Believe it or not, I am a big, enthusiastic fan of the series. I started watching a month or so ago, and have seen all but five episodes on four TV channels in the NY area. This has to be one of the worst, most depressing episodes of the entire series! I just watched the episode a second time, and I see more clearly why the episode so alienated me: it is perhaps the only episode where there is no interaction or struggle against a force OUTSIDE of their little group. The humor of the show is derived from the smart nerds rubbing against normal society. None of that in this episode. The boys are playing a game of Dungeons and Dragons amongst themselves, and Sheldon is complaining about how, when he was a child, he fruitlessly implored Santa Claus to restore to life his dead grandfather, thus leading to an animus towards Santa Claus. The girls go off bar hopping, and they take Raj along. There is an awful scene where Raj and Amy compare notes on how they were rejected throughout their lives. It was impossible for me to enjoy all this negativity. Raj's sexual innuendoes were particularly blatant and disgusting to me , as was Sheldon's attacks on Santa. I'm not religious and I despise the Amy character, yet I still find the episode offensive. Two pluses: Sheldon's singing and the bell-ringing.
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