Inspired by the artwork, commentary, and
“.gif sets” of Big Bang Theory fans this morning, I decided to go right
ahead and reveal Sheldon Cooper’s not-best-kept secret:
He can’t keep a secret.
He managed, somehow, not to divulge the 20 minutes missing from his workday to Howard and Raj until the end of the episode, two or three BBT episodes ago, but I’ll chalk that up to “character development.” He certainly gave the two a good scare by the end, anyway.
Although, at the beginning of the series, Sheldon couldn’t keep a secret without careful deliberation and planning: big secrets, small secrets, unrequited secrets and “secrets” (i.e. Leonard telling Amy Sheldon isn’t home, when he’s sitting at his computer desk). He needed a backstory and the name of an Irish lass written on a bar napkin, lest he suffer more painful secret-keeping consequences. In dire situations, he’s even forced to spill The Secret to save his sanity, much to the displeasure of his friends and peers.
Fortunately, everyone seems to know Sheldon can’t withhold information. I think it’s easiest to refrain from pointing out what is and isn’t a secret—he doesn’t usually talk about irrelevant things. It’s the guilt that gets him.
Penny suffers the consequences in Season 2, when she tells Sheldon about her insecurities with her schooling and smarts. Sheldon might have been successful in his endeavor, if one valium-soaked sleepover didn’t make him loopy enough to blab at Leonard’s insistence…leading to a few of the character’s own one-line gems:
Leonard: “What secret? Tell me the secret!”
Sheldon: “…Mom smokes in the car. Jesus is okay with it, but we can’t tell Dad.”
Both Leonard and Amy had their turn trying to coax Sheldon to secret—usually about women, or Penny, I might add—but to no avail. We have yet to see Sheldon keep a successful secret…that is, one he considers a secret, anyway. There’s plenty we don’t know about the doctor as of yet. Hopefully, with the momentum of the current season, Sheldon will spill just a little bit more for the viewers.