CBS' new show "Young Sheldon" is a spinoff of the hit series "The Big Bang Theory" and on Thursday's episode, "A Mother, a Child, and a Blue Man's Backside," the family prays in the name of Jesus, but the prayer is followed by the remarks of an adult Shelden who's critical of Christianity.
In the episode, young Sheldon, played by Iain Armitage, becomes angry with his mother Mary (Zoe Perry) because she takes away his inappropriate comic books. The comic featured weapons, violence and a blue character whose backside was showing.
The overprotective mother, who's an evangelical Christian, went as far as to demand that the comic book store clerk never sell a magazine to her son again. As the story progresses, young Sheldon demands he wants to be treated like an adult and begins to make his own decisions until a tornado hits their neighborhood and he finds himself in his mother's arms.
The natural disaster reminds Sheldon how much he still needs his mom and he clings to her as she prays to Jesus.
"In the name of Jesus, I place a hedge of protection around this house and my family. I command this storm to skip over our home in Jesus' name," Mary is heard praying with conviction. "I wish peace to every single person in this room and declare that not one of us will get hurt in this storm, in Jesus' name!"
"Pray harder!" Sheldon exclaimed.
As the family left the house and their home was spared from the storm, young Sheldon noticeably made up with his mother and hugged her in gratitude.
The fuzzy moment, however, followed a snarky comment made by the narrator (adult Sheldon) who adds: "The good news was most of our neighborhood was spared. The bad news: My mother thought she had something to do with it."
Although CBS was praised for showing a prayer, many viewers disliked the comment that followed, which implied that praying to God has no power.
"That scene actually made me cry and warmed my heart. Until the snark came in that last line. If it was meant to be funny, it failed," Newsbusters reported. "Many Americans are Christians who pray and can easily identify with this scene, but the liberal Hollywood writers were probably uncomfortable with the prayer on its own so they had to throw in a snarky comment to ruin the beautiful moment between a praying mother and her family."
In both "Young Sheldon" and "The Big Band Theory," Sheldon is portrayed as loving his mother but resenting her Creationist views.
Sheldon is a senior theoretical physicist in the first 10 seasons of "The Big Band Theory," and is pegged a "skeptical agnostic" because of comments made on the show like, "Oh, deity, whose existence I doubt, why has thou forsaken me?"
Nevertheless, the character's religious upbringing is reflected in the adult version of the show from time to time. In another episode, he praises God after making a strike in bowling by shouting "Praise Jesus!" Then sheepishly adds "as my mother would say."