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Kaley Cuoco's Partner Learned About Her Big Bang Theory Role In An Unexpected Way

When you consider the fact that "The Big Bang Theory" aired for a whopping twelve years and twelve seasons, it certainly seems as if you'd have to live under a rock to not be at least decently aware of it — and its stars, like Jim Parsons and Kaley Cuoco. Apparently, Cuoco's husband Tom Pelphrey didn't live under a rock at any point, but he did live in a remote location ... and he didn't know who she was.

In an interview with W Magazine, Pelphrey, also an actor, was asked if he'd ever watched "The Big Bang Theory," and he was unequivocal with his response: "Never." The story gets stranger from there, though — because Pelphrey says that when he brought Cuoco home to meet his family, they recognized her.

"Matter of fact, when I first brought Kaley to New Jersey to meet my family and friends, my mom's partner—who apparently was a 'Big Bang Theory' fan—was there, and he kept calling her Penny," Pelphrey said. "I had no clue what was going on. So I pulled Kaley aside, like, 'I'm sorry, I don't understand what's happening. Why does he keep calling you Penny?' She's like, 'That's my character in The Big Bang Theory.' I was completely unaware."

After that, Pelphrey apparently decided he should check out his wife's show. "I've watched a few episodes with her since, and, obviously, she's fantastic," he said.

Tom Pelphrey says living remotely left him unaware of Kaley Cuoco's massively successful show

To be fair to Tom Pelphrey, he did qualify his answer, saying he actually hadn't seen any of his wife's work at that point. "I hadn't seen Kaley in anything," he explained. "Look, I live in a cave. Before I met Kaley, I was living in upstate New York, on a dirt road, in the middle of the woods, without much Wi-Fi. She's brought me into modern times." Pelphrey then went on to point out that he and Cuoco live a relatively pastoral life in California because they have so many animals on their property, and welcomed a daughter in 2023. "We're up to six dogs, all rescues," Pelphrey told the outlet. "And now we have a beautiful little girl. A human to add to the mix."

As for Pelphrey, he's also an actor — and though he hasn't appeared in any huge sitcoms like "The Big Bang Theory," he's got a pretty solid resume. In 2017, Pelphrey played the role of Ward Meachum, childhood friend of Danny Rand (Finn Jones), and ended up joining the cast of the Netflix original series "Ozark" in 2020 as Ben Davis, brother to Laura Linney's Wendy Byrde who struggles with mental illness. Pelphrey also played a pivotal role on the 2023 HBO miniseries "Love & Death," and he has some major big-screen credits to his name as well. In 2020, Pelphrey joined Gary Oldman on David Fincher's biopic "Mank," playing Joseph L. Mankiewicz (younger brother of Oldman's main character Herman), and he appeared in the 2023 film "She Said," which tells the real-life story of the New York Times' ground-breaking exposé on Harvey Weinstein.

Kaley Cuoco spent 12 years on a huge sitcom — what has she been doing since?

As for Tom Pelphrey's wife Kaley Cuoco, she's earned major fame and acclaim thanks to "The Big Bang Theory," but she's established a thriving career since that show ended. From 2007 to 2019, Cuoco played Penny (who doesn't have a last name until she marries Johnny Galecki's character Leonard and takes his last name of Hofstadter), a beautiful waitress and aspiring actress who moves in across the hall from Leonard and his brilliant, socially awkward best friend Sheldon Cooper (Jim Parsons). Penny is vivacious, funny, and charming, but the men don't always treat her kindly; Leonard and Howard Wolowitz (Simon Helberg) openly objectify her, and Sheldon treats her derisively. Eventually, those relationships evolve — Penny and Leonard get married, and Sheldon ultimately admits that he considers Penny his best friend.

Since 2019, Cuoco has charted her own path in the entertainment industry by producing her own projects like the acclaimed Max miniseries "The Flight Attendant," which casts Cuoco as troubled stewardess Cassie Bowden and scored her Emmy and Golden Globe nominations. She also produced the Peacock original "Based on a True Story," a true crime comedy that also stars Chris Messina, and since 2019, she's lent her voice to the title role of the popular animated Max show "Harley Quinn."