Hi, friends! And welcome to my first real This is Us recap of 2021! As you'll find out shortly, this episode did absolutely nothing for me! It was a huge waste of time and it feels particularly frustrating to have such a boring episode when we as viewers know that we are only getting six seasons of the show. I want more background on underdeveloped characters, not a filler episode where the Big Three are moody and broody and well, annoying.
So, without further ado, here is my recap of Season 5 Episode 5 "A Long Road Home". Spoilers ahead, y'all!
We begin by tying up some loose ends from the last episode we saw before Winter hiatus, with Kate confirming that she did in fact have an abortion at the age of 18. This is such a weird plot line to me. Katiegirl has been pregnant twice before in the span of the show: she miscarried and then she gave birth to baby Jack. Why is this abortion PTSD just now coming up? And why is she suddenly so interested in seeing what happened to her shitty ex-boyfriend? If this had happened maybe two or three seasons ago, I would buy it, but I don't. I'm annoyed and frustrated.
For reasons I cannot possibly explain, Kate decides to track down Marc to see what he's up to these days and...tell him off? Listen, I can't speak for everyone, but I know for a fact that any abuser or source of negativity or cause of PTSD in my past needs to stay in the past. Marc hurt her, both physically and emotionally, and who's to say 40-something Marc wouldn't do the same?
So Toby takes Kate to this place in LA where he's working (sidenote: Didn't they meet in PA? Why is he also in California?) and is outside on a smoke break. He looks the same, long hair and a creepy mustache. He doesn't immediately recognize Kate and he's not sure why she's there. Guess what, Marc? The audience doesn't know either! Kate goes off on him about how she's doing so great now and that he sucked as a boyfriend. He's like...what took you 20 years? And he has a point! Kate is MARRIED! She has a CHILD! All of this could've been said in THERAPY! Also closure isn't real and will never get you what you need. NEXT.
Kevin is getting ready to leave for his movie that shoots in Canada and Madison is getting nervous. He starts talking about how often they'll travel because of his work and she really just wants to stay where they are with their family. It's a point of contention and proof that they still really don't know each other at all. BUT! Dan Fogelman lets his wife kiss Justin Hartley so I guess that's some progress on the #Kadison or #Mevin front?
They interview a nanny but Madison isn't feeling it, and she also isn't feeling it when Kevin tries to give her a big Pearson speech. She tells him to go and they will figure it out soon. The babies are still two months away. Mmmk, but does Miss Madison know that a lot of times twins come ~early~. Guess not! Who wants to bet these ones do?
Kevin has a flashback to when Randall called him and told him not to move to LA the first time and leave Sophie so soon after they got married. Young Kevin shoots him down and thinks he's just trying to sabotage his life and doesn't believe in him. Adult Kevin needs Randall to tell him the same thing now so he has a reason to turn around. But Randall doesn't so Kevin doesn't, and the whole thing feels very blah. Like, you're 40 years old Kev, make your own choices and stick to them.
Lastly, Randall learns that his biological mother actually lived a full life, passing away in 2015 from breast cancer. This begs the question: why the weird mystery and making us think she's currently alive? I feel like they could've done a flashback episode about Laurel's life without making her not die after giving birth.
Anyway, Randall gets really pissed at William (who is dead) because he lied to him, but thankfully we get a really quick resolution when Hai (the man who contacted Randall) lets him know that William had no idea Laurel survived. Randall gets a bunch of added stress from this new discovery, and him and Beth decide they're going to go and see Hai in person to get Laurel's story. Aaaaand that's gonna be the next episode. All about Laurel.
It should be a good one, because the deep-dive history episodes are usually great (see: Beth's episode), but it does feel like such a weird time to learn about Laurel, but I need Randall's stress to go away ASAP. He has too much to talk about in therapy, poor guy.
What did y'all think of the episode? Underwhelming? Do you disagree with me and absolutely adore it? Let me know in the comments!
Hi! So obviously this episode of This is Us aired on November 17th and it is now January 5th and I still haven't blogged about it which is just rude! Because the mid-season (is that what we're calling it?) premiere is tonight, I thought I'd come back with a short blog recapping the last episode we got before that Winter break. However, because it's been so long that I barely remember it, y'all get my Notes app version* instead.
*by this I literally mean these are the things I wrote in the Notes app as the episode was airing. Usually I make a whole recap out of them but not for this one! Okay here we go:
- Kevin overworking himself makes me sad.
