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The Untold Truth Of Amy From The Big Bang Theory

When "The Big Bang Theory" first began, fans were instantly primed to focus on Leonard and Penny's romance. From the start, Leonard (Johnny Galecki) loves Penny (Kaley Cuoco), leaving the rest of the boys in the iconic friend group without love interests of their own. Raj (Kunal Nayyar) and Howard (Simon Helberg) were actively seeking love, and Howard met his eventual wife Bernadette (Melissa Rauch) early in Season 3. It wasn't until late Season 3, though, that Sheldon's eventual love interest, Amy Farrah Fowler, was introduced.

Amy (Mayim Bialik) was brought into the show specifically for Sheldon (Jim Parsons). She was virtually perfect for him. She's a neurobiologist who struggles socially and shares a disdain for ridiculous behavior — aspects Sheldon appreciates and shares in common. Though most of her initial storyline revolves around being Sheldon's love interest, Amy grows tremendously throughout the 10 seasons she's part of the show. She creates her own relationships with the other characters, dates outside of Sheldon, and finds success in her career.

In order to truly understand this wacky addition to "The Big Bang Theory" friend group, here's a look at some untold truths about Amy Farrah Fowler.

A previous engagement

Of course Amy's character was created for the purpose of giving Sheldon a love interest, but that doesn't mean she didn't have relationships of her own outside of Sheldon. During the show we see her go on a date with Stuart Bloom (Kevin Sussman) and have a brief fling with David Gibbs (Stephen Merchant). However, Amy also mentions to Sheldon that she used to be engaged to a Saudi Arabian prince in Season 4, Episode 15, "The Benefactor Factor." Amy tries to convince Sheldon that fundraising and campaigning for funding is a crucial job for all scientists. She tells Sheldon she received her funding after traveling to Saudi Arabia and meeting with a prince who had an interest in neurobiology.

When Sheldon becomes skeptical of this idea, she also tells him that the prince, Faisal, is technically her fiancé. Though this could be considered strange, Amy rationalizes it by remembering that she now has a state-of-the-art two-photon microscope and a place to stay if she travels to Riyadh for the winter. The engagement is never mentioned again, but clearly Amy ended it with Faisal once she gained more success and her official relationship with Sheldon.

She has some allergies

Though "The Big Bang Theory" talks a lot about Howard's peanut allergy and Sheldon's cat allergy, the other characters don't have large storylines regarding their allergies. That's why fans may forget that Amy has two specific ones that are canonically mentioned in the show: penicillin and avocado. First, in Season 5, Episode 12, "The Shiny Trinket Maneuver," Penny takes Sheldon to the jewelry store to try and help him find an apology gift for Amy after he ignored the fact that she made the cover of "Neuron," a prestigious science journal. When Penny asks if Amy likes bracelets, Sheldon tells her she's quite fond of the silver bracelet she wears that says "allergic to penicillin" on it. Though we don't see the bracelet or hear it from Amy, Sheldon reveals this hidden detail about the character.

Coincidentally, in Season 8, Episode 3, "The First Pitch Insufficiency," Sheldon also reveals Amy's second allergy, though she is present to confirm it. Amy, Sheldon, Penny, and Leonard all head to a pub to hang out. Amy asks Sheldon for a bite of his burger, and he says she's not allowed to have one. Upon criticism from Leonard, Sheldon tells the group that the burger has avocado on it, which Amy is allergic to.

She waited a long time for Penny's feelings

From Amy's first full season on the show in Season 4, she is adamant about her love and admiration for Penny. Even before Amy becomes a fully realized and developed character, she considers Penny her best friend. In Season 4, Episode 13, "The Love Car Displacement," Amy asks Penny to accompany her to a science convention where their friends are speaking. Penny says she has plans and can't attend, and Amy says she's disappointed — it would be a great bonding opportunity for them because Penny is her best friend. Penny seems to be confused, to which Amy responds that she's blogged about their best friendship.

