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Young Sheldon - Rockets, Communists, and the Dewey - Review: "Well That Was Depressing"

5 Nov 2017

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After almost more than a month on hiatus, Young Sheldon returned with an episode centered on Sheldon and his quest to make friends. Mary is worried about Sheldon as he sits alone in the lunch hall and wanted reassurance for herself that he can make friends and has someone to talk to that is real. Sheldon, attempts to do this, not because he wanted friends but for his mother’s sake. Sheldon cares for Mary, probably above all his family. His mother is important to him, and you can see that.

Sheldon doesn't do things in a normal fashion. He might be young, but he doesn't and still hasn't grasped social interaction. Even grown up Sheldon hasn't really gotten the full context of it. He checks out a book at the library on how to make friends, and although he uses the book to interact with other people around his school he gets nowhere. Just as all hope looked lost for him he gains a friend accidentally on his way back to return the book. This was an endearing scene as it showed that he can make friends, and that he isn't completely lost from the outside world.

Sheldon's friend was Vietnamese, and that was a very interesting creative decision the writers made. Mary has often in The Big Bang commented on Raj or Howard's cultural backgrounds, and whilst she did subtly make a comment about his religion here, I thought she might have come out with something offensive, like she accidentally tends to. I do question why the dinner scene was important to show though, are we deliberately meant to feel bad for Sheldon's friend after his unfortunate upbringing story, because I'm not sure what Chuck Lorre was going for, but funny it was not. Sheldon summed it up well, 'Depressing.'

Young Sheldon is very different from Big Bang, and it finds itself with an actual story behind it that is both endearing and somewhat humorous at the same time. The show doesn't feel like your typical comedy, it has actual heart and something to get behind. We are watching a show about Sheldon growing up day by day and rather than focusing on just the comedic aspect of it, the show has a notable flow of story within. It’s very different to the main show. The Big Bang Theory is a straight up comedy, this show is not. Though this show does lack any real comedic value.

I am however still not completely onboard with the show. I'm still finding it increasingly hard to get behind the supporting characters. The show feels like the Mary and Sheldon spectacle. It sometimes feels like the rest of the family are often forgotten. The show is about Sheldon's upbringing and his dad, sister and brother are just as important to that. If the show is going to work in the long run, it needs to even out the focus on the family. Sheldon is the main character, but he surely interacted with his other family members, and we need to see that.

It was a good episode, but it wasn’t a great episode. The premiere was a good introductory episode and whilst this episode did continue from that it didn't go beyond. It was focused on one topic and that alone. The show needs to venture out its comfort zone and focus on other characters as well, it can't just be about following Sheldon around all day. The show has a good enough story, it just needs to find its footing. Overall, the show is heading in the right direction creatively, we just need to see more.