- This director seems like a dooooouche but he has excellent hair.
- This adoption isn't gonna go well, make my words.
- They named her Chloe...that ain't maybe-Haley.
- Annie talking like she's a March sister LOL
- Malik shadowing Randall, that's cute. Glad we got to see him and Deja interact.
- Not Malik falling asleep
- Yeah Ellie doesn't like that they named that baby
- Rebecca babying Kevin parallel? Idk I kind of get it
- Okay so Malik did not cut the cameras
- Deja calls Randall 'Dad' and Beth by her name.
- This scene would be more awk but SKB is fine
- Jack's color is green and Becca's is pink.
- Little Kevin is such a dick lmao
- Why does Ellie feel so sketchyyyy
- Malik is so BOLD asking for an internship
- "Honestly" = doesn't mean honest
- "I think I love this melted wax baby" Toby omg stop
- What's wrong with Kate??? You always sad bish
- This teen pregnancy thing seems out of character for Kate??? Like doesn't make sense to me and I don't buy it 5 seasons in
- JACK PEARSON YOU ARE NOT AN ORDINARY MAN
- Kevin still uses the flash cards :( I love that
- Why did Foster send him a basket? Eh, I don't care.
- Randall looking at the memes
- Oh shit that one guy is gonna find him
- Do you ever think about how Jack died and cry
- I'm emotionaaaaaal
- JANUARY 5TH? Fuck that shit.
Okay! Hope y'all enjoyed that unfiltered mess! I will return with regular recaps this week, but I will always use my trusty notes app and thank it for giving us this messy AF blog post.
Hi, my friends. Episode 3 of This is Us's fifth season was entitled, "Changes" because things are, you guessed it, changing! And yes, this is in fact the third episode because the premiere, "Forty" was two episodes! I know what you're all thinking: I'm great at counting, and you're right!
Here is your little SPOILER ALERT! If you haven't seen last night's episode of This is Us, don't read this recap! Unless you don't plan on watching it and just wanna know what happens, which I absolutely do not judge you for.
Up first this week is Kate and Toby and their adoption journey. We know they have a daughter named Haley in the future, but what's the age difference between her and Jack? Was she adopted or did Kate birth her?
Right now we're operating under the assumption that Haley is indeed adopted, and this week Kate and Toby meet her supposed birth mother. Her name is Ellie and she's a 33-year-old single mom. She already has one daughter, Willow, name after the character from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Ellie got pregnant with maybe-Haley after a one night stand with a guy she met after the death of her husband. She seems really cool and her and Kate get along great.
HOWEVER...I am so wary of these adoption storylines. I watched it go down on Parenthood and again on A Million Little Things (actually, I quit AMLT before it got to that point, but when I read that it did, it didn't surprise me in the slightest). The adoption fakeout is a tired trope. For those who are unfamilar, it's when the birth mom finds a couple (usually main characters on the show) she wants to adopt her baby, and then at the last possible second, usually after she gives birth, she changes her mind. It's so devastating and also overused at this point. I'm really hopeful they stick with Ellie and Ellie sticks with them and gives them Haley of the future.
Next up we've got Randall. Randall has a new therapist, a nice Black man with a baby. He wants Randall to recount memories of his childhood and stop trying to prove to him that he's Black despite being raised by White people. He literally says to his therapist, "Beth, my wife. My Black wife." His therapist is like, "Calm down."
Also shout-out to anyone doing virtual therapy right now (therapists and clients alike). That shit is HARD! It is so different from going in person and having a real private, human conversation. So to those (like me) doing that right now, good job. Mental health is so important, especially during a global pandemic.
Also in Randall-land, Tess gets in trouble at school for posting a "profane" video online with her friend. In the video, she and her friend call out a teacher who is particularly grab-y with Black students, and fails to recognize non-binary students as such. The video is done in the style of a rap/dance/thing and it's...not profane? Like I don't see the issue?
Beth and Randall come down hard on Tess and then ground her for SIX WEEKS. Obviously NBC couldn't make the video worse (I guess?) because it's network television BUT there wasn't even any swearing! Or inappropriate dance moves! Poor Tess was just standing up against her weird ass teacher. I'm Team Tess on this one, guys. Oh, also Randall has a come-to-Jesus moment where he realizes that maybe Tess will turn out better than him, since she already knows who she is. But I beg the question, WHAT ABOUT POOR ANNIE? Annie girl is gonna have all of Randall's anxiety, mark my word.
