The Big Bang Theory Wiki

"The Champagne Reflection" is the tenth episode of the eighth season of the American sitcom The Big Bang Theory. The episode aired on Thursday, November 20, 2014.


Howard, Raj and Leonard cleanup the life's work of another professor who passed away, Bernadette faces up to her bullying and Sheldon records the last episode of "Fun with Flags".

Extended Plot[]

Sheldon is taping the final episode of "Sheldon Cooper presents Fun with Flags." Amy sets off a party popper than scares Sheldon. After only 232 episodes, the Internet series is over. Actually 233 if Amy hadn't failed to hit the record button on a Fourth of July episode.

Leonard, Howard and Raj are cleaning out Professor Roger Abbott's office, throwing out a life's work. Raj thought the job was going to be boring, but then he found a set of dentures and decided it was also gross. Howard mused that someday someone else will throw out their work. Leonard said that it was Sheldon and he did it yesterday. Leonard really wonders if there are any important discoveries among the files. Raj finds a pen which when tilted; a girl's bathing suit falls off. Leonard finds a 50 year old bottle of champagne with a note from Professor Abbot's mother. The bottle is to be opened after he makes his first great discovery. While Leonard is reflective, Howard and Raj think it's funny that his name sounds like Roger Rabbit.


Good day, mate!

Penny meets her boss Dan at a company banquet and he greets her as his newest star employee who is the third best sales rep. Bernadette is still parking the car. Dan calls her "dear, sweet vicious little Bernadette". Penny tries to defend her; however, Dan describes how she yelled at him and his grandson for losing the three-legged race at the company picnic. His grandson called her the mean little kid with the big boobies. When Bernadette arrives, Dan disappears.

Sheldon is showing the highlights of his "Fun with Flags" series where viewers have learned, laughed, wondered and even shed a tear or two while learning about flags. Amy appears in a kangaroo costume for Australia, Sheldon is dressed as Betsy Ross debunking her myth, both of them are on a beach in 1890's costumes talking about beach warning flags and Barry Kripke is a guest playing the game "Fwag, not a fwag" as flash cards are presented to him.  In the beach scene Amy keeps looking at Sheldon's legs.

Leonard is reviewing some of Professor Abbot's notebooks that are full of numbers. He wonders what the professor was working on and wants to find some time on the supercomputer to decrypt the notebooks. Howard agrees to help until he admits he has no idea how to decipher them. Raj tells him to talk to the fellow he shared the office with, Professor Sharp.

At the banquet, Dan, Penny and Bernadette are sharing a table. Penny asks about Dan's grandson who is seven. Bernadette remembers him from the picnic crying like a wuss. Her Dad always said that that the only ones who like cry babies are mommies and Democrats. Dan goes to get another drink. Penny points out that she can be rough on people at times, while Bernadette still sees her as the sweetest person she knows.

LeVar Burton is back as FWF's guest. He is appearing under the assumption that Sheldon will erase his contact information in his presence. Sheldon shows LeVar the episode where he dressed up as George Washington Carver for Black History Month. His black-face tribute was called by Leonard "wildly racist". When LeVar watched it, he said "Hell, no!" Sheldon assumed that meant LeVar was disagreeing with Leonard, especially since Sheldon always thought Leonard was wrong, and concluded that LeVar approved.


What to do with an old bottle of champagne?

The guys visit Professor Sharp's apartment in a run-down building] to discuss the notebooks Leonard had found. Raj thinks that they are some kind of interstellar coordinate system for an updated version of Hubble's Law. Sharp explains that it is a caloric diary Professor Abbot had kept under the assumption that restricting calories was the key to living forever. Raj asked if it really worked. Howard looked at him funny and asked if he was serious. Even though he was dead he could have been hit by a bus. As to his physics work, Professor Abbot never accomplished anything significant.  Raj asked about Professor Sharp's work. He replied that one gets an apartment like this for winning a Nobel Prize.

Penny continues to discuss Bernadette's personality. Bernadette says that she is tough, but that she isn't a bully. Her dad always taught her to stand up for herself. Penny replied that there is a difference between being tough and telling your friend that her new pants look like a saggy diaper. Bernadette said that to Penny, who felt self-conscious enough to return the pants. "Did she return them to Babies 'R' Us?" Bernadette snaps back. She did it again. Bernadette wants to leave since she thinks that everybody hates her. People find her quite intimidating and she just has to show them how sweet she is. Penny insists that they are going to stay and fix this situation together even though her dress is ugly.

