CBS has picked up “Young Sheldon” for a full season.
The move follows a huge premiere Monday for the freshman comedy, which retained 98% of its total lead-in audience from “The Big Bang Theory.” With a 3.8 Nielsen live-plus-same day rating in the 18-49 demo and 17.21 million viewers, “Young Sheldon” was the highest rated broadcast comedy premiere since the 2011 debut of CBS’ “Two Broke Girls.”
While CBS regularly debuts new comedies behind “The Big Bang Theory” in order to drive a large sample audience to freshman shows, none has ever shown the high level of retention that “Young Sheldon,” which tells the childhood story of the character played by Jim Parsons on “Big Bang,” demonstrated Monday night.
The pick-up extends the show’s initial 13-episode order to 22 episodes, and makes “Young Sheldon” the first new series of the 2017-18 season to get a back-nine order.
“Young Sheldon” is produced by Warner Bros. Television with Chuck Lorre, Steven Molaro, Parsons, and Todd Spiewak serving as executive producers. A single-camera comedy, it marks a departure from typical Lorre-produced multi-camera sitcoms such as “Big Bang.”
In her review for Variety, Maureen Ryan wrote, “Like an ambitious science experiment, “Young Sheldon” is a work in progress, but if it finds a way to meld the pathos of Sheldon’s existence — he is frequently taunted and misunderstood at school and at home — with gentle but reliably effective humor, CBS might be on to something with this prequel.”