In flashback 90s world, Jack and Bec are dealing with the Big 3 entering puberty and oh my goodness, those little kid actors have gotten SO big. Their voices are changing and I'm sad because they used to be so freaking little!
Mom and Pops take the kiddos to the doctor to see how they're growing, and then Kate has her friend Tonya and ex Stewart over for a group project. Randall sits in the living room watching TV before doing his homework when Tonya tries to kiss him because she's "always wondered what it'd be like to kiss someone like him". Yucky racism yuck. Grown-up Randall uses this story to write down and possibly tell his therapist. The scene makes me uncomfortable and sad. Fuck Tonya.
Meanwhile, Kevin is trying to get buff for football. Jack takes him to the garage to work out and Bec is apprehensive because she doesn't want Kev to feel like he needs to work out or be a certain size. I mean, he's still growing after all! Last episode showed us that Rebecca didn't want her sons to have to feel male pressure from society, and this scene really drives that point home. Side note: Becca trying to be a "cool mom" is so funny.
Jack and Kevin have a great moment of him teaching Kevin to lift weights, and he doesn't push him too hard. Instead, Kev pushes himself a little too hard, probably trying to prove to himself that he's a big tough guy. I did very much enjoy the wholesome Jack and Kevin content, and wish we got to see more of that. Jack was taken from those kiddos way too soon.
Grown-up Kev is still battling his insecurities when he lands the job in a movie called "Glass Eye". It's about a trial lawyer who takes his shirt off? Anyway, he's still living with pregnant Madison and they're engaged I think. He tells her about the movie and how his diet has the change and she immediately shuts down. He think it's because the sex scenes. LOL.
I'm SO glad they decided to finally address Madison's eating disorder while being pregnant! We watch as she wakes up before Kevin and puts on a full face of makeup before getting dressed and making him breakfast. It reminds me of one of the scenes from The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, where Midge does the same so that her husband doesn't see her without makeup. It's so sad to watch Madison here, clearly so insecure about her appearance in front of the man she's seemingly engaged to.
Eventually Madison breaks down, and tells Kevin she has to literally remind herself to eat for her babies. She has bulimia, which we knew but he didn't, and it almost killed her at 17. She's got a handle on it, but she hates that strangers can tell she's pregnant and that Kevin now has to have a strict diet for a movie. Kevin opens up that he's an alcoholic also battling insecurities around his appearance, and decides a trial lawyer shouldn't need to take his f'ing shirt off! They have a really sweet heart to heart and I'm still waiting for them to just KISS but I'll settle for a deeper, authentic love story right now.
Lastly, at both the beginning and end of the episode there are scenes with a Vietnamese man and his granddaughter. He cooks for her and tells her he also cooked to impress the woman he love(s/d?). This is Us loves bringing in new characters all the damn time just to drop them, so I figured this was just a bookend to whatever the Pearson's were going through in this episode.
But! Turns out, this guy is in love/was in love with Laurel, Randall's totally-alive-now birth mother. The end of the episode is a close-up of a picture of the Vietnamese man and Laurel, and I'm sitting here like "Oh." That's literally it. I think I'm supposed to care more, but I thought Laurel was dead for the past four seasons so I guess my heart isn't really in it. Also, that probably means Randall has a shit ton of other family members and then This is Us is just gonna turn into This is the Duggars. I mean, of course not exactly but...kind of?
That's all for this week! As always, let me know your thoughts in the comments! What do we think of Ellie and adoption storylines? Do you ship Kevin and Madison? Was Tess in the wrong or were Randall and Beth "fascists" ("Did she call you a fascist?")? Do you care about Laurel's story? Tell me!
Hi, friends! I'm writing this in a timely fashion for once because I'm on top of my game! Yay! Last night's episode of This is Us was a mix of really sweet moments, a really unrealistic therapy session, and lots and lots of Joni Mitchell. Let's get to it!
Here's your SPOILER ALERT warning as always, if you haven't watched Season 4, Episode 15 "Clouds" I suggest going and doing that and then coming back to me! Thanks!