Sheldon finishes his final episode throwing a salute to all his "flag-keteers." He wishes he could run them all up a flagpole and salute them. He thanks Amy and mentions that she is the first woman to co-host a flag or banner-related Internet show. Amy adds, "Take that, glass ceiling" Sheldon gets very sentimental as he signs off using his white flag as a handkerchief. Amy says that she thinks his sign-off was beautiful and all Sheldon can do is again ask her if she hit the record button.

Professor Sharpe's office is now empty. As the guys are throwing out the last of his files, Leonard sighs that that is the end of Roger Abbott. Raj adds that they never found out who framed him. Not everyone achieves something great in their lives. Some people just have to concentrate on the small moments that make up their lives, muses Howard; however, he doesn't have to worry about that because he went into "space".  Since the leftover bottle of champagne was meant to celebrate a great discovery, the guys decide to open it when one of them makes one. They will toast Professor Abbot, celebrate their achievement and also rub their success in Sheldon's face. Everyone agrees that that would be the best part.

Penny and Bernadette approach Dan at the bar so she can apologize. Dan is nervous talking to her. Bernadette is sorry that she yelled at his grandson. Dan tells her not to worry about it. Then she adds that Penny says that everybody is afraid of her. Dan nervously asks why anybody would say that. Bernadette plans on being more sensitive toward people in the future.  Fine. Dan then tells her that the company is going to stop paying for everybody's coffee and that it started five months ago. No one wanted to tell her and everyone else has been paying for Bernadette's coffee by using the money from their "Profanity Swear Jar". They also gave her a private bathroom due to her attitude. Bernadette feels terrible and thinks that everyone sees her as a monster. Dan quips that she is like the cute one eyed one (Mike) from "Monsters, Inc".  Bernadette breaks into tears and says that she wants to quit, but Penny says that the company needs her. Dan tells her that they will still pay for her coffee or even better get her an espresso machine. Bernadette sobs that that would be nice AND has found a new way to get what she wants.


Bernadette upset on how others perceive her.

Leonard returns home late with the bottle of champagne. Sheldon is hunched over his laptop not getting any comments on his last FWF episode. Sheldon feels that his efforts were for nothing, not unlike Leonard throwing out all of Professor Abbot's life's work which showed no significant accomplishments. Sheldon tells Leonard that he doesn't know how he feels. Sad? Then Sheldon realizes that Leonard does get his attitude. Then one short note arrives to his website that someone was sorry FWF had ended. "The people are heartbroken!"  Sheldon is going to bring the series back. He wants to celebrate and opens up the 50 year old bottle even though the guys had other plans for it. He didn't want to drink it, he just wanted to hear the pop, though it still scared him.

Finally, Sheldon visits LeVar's house knocking the usual three times. He wants LeVar to know that the show is back and LeVar can be his first guest. Wil Wheaton had told him to get a gate. Since LeVar was born in Germany would he like to help with an episode on German flags? And would he mind dressing up as a swastika? The door] is slammed in his face.



  • Title Reference: When the guys find a bottle of champagne left by a deceased colleague for a never made great discovery, they reflect on their own work and legacies.
  • Taping date: November 11, 2014
  • This episode was watched by 14.61 million people with a rating of 4.1 (adults 18–49).
  • Total viewers including DVR users 19.91 million.
  • The Big Bang Theory was ranked #2 for the week ending 23 November 2014.
  • This episode aired in Canada on November 20, 2014, with 4.103 million viewers with a weekly ranking of #1.
  • In Australia, it aired on February 24, 2015, with 0.92 million viewers.
  • Chuck Lorre Vanity Card
  • Episode transcript [1]
  • Chuck Lorre's vanity card [2]


  • Jesse Schedeen for IGN - Every so often it's nice to get a reminder that The Big Bang Theory can be serious and introspective...They were tasked with cleaning out the office of one Professor Roger Abbot, a man who accumulated plenty of notes and journals but apparently achieved nothing of note in his long career...Leonard's ultimate epiphany was trite but true - all anyone can really do is “find meaning in the little moments that make up life.”..Sheldon and Amy were the real pinch-hitters when it came to humor this week...The montage of past shows was especially enjoyable. It's not every week you see Sheldon decked out in full Betsy Ross regalia and lambasting the mythologized American icon. Even better - that scene of Sheldon and Amy wearing old-time bathing suits and discussing the merits of purple lifeguard flags...Unfortunately, the Penny/Bernie subplot lagged behind the rest as the writers seemed to go out of their way to make Bernie seem unlikable and cruel. [3]
  • Dhruv Rao of The DR Club (A-) - "I knew this episode had a lasting effect when I often ignored the comedy in the A-plot and focused on what Leonard was trying to argue: the poignancy of a life that amounts to nothing. The thought process that this plot evoked was remarkable, and that's why I commend the writers for writing such a refined episode. Furthermore, I appreciate the balance in the episode between light-hearted humor and plots like these. The B- and C-plot provide for the former, and they do their job well, as the episode can easily be categorized as one of a sitcom."
  • IMDb user reviews [4]


