The Sheldon-Amy relationship has been one of the best -- if not the best -- part of "The Big Bang Theory" for several seasons now. Jim Parsons and Mayim Bialik are always excellent at navigating the romantic fumblings of their awkward characters. But on Thursday's (Nov. 19) episode, it was some of their finest work to date.

In the episode, Sheldon and Amy try being "just friends" because they have tickets to the aquarium for Thanksgiving -- and no one else wants to go, because who wants to spend Thanksgiving in an aquarium with Sheldon?

Well, Amy does, and she has such a great time with Sheldon that it reminds her of all the good things between them. In the show's final scene, she calls him up and nervously says, "I really enjoyed spending this morning with you. I was thinking that maybe I'm ready to be your girlfriend again."

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Then Sheldon, in a massive display of how much his character has managed to grow over the eight years the show has been on the air, responds by telling Amy he can't.

"Amy, I excel at many things, but getting over you wasn't one of them," he says. "I think I need to just be your friend."

Amy says she understands, as she swallows hard and chokes back tears. It was both a tremendous moment for Sheldon and a heartbreaking one for Amy.

Of course, since CBS spilled the beans about Amy and Sheldon consummating their relationship in three weeks, viewers know that reconciliation can't be far off. But still -- "The Platonic Permutation" was really, really well done.

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."