Post Mortems
Big Bang Theory Season 11

Big Bang Theory Premiere: EP Talks Amy's Answer, Bernadette's Surprise

The following story contains spoilers about Monday’s Big Bang Theory premiere — proceed at your own peril

“Shamy” fans can relax: She said yes.

Monday’s Season 11 premiere of The Big Bang Theory picked up right where the May finale left off, with Sheldon popping the question to a gobsmacked Amy. His long-suffering love of course accepted his proposal, setting the stage for what will certainly be one of television’s most unusual wedding ceremonies ever. But when will the duo tie the knot? (Remember: Big Bang has already been renewed through next season). 

The opener’s other major development was something of a repeat — Howard and Bernadette are expecting. Again. However, this time around, Mom and Dad are far less giddy about the stork’s impending delivery.

Below, new showrunner Steve Holland explains why he and his fellow EPs decided to incorporate Melissa Rauch’s real-life pregnancy into the show so soon after the Wolowitzes welcomed into the world their first child (daughter Halley). Holland also sheds a little light on Sheldon and Amy’s nuptial timeline.

TVLINE | Did you every consider having Amy say no to Sheldon?
We considered all the options. Our first thought was that she would say yes, but we threw the doors open wide and discussed every possibility. We [debated] whether finding out about the kiss would be enough to make her turn down the proposal. But it didn’t feel real to us. This is something she has been waiting for.

TVLINE | I don’t expect you to give me a wedding date, but can you say whether this will be a long or short engagement? 
[Sheldon and Amy] planning their wedding will certainly be an arc throughout the season. I can’t promise that we’ll see a wedding at the end of the season, but we’ll certainly be building towards a wedding.

TVLINE | What about an engagement party and bachelor/bachelorette parties? Are we getting all the trappings?
Those are stories we’re interested in telling. We’ve written about eight episodes so far this season, and… Sheldon is actually trying to make this wedding perfect but in his own Sheldon way: being super-controlling and having opinions about everything. It’s been fun watching the two of them compromise.

TVLINE | The other big development: Bernadette is pregnant again. Talk to me about the decision to incorporate Melissa Rauch’s real-life pregnancy into the show?
When Melissa told us she was expecting, which we were obviously so excited about, we started talking about the best way to handle it on the show. We could obviously hide it by putting her behind couches and counters and laundry baskets. But then we thought [a surprise second baby] could be a really interesting curveball to throw at Howard and Bernadette. It’s just so unexpected; it presents a lot of exciting story opportunities.

TVLINE | Their panic and uncertainty and ambivalence about the pregnancy provided some of the episode’s biggest laughs. How far — and how dark — can you take their unease on a traditional broadcast sitcom?
[Laughs] I think we tried to play that moment very real. This was not something they were planning, so it’s a bit of a punch. It’s going to take some time for them to come to terms with this.

TVLINE | Will Pamela Adlon voice this child, too?
We’re just starting to talk about that. It was so great to have Pam [voice] Halley, and such a nice nod to Carol Ann Susi, who played Mrs. Wolowitz. But I feel like we have to do something different the second time around. We can’t just repeat ourselves. We still have some time to figure it out. Bernadette’s not due until March.

TVLINE | Melissa’s maternity leave is going to fall in the middle of the season. How will you explain Bernadette’s absence?
We have fun ways to keep her included as much as we can. But, yes, she’ll be out for a few episodes.