The Big Bang Theory
Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Character Analysis

(Avoiding Spoilers)

Living... in an apartment in Pasadena, California. While she lives alone, Penny frequently freeloads food and wireless Internet from her next-door neighbors, Leonard and Sheldon. Her apartment is frequently in complete disarray, a fact that she doesn't seem to mind or even notice, really.

Profession... waitress. Penny moved to California from Omaha, Nebraska, with dreams of becoming a well-known actress. But like many others with such aspirations, she is currently working at a local restaurant.

Interests... she’s a "people person," enjoying spending most of her time out socializing with others. She associates mostly with a nerdy group of friends completely embedded in academia and science. Penny enjoys expanding their comfort zones and pushing them to be better at "normal" social interaction.

Relationship Status... complicated. Penny has been in an on-again, off-again relationship with her doctoral physicist neighbor Leonard for a few years now. They love each other, but Leonard often appears much more involved than Penny would like (at times even proposing marriage). She has dated other men in their time apart but always seems to end up with Leonard in the end, showing where her true feelings really lie. However, she does often express her frustration with their completely different personalities: "I need to go back to dating dumb guys from the gym..."

Challenge... proving her intellect. Having dropped out of community college, Penny provides a foil to her highly academic friends. She shows a lack of technical education but regularly trumps them in social skills and "street smarts," providing a level-headed perspective on their frequent problems that often can't be solved through their strict logical reasoning. Penny champions this more "base" level intellect, showing that there is more than one type of intelligence. Although her friends with genius-level IQs often look down on her, they regularly come to her for advice and insight.

Personality... easy-going and good-hearted. She prides herself on her social skills, vast knowledge of popular culture, and generally positive outlook. She does have a bit of a temper as well, mostly brought out when she feels intimidated or put down. That said, Penny can be relatively self-centered, but mostly in the sense of caring a lot about how she is perceived by others, focusing more on her external being than internal development. She is a good friend, though, offering a different and much needed perspective to the introverted group she spends time with. Penny is often able to humorously make light of their problems and cheer them up: "Oh, it's not so bad. You lost money, you're filled with shame, and you got groped by a stranger. That's Vegas. You nailed it."


Fans of her also like:

Find out how you match to her and 5500+ other characters