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The Big Bang Theory's Courtney Ford Has A Real-Life Connection To A Superman

Superhero references are a dime a dozen in "The Big Bang Theory," but sometimes the joke goes beyond simply mentioning a certain hero for a laugh. In fact, there's one particular Superman-related gag in the show that has a deeper meaning only fans in the know will recognize.

Season 5, Episode 7, titled "The Good Guy Fluctuation," features a guest appearance from "Dexter" actor Courtney Ford. The installment features the performer as a comic book fan named Alice, whom Leonard (Johnny Galecki) strikes up a brief romance with. At one point in the episode, Alice flirts with Leonard by joking that her Kryptonian father has forbidden her from using her powers for evil. It's a pretty typical line for "The Big Bang Theory," and most viewers won't pick up on the fact that it's an in-joke, as Ford actually has a real-life connection to a major Superman actor.

As it happens, Ford is married to Brandon Routh, who played Superman in the 2006 movie "Superman Returns" and later reprised the role as part of the Arrowverse's "Crisis on Infinite Earths" TV event. Ford and Routh married in 2007, nearly four years prior to the release of "The Good Guy Fluctuation" in 2011. With this in mind, having Ford's character on "The Big Bang Theory" make a reference to the Superman mythos is almost certainly an intentional choice, resulting in a clever little Easter egg for diehard "Big Bang Theory" and Superman fans to uncover.

Ford has joined the DC universe as well

Courtney Ford's connection to the DC universe actually runs a fair bit deeper than simply being married to one of Superman's live-action actors. In fact, she actually joined the franchise as well by way of her status as a recurring cast member on The CW's "DC's Legends of Tomorrow." In the series, Ford portrays Nora Darhk, the daughter of the villainous Damien Darhk (Neal McDonough). While she starts out as something of an antagonist herself, she eventually comes around and joins the forces of good.

Of course, fans of "Legends of Tomorrow" know that one of its most popular cast members is none other than Brandon Routh. However, instead of reprising his legacy role as Superman, he instead plays Ray Palmer, aka The Atom, for the majority of the show. Over the course of the series, Ray and Nora forge their own romance, mirroring the fact that the two actors playing the characters are a real-life couple. As to be expected, there are plenty of veiled references to Routh's time as Superman peppered throughout.

In truth, Ford is just one of the various "The Big Bang Theory" cast members who eventually joined the DC universe. She shares this distinction with "Titans" actor April Bowlby and "Harley Quinn" star Kaley Cuoco, just to name a few.