'The Big Bang Theory' Season 11, Episode 8 recap: the gang forms a rift

The gang finds itself taking sides in an age-old scientific debate on the latest episode of “The Big Bang Theory.” When Sheldon takes credit for the guy’s work, the rift almost becomes more than they can handle.

The episode opens with the group converging at Leonard and Penny’s place to watch a documentary about the rivalry between Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison. They explain to Penny, in an extremely snobby way, that Edison was merely a publicity hog that wouldn’t have made his greatest discoveries without the research of real innovators such as Tesla. She pretends to be interested.

The next day, Sheldon reveals that he’s still working for the military despite the whole team being fired at the end of last season. Leonard and Howard are incredibly upset and call the Colonel to find out what’s going on.

Meanwhile, Bernadette gets a visit from Raj and Ruchi. Last week, the two started a casual sexual relationship that’s progressed a bit. Later, Bernadette confesses to Raj that she’s worried Ruchi is trying to steal her position at work and asks if he’ll do some reconnaissance for him.

The next time they have sex, he asks her afterwards if she’s happy Bernadette is gone. She admits that she’s loving being able to tackle all her projects, forcing Raj to report the news to Bernadette. Unfortunately, it doesn't do any good and just leaves her feeling insecure.

In one of Raj’s more boneheaded moves, he tells Ruchi everything, and mentions he stuck up for her with Bernadette. She reminds him that he’s not her boyfriend and that they don’t need to stick up for each other.

“We’re in a relationship, you’re going to have to find a way to deal with it,” he says.

Just like that, Ruchi dumps him.

While this is happening, Leonard and Howard continue to gripe about Sheldon going behind their back to the military. It turns out that he is using the work they all did together as a springboard for another project. The duo accuse Sheldon of being an Edison to their Tesla, which offends him greatly. While Sheldon figures out what to do, the boys dream up a breakthrough that will improve on what Sheldon is doing. Not wanting to enlist his help, they go to Sheldon’s rival, Kripke, who is all-too-thrilled to stick it to Sheldon intellectually.

Sheldon is definitely shaken, as he even goes as far as to shamelessly wipe some of Kripke’s calculations off the whiteboard. Fortunately for Howard and Leonard, his research is undeterred. The next day they discuss pitching it to the military when Sheldon comes over to congratulate them.

They quickly go ask Kripke if he has gone over their head to pitch the idea to the military, but he can only tell them the answer to that question is classified.