Amy's feelings are crystal clear. However, as close as Penny and Amy are, it takes Penny a long time to be clear about her feelings — seven seasons, to be exact. In Season 11, Episode 12, "The Matrimonial Metric," Amy is searching for her maid of honor through a series of secret experiments. Of course, Bernadette and Penny find out about the experiments and are understandably frustrated, but it isn't until near the end of the episode that Penny realizes she's frustrated because Amy didn't just immediately ask her to be the maid of honor. Speaking to Leonard, she tries to play it off like she doesn't care about the best friend label, but realizes that Amy is her best friend and should've asked her. Penny storms into Amy's apartment and tells her that Amy is her best friend and that she's going to be her maid of honor. After seven seasons of waiting to hear this from Penny, Amy explodes in happiness and runs to hug Penny, screaming, "Bestie!"

First kiss fumble

Amy and Sheldon's relationship moves extremely slowly. Sheldon is obviously uncomfortable with the social aspect of romantic relationships, but he's even more uncomfortable with the physical aspect. That's why it takes three seasons of their relationship before Amy and Sheldon even have their first kiss in Season 7, Episode 15, "The Locomotive Manipulation." It comes in a fit of frustration from Sheldon after he feels he's been tricked by Amy into an evening of boundary-pushing romance. He kisses her to prove a point that romance isn't all it's cracked up to be, but once their lips meet, the awkwardness fades away into tenderness, and the audience sees a truly vulnerable moment between the characters.

However, though the onscreen kiss was very sweet and a huge milestone for the "Shamy" shippers, actor Mayim Bialik, who played Amy, told audiences of the offscreen ick factor. In an interview with TBS, Bialik said the episode was one of her favorites because of the kiss, but in real life, Sheldon's Jim Parsons had a raging case of the flu. In between takes, Bialik had to wash her mouth out with peroxide to keep herself healthy, and it evidently worked because she didn't end up getting sick. Even though the pair were dealing with the flu snafu, the moment still read to audiences as sweet and tender.

Mayim Bialik is similar to Amy

Amy is quite the accomplished woman and a brilliant neurobiologist. In real life, Amy's portrayer, Mayim Bialik, shares a lot of the same attributes, not least the fact that they both have a Ph.D. in neuroscience. Bialik started in acting, though, starring in the sitcom "Blossom" that ran for five seasons.

In an op-ed for the New York Times, Bialik wrote about how she left the entertainment industry because she "craved being around people who valued me more for what was inside my brain than what was inside my bra." She continued to talk about how she was constantly berated in reviews of "Blossom" for her appearance, and that the incessant stress made her want to leave the industry altogether. She also said "after 12 years away from Hollywood, I returned to acting, largely because I had no health insurance and missed performing and making people laugh."

Mayim Bialik was mentioned before playing Amy

"The Big Bang Theory" sits at an intersection between entertainment and science, so it's only natural the writers would think of Mayim Bialik, who created a name for herself in both industries. Bialik starred in TV's "Blossom" for five seasons between 1991 and 1995. After "Blossom” ended, she left Hollywood to pursue a Ph.D. and career in neuroscience. This fact was referenced very early in "The Big Bang Theory," before Bialik signed on as Amy.

In Season 1, Episode 13, "The Bat Jar Conjecture," the boys form a team for the annual physics bowl. After practicing together, Leonard, Raj, and Howard all become frustrated with Sheldon, and decide to kick him off of the team. While the three boys are discussing who their fourth teammate will be, Raj suggests Bialik without directly naming her, saying, "You know who's apparently very smart is the girl who played TV's 'Blossom.' She got a Ph.D. in neuroscience or something." However, the idea is short-lived, as Leonard shuts him down quickly in favor of one of their Caltech colleagues.

Raj and Howard were the secret to Sheldon and Amy's success

Many people forget that Sheldon and Amy actually met through an online dating service — mostly because it seems unheard of that either character would ever use one. Because Sheldon was so focused on his work and had an aversion to romantic relationships, Raj and Howard had to serve as the catalyst for "Shamy." In Season 3, Episode 23, "The Lunar Excitation," Raj and Howard decide to sign Sheldon up for an online dating service as an experiment to see if they can find a match. Their experiment pans out and the service matches Sheldon with Amy, whom the boys email to set up a meeting with her. When they tell Sheldon, he's extremely skeptical at first, assuming Raj and Howard have no idea how to answer the questions the way he would, but they eventually convince him based on blackmail and experimental curiosity.

