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Though some may have expected The Big Bang Theory to continue on until its central characters were senile senior citizens, the CBS hit is hitting full-stop with Season 12. The network already figured out a way to siphon off some of Big Bang's popularity with the insightful spinoff Young Sheldon, but could we see another offshoot comedy beyond that prequel? Here's what CBS Entertainment President Kelly Kahl had to say about conversations on that front.
Nothing formal. The ball is in squarely in their court. If they want to talk to us about it, we are here to listen.
To the surprise of probably no one, CBS' programming exec was not about to ferociously claim that the network would never be interested in another Big Bang Theory follow-up project. Even if it was indeed true that no one at CBS wanted to continue expanding the franchise with another half-hour series, it's certainly not a statement that Big Bang fans want to hear. (It might even disappoint at least one star hoping to keep going somehow.)
All that said, CBS execs are undoubtedly interested in whatever creators Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady and the show's producers have to say about what could happen next. The Big Bang Theory has been one of the only comedies to continue pulling in viewing numbers that reflect the ratings heydays of yesteryear, and Young Sheldon hasn't exactly been that far behind, either.
In a sense, there are no better sources of potential success than spinning off Big Bang Theory. And Kelly Kahl noted to Deadline that the 2019 fall season is like every other one in that they're trying to strike gold. In his words:
I think it’s a big priority every year to find a big multi-cam that develops into a big hit. We are always looking for the ‘next one,’ and that would be the case again this year.
For instance, maybe Leonard and Penny could get their own show, possibly centering on their own burgeoning family, and possibly with the couple being closer with Zack and Marissa, who need Leonard's sperm in order to have their own baby. Or maybe Kunal Nayyar can front his own spinoff with Raj, assuming he does go through with his arranged marriage, or maybe even if he doesn't. Would a Howard and Bernadette spinoff win anyone over?
I've got it! A spinoff centered entirely on Bob Newhart's ghost of Professor Proton star Arthur Jeffries. Follow him each episode as he appears in the dreams of another one of his adoring and quirk-driven fans. I'd watch that for sure.
There's still quite a bit of story left to go in The Big Bang Theory's final season, though. From Leonard's aforementioned sperm situation to Sheldon and Amy's theory predicament to the impending presence of William freakin' Shatner! Maybe the spinoff could be about whatever his character is, especially if he's playing himself.
The Big Bang Theory airs on CBS on Thursday nights at 8:00 p.m. ET. To see what other shows are hitting primetime in the months ahead of that big finale, keep current with our midseason premiere schedule.