BigbangstMaybe you had to be a "Star Trek" geek as a kid, and it probably helps to have grown up with Caltech and JPL being places you visited on school field trips… but even if you didn’t mark time by the "star date" calendar or spend your formative years in Pasadena, you’ve gotta be able to get a giggle out of "The Big Bang Theory."

CBS/Warner Bros. TV comedy, created by Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady, is the frosh MVP of the tortured 2007-08 season, IMHO. Episode by episode, the ensemble is getting tighter and more playful, making the characters richer and, most important, funny. This is not one of those half-hours that is stingy with big, broad laughs, or more concerned with advancing soapy storylines than the pound-for-pound silliness of each episode.

Perhaps the buddy comedy’s biggest accomplishment has been making Kaley Cuoco’s Penny, the ditsy Bigbangpms_2 hot chick who moves in next door to the egghead Caltech-ers (played with aplomb by Johnny Galecki and Jim Parsons), more than a one-note punch line.

Producers are promising some extra-special hijinks for "Big Bang’s" May 19 season finale.

For a representative sample, spin this recent "Big Bang" seg, "The Bat Jar Conjecture," as pictured here. Hint: As always, keep your eye on the red shirts.

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