Jim Parsons as Sheldon Cooper on The Big Bang Theory

The Big Bang Theory reigned as one of television’s biggest comedies during its 12-season run. One of the main reasons for its success was the insufferable, yet lovable, Sheldon Cooper, played by Jim Parsons. Fans know that Sheldon had many quirks, but many were surprised when the typically animal averse scientist adopted numerous cats. This fact was Parsons, who is allergic, and the actor recently recalled what it was like working with cats on the set despite this.

Jim Parsons mastered the intricacies of Sheldon Cooper over The Big Bang Theory's 12 seasons, and the character's eccentricities would put the actor in some interesting positions. Most recently, he and former Big Bang co-star Mayim Bialik reunited for the cat-centric Fox sitcom Call Me Kat, which he produces. When the two recently stopped by The Ellen DeGeneres Show to discuss the new sitcom, Parsons reflected on his own feline experience on their former show:

There was one time very early on in Big Bang where they were tossing around an idea for a script and they came up and asked me, ‘Are you allergic to cats by any chance?’ And I said, ‘Yeah I am, my eyes get puffy and whatever.’ About a week later, the script showed up with a box of Claritin, and it was like, ‘Here, we’re going to do one where you’re surrounded by cats the whole episode.’

Luckily, Jim Parsons managed to get through the episode without having an allergic reaction. He revealed how he kept it from happening:

I have gone through that… but I was fine, I just didn’t touch my face.

The irony of Jim Parsons’ cat allergy is that Sheldon’s favorite song was “Soft Kitty,” which was sung many times as a lullaby for the character. Still, That fact that Parsons pushed through his cat allergies for The Big Bang Theory shows how committed the actor was to his role.

Jim Parsons starred on CBS' The Big Bang Theory with Bialik, Kaley Cuoco, Johnny Galecki, Kunal Nayyar, Simon Helberg and Melissa Rauch from 2007 to 2019. For his performance, he received three Lead Actor in a Comedy Emmys and a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Television Series Comedy/Musical along with multiple TV Critics’ Choice and SAG Award nominations. The series became the number one show on television after seven seasons in the top ten.

Since Big Bang ended, Jim Parsons has found roles that don't involve cats, as he played a key role in the Ryan Murphy Netflix miniseries Hollywood. And aside from Call Me Kat, he's also served as a producer on Young Sheldon, a spinoff prequel of Big Bang. Along with television, the actor began taking on more film projects. He appeared in the Ted Bundy biopic Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile as well as the ensemble drama The Boys in the Band with Zachary Quinto and Matt Bomer.

If you want to check out Jim Parsons' hilarious performance as Sheldon Cooper, you can stream The Big Bang Theory on HBO Max.

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