Sep 26, 2017

[TV] First Look at Young Sheldon

The folks at Warner TV were generous enough to give this geeky blogger an advanced look at Young Sheldon, a new spin-off series based on the same Sheldon character from The Big Bang Theory. The first full episode was made available to the press today and the experience was...interesting, to say the least.

It's hard to really get a good feel for any show based on a single episode, especially a pilot, so instead of a full review I'll just share my initial thoughts.

Young Sheldon is a new American sitcom created by Chuck Lorre and Steven Molaro and is a spin-off prequel for the character of Sheldon Cooper. The show starts in 1989 and Sheldon is only 9 years old and about to start high school.

First, Iain Armitage is a brilliant choice as Sheldon as he carries the complex character well. It may not always make sense why someone like him grew up with a family like his but it makes for some interesting scenes.

Second, setting is a little confusing. It's the tailend of the 80's but it doesn't quite feel like the 80's nor does it fully embrace the 90's except for a few nods here and there. Maybe this gets further addressed in later episodes.

Third, this is not a straight-up comedy like what we get with TBBT. With the additional voice over provided by Jim Parsons, the show feels more like a lighter version of The Wonder Years, but with more punchlines. You don't have a studio audience or a laugh track and instead get a show that is shot more like a drama at times. This was rather surprising to me.

The pilot was directed by Jon Favreau and it will be interesting to see if the rest of the series has the same directorial tone. It's a very different experience from TBBT and that might be its strongest point.

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