Stars of The Big Bang Theory bid farewell to their characters in new interview videos, as the series comes closer and closer to its big finale.
The Big Bang Theory ends this spring with its 12th season. The show has been a staple of network TV for over a decade, and its stars have become some of the most beloved and highly-paid actors on the air. They have now grown up alongside their characters for a dozen seasons, and saying goodbye is not easy. In new footage from Entertainment Weekly's cover shoot with the actors, they try their best anyway.
Johnny Galecki, Kaley Cuoco and Jim Parsons — Leonard, Penny and Sheldon, respectively, joined the magazine for an interstellar cover shoot last week. The pictures show the stars apparently floating through outer space, and while they are smiling in the shots, they admitted that there are a lot of tears in their futures. Each one did their best to describe how much their respective characters have meant to them.
"I've been asked to say goodbye to Leonard," Galecki began, "but that's kind of impossible. These characters say in you, you know? Whether you want them there or not. They're in you on a cellular basis for the rest of your life. When it comes to him, I'm very happy about that."
Cuoco was nearly lost for words, addressing Penny directly in her interview. She told the character how much the last few years have meant to her, on the verge of emotional tears the entire time.
"Penny, that was the greatest character I'll ever play in my whole life, and I will never be the same," Cuoco declared. "I loved drinking with you, girl, and being the neighbor to these goofy guys, and... This character has changed my life, and this show has changed my life and I'll never forget it."
Finally, Parsons, too, spoke to Sheldon as if he were there, saying goodbye to the role that has defined much of the TV and pop culture landscape for years now. However, he seemed to agree with Galecki, suggesting that the character was a part of him now.
"Hello Sheldon, this is Jim here," he said gently. "I've helped bring you to life for 12 years now, and now it's time, I suppose, I'm supposed to say goodbye. So um, but you know what? I'll never be able to say goodbye completely, because, A: I helped make you, so I own part of you, and B: Playing you for this long will always be a part of who I am, and has cahnged me in some ways."
"I can't say it's made me smarter," Parsons joked. "Sorry. I'm not even sure it's made me a better person, because you really don't bring those kinds of qualities. I think that, if anything, I've helped you become a better person. But wait a minute, we were saying goodbye."
"You know what? I'll just, I'll see you around," Parsons finished. "You are on syndicated repeats on television all the damn time, so I can't avoid you, although you get to be free of me. Congrats."
The Big Bang Theory airs on Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.