2Social Drinking Dominates Society

A wine glass is not big enough for Penny’s relationship with wine! By bigbangtheory.wikia.com.

Social drinking dominates society in the United States. It might even be more prevalent than the “drinking to get drunk” movement. You either drink socially or you know someone who does. A glass of wine at dinner, or a beer for the big game tonight.

The Big Bang Theory has its share of drinkers. Raj drinks out of necessity in circumstances that place him in front of women. Bernadette and Amy are seen having drinks on occasion. But the drinker buzz on the show is really about one character in particular: Penny.

A Problem or Social Construct?

Penny consults Bernadette for advice over a glass of wine by hypable.com.

Many fans notice that Penny is often times seen drinking. Sheldon even rated her relationship with wine above her relationship with Leonard at one point. But does this mean that she is a drunk or that there is something else going on?

Penny comes from a group of people who get together and drink a lot for fun. Being the hot popular girl comes with the standard that you always have the best alcohol on hand. Whenever you entertain you have a wine glass nearby. That is the lifestyle she is used to.

When Penny is confronted with a totally new social group, she does not fit in, in more than one way. Her idea of a social get together is to grab a glass of something with alcohol. This is what we often times see when she is with her friends, though sometimes when she is alone as well. To her, alcohol has always been how she gained social acceptance, and so she turns to her old friend when she finds herself attempting to fit in with a new social circle.

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Laura Scroggins

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