Of course we know why Sheldon was signed up, but when Sheldon and Amy meet it's clear she wouldn't sign up for a dating service of her own accord. She explains to him that she's only there because she told her mother she would date once per year. Both of them are awkward and unwilling at the beginning of the meeting, and have very similar personalities and verbiage. However, Sheldon really gets hooked when Amy mentions that she won't be engaging in most physical activity with him, including coitus. Amy's similarity to Sheldon and the reason she signed up for the dating service make them an instant match.

The Amy and Sheldon episode that broke a record

In Mayim Bialik's interview with TBS, she talks about her favorite episodes of "The Big Bang Theory." One such episode is Season 9, Episode 11, "The Opening Night Excitation," when Amy and Sheldon have sex for the first time — or as they call it, "coitus." Seeing as their relationship begins in Season 4, it seems a long time coming to get to their first time having sex five seasons later. The episode has Sheldon trapped in a mental war of wanting to go to the opening night of the new "Star Wars" movie, but feeling obligated to spend Amy's birthday with her because they're in a relationship. He asks for Penny and Bernadette's help in selecting a gift for Amy, and one of the options is coitus. The girls ruin the surprise for Amy and take her to get waxed.

Once Amy and Sheldon are together and make the move to have sex, the whole scene is adorable. They are tender and nervous and everything goes really well. Not only did it go well for the characters, but the show itself experienced a record-breaking episode. According to MensXP and "The Big Bang Theory" Twitter, "The Opening Night Excitation" broke the Guinness World Record for the largest live audience in primetime television with 24 million people tuning in to watch Amy and Sheldon take this step in their relationship. Of this episode, Bialik said to TBS, "Coitus. I can't make a list and not have this episode in there. What an unexpected sweet tender way for this couple to have this kind of intimacy. It felt so vulnerable even as an actor. And this episode set a record I believe for most viewed show in primetime. Big scene indeed!"

She's obsessed with Neil Diamond -- and Simon Helberg

Amy has close individual relationships with most of the friend group, but one character she has little screen time with is Howard. However, in Season 7, Episode 3, "The Scavenger Vortex," Amy and Howard are paired together for a scavenger hunt. Raj sets up a bunch of clues for the three sets of partners to figure out, and though Howard and Amy feel awkward at first being paired together, they quickly break the ice because of one musician: Neil Diamond. When trying to find common ground, the two discover they're both fans of the artist, and spend the rest of the episode singing "Sweet Caroline," "America," "Love on the Rocks," and "Cherry, Cherry," and they even buy tickets to an upcoming Neil Diamond concert.

In her interview with TBS, Mayim Bialik talked about how that episode was one of her favorites, but not because of Amy's love for Neil Diamond. Rather, the episode was extremely special because of Bialik's affection for Howard's actor, Simon Helberg. To TBS, Bialik said, "I am his biggest fan and I tell him that pretty much weekly. Singing with Simon was a highlight of 'TBBT' for me. He's so fun, he's so brilliant and I just hope I can somehow match his skills someday!" As it's one of the episodes that gives us more insight into Amy's likes, "The Scavenger Vortex" is definitely a highlight for Amy fans as well.

Her childhood and family relationships were complicated

Unlike Sheldon, whose family received their own spinoff ("Young Sheldon"), Amy is not close with her family. Her father and mother are in a loveless marriage and don't really spend any time with her. Amy has a strained relationship with her mother, who is constantly criticizing her, punishing her, and pushing her outside of her comfort zone. Amy's mom was played by Annie O'Donnell in Season 4, Episode 5, "The Desperation Emanation," in a quick Skype chat. Mrs. Fowler was then recast, with Kathy Bates taking over the role in Seasons 11 and 12.

