After its landmark 200th episode, CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory” will continue with Season 9, episode 11 on March 10. Despite taking a week off, the gang is ready to get back into the swing of things as they seek a little legal guidance in “The Application Deterioration.” 

With the fun of Sheldon’s birthday party finally wearing off, the gang gets down to serious business as Howard (Simon Helberg), Sheldon (Jim Parsons) and Leonard (Johnny Galecki), seek a patent for their infinite persistence gyroscope, according to a plot synopsis from CBS. Meanwhile, the emotional stakes will be raised as well when Raj (Kunal Nayyar) gets a message from Emily (Laura Spencer) following their recent breakup. He’ll need the help of his best gal pals, Amy (Mayim Bialik), Bernadette (Melissa Rauch) and Penny (Kaley Cuoco), to guide him through the awkward encounter. 

Previously, Raj began having second thoughts about his girlfriend when a new love interest made her way into his life. That was around the same time that Bernadette and Howard revealed that they were expecting their first child together. Now, with his sense of responsibility turned up to 11, he’ll have to make sure that he wants to engage in a legal business relationship with the often wacky Sheldon and Leonard. 

It makes perfect sense for Howard to be the skittish one in this partnership. With a baby on the way, he’s dealing with levels of responsibility his friends can only dream of, and, according to showrunner Steve Molaro, it will stay that way. 

Speaking to TV Line, the showrunner explained that Howard and Bernadette will be able to take care of a child without drastically changing the makeup of the show, but that the same can’t be said for the other hot couple on the series, Leonard and Penny. 

“Realistically, if Penny and Leonard had a baby, that baby would start to alter the DNA of the show a lot more dramatically than Howard and Bernadette’s.” 

That quote, coupled with the fact that Sheldon and Amy still aren’t having sex more than once a year, means that “The Big Bang Theory” is in no real danger of becoming a family-centric sitcom any time soon. However, given the episode 18 plot synopsis, it does look like the spectre of a baby will loom large over both the show and Howard’s decisions.