While Sheldon is the unquestioned protagonist of Young Sheldon, the series has a number of important and well-developed characters. Pastor Jeff has stepped into his villainous role, while Georgie gets closer to his counterpart from The Big Bang Theory. At the same time, George has shown that he can be a pretty good father for Sheldon — at least when compared to Sheldon’s descriptions of him from TBBT. In fact, some fans would prefer it if Young Sheldon would break canon and let George remain a decent human being.
However, Young Sheldon’s most underrated character is Dr. John Sturgis. He started off as Sheldon’s a pen pal, and over time, he developed into one of Sheldon’s most important mentors. Unfortunately, Young Sheldon is building to a plot hole that will be rather insulting for Dr. Sturgis’ character.
As mentioned, Dr. Sturgis started out as a simple pen pal, but he quickly developed into a more important character. When Sheldon started auditing a college course, Dr. Sturgis was his professor, and the two immediately hit it off. Dr. Sturgis saw something of himself in Sheldon, and he enjoyed being friends with someone of equal intelligence. However, intelligence didn’t always mean common sense. In fact, there was a time when Dr. Sturgis and Sheldon had a hilarious sleepover, which nearly burned down an apartment complex.
While Dr. Sturgis was a mentor for Sheldon, he was a lover for Meemaw. He was a bit eccentric, but the two made a great pair. Their relationship was also great for comedic relief because Dr. Sturgis (just like Sheldon) could be pretty socially awkward. Unfortunately, they broke up when Dr. Sturgis encountered some mental health problems. When he came back into the fold, he didn’t take retake his job teaching. Instead, he worked for a government science project and, later, a grocery store. However, he was fired from both of those jobs.
After Dr. Sturgis was fired from the grocery store, it looked like his character would fade into the background. Georgie got Mandy pregnant, and it looked like Young Sheldon was headed in a new, family-drama direction. In fact, Dr. Sturgis had only appeared once in Season 6: he had resumed teaching at Sheldon’s college but was only shown briefly.
However, in “College Dropouts and the Medford Miracle,” Dr. Sturgis returned in full force. Sheldon needed a partner for his database project and chose Dr. Sturgis. It remains to be seen how the project will work out, but the fact that Sheldon chose Dr. Sturgis was telling. It proved that Dr. Sturgis was one of the most important mentors in Sheldon’s early life, which could end up making things a bit awkward.
Sheldon’s life goal was winning a Nobel Peace Prize, which he did on The Big Bang Theory’s final episode. In his acceptance speech, he thanked his friends and his family by name, but he never mentioned Dr. Sturgis. That could have made sense if Dr. Sturgis stayed in the background of Young Sheldon, but now that he’s back to being a significant mentor for Sheldon, it doesn’t make sense that he wasn’t thanked in the acceptance speech. In fact, it would be downright insulting for a mentor like him. So, unless there’s a significant falling out between Sheldon and Dr. Sturgis, Young Sheldon could end up having quite the plot hole.