  • Fourth appearance of "Fun With Flags". Sheldon never admitted to himself the series is unpopular and he only had one viewer.
  • Howard muses that not everyone does something great with his life, but it's not him because he has been in outer space. Raj also achieved something great earlier in the show where he discovered a planetary body.
  • Sheldon shares no scenes with Howard, Penny, Raj and Bernadette in this episode.
  • Clips of previously unseen episodes of "Fun with Flags" are viewed.
    • Barry Kripke only appears in two of these clips in this episode.
  • The signs at the company banquet again indicate that the name of Bernadette and Penny's company is Zangen.
  • Originally Sheldon had said on the first episode of "Fun with Flags" that the series would last a year, though it ended after nearly two years and 232 episodes (233 had Amy remembered to press "Record" on the Fourth of July special).
  • The third appearance of LeVar Burton on The Big Bang Theory, the second most of a celebrity who plays a version of himself.
  • Leonard is the only character to appear in more than two locations and he shares no scenes with the three girls (Bernadette, Amy and Penny) in this episode
  • Bernadette and Penny share no scenes with Amy and the usual four men (Sheldon, Leonard, Howard and Raj) in this episode.
  • Amy shares no scenes with Raj, Penny, Leonard, Bernadette and Howard in this episode.
  • The taping date of this episode is the same day that Carol Ann Susi (A.K.A. the voice of Mrs. Debbie Wolowitz) lost her battle with cancer, and passed away.


Leonard: It still feels weird just throwing away his work like this.
Howard: Don’t feel bad. Someday, someone will be throwing your work away too.
Leonard: That someone was Sheldon and the day was yesterday. Hey, look at this. “Dear Roger. To be opened upon your first great discovery. Love, Mom.” Wow, look at the date. He saved this 50 years and never got to open it.
Howard: That’s intense.
Raj: Poor Roger Abbot.
Howard: (cracking up and beginning to laugh) Roger Abbot sounds just like Roger Rabbit.
Raj: (saying the name until realizing Howard is right) Roger Abbot, Roger Abbot, (cracking up) Roger Rabbit... Oh my God, Leonard. I know he's dead, but try it. It's fun!
(Raj continues to do it while Howard laughs)

Dan: Oh, good. Bernadette. Cute, sweet, vicious little Bernadette.

Amy: Say Betsy Ross. What you working on?
Sheldon: (high-pitched voice) I have no idea. Because the story of me sewing the first American flag is unsupported poppycock.
Amy: Then who did it sew it? Hmm?
Sheldon: (high-pitched voice) Don’t ask me. I’m just a simple seamstress whose descendants are (normal voice) out to make a quick buck.

Penny: So, Dan, you have a grandson. How old is he?
Dan: Seven.
Bernadette: Oh, yeah. I remember him from the picnic. He was the one crying like a wuss the whole time.
Penny: I heard he was being picked on by a mean kid.
Bernadette: Just builds character. Like my dad said, nobody likes a crybaby except mommies and Democrats.
Dan: I need another drink. (walks away)
Bernadette: (to Penny) What’s his problem?
Penny: (sarcastically) Oh, I don’t know. Maybe he didn’t like the fact that you called his grandson a wuss.
Bernadette: (now annoyed) Well, I didn’t think you were supposed to say sissy anymore.

Penny: OK, look, I know what a good person you are, but sometimes people think you might come off a little harsh.
Bernadette: (now offended) What? I’m like the sweetest person I know. Look at me. I should be in a tree baking cookies.
Penny: Yes, but once in a while people think you’re a little mean.
Bernadette: (suspiciously) Oh yeah? You one of those people? 
Penny: No, no, no, no. I think the cookie thing.
(Both Penny and a still angry Bernadette pick up their glasses).

Sheldon: Welcome back. Our guest today is a returning fan favorite. He puts the reading in your rainbow, the Geordi in your LaForge and the Kunte in your Kinte. Mr. LeVar Burton.
LeVar Burton: Thank you Sheldon. Now remember our deal.
Sheldon: You do this, I delete the contact information...
LeVar Burton: While…
Sheldon: While you watch me do it.
LeVar Burton: Great. Happy to be back.
Sheldon: Well, since you’re here I’d like to get your opinion on something. In honor of Black History Month I portrayed George Washington Carver in a loving tribute that my roommate called “wildly racist”. What do you think?
Recorded Sheldon: Hi. My name is George.
LeVar Burton: (offended by the video) Oh, hell no.
Sheldon: You heard him Leonard. No, it’s not racist.

