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YMMV / Young Sheldon

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  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Paige in "A Second Prodigy and the Hottest Tips for Pouty Lips". Sheldon confesses that he has a crush on Paige and she says she feels the same way and has for a long time, but when they're about to kiss, she instead draws a mustache on him. Was she just messing with him the entire time, or was she being honest about liking Sheldon back and was too nervous to kiss him? Her confession seemed rather sincere and her actions in "A Solo Peanut, a Social Butterfly and the Truth" imply that she still likes him in some way.
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    • Sheldon's son being named Leonard Cooper. Is it merely a homage to one of his favorite actors, or is it also a way of honoring his best friend at the same time? Knowing Sheldon, it could be either.
  • Aluminum Christmas Trees: The shortwave radio station that broadcasts the "time in Ottawa" in "A Swedish Science Thing and the Equation for Toast" is a real station with the call letters CHU, which has been on the air since 1923 (it actually transmits time announcements in English and French).
  • And You Thought It Would Fail: While its parent show was one of the biggest shows on TV during the 2010's, it was also very polarizing, with Sheldon Cooper himself being a major Base-Breaking Character. This made many viewers hesitant to see a Sheldon-centric prequel series. While Young Sheldon didn't earn the same level of success as The Big Bang Theory, it managed to be one of the top rated series on its network and is slated to run for at least 7 seasons. In addition, those who saw it were pleasantly surprised to see that the show avoided many of TBBTs biggest flaws (such as its mean-spirited and oftentimes immature humour, Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonists, and a persistent Studio Audience), with Sheldon himself being interpreted as naïve, but well-intentioned rather than, in Chuck Lorre's words; "bratty and annoying".
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  • Awesome Music: The short theme song, "Mighty Little Man" by Steve Burns.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Mary, much for the same reasons as in The Big Bang Theory (see here for more info.)
    • Missy. Some people think that she's hilarious, adorably mischievous and a brilliant contrast to the calmer and more composed Sheldon, with a more vulnerable side that explains her bratty attitude at times. Others think of her as nothing more than a spoiled brat, who is constantly rude to her family, and who only ever thinks of herself. However, both sides often agree that Missy's actress is one of the best in the show, despite her young age.
    • Connie. Some fans think that she's a better parent than Mary or George to all three children, due to being the ideal balance between overbearing (Mary) and lax (George). Other fans think that she's an immature Dirty Old Woman who only cares about sticking it to Mary and George, especially since her other children never speak to her; case in point, in "Babies, Lies and a Resplendent Cannoli", she openly admits to Sheldon that she only reads books that have a Mr. Fanservice on the cover. Others think she's somewhere in the middle—which is to say, probably a better parent, but still nowhere near perfect. Both sides often compare her to what Penny would be like if she ever became a grandma; Penny, like all of the other main characters in the parent series, is a Base-Breaking Character herself.
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    • President Hagemeyer. Some fans admire her ability to put up with Sheldon. Other fans point out that she only uses Sheldon to boost the University's funding, and doesn't actually care about his well-being. She also didn't win popularity for her rude behaviour to Mary on the phone "he didn't come to you complaining about me".
    • Mandy. Does the fact that Georgie (who is doing everything he can to support her and the baby) lied about his age justify her rude behavior towards him?
  • Fandom Rivalry: While it does have a better reception than its parent show, it still has a bit of a rivalry with The Goldbergs with fans of the latter accusing the show of being a rip-off to cash in on the show and The Big Bang Theory ending.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • This exchange in "An Eagle Feather, a String Bean, and an Eskimo", after Georgie drops out of school in Season 5.
      Georgie: As soon as I graduate high school, I'm gonna be a professional male model.
      Connie: That is hilarious.
      Georgie: What? I'm good looking.
      Connie: No, that you think you'll graduate high school.
    • In "Quirky Eggheads and Texas Snow Globes", Georgie reminds everyone about the time that there was snow in Texas, in order to sell snow globes. Less than two years after this episode aired, there was indeed snow in Texas, only it led to the worst power outage in state history, causing hundreds of deaths and billions of dollars in damage.
    • In "A Clogged Pore, a Little Spanish and the Future", Sheldon brings up monkeypox to the doctor who is checking out his pimple, and assures the doctor that it may not sound real, but it is. Following this episode's production was a real-life outbreak of monkeypox in the UK, which quickly spread around the world.
  • Like You Would Really Do It: While the scene of the Earth being devoured by a black hole is genuinely unsettling and nerve-wracking, very few people thought that the show would actually go that route, for obvious reasons.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Young Sheldon is a generally light-hearted show, but it has its scary moments.
    • In "Poker, Faith and Eggs", Sheldon walks in on his father being treated. Seeing the doctors frantically trying to revive him, George unconscious and covered in wires and tubes, and Mary in tears praying, it's easy to understand why adult Sheldon is afraid of hospitals in The Big Bang Theory
    • In "A Therapist, a Comic Book, and a Breakfast Sausage", Sheldon nearly chokes to death on a breakfast sausage. Mary, George, and Missy are appropriately terrified and Sheldon develops a phobia of eating solid food for the rest of the episode.
    • In "A Mother, A Child, and a Blue Man's Backside", The tornado during the last few minutes of the episode has the entire family terrified and huddling together in the bathroom, not knowing if they're going to survive the night. Sheldon has it the worst of all because he spent most of the episode angry at his mother, but when it comes down to it he's just a little kid who very much needs her. Luckily they get out of it without any real damage, but the entire scene is portrayed as deadly serious (complete with a sudden cut to black).
    • In the Season 4 finale "A Black Hole", Sturgis explains the remote possibility of a black hole powerful enough to devour the Earth forming at the Waxahachie super collider. George imagines that the black hole is forming outside the house, with everyone scared and huddled together to pray against all hope of surviving. The scene is played almost entirely for horror, and the fact that it's presented as a Daydream Surprise makes it all the more unsettling.
  • Older Than They Think: This isn't the first time that Zoe Perry (Laurie Metcalf's daughter) is playing the younger version of Metcalf's character, as Perry played a younger Jackie, whom Metcalf portrayed in Roseanne.
  • Signature Scene: The Season 2 finale, which shows The rest of the Big Bang Gang as kids, is considered to be the highlight of the series, as a glimmer of optimism in an otherwise depressing episode. It helps that this episode aired immediately after its parent show's Grand Finale.
  • Surprisingly Improved Prequel: Reception for Young Sheldon is miles more positive than its parent show. Due to the differences in formatting and jokes (dramedy angle, plots based on family, single-camera Mockumentary style), it's seen as more accessible to viewers that either have never heard of Big Bang (thus making it easier to get into) or don't care for it and its comedy style.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Sheldon in "A Pager, a Club and a Cranky Bag of Wrinkles", when he doesn't want to join the chess club because they regularly meet outside. This is Played for Laughs, but those on the autism spectrum who regularly experience sensory overload understand exactly why Sheldon would be bothered by this.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Missy can come across as this in "The Wild and Woolly World of Nonlinear Dynamics". She pulls a Jerkass Ball being even more hostile than usual taking her heartbreak-induced anger out on her whole family (especially Sheldon) to the point very few people really have sympathy for Missy for the way she's behaving.
  • The Woobie: Has its own page.