Kate and Toby are still having marital woes, which is frustrating because nobody on this show can ever just be happy. Toby unveils a present for Kate he came up with while she was away; a music studio for her (and Jack). Instead of thanking Toby for being thoughtful, she kinda freaks the fuck out and says that a grand gesture isn't enough. I get it but also, we are EXHAUSTED, Kate.
She has lunch with Madison who, after sleeping with Kevin, is suprisingly insightful. She's like, "Girl. Toby's trying. Let him try." And then mentions Kevin being the first guy who's ever really "seen" her, which I think is really special and makes me okay with them ending up together (if they do because at this point I have absolutely no idea). Kate goes back to Toby and lets him show her the part of the music studio for Jack, and then at the end we get flashforwards of Jack using it for years and years to come. I cried a little.
In the early 90's, the kiddos get their report cards and Randall has a CRISIS over getting an A-. Becca wants to get him some help for his anxiety from a counselor or something but Jack assures her that he will take care of it. His solution? RUNNING.
Guys, I love Jack. I always have and I always will. But it's hard to not overlook his faults as a parent, often time masked as strengths and bonding moments with his kids. I too have been told that all I needed was a little exercise when it came to managing my anxiety, but the truth is that that is not enough, and it doesn't work for everyone especially those suffering from severe anxiety like myself and Randall.
We've seen in previous episodes that Randall uses running as an outlet, and in a sequence here we see him running with Jack, running as a teenager without Jack, and running as an adult. Jack was a good dad. Jack didn't understand the severity of his son's issues.
So after all these years, Randall is going to therapy, and his therapist sucks. We don't see her face until the end of the episode, probably for dramatic effect and so we're more focused on Randall during the therapy session itself, but good god, she's awful. As someone who has gone to therapy for almost ten years, this is NOT how all therapists are. For one, she knows his story because she's heard his speeches, meaning she has preconceived notions about Randall before even meeting him, and she doesn't make him comfortable (ESPECIALLY IN A FIRST SESSION) she pokes and prods and just lets him ramble without being reassuring or gentle. Huge dislike, I don't blame Randall for wanting to quit.
But the best scene for Randall comes at the end between him and Beth, where she empties her purse and reveals that she carries pepper spray when closing her dance studio at night, takes doctor prescribed sleeping pills because she can't sleep, and bought Annie an iPhone because after the break-in she's terrified of not being able to contact her daughter. It just goes to show that everyone is hurting, and it persuades Randall to give his awful therapist a second chance. The guy needs therapy but not with this woman! Yuck!
While Randall is getting his therapy on, Kevin takes it upon himself to spend the day with his mother, who is about to get results from her MRI. Spoiler alert: It looks like our Bec is gonna have Alzheimer's :(.
They go shopping at the record store and then on a L.A. road trip to find Joni Mitchell's old house, something Jack and Becca tried to do back in the day. In flashbacks, pre-teen Kevin and Rebecca go scowering for baseball cards after getting groceries, Kev's reward for his two A's on his report card. He buys 14 packs for eight dollars, chew 60-second lasting gum, and Mama Pearson puts her magic touch on one pack to get Kevin the card he desires; a 1991 Jack Candelaria.
They find Ms. Mitchell's house and Becca sings "Our House" as she sees it up close for the first time, a scene that perfectly mirrors her singing it to Jack (and failing to get him to sing along). Kevin looks so happy to see his mama happy, and oh no, I'm crying again.
I still don't understand how we've gone four seasons without an explanation as to how and why Miguel and Bec ended up married, but it breaks my heart to see the side by side of Jack and Rebecca having movie night and snuggling compared to Miguel and Rebecca. Something will just never be right.
Rebecca tells Kevin that his fun spirit never gets lost upon her, and as Kevin reflects back on that day with his mom in the 90's, he goes to a pawn shop and buys a 1991 Jack Candelaria card for two dollars and keeps it in his wallet. Ouch my heart hurts.
Episodes like these remind me how much heart this show has, and that it doesn't have to be over the top to create tear-inducing moments. So often I feel like the writers/creators hype it up too much, so you're expecting more tears or plot twists. "Clouds" reminds us that small moments can have big impacts, and that life is fragile, but Joni Mitchell is timeless.
What did y'all think? Are you sad we have to wait two weeks for another episode? How do you feel about Rebecca's diagnosis? Was I too hard on Randall's therapist (NO!)? Do you think Kate and Toby back on track now? Let me know in the comments!
