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Young Sheldon - A Tornado, a Ten-Hour Flight and a Darn Fine Ring - Review

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After a season full of intense storylines and big changes for the Cooper family, a dramatic finale was anticipated and desired. Instead, it was lackluster, dull and a major disappointment for fans who are hanging on to the canon timeline, expecting either the implosion of George and Mary’s marriage, or George Sr. 's demise. Season six focused on major developments to all of the character arcs. Sheldon began to consider his future after Texas Tech, Missy attempted to discover her place in the Cooper family, Georgie became a father and an official adult all at once and George and Mary were forced to face the troubles lingering in the marriage. Yet despite all of the build up, the season finale failed to conclude any of the existing storylines, introducing a new challenge for the Cooper family instead. 

The half-hour finale centred around a tornado headed for Medford, although nobody knew it was coming at first. Prior to the storm, Sheldon was sleeping in his bed for the final night before his trip, struggling with guilt over telling his parents Missy’s secret. His sister saying she hated him clearly rattled him, and he wanted to set things right before leaving. In a rare move, he told her over the walkie talkie that he is going to miss her, but she responded by placing her walkie at his door as a symbol that she is done speaking to him. Although Mary forced Missy to come to the airport, she refused to say goodbye to her brother- a move that she would soon regret. During George and Missy’s long drive home from the airport, the two argued over Missy’s recent indiscretions. The argument didn’t last long, as Missy spotted the tornado headed towards them. They took shelter in a ditch at the side of the road and when the tornado passed without injuring them, Missy apologized to George for everything she had done and told him she loved him. If the admission was intended to be a moment of clarity for Missy, it was a major snafu for the writer’s. In the last episode, adult Sheldon narrated that Missy snuck out 32 times that summer. Clearly the stress of her near death experience caused her to make promises that she did not intend to keep. 

Prior to the tornado hitting, a newly engaged Mandy and Georgie traveled to her parents to break the news of their impending nuptials. It was clearly meant to be a comedic storyline, but it ended up falling flat. Mandy’s mother was happy about the couple's decision to have a courthouse wedding out of embarrassment of the circumstances, prompting Mandy to want to have a big wedding out of spite. As Mandy attempted to storm out, the tornado hit, forcing the couple and Cece to take shelter with the McAllisters. There was no real decision made about the wedding, but after a near death experience, it was clear from their facial expressions that both women softened in their resolve. 

Dale was in the process of installing security cameras at the laundromat during the storm, until Pastor Jeff walked in, curious as to why a laundromat would need so much security. Dale immediately panicked, and left Connie to take charge of the situation. Unfortunately for Connie, the tornado hit, forcing her to bring Pastor Jeff into the gambling room to take shelter, exposing her secret. After Connie discovered her house had been completely destroyed by the tornado, Pastor Jeff reassured her that her secret was safe with him, considering all she has been through. After the Pastor’s insistence on having the gambling room closed over R rated movies, it is difficult to believe that he will actually be able to let the discovery of the gambling room go. Connie's secret being exposed and the loss of her home, will definitely be a main focus of season 7. Though completely unexpected, it is nice to see Connie get her own storyline next season, apart from being a Meemaw.

Obviously the show runners weren’t ready to deal with the impending dark plot points of the Cooper marriage and George’s death, but choosing to downplay major events in Sheldon’s life, such as George’s cheating scandal, was an unfortunate way to handle the deviation from the original timeline. Although Chuck Lorre made it clear that the prequel is under no obligation to maintain the Big Bang Theory timeline, there are certain pivotal plot points that shaped who Sheldon was that should not be altered. The writer’s might have a bigger plan in place to satisfy viewers in season seven, but after an uninspired finale, hopefully fans will stick around to find out what that plan is. I’d love to hear your thoughts, Young Sheldon fans: What did you think of the finale? How do you feel about the deviation from the timeline? Will season 7 set things back on track? Share your thoughts below and interact with me on Twitter.

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