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The Big Bang Theory Moments That People Think Went Too Far

"The Big Bang Theory" was mostly a good-natured show, but sometimes it veered into uncomfortable territory, especially in its earlier seasons. As the characters got older and coupled up, a lot of the show's edgiest humor waned, but sometimes, the jokes could be pretty risqué... and even offensive.

There are many moments on "The Big Bang Theory" that fans think went too far with how bawdy or edgy they were. The socially inept characters often did things that crossed the line from awkwardly funny to straight-up creepy — like the time Raj (Kunal Nayyar) took an ecstasy-like anti-anxiety drug that removed his inhibitions to the point that he took all his clothes off and propositioned a woman in a coffee shop. There was the time Sheldon (Jim Parsons) had an extremely inappropriate conversation with his lab assistant Alex (Margo Harshman) about her attraction to Leonard (Johnny Galecki). Beyond those, don't forget about time Sheldon got drunk and did an ill-advised stand-up comedy routine in front of a room of unamused scientists.

But there are two plotlines of "The Big Bang Theory" that stand out among fans as going too far, according to a survey conducted by Looper.

People think Amy's smoking monkey was too much

25.75% of survey respondents think the time Amy (Mayim Bialik) gave cigarettes to a nicotine-addicted monkey she brought home from her lab went too far. Apparently, most people just don't find animal cruelty particularly funny.

In the Season 4 episode "The Agreement Dissection," Sheldon goes to Amy's apartment and meets Ricky, a monkey who's sitting on a table and chain-smoking Amy explains that he's part of the neurobiology department's nicotine addiction study, and she brought him home because she wants him to have a pleasant time while she's killing him. "I'm giving him emphysema; the least I can do is let him hang out and watch cable," she says. Ricky deliberately blows smoke at Sheldon, because "he's kind of an a**," according to Amy. Amy wasn't giving cigarettes to a monkey for her own entertainment; she was doing scientific research. But she's still knowingly and willingly subjecting a monkey to a slow, painful death, and that's going too far. Just because science can doesn't mean science should.

Howard regularly went too far

Amy's smoking monkey isn't the thing fans hated on "The Big Bang Theory." The thing more people think went too far on "The Big Bang Theory" is Howard's (Simon Helberg) treatment of women in general. Creepy Howard slightly edged out Amy's smoking monkey in the poll, garnering 26.87% of the vote.

In the early seasons of "The Big Bang Theory" — before Howard gets together with Bernadette (Melissa Rauch) and settles down — he aggressively chases women to an off-putting, stalkerish degree... especially Penny (Kaley Cuoco), who he's obsessed with early in the show's run despite her having zero interest in him. There are so many examples of Howard's gross behavior toward women that it's hard to pick out the exact ones that stand out more than others, but we can think of a few. There was the time it was revealed that he once put a webcam in a teddy bear and gave it to Penny so he could spy on her in her apartment. That was probably the creepiest thing he's ever done.

"The Big Bang Theory" started in 2007, and while that wasn't that long ago, cultural attitudes have changed so much that Howard's harassment couldn't be depicted as harmless and funny today. Honestly, it's surprising that the results were even this close, because Howard went too far so often in such uncomfortable ways.