It is the prerogative of the prequel series to be filled with calls and references to its main show. Sometimes it is because the events featured in the original series require expansion, but more often it is as a form of friendly nod to the audience who saw the original, a little joke.
Young Sheldon is no different in this regard. In detailing Sheldon Cooper’s childhood, a popular subject for jokes on The Big Bang Theory anyway, young Sheldon isn’t afraid to include events simply to remind him of the main show. Young Sheldon focuses on how Sheldon Cooper came to be who fans knew him on The Big Bang Theory.
Sheldon doesn’t like Geology
One of Sheldon’s most notable traits is his dislike for almost any scientific discipline other than theoretical physics. He looks down on his friends for being engineers, biologists and even experimental physicists, whom he often plays for laughs. The most significant hatred about him, though, is geology, a hard science that he treats like it’s something for kids.
The irrational hatred is somehow explained in Young Sheldon, which involves Sheldon’s friend Libby. Initially, Sheldon is interested when Libby, much older and with whom he has a crush, introduces him to the subject. However, once he learns that she sees him as a babysitter, he experiences her first heartbreak and her association leads him to hate Geology.
One of the recurring points about Sheldon’s backstory in The Big Bang Theory is the unhappy marriage between his parents, which is said to include infidelity, arguments, and threats of violence. However, in Young Sheldon’s initial seasons, the two are at least somewhat content together, and both are dedicated to raising Sheldon despite the challenges he poses.
Tensions occasionally flare up early on, but it’s in Sometimes Life Gets Complicated where the audience really begins to see the cracks that form in George and Mary Cooper’s marriage. They have a truly massive fight, which leads to George breaking into a bar and starting talking to a newly divorced neighbor. It is something moving for the public to know what will happen before the premature death of George.
For the most part, there are no hackneyed inclusions of other characters risking growling for continuity in Young Sheldon. The future best friends of The Big Bang Theory are scattered all over the United States, living completely separate lives, without interacting with each other.
In a particularly poignant moment, where Sheldon believes that he will always be alone, a montage appears showing each of The Big Bang Theory’s main characters as children (recognizably themselves despite the age difference). Aired directly after the end of the show, it was a moving tribute to the series crossover.