldon: Then it's got to be Patrick Stewart.

    • (Sheldon goes to sit down next to Leonard)
      Leonard: Sorry, somebody's sitting there.
      Sheldon: Who?
      Leonard: (holding to Sheldon's face) My Physics Bowl trophy!

    • Sheldon: How do you know anything about physics?
      Dmitri: Here I am janitor, in former Soviet Union I am physicist—Leningrad Politeknika. Go, Polar Bears!

    • Leslie: Hello, Sheldon.
      Sheldon: (looks terrified) Leslie Winkle!
      Leslie: Yeah, Leslie Winkle! The answer to the question, "Who made Sheldon Cooper cry like a little girl?".
      Sheldon: Yes! Well, I'm polarized tree sap and you're inorganic adhesive, so whatever verbal projectile you launch in my direction it's reflected off of me, returns on its original trajectory and adheres to you.

  • NOTES (5)

    • The German episode title is "Superbowl für Physiker", meaning "Super Bowl for Physicists". The French title is "La Conjoncture du Batbocal", the Italian title is "La congettura della bat-biscottiera", the Spanish title is "La conjetura del Bat-tarro", and the Mexican title is "La conjetura del Bati-frasco", all exact translations.

    • In the German dubbed version, the smart girls mentioned by Koothrappali are changed to Jodie Foster (B.A. in literature) and Emma Watson.

    • International Airdates: Turkey: December 9, 2008 on CNBC-e; Czech Republic: June 30, 2009 on Prima COOL; Germany: September 12, 2009 on ProSieben; Slovakia: September 6, 2011 on Markiza

    • Music: Queen's "We Are the Champions"

    • This episode's end titles has Chuck Lorre's Vanity Card #204, a special audio card. It, along with the accompanying 205 card for the night's later Two and a Half Men (which was actually the exact same audio), caused Chuck Lorre's site to generate 'bandwith exceeded' errors the morning after the episode broadcast.


    • Wolowitz says "He compared Sheldon to a disposable feminine cleansing product one might use on a summer's eve". "Summer's Eve" is a brand that makes several kinds of feminine products, including the one Howard references here.

    • When the Perpetual Motion Squad is declared the winner and "We Are the Champions" by Queen begins to play, Wolowitz kneels on the floor and tears off his shirt in the same manner as lead singer Freddie Mercury used to do when Queen played in concert.

    • Sheldon completes Penny's phrase, "I tought I taw a...", with "a Romulan?" The correct answer is: "... a putty tat.". This is from the 1950s-60s cartoon show Tweety and Sylvester when Tweety would try to say, "I thought I saw a pussy cat."

    • In the cafeteria, when the gang are discussing who they should get for a fourth team member, Koothrappali mentions getting the girl from Blossom or the girl from The Wonder Years. The two respective girls are Mayim Bialik, who graduated from UCLA with a Ph.D in neuroscience, and Danica McKellar, who got a bachelor's in Mathematics from UCLA co-wrote a research paper on a mathematical proof, and also guest-starred in the season 3 episode "The Psychic Vortex".

    • Leonard gleefully exclaims that with the four of them together, the "entire Physics bowl will 'kneel before Zod'", borrowing from General Zod's demand to both the President of the United States and Superman in Richard Donner's 1980 film, Superman II.

    • When Penny says, "Wow! So in your world you're like the cool guys," Howard replies saying, "Recognize!," imitating Ali G, the fictional character played by the English comedian Sacha Baron Cohen.

    • In the cafeteria Raj tries to laugh diabolically, and when he does so poorly, Howard tells him, "That sounds more like we are a tall, thin woman who wants to make a coat out of your Dalmatians," making a direct reference to Cruella de Vil's laughter from Disney's 101 Dalmatians.