It doesn’t take a genius to see that Young Sheldon is closer to the end than it is the beginning.
The Big Bang Theory spinoff, currently in Season 6, is two years into a three-season renewal, which culminates in Season 7. And according to executive producer Steve Holland, preliminary talks have begun, at least internally, about whether Season 7 will be its last.
“We’ve certainly started to talk about it,” he tells TVLine. “When you’re in the middle of a season, it’s such a grind that we haven’t had too many in-depth conversations. But now, as we’re getting to the end [of Season 6], we’ve started to talk about it more.”
Assuming the prequel’s narrative keeps at a steady pace, Sheldon will turn 14 during Season 7 — the age where, per Big Bang‘s previously established timeline, the future Nobel Prize winner moves from Medford, Texas, to Pasadena, Calif., to begin his graduate studies at CalTech University. That same year, Sheldon’s father George dies and older brother Georgie marries for the first time.
“There are certainly things we know we want to hit next season, and there are certain things where, if it’s the end versus if it’s just [another season], those things might be different. It’s not my decision to make. I don’t think we’ll know for a while, but I don’t think it will effect the first half of [Season 7]; I think it will play out the same either way. But as we get near the end, I think it will play out differently depending on whether this is, or is not, the final season.”
Another factor that could determine the outcome is a potential writers’ strike. Amid rumblings of the Writers Guild of America’s first possible work stoppage since 2007-08 — a strike that interrupted Big Bang in its first season, resulting in a shortened freshman run of 17 episodes — Holland can foresee a scenario where an eighth season is necessary to bring the spinoff to a satisfactory close.
“That’s certainly another thing that throws a wrench into it — if [a strike] happens, how long it goes on, and how many episodes this next season will end up being,” he explains. “Those are questions we can’t even answer; we’d just be speculating. So we certainly have a plan in place of where we’re aiming [to get] next season with some understanding, and some flexibility, that this may or may not be the end.”
For its part, CBS will no doubt want to keep the Young Sheldon train chugging along beyond Season 7. Season to date, the show is averaging 9.3 million total viewers and a 0.9 demo rating (with Live+7 playback), up a smidgen in viewers from last season while down just a tenth in the demo. Among all TV comedies, it is the most-watched and trails only its lead-out, Ghosts, in the demo.
Do you think Young Sheldon should wrap things up in Season 7? Or would you like to see the series continue for many years to come? Sound off in Comments.