TV

End of an era as The Big Bang Theory goes out with a bang

NEW YORK: Peopled by geeks making physics references, The Big Bang Theory, whose finale episode airs today in the US, seemed destined at first to appeal to only a niche audience.

But as the sitcom reaches its conclusion, it has become one of the top five most-watched series in the world.

Focused on whether characters Sheldon Cooper and Amy Farrah Fowler will win the Nobel prize, the show is going out on top as it wraps up its 12th and final season.

The Big Bang Theory has carved its place at the top of US television, with more than 17 million viewers for much of the current season, including delayed watchers - similar levels to Game Of Thrones, which comes to a close on May 19.

Though it differs from most shows in its popularity and subject matter, the series still relies on a variety of tried-and-true sitcom conventions: The episodes, shot on multiple cameras, are made up of a series of punchlines interspersed by a laugh track, some of it edited in later (the show is filmed in front of a studio audience).

The end of the series, which coincides with the end of ABC's Modern Family, which will finish with its 11th season next year, marks the end of an era for the genre.

Sitcoms on traditional networks, such as Big Bang spin-off Young Sheldon and Mom, also the work of Big Bang creator Chuck Lorre, just do not bring in the same audience numbers.

By 2020, the classic sitcom will be absent from nearly every major streaming platform, including Amazon and Hulu. - AFP

TV