According to Express UK, "The Big Bang Theory" showrunner Steve Holland explained it had nothing to do with O'Donnell's acting, but that creator Chuck Lorre had a close relationship with Bates, "and, well, how do you say no to bringing Kathy Bates on?" So even though we don't see a lot of Mr. and Mrs. Fowler throughout the show, the times we do see them are filled with the same caliber of awkwardness and hilarity as the audience's experiences with Amy.

As far as her childhood goes, Amy didn't have any friends other than the janitor at her high school. Her childhood was so lonely, in fact, that Mrs. Fowler paid Amy's cousin to go to the prom with her. The cousin didn't take the bait, however, and Amy was left to clean up after the event and share one dance with her mop. Even the janitor wasn't allowed to be her friend after his wife found out he was having lunch with her, because she was skeptical of him spending time with another woman. Without a close relationship with her family and any friends to speak of, "The Big Bang Theory" friend group is her first real taste of connection.

To ice skate or not to ice skate?

Throughout the show, Amy isn't known for being in favor of physical activity. From her initial aversion to physical intimacy to her inability to ride horses because of her narrow pelvis, Amy is much more of a brain-centered activities woman. This is proven in Season 8, Episode 12, "The Space Probe Disintegration," when Amy and Penny are trying to figure out something to do for fun and Penny suggests ice skating, but Amy says she's unable to ice skate because of her unnaturally brittle ankles. Because of her history with other physical struggles, this is easy for the audience to believe.

However, according to an article from Express UK, fans were quick to point out that this fact about Amy contradicts another episode. In Season 9, Episode 2, "The Separation Oscillation," Sheldon and Amy have broken up, and Sheldon is returning Amy's scarf from an ice skating date. To this, Amy responds, "You mean the night that I went ice skating and you stood at the rail Googling the symptoms of hypothermia?" It's unlikely that within the span of not even a full season Amy would've strengthened her brittle ankles, so it's been singled out by fans as a plot hole.

She stopped playing the harp because of real life car crash

We've already talked about how similar Amy and Mayim Bialik are, but another similarity comes from one of Amy's hobbies. Amy loves the harp; in fact, other than science and Sheldon, it's one of her greatest passions. To make the harp hobby more authentic, Bialik learned how to play the instrument for the role, according to Sylvia Woods Harp Center, who rented the harps to Bialik while she practiced.

However, fans might notice that Amy's harp playing dwindled as the show progressed, with that hobby being virtually written out. That was no accident; Amy stopped playing the harp in the show because Bialik struggled in real life. According to an article from The Hollywood Reporter, Bialik was in a car accident in 2012 and sustained injuries to her left hand and thumb, which limited her function in her hand, restricting her from playing the harp. It's never mentioned in the show why Amy is seen playing the harp less, but fans will know her car accident played a role in it being written out.

Amy and Sheldon had a child after the show ended

For "Shamy" fans who wondered what happened after Sheldon and Amy fell in love, got married, and won a Nobel Prize, "Young Sheldon" just might have the answers. Though "The Big Bang Theory" ends with the couple receiving the prestigious award, that's not the end of their love story. After "The Big Bang Theory" had primetime success, the franchise expanded with a spinoff show about Sheldon Cooper's childhood, "Young Sheldon," which features adult Sheldon actor Jim Parsons contributing a voiceover. Some details about Sheldon's life have been revealed through Parsons' lines, and because of his marriage to Amy, some of the details of her post-"Big Bang" life are revealed, too.

In "Young Sheldon" Season 4, Episode 1, "Graduation," Sheldon talks about how the graduation party he and his family attended was the best one they'd been to until his son's graduation. It's revealed that their child's name is Leonard, no doubt after both their best friend Leonard Hofstadter and Sheldon's idol and "Star Trek" actor Leonard Nimoy. Sheldon then says he wanted to name their son Leonard Nimoy Cooper, to which Mayim Bialik's Amy interjects and says "Be happy I let you name him Leonard." This episode not only brings back Amy and the witty banter between the couple, but it also shows that Amy and Sheldon's relationship is stronger than ever, with a child to continue their brilliant legacies.