Maureen Lee Lenker
September 22, 2017 AT 05:00 PM EDT

Jim Parsons wasn’t prepared for how emotional it would be to watch Young Sheldon star Iain Armitage play a younger version of a character he’s played for years.

“Watching Iain bring this young version of this character to life that I’ve been working on for a decade of my own life, it was really moving,” he told EW. “I felt such a sympathy for this little guy. It was kind of mind-blowing to see him brought to life through Iain.”

For The Big Bang Theory actor, it was a chance to reflect on how much he loves his job. “I don’t think I’ve forgotten how much fun everything is, but maybe a little bit, because it definitely feels like a reminder of something when I watch you [Iain] work on all this stuff and do all this stuff,” he said.

Parsons also assured viewers that you don’t need to have ever watched The Big Bang Theory to enjoy Young Sheldon. “If you didn’t know Big Bang at all, you could watch this show on its own,” he says. “It’s a family with three kids, one of which is very special. It’s really an origin story, and it’s a bit of a memory play in that way too.”

Watch the video above for more from Parsons and Young Sheldon himself Iain Armitage.

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