Big Bang Theory Stereotypes

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The Big Bang Theory: A View on the Modern “Nerdist” The Big Bang Theory is an extremely successful sitcom that airs Monday nights on CBS. It involves love, drama, comedy and many other elements into a single format. Some of the main characters are Leonard, Sheldon, Penny, Howard, Rajesh, Bernadette, and Amy. One of the reasons I am researching The Big Bang Theory or “TBBT” is because it is one of the most watched, successful, and highest rated sitcoms of all time. According to Winston, as of 2014, “TBBT” had over 20 million viewers in the United States (290). My goal in this paper is to discuss the repeated behaviors of the characters, the stereotypes that are reinforced through the program, how these behaviors and stereotypes effect viewers, …show more content…
It does lend itself to a mass audience, and seeks to have viewership from all walks of life. So, with that being said, you have your typical Indian character, as seen through Rajesh Koothrappali. He is stereotyped through his accent and his mannerisms. Howard, is another stereotypical character. He is stereotyped as the shy, weak, but not lonely (anymore) Jewish guy. Sheldon is stereotyped as the intellectually nerdy, paranoid, nervous guy, who has OCD tendencies, such as sitting in the same spot on the couch, in every episode the couch is featured, or knocking three times, every time and by being socially inept. He is stereotyped in his role of being nerdy, by his “distaste for relationships as well as his deficits in social skills” (Winston 293). In fact, all of the male scientists in the show, are considered “nerds,” and according to Bednarek, “while geeks/nerds are frequently negatively evaluated, the term can be reclaimed by speakers, and geeks/ nerds are also associated with ‘economic fame and fortune” (204). Leonard, on the other hand, is classified as a nerd but has broken the stereotype, by getting the pretty girl across the hall to be his wife. Penny, is the all American girl, who is popular and pretty. She too is stereotyped, as the ditzy blonde who is not as intelligent as the scientists she mingles with. I believe that the long term effects from the behaviors and …show more content…
Some of the commercials that I observed were Ford commercials, Tide, Purina dog food, Natural Made: Vitamin D3, American Express, Discover Card, Star Trek: Beyond on Blu-Ray and DVD, Moto Droid, AT&T IPhone 7, Enbrel (for plaque psoriasis), The Dr. Strange movie, Fantastic Beasts movie, and The Arrival movie, and a political commercial from Fortune45, criticizing the Clinton family. When I look at the list of advertisers, I can conclude that the target audience in terms of advertisements, is geared toward young to middle-aged men, who are techies, and into comic books and Sci-Fi films. The Natural Made: Vitamin D3 is a nice touch as well, considering natural vitamin D is gained from exposure to the sun, considering techies are always indoors, that furthers my theory about whom the target market is. Also, with regards to the credit card commercials they aired, it leads me to believe that they were trying to advertise to people in the mid-range socioeconomic status, most likely, your average American. The majority of the actors in these commercials, matched the target audience, in their 30s and white. According to Mastro and Sterns research on television advertisements, “the majority of these characters were white...males of all races appeared more often than females…white characters were seen most in commercials for technology” (642-643). Furthermore, the

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