Do not be deceived by outward appearances; Sheldon Cooper is a ladies’ man. Oddly, Penny cannot seem to stay away from him, and Sheldon finds female companionship in the form of Amy Farrah Fowler, but his way with the ladies does not end there. Have you seen the episode in which Sheldon Cooper steals Raj Koothrappali’s date?
In “The Grasshopper Experiement,” season 1, episode 8 of The Big Bang Theory, Raj Koothrappali is set up with Lalita Gupta by their respective parents. Both agree to the date because they want to get their parents off of their backs about the whole thing. Neither actually believes in the ultra traditional form of dating that hearkens back to conservative India.
Naturally, Raj is terrified of going on a date because he is the victim of selective mutism, and he cannot talk to women to save his life. Coincidentally, Penny decides to practice her bar-tending skills Sheldon, Leonard, Howard, and Raj, and through the “miracle” of a cocktail, Raj is suddenly able to talk to women. He is clearly aware of his weakness: “Ever since I was a little boy my father wanted me to be a gynaecologist like him. How can I be a gynaecologist, I can barely look a woman in the eye!”
Watch an excerpt from The Grasshopper Experiment and see what happens when Penny mixes geeks with alcohol.
The revelation gives Raj an idea: if he drinks on his date with Lalita Gupta, he will be able to talk to her. Penny suggests that they go to her restaurant so that she can keep an eye on him. Like spectators drawn to the scene of a horrific traffic accident, Leonard, Howard, and Sheldon all show up to watch what happens on Raj’s date.
But, when Sheldon sees Lalita for the first time, he is transfixed.
Sheldon: So, how’s Koothrappali d…. oh my Lord.
Sheldon: That’s Princess Punchali.
Leonard: I’m pretty sure her name’s Lalita.
Sheldon: No, no, Princess Punchali from The Monkey and the Princess.
Howard: Oh, yeah, I tried to watch that online, but they wanted a credit card.
Sheldon: It’s a children’s story.
Howard: Oh, no it isn’t.
Sheldon: When I was a little boy and got sick, which was most of the time, my mother would read it to me. It’s about an Indian princess who befriends a monkey, who was mocked by all the other monkeys because he was different. For some reason I related to it quite strongly.
Penny: I know the reason.
Leonard: We all know the reason. Sheldon, what are you getting at?
Sheldon: That woman looks exactly like the pictures of Princess Punchali in the book. How often does one see a beloved fictional character come to life?
A few minutes later, Sheldon approaches Lalita:
Sheldon: Forgive me your highness, for I am but a monkey, and it is in my nature to climb. I did not mean to gaze upon you as you comb your hair.
Lalita: I’m sorry?
Sheldon: You are the living embodiment of the beautiful Princess Punchali.
Lalita seems to blush and asks more about the Princess. Sheldon talks about lotus blossoms and her “ebony hair;” that “the gods fashioned her eyes out of the stars” and “roses were ashamed to bloom in the presence of her ruby lips.”
A few minutes later, Sheldon and Lalita leave together. The funniest part of the episode is the fact that Sheldon does not realize that what he has done is a faux pas in the realm of friendship. After a cursory apology, which is more than Leonard has ever gotten from him, Sheldon denies responsibility: “And may I point out she wouldn’t have asked me to go with her if you hadn’t been drunk and boring.”
Taking advantage of a drunk buddy’s date gone awry? With this a proof, maybe it is true that Sheldon Cooper is a ladies’ man!