Penny goes to college, sneak peek video The Big Bang Theory

Is it time for The Big Bang Theory to move away from the scripts that portray Penny as the eternal "dumb blonde?" In tonight's episode, "The Extract Obliteration" Penny's education secret is revealed.

Penny is taking a college class, she tells boyfriend Leonard over a home cooked meal of spaghetti. Even in this context, the writers tweak Penny by having her screw up boiling water for the pasta.

Leonard is thrilled as fans would imagine and goes off on a tangent about how she could roll that into a degree program.

Have we had our fill of Penny the perpetual joke? Probably not, but the show has demonstrated maturity on her part and in a way that might not seem typical.

Read about the episode and how Stephen Hawking played a big part

We got to see her practical intellect and motor skills win the day when she proved to Sheldon that while being a physicist, he can't play a simple game and win. During Pictionary, his obtuse drawings to depict easy words drag his team down. He was no better in Where's Waldo? Read: It's polish, not Polish!

Then there was her decision to cool it with Leonard due to his insistence on knowing if she was moving towards making their relationship a more permanent one. That took guts on her part and losing him was never a thought.

It became one however and Penny moved quickly to prevent it.

Penny came back with a vengeance after saying she was bored with her relationship.

What brought it about? Jealousy did and you can thank good old clueless Sheldon.

With so much to do and so little time, Sheldon hired an assistant to help him unearth something from his childhood journals that could bring him a Nobel Prize.

She is a hottie, when you compare her to most of the employees at Sheldon's place of business. Alex causes a bit of a stir at work and among the nerd pals of Sheldon.

Amy and Penny observe Alex in conversation at a lunch table with their respective boyfriends and believe she is up to something that might mean one of them would be dumped.

Penny decided to diss her when they meet and stakes her claim to Leonard by dragging him into her apartment for a romp under the sheets.

The interest in Leonard continues and begins to extend to her taking a bit of interest in what he does for a living. When she discovers some cool stuff like holograms and lasers, her libido goes wild once again. Read: Science as aphrodisiac for Penny

Now we are to believe that Penny is tired of being a food and drink server who is made to feel like the dumbest person in the room. Here's a question: will Sheldon approve or disapprove? Image: CBS The Big Bang Theory