Thursday’s Young Sheldon (CBS, 8/7c) marks the death of prolific science-fiction writer Isaac Asimov — and TVLine has your exclusive first look at the episode.
In the above video, Sheldon is stunned to discover that Connie is unfamiliar with the Foundation author, who held a special place in the heart of her late husband Charlie.
“He was a personal hero [to Sheldon],” series co-creator Steve Molaro tells TVLine. “And on a more emotional note, Meemaw’s husband, Sheldon’s Pop-Pop, is the person who gave Sheldon his first Asimov book when he was five, so that’s another connection that he has to this author, and he’s troubled by his death.”
Asimov passed on April 6, 1992. By marking his death, the Big Bang Theory spinoff is establishing a much more specific timeline than ever before. “It’s very obvious when Asimov died,” Molaro says with a laugh. “You can’t bend the truth on that one.”
As for whether the show will continue to make references to the year, Molaro answers, “It’ll come up here and there, and we’re certainly aware of it” when it comes to specific pop-culture references and previously established lore in regards to George Sr.’s (supposed) infidelity and early demise.
“We’re in 1992 and we’re always conscious of [what we reveal], but we try to keep it vague,” Molaro explains. “If someone doesn’t need to say it, then we don’t. We don’t need to say the exact month or year that we’re in, but we’re also not shying away from it.”
With that said, “because these are stories being told from a present-day storyteller that take place about 30 years ago, there’s a certain amount of leeway [that we have],” Molaro points out. “It’s not like Adult Sheldon has decided to sit down and tell us one story a week that happened exactly 30 years ago. So you can have a stretch of stories that all take place over one week. We can slow things down when we need to, but also honor some sort of realistic timeline.”
As for the big Georgie cliffhanger at the end of the 100th episode, Molaro teases that Thursday’s installment picks up “moments later,” and sees Sheldon’s big brother “understandably freaking out.”