- Young Sheldon had several celebrity cameos, including characters from The Big Bang Theory and new characters specific to the show.
- Some cameos appeared in multiple episodes, such as Sheldon’s acting coach and Dale’s ex-wife, adding depth to the storylines.
- Notable celebrity cameos include Ray Liotta, Elon Musk, Reba McEntire, and Jason Alexander, among others, all contributing to the entertainment value of Young Sheldon.
Like its parent series The Big Bang Theory, Young Sheldon had its fair share of celebrity cameos over the course of six seasons. Young Sheldon’s cameos included both The Big Bang Theory’s central characters appearing thanks to adult Sheldon’s voiceover and new characters who only appeared in Young Sheldon. Not unlike The Big Bang Theory, Young Sheldon also included a few cameos of celebrities appearing as themselves, making the stories they were involved in Young Sheldon all the more interesting.
While most cameos in Young Sheldon involved actors and comedians appearing in only one episode each, some characters appeared in a few episodes. Sheldon’s improbable acting coach Gene Lundy (Seinfeld’s Jason Alexander) was one of them, as his appearances through the years either caused a scandal in Medford or risked involving the Coopers in selling schemes. Similarly, Dale’s ex-wife June (Reba McEntire) also appeared in multiple seasons, being a friend to Connie in the most surprising way, given how they got to know each other. No matter the number of times they returned to the show or not, here are the best Young Sheldon celebrity cameos unrelated to TBBT.
Ray Liotta As Vincent
Young Sheldon season 1, episode 5, “A Solar Calculator, a Game Ball, and a Cheerleader’s Bosom”
Ray Liotta was one of the first celebrity cameos in Young Sheldon, appearing as Connie’s out-of-town bookie, Vincent in Young Sheldon episode 5. While the scene wasn’t initially fun for Connie, as Vincent was in the state precisely to remind her of the money she owed him, it turned out better than expected once she managed to repay part of her debt in quarters. The cameo established the extent of Meemaw’s gambling problem, but it also secretly hinted at Meemaw’s gambling den in Young Sheldon season 1, which would have only become a reality seasons later, by having her complain about the house always winning.
Elon Musk As Himself
Young Sheldon season 1, episode 6, “A Patch, a Modem, and a Zantac”
Young Sheldon season 1 contained multiple cameos, and entrepreneur Elon Musk appeared right after Liotta, in Young Sheldon episode 6. “A Patch, a Modem, and a Zantac” involved Sheldon being humiliated by a NASA scientist after he suggested landing rockets instead of letting them fall in the ocean, and subsequently getting an ulcer because of the stress it caused Sheldon to try and do the calculations to prove the scientist wrong. However, Musk’s cameo somehow avenges Sheldon’s calculations, as he can be seen reading Sheldon’s “Rocket Re-entry and Retropropulsion” notebook, hinting at his success in landing a rocket deriving from what Sheldon had calculated years before.
Jason Alexander as Gene Lundy
Young Sheldon seasons 1 to 5
Unlike Liotta and Musk, Jason Alexander appeared five times in Young Sheldon, one in each season aside from season 6. Initially appearing as Sheldon’s acting coach in Young Sheldon season 1, episode 16 after a scientific disappointment, Lundy proved helpful because saw talent in Sheldon and recruited him for a musical. However, throughout Young Sheldon seasons 2 to 5, Lundy also returned to help Mary put up a show for the church on Halloween, as a realtor about to sell the house next to the Coopers, as Georgie’s almost business partner for the Cowboy Aerobics VHS, and as a make-up seller, proving one of the most memorable Young Sheldon cameos.
Richard Kind As Ira Rosenbloom
Young Sheldon seasons 1 and 3
Notorious actor and voice actor Richard Kind appeared in three episodes over two seasons of Young Sheldon. Introduced in Young Sheldon season 1 as Meemaw’s ex-boyfriend, Ira first helped Sheldon in his research into Judaism, after Mary prohibiting Sheldon from playing Dungeons & Dragons piqued his interest in other religions. However, Kind’s return in the Young Sheldon season 1 finale proved even more iconic, as Ira tried to win over Meemaw’s affections by gifting her a dinette set, and ended up forming a friendship with Dr. Sturgis, despite being romantic rivals. Kind’s last cameo as Ira was in Young Sheldon season 3 when he went on a “spite date” with Meemaw.
