The Big Bang Theory: The 19 Best Episodes of All Time!

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The Big Bang Theory may be coming to an end after 12 seasons, but the record-smashing and also controversial comedy series will leave fans with countless episodes to watch and rewatch.

But which episodes are the very best?

Everyone has their own opinions on which episodes are the best, but we took a look at how the episodes are rated on IMDB to figure out which are the most beloved by fans.

There are a lot of holiday episodes.

Also, a lot of episodes with the word "excitation" in the title. Mere correlation or is there a causal factor?

Take a look at 19 of the very best episodes of this legendary series -- and get excited about your next rewatch!

19. The 43 Peculiarity

The 43 Peculiarity
Season 6, Episode 8 -- Leonard is jealous of Penny's flirty new study partner while Raj and Wolowitz investigate where Sheldon keeps disappearing to while muttering "43"

18. The Middle Earth Paradigm

The Middle Earth Paradigm
Season 1, Episode 6 -- Penny invites the guys to her Halloween party, where she and Leonard share an early moment. Meanwhile, Sheldon's doppler effect costume goes unappreciated.

17. The Roommate Transmogrification

The Roommate Transmogrification
Season 4, Episode 24 -- Leonard and Priya's romantic escapades prompt Raj to move in with Sheldon, and it turns out that they get along just fine. Raj gets along a little TOO well with Penny.

16. The Lunar Excitation

The Lunar Excitation
Season 3, Episode 23 -- Penny discovers that her time with Leonard has made her less interested in dumb men, leaving her to have an odd encounter with Leonard. Sheldon also gets a dating profile, but it was not his idea. Side note: this is just one of many "excitation" titles on this list.

15. The Vegas Renormalization

The Vegas Renormalization
Season 2, Episode 21 -- The B Story is that Sheldon gets locked out of his apartment, which seems unlikely but leads to him sort of bonding with Penny. The A Story is that Raj and Leonard take Wolowitz to Las Vegas to cheer him up after his breakup with Leslie.

14. The Hawking Excitation

The Hawking Excitation
Season 5, Episode 21 -- Wolowitz torments Sheldon, who idolizes Stephen Hawking, by making him run a proverbial gauntlet before he can meet the famed theoretical astrophysicist. Petty is as petty does.

13. The Tangerine Factor

The Tangerine Factor
Season 1, Episode 17 -- Penny is grappling with an ex who has embarrassed her online ... but this leads her to go on a date with Leonard. At the same time, Sheldon has become convinced that his favorite Chinese restaurant is using the wrong ingredients.

12. The Good Guy Fluctuation

The Good Guy Fluctuation
Season 5, Episode 7 -- Leonard is dating Priya but feels conflicted after catching the eye and interest of a beautiful comic book artist. So he turns to Penny for advise. At the same time, it's Halloween, and the relentless insensitivity to Sheldon's feelings and boundaries continues as the guys take great pleasure in scaring him.

11. The Justice League Recombination

The Justice League Recombination
Season 4, Episode 11 -- Penny isn't quite over Leonard but she's dating Zack, who's hot but dumb as a rock. They go to a costume party at the comic shop for New Year's Eve. Mostly this episode is just a great reminder that Penny has feelings for Leonard and that Warner Bros likes to use their properties to promote their other properties.

10. The Panty Piñata Polarization

The Panty Piñata Polarization
Season 2, Episode 7 -- Sheldon is fuming with Penny because she won't stop mooching off of their internet service, but she somehow gets the upper hand. In the mean time, Wolowitz is hoping to score rejects from America's Next Top Model, on the theory that these beautiful women will be desperate and emotionally vulnerable after getting booted off of the show. Yikes.

9. The Robotic Manipulation

The Robotic Manipulation
Season 4, Episode 1 -- Sheldon agrees to go on a date with Amy, but he insists that Penny be their chaperone. Wolowitz appears to have stolen a robotic arm, which leads him to ... oh no ... attempt to use the robotic arm to pleasure himself. Yes, this sends him to the hospital.

8. The Scavenger Vortex

The Scavenger Vortex
Season 7, Episode 3 -- Raj sets up a scavenger hunt, because it's season 7 so anything goes at this point. Somehow, after seven seasons, Leonard still has misgivings about partnering with Penny because he feels like she'd be holding him back. Big yikes.

7. The Barbarian Sublimation

The Barbarian Sublimation
Season 2, Episode 3 -- Penny is feeling lost and has way too much free time on her hands, so she tries video games for apparently the first time and gets hooked. Fun fact: in real life, the majority of video game players are adult women.

6. The Thanksgiving Decoupling

The Thanksgiving Decoupling
Season 7, Episode 9 -- in yet another holiday episode on this list, awkwardness abounds at Thanksgiving. Sheldon is awkward around Bernadette, but her dad takes to Sheldon (and not to Howard Woolowitz) right away). In the mean time, Leonard does not love learning that Penny accidentally married her beautiful idiot boyfriend Zack years ago in Vegas. Whoops.

5. The Maternal Capacitance

The Maternal Capacitance
Season 2, Episode 15 -- Christine Baranski is love, Christine Baranski is life, and she play's Leonard's mom. You know how you sometimes really bond with a friend's parent? That happens with her and Sheldon, while she's very critical of Leonard ... and just about everyone else. Leonard and Penny get a little closer as a result of her visit, though.

4. The Adhesive Duck Deficiency

The Adhesive Duck Deficiency
Season 3, Episode 8 -- Leonard is with Raj and Woolowitz in the desert to witness a meteor shower. Sheldon stays home, but ends up bonding with Penny, who is sick. He accidentally touches her in a way that neither of them had intended. This was all leading up to fanservice, however, because he sings a new version of "Soft Kitty" to her.

3. The Staircase Implementation

The Staircase Implementation
Season 3, Episode 22 -- honestly, this one is a lot of people's all-time favorite episodes. Leonard tells the story of how he ended up living with Sheldon and while he overlooked Sheldon's personality quirks, as if Sheldon's friendship weren't an absolute gift. Also, fans finally learn why the elevator doesn't work.

2. The Opening Night Excitation

The Opening Night Excitation
Season 9, Episode 11 -- in a truly preposterous turn of events, Sheldon has only just now realized that Amy's birthday is on the same day as the Star Wars premiere, as if everyone doesn't spend the three months before any new Star Wars film worrying and stressing over it. Sheldon does confide in Penny and Bernadette that he's ready to get physical with Amy.

1. The Bath Gift Hypothesis

The Bath Gift Hypothesis
Season 2, Episode 11 -- a Christmas episode and also the highest-rated episode. While Sheldon agonizes over what to get for Penny, because he wants to match her thoughtfulness instead of going overboard or giving her less than she deserves, Leonard is preoccupied. See, his buddy David has taken an instant shine to Penny and Leonard is having all kinds of feelings about it.

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