McKenna Grace as Paige and Iain Armitage as Sheldon in Young Sheldon
(CBS)

‘Young Sheldon’ Has Just Two Episodes Left To Solve Its Biggest Mystery

As Young Sheldon nears the end of its seven-season run, there’s a number of questions neither it nor The Big Bang Theory have answered, and one of the biggest is what happened to Paige Swanson (McKenna Grace).

Recommended Videos

Young Sheldon is a spinoff of The Big Bang Theory, which follows the childhood of Sheldon Cooper (Iain Armitage) in East Texas. As a child prodigy, Sheldon struggles with finding acceptance and understanding from his peers and family. However, throughout his high school and college career, he manages to make one friend and one frenemy. In high school, Sheldon had one best friend, Tam (Ryan Phuong), a Vietnamese-American who was also ostracized and helped foster Sheldon’s love of superheroes and comic books. The Big Bang Theory later revealed that Tam and Sheldon had a falling out after high school because Tam refused to move to California with Sheldon.

Although The Big Bang Theory reiterates that Tam was Sheldon’s only high school friend, some viewers would argue that he did have one additional friend: Paige. She arguably understands Sheldon even more than Tam, given she is also a child genius. While Young Sheldon confirms that she and Sheldon went down very different paths, there are still lingering questions over her ultimate fate.

What happened to Paige in Young Sheldon?

Sheldon sits on the couch in Young Sheldon.
(CBS)

In Young Sheldon, Paige and Sheldon have a complicated relationship. They first meet in high school, where they are the two sole child geniuses. It is debatable who is more intelligent than whom, but Sheldon frequently feels threatened by Paige, which develops into a rivalry. However, they are often unable to escape each other, especially when Paige and Missy (Raegan Revord) develop a close friendship. Once Sheldon begins attending East Texas Tech, he becomes fearful that Paige will also become a student there as the school seeks to recruit her.

Unfortunately, Paige’s story takes a sad turn. Throughout the series, she struggles with her parents’ divorce, which causes her to act out. She grows rebellious and angry, letting her grades fall and losing sight of her future. Paige also often encourages Sheldon to rebel, pushing him to temporarily give up his strict rule-following habits. Although she ends up attending the University of Austin, she feels lonely and like an outcast. She especially grows disillusioned when she learns Sheldon has actually fared better than her in college and has formed some casual friendships.

Soon, she drops out of college altogether, taking up partying and underage drinking. The very last viewers see of her is in season 6, when she and Missy get into trouble with the police after stealing a truck and trying to drive to Florida. While viewers were likely interested to learn where Paige ended up after the incident, she has not appeared in the series since. However, there is still a chance she will show up in the two-episode series finale. If she doesn’t, though, viewers may never learn what happened to her.

Unlike Tam, Paige never appears or is so much as mentioned in The Big Bang Theory. This is because she is an original character created for Young Sheldon after The Big Bang Theory concluded. It has already been frustrating enough for viewers that the adult Sheldon seemingly just forgot about the troubled childhood genius. Despite their rivalry, the pair showed sparks of camaraderie as Paige pushed Sheldon outside his comfort zone, and Sheldon learned to listen and show empathy after learning of Paige’s struggles. It would’ve been very interesting to see the adult Sheldon reflect on their relationship and how he very well could’ve ended up like Paige if he had also succumbed to the immense pressure of being a child genius. On the other hand, it might’ve been satisfying to learn that Paige overcame her past and went on to become as prestigious an intellectual as Sheldon.

Without any answers from The Big Bang Theory, viewers are holding onto hope that the Young Sheldon season finale will finally provide some insight into whatever happened to Paige.


The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more
related content
Read Article Which Season of ‘The Sopranos’ Is the Best … and Which Deserves To Be Whacked?
Adriana (Drea de Matteo) and Silvio (Steven van Zandt) driving in The Sopranos
Read Article What’s the Eco Pup’s Catchphrase Your Toddler Keeps Repeating From ‘PAW Patrol’?
Rocky on Nickelodeon's "PAW Patrol"
Read Article One Cut ‘Bridgerton’ Character Changes One of Season 3’s Best Scenes From the Books
The Featherington sisters and their husbands in Bridgerton season 3
Read Article When Can We Return to the Flames With ‘Fire Country’ Season 3?
Max Thieriot in Fire Country
Read Article Get Emotionally Wrecked by the 9 Best Shows Like ‘Heartbreak High’
Amerie, Darren, and Quinni standing at their lockers in Heartbreak High
Related Content
Read Article Which Season of ‘The Sopranos’ Is the Best … and Which Deserves To Be Whacked?
Adriana (Drea de Matteo) and Silvio (Steven van Zandt) driving in The Sopranos
Read Article What’s the Eco Pup’s Catchphrase Your Toddler Keeps Repeating From ‘PAW Patrol’?
Rocky on Nickelodeon's "PAW Patrol"
Read Article One Cut ‘Bridgerton’ Character Changes One of Season 3’s Best Scenes From the Books
The Featherington sisters and their husbands in Bridgerton season 3
Read Article When Can We Return to the Flames With ‘Fire Country’ Season 3?
Max Thieriot in Fire Country
Read Article Get Emotionally Wrecked by the 9 Best Shows Like ‘Heartbreak High’
Amerie, Darren, and Quinni standing at their lockers in Heartbreak High
Author
Rachel Ulatowski
Rachel Ulatowski is a Staff Writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, literature, and celebrity news. She has over three years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant, JustWatch, and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.