Dave Foley As Gary O’Brien
Young Sheldon seasons 4 and 6
The Kids in the Hall’s Dave Foley cameoed as “the antistatic furniture king” Gary O’Brien, a patron of Sheldon’s university, and one Sheldon was forced to dine with by President Hagenmayer. Foley appeared as O’Brien over three episodes in Young Sheldon seasons 4 and 6 respectively. His character’s interactions with Sheldon were made exceptionally funny by the fact O’Brien saw himself as a scientist despite being only an investor gullible enough to believe even para-scientific concepts, and his opinions eventually made Sheldon explode with the truth by calling him “a rich man no one will be honest to because everyone wants your money.” Foley reappeared as O’Brien in Young Sheldon season 6 when Sheldon was looking for investors in his database project.
Reba McEntire As June
Young Sheldon seasons 3, 4 and 5
Reba McEntire proved among the celebrities appearing more often on Young Sheldon, having cameoed in seasons 3, 4, and 5. Introduced for the first time in Young Sheldon season 3, episode 15, the country music star played June, the ex-wife of Meemaw’s new boyfriend, Dale. Despite meeting because of Dale, Connie and June eventually became close friends because of their similarities, with Connie even going to help June out at her place when she broke her knee. Reba costar Melissa Peterman reportedly suggested a McEntire cameo, which was partly the reason McEntire was chosen (via TV Line), even if Brenda and June have yet to interact on-screen.
David Hasselhoff As Himself
Young Sheldon season 4, episode 10, “Cowboy Aerobics and 473 Grease-Free Bolts”
David Hasselhoff appeared as himself in Young Sheldon season 4, episode 10, as a star of a workout VHS that was supposed to feature Georgie. “Cowboy Aerobics and 473 Grease-Free Bolts” hilariously involved both Alexander as Lundy and Hasselhoff as himself, as Lundy turned to “the Hoff” when Georgie refused to participate in their idea of a workout cassette featuring him because his profits would have been too low. According to Young Sheldon co-creator Steve Molaro, Hasselhoff was chosen because they wanted a 90s star who still “looked young enough to play his earlier self” (via TV Line), confirming they were as thrilled as Lundy in the episode that they managed to secure “the Hoff.”
Lance Reddick As Professor Boucher
Young Sheldon season 5, episode 7, “An Introduction to Engineering and a Glob of Hair Gel”
John Wick’s Lance Reddick appeared in one episode of Young Sheldon, precisely season 5, episode 7. The episode also famously entailed The Big Bang Theory’s Simon Helberg’s cameo in the voiceover, as it focused on engineering. Reddick’s cameo as Professor Boucher was revealed to be the cause of Sheldon disliking engineering and engineers, as his classes proved among the most frustrating for Sheldon because of Boucher’s attitude. However, what made Sheldon swear off engineering was that when he figured out Boucher’s homework, he couldn’t hand it in, as the professor had already closed the door of the class, as it had just started, infuriating Sheldon as a result.
Ming-Na Wen As Dr. Lee
Young Sheldon season 5, episode 14, “A Free Scratcher and Feminine Wiles”
Despite being known mostly for her action roles, Ming-Na Wen cameoed as a Physics professor in Young Sheldon season 5, episode 14. Wen appeared as Dr. Lee in “A Free Scratcher and Feminine Wiles,” and her role wasn’t too dissimilar from her past ones, as Dr. Lee was very authoritative, and had to be, given her role in the episode. Indeed, Dr. Lee was appointed by President Hagenmayer to work on Dr. Sturgis, Dr. Linkletter, and Sheldon’s research, to make sure they didn’t spend time bickering, instead working on a way forward together. Sheldon might have challenged Dr. Lee, but she eventually outsmarted him, unlike other past antagonists.
Penn & Teller As Acne Vulgaris & Pus
Young Sheldon season 5, episode 22, “A Clogged Pore, a Little Spanish and the Future”
Illusionists Penn and Teller also appeared in Young Sheldon season 5, cameoing as an important duo in the Young Sheldon season 5 finale. Indeed, once Sheldon discovered a pimple on his face, Penn and Teller appeared as Acne Vulgaris and Pus respectively, telling the story of their appearance being synonymous with growth, as it signaled Sheldon being closer to puberty than ever before, and sharing how their arrival was never truly welcome. Penn and Teller were hilarious physical representations of the pimple, and they eventually left the Young Sheldon season 5 finale once Missy popped the pimple on Sheldon’s face.
Sources: TV Line
- Release Date:
- Jim Parsons, Iain Armitage, Annie Potts, Emily Osment
- 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.
- Story By:
- chuck lorre
- Chuck Lorre
- Streaming Service(s):
- Jon Favreau