The Big Bang Theory: Season 5, Episode 9

The Ornithophobia Diffusion (10 Nov. 2011)

TV Episode  |  TV-14  |   |  Comedy
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Sheldon tries to overcome his fear of birds, while Leonard and Penny attempt to hang out together strictly as friends.



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A blue jay perched on his apartment window ledge is too much for ornithophobic Sheldon to handle. As no one - even the authorities (gasp) - seems to want to help him shoo away the bird, a scared Sheldon does whatever he can to get rid of the bird in any way he can. He turns to his two biologist friends, Amy and Bernadette, who try to help him get him over his fear. Their attempts have unexpected results. Meanwhile, Penny asks Leonard if he wants to go see a movie with her. He realizes that Penny's invitation is not a date, despite he deep down wanting it to be. But once he gets over the notion that this event is not a date, Leonard is able to relax and enjoy his time out, even more than when they were actually dating. As Leonard makes it abundantly clear to Penny that it not being a date has its own consequences, Penny decides to take her own actions to prove to Leonard that it is indeed not a date. Written by Huggo

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Release Date:

10 November 2011 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


The blue jay in the episode is actually a black-throated magpie-jay, another member of the blue jay family and closely related to the blue jay. See more »


Leonard notes that he and Penny haven't spent time alone together since they broke up, though they spent an evening painting each others nails and reminiscing in "The Staircase Implementation". And they also had sex after she and Doug broke up in "The Lunar Excitation". See more »


Sheldon Cooper: [talking to a blue jay] If you were a dove, I'd call you Lovey Dovey. Oh, who am I kidding? This isn't a moment for strict adherence to the literal. You're just my Lovey Dovey, aren't you?
Amy Farrah Fowler: Guess you gotta have hollow bones to get some sugar around here.
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Crazy Credits

CHUCK LORRE PRODUCTIONS, #366 [Image of a cluttered desk containing a Mac SE, a glass of bourbon, dirty ashtrays, pencils, erasers, etc.] This photograph was my vanity card when I was working on Grace Under Fire and Cybill. I remember deciding on its composition by asking myself what were some of my favorite things. The answer, as you can see in the picture, was tobacco, bourbon and an old Mac computer. Eighteen years later, I still love my Mac. The other two items, despite my eternal affection, have been replaced with a bronchial inhaler and a metal folding chair in a church basement. See more »


The Big Bang Theory Theme (Instrumental)
Composed and Performed by Barenaked Ladies
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User Reviews

See Leonard and Penny go out as friends in "The Ornithophobia Diffusion" ep of "The Big Bang Theory"
24 November 2011 | by (Baton Rouge, La.) – See all my reviews

Penny asks Leonard to a movie but since they've broken up, it's only as friends. Leonard agrees since Sheldon is too busy trying to get rid of a bird he's afraid of. Since Leonard knows he's not going to have sex afterward, he picks the movie and makes Penny pay her share. Oh, and since Sheldon has failed to get rid of the bird, he enlists Amy and Bernadette to help him...This was another quite funny ep of "The Big Bang Theory" with some new behaviors on the Leonard and Penny front. It's interesting to see them trying to change personalities to impress new potential dates. And then there's the way Sheldon changes his attitude when it comes to a potential pet. All in all, "The Ornithophobia Diffustion" was another worthy episode of this still-funny enough series.

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