(The scene at the conference room at Zangen)
Bernadette: (still offended) I am not a bully. I mean, maybe I come off a little strong, but that’s only because my dad raise me to be tough and not take any crap from anybody.
Penny: No, that’s fine, but there’s a difference between being tough and telling your friend her new pants look like a saggy diaper.
Bernadette: (feels guilty) I did say that, didn't I?
Penny: Yeah, you did. I felt so self-conscious that I had to return them.
Bernadette: (sarcastically) Where? To Babies R Us?
Penny: (offended) You’re doing it again.
Bernadette: (now guilty again) Sorry. Can we just go? I feel like everybody hates me.
Penny: Oh, come on. They don’t hate you, all right. They’re just a little intimated. All you need to do is show everyone how sweet you really are.
Bernadette: I think I rather go.
Penny: No, come on, we’re not going anywhere. I am here for you and we’re going to fight this together.
Bernadette: Thank you.
Penny: Even though your dress is ugly.
(Bernadette glares at Penny in offense)

Sheldon: Well my little flag-keteers. It looks like the last episode of “Fun with Flags” is at an end. If I could I would run each and every one of you viewers up a flagpole and salute you. And if you touched the ground, burn you. I’d like to take a moment to personally thank Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler who you may or may not know is the first woman to co-host a flag or banner-related Internet info-tainment show.
Amy: Take that, glass ceiling.
Sheldon: And if I may get serious for a moment, hosting this show has been one crazy ride. With all its ups and downs I wouldn't give it up for the world. Except for now when I’m giving it up. Before I sign off I’d like to share with you one last use for a white flag. It’s good for times like this. (Crying.) Good night.
Amy: [stops filming] Cut. Sheldon, that was beautiful.
Sheldon: If you didn't press record….
Sheldon: [slightly recoils in surprise]

Leonard: Well, that it’s it. That’s the end of Roger Abbott.
Raj: And we still don’t know who framed him.
Leonard: I still keep thinking about how an entire life seemingly amounts to nothing.
Howard: I guess the truth is not everyone will accomplish something great. Some of us may just to have to find meaning in the little moments that make up life.
Leonard: That’s a nice way of looking at it.
Howard: Yeah for you, not for me. I went to space. I’m covered.

Bernadette: Dan, could I talk to you for a minute?
Dan: Sure, go ahead.
Bernadette: Just want you to know I didn’t mean to be rude about your grandson.
Dan: No, it’s okay.
Bernadette: No, it’s not. Penny told me that everyone’s scared of me.
Dan: What? What? Why would she say that? You know she drinks, right?
Penny: What?
Bernadette: No, she’s right, and I just want you to know that from now on, I’m gonna be much more sensitive. I don’t want anyone walking on eggshells around me.
Dan: Oh, well, okay, then, uh, one thing I’ve been meaning to tell you is that the company is gonna stop paying for our coffee.
Bernadette: No problem. When does that start?
Dan: Five months ago.
Bernadette: What?
Dan: Yeah.
Bernadette: Who’s been paying for my coffee?
Dan: All of us.
Penny: Yeah. It comes from the swear jar we put money in when you curse.
Bernadette: What else don’t I know about?
Penny: Uh, well, you know your private bathroom?
Bernadette: Yeah?
Penny: That was supposed to be for the whole floor.
Bernadette: You’re kidding.
Dan: No, no. It’s okay. It only really affected Wheelchair Kathy, and she’s back in the hospital now, so it all worked out.
Bernadette: (sadly and softly) I feel so bad.
Penny: Well, then, maybe you shouldn’t have named her Wheelchair Kathy.
(Dan nods his head)
Bernadette: (almost in tears) Oh, my God. I thought everybody liked me, but I’m just a monster!
Dan: But a cute one, like that, uh, eyeball guy in Monsters, Inc.
Bernadette: (she is now crying) No, I’m the worst! I’m a terrible person!
Dan: Come on, don’t cry. It’s okay.
Bernadette: (she is still crying) It’s not okay! How can I even work here anymore?
Penny: Because this company needs you.
Dan: It’s fine. We don’t mind paying for the coffee.
Bernadette: (she's now in even more tears) I can’t let you do that.
Dan: Maybe we could get you an espresso machine for your office.
Bernadette: (she weeps even harder) I guess that would be all right.
Penny: See? You don’t have to be mean to get what you want.
Bernadette: (she continues crying) You’re right. Now where did we land on my bathroom?
(Both Dan and Penny put on their thinking expressions)



  • [5] Taping Report by MichyGeary