Big Bang Theory Intro #14: Cave Painting

One of the earliest signs of artistic expression is next on our list - it’s painting!

Cave paintings have been around for a long time. Really, a long, long time. The earliest cave paintings have been dated to over 32,000 years ago! That’s a lot longer ago than the Big Bang Theory timeline suggests, and far before our previous scene of The Wheel. These are all out of order.

No one really knows the purpose of cave paintings. I always thought that they were some way of storytelling, but some of them don’t make sense, because they are tucked away really deep into some caves, in places where there aren’t any signs of habitation. Some have suggested that they might have been used in some type of religious ceremony.

It’s also been recently thought that the paintings weren’t made in one session, but instead added on to throughout the years, some taking over 20,000 years to complete. I love the idea of people stopping in a cave while being the migratory people that they are, and finding a painting which is partially done, and then adding on to what they saw. It hearkens to some type of Noble Savage impulse in my mind.

This would also be the first image in the opening sequence to have a female human subject - the figures on the left side are definitely of the chesty variety. I look and wonder what the heck they are doing though. The one on the bottom seems to be fulfilling some sort of either ammo restocking, or possibly waving something around to distract the hunted prey so that it is easier to shoot.

The one on the top is definitely giving someone the finger, suggesting it might be even more universal than I previously thought. Maybe M.I.A. was just trying to educate everyone about how old the gesture is. Apparently Diogenes of Athens used it in 4th century B.C. Then again, most Europeans are more likely to use two fingers.