• Penny’s acting dream remains alive years after the end of
    The Big Bang Theory
    , showcasing the unsatisfying end to her storyline in the nerd-centric sitcom.
  • The
    Young Sheldon
    finale flashforward reveals that Penny influenced Sheldon and Amy’s daughter’s penchant for acting.
  • The Big Bang Theory
    missed an opportunity to explore Penny’s passion for acting, leaving her storyline unsatisfying.



The Young Sheldon ending unexpectedly name-drops Penny, but aside from the shoutout, it also secretly highlights The Big Bang Theory‘s worst crime against the character. While the first half of Young Sheldon’s series capper is devoted to the aftermath of George’s death, its final 30 minutes shift its focus to looking at the future of Sheldon. Bringing in Jim Parsons and Mayim Bialik as adult Sheldon and Amy is meant to bring the socially-inept genius’ arc full circle, which it does. Beyond that, it also provides new information about the Pasadena gang five years after the nerd-centric sitcom wrapped up.

Ideally, the rest of the Pasadena gang would have appeared in the Young Sheldon finale. Unfortunately, despite hopes that the prequel would stage a brief The Big Bang Theory, that wasn’t the case since the focus of the two-part ending was on Sheldon and the Coopers. There were some clues, however, about how the rest of the fan-favorite friend group is doing, including the suggestion that Leonard may be dead post-The Big Bang Theory. While his arc is left vague, the Young Sheldon finale made sure to have a direct reference to his wife, Penny.



Young Sheldon Ending Solves Sheldon’s Last Remaining Big Bang Theory Plot Hole

In time for its ending, Young Sheldon explains the final remaining major The Big Bang Theory plot hole with regard to Sheldon and his history.

Young Sheldon’s Ending Confirms Penny Is Still Passionate About Acting

Penny Passes Her Passion For Acting To Sheldon And Amy’s Daughter.

In the final moments of the Young Sheldon ending, “Memoir,” Sheldon and Amy from the future wrap up their conversation about going to their son, Leonard’s hockey game. That’s when Amy reveals that their unnamed daughter wants to start acting lessons, to which her husband answers exasperatedly that they shouldn’t let Penny babysit anymore — a reference to Leonard’s wife’s life-long dream to be an actress. It was the reason why Penny moved to California and was the crux of her arc in the earliest seasons of The Big Bang Theory until she was forced to change careers.

Despite being part of her original storyline,
The Big Bang Theory
never really took Penny’s dream seriously.

Penny eventually became a successful pharmaceutical sales rep, earning more than Leonard at the end of The Big Bang Theory. However, Sheldon’s revelation about her still being interested in acting after more than a decade since the end of the nerd-centric sitcom emphasizes how unsatisfying her ending was. Despite being part of her original storyline, The Big Bang Theory never really took Penny’s dream seriously. She was often mocked by Sheldon and her failures were often played for laughs, although in reality, they were demoralizing. Learning that acting remains her passion in the future is saddening.


Young Sheldon Finale Continued Big Bang Theory’s True Sheldon Soulmate Disrespect (It Isn’t Amy)

Young Sheldon finale’s TBBT connections were minimal, but to make things worse, it also continued the flagship’s failure of Sheldon’s true soulmate.

How The Big Bang Theory Could Have Fixed Penny’s Acting Storyline

Penny’s The Big Bang Theory Finale Fate Revolved Around Her Pregnancy Plot Twist.

Penny in The Big Bang Theory finale

While The Big Bang Theory finale was generally beloved, Penny’s pregnancy arc was its biggest problematic storyline. Before that divisive reveal, however, the series could have already fixed her personal arc by allowing her to go back into acting. With her pharmaceutical job paying the bills, Penny would already have the freedom to revisit her true passion. While not being able to fully follow through with it would be disappointing, setting her down that path would have left her in a more hopeful state for self-fulfillment. Sadly. that wasn’t part of the plan in The Big Bang Theory‘s ending.


Young Sheldon

series finale is available to stream on Paramount+.


Young Sheldon

A spinoff of the sitcom The Big Bang Theory, Young Sheldon follows the youth and coming-of-age of Sheldon Cooper during his childhood in Texas as he pursues science and academia. The show also follows his parents, siblings, and Mee-Maw, painting a picture of the world where Sheldon grew up.

Jim Parsons , Iain Armitage , Annie Potts , Emily Osment

Release Date
September 25, 2017


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