My aunt told me that last week's episode of This is Us, entitled "The Cabin" was her favorite episode in a season and a half. While I'd argue that the best episode as of late was Kevin's "Hell of a Week", I do agree that this episode was a gamechanger, and felt oddly familar and comforting.
It's not often we get all 3 Pearson siblings together (two live in L.A., one lives in Philly) and it's even less frequent we get them together without their spouses. This episode was all about the 'Sad Three' navigating a rough patch in their lives and figuring out what lies ahead. SPOILER WARNING!
This episode is told in 3 timelines; 1993, 1999, and 2020. Let's start in '93, shall we?
The Pearson kiddos are around 12/13 and oh my god they're annoying! But in a good, annoying teenager way. Jack thinks it'd be a fun idea for everyone to put something into a time capsule he got for them, including himself and Bec. In true Pearson family fashion, Kevin thinks the whole ordeal is stupid, Kate thinks it could be fun, and Randall is dressed out beyond belief at the idea of putting something meaningful in for him to find when he's 18.
Meanwhile, Jack daydreams of building a dream house for him and Becca to grow old in, one up on a hill that overlooks their small cabin. He draws a sketch of it and throws it in the garbage.
In 1999, Rebecca, Kevin, and Randall are on their way to the cabin to help Kate because they think she's in trouble. They're stopped by a snowstorm and their trip is delayed until the roads open back up in the morning. When they arrive, Marc is making breakfast and things seem normal, until they notice a draft coming from the window.
The boys discover the window shattered, and Kate's hand wrapped in gloves. She claims she's fine, she's just cold, but when she takes off the gloves a huge gash in her hand is revealed. Flashback to the previous night, she tried to make coffee and a fire with Marc. He took Jack's mug when she asked him not to, and accidentally broke it. They fought, and he locked her out of the cabin while she collected firewood. It was snowing and freezing and she had to break the window to get back in.
Rebecca is having NONE of Marc's shit and, quite simply tells him to, "Get the hell out of my house." He stands there unfazed, until the boys take a step forward and Rebecca remains firm, and he finally leaves. Becca holds teen Kate in her arms as she cries, "He told me he loved me."
Present day Big Three leaves their familes (well Kevin, leaves Madison) behind as they embark on their sibling getaway. Toby offers to look after Jack for the weekend, insisting that he needs to do it to spend time with his son and also show Kate that he's the man she married. She reluctantly lets him, and things go mostly well aside from Jack nearly choking but it's all good 'cause Tobes has it under control.
When the grown-up Pearson's arrive at the cabin, the power goes out almost immediately due to a storm. They head to a grocery store for candles, food, and shit (or in the case of Randall...wifi). While there, Kate listens to her voicemails from Madison (THREE OF THEM) in which she slowly confesses to sleeping with Kevin. Yikes.
Meanwhile, Randall wants to get a signal so he can check the security cameras at his house, but service is so bad he can't. The siblings' frustrations come to a head as Randall and Kate finally tell Kevin that Rebecca is struggling and might be showing early signs of permenant memory loss. He storms out and sulks in the cold, but not for long before Kate and Randall come get him.
They decide to dig up the time capsule because it's been nearly 30 years since they buried it. They didn't open it back in '98 because of the VERY SAD THING that happened that year. Inside they find: a picture of Kophie from Kevin, a game of M*A*S*H from Kate, a missing puzzle piece from Randall (Kevin's idea to ease his brother's anxiety), Jack's drawing of the house, and a tape recorder.
Originally believing the drawing to be from Jack, they wonder why Rebecca left the tape and recorder. They listen to it and find out that she didn't; Jack did. It's a message from him talking about the family, and how Becca is the glue that holds them all together. She dug his sketch out of the garbage and put it in the capsule, something he suspected when he couldn't find it later. He describes how fiercely loyal his wife is, and how much he loves her. BRB BAWLING RIGHT NOW.
THEN as if that wasn't enough we get a flash forward to approx. 10-12 years in the future, a time frame we've seen briefly before (the one where Bec is on her death bed). Kevin gets out of his car with food in a bag, pulling up to the house that Jack envisioned building for Becca all those years ago. He looks down, all salt and pepper and aging handsomely, at the cabin under the hill all lit up. Beth answers the door and we see that he made his dad's dreams come true, with the house and Rebecca growing old (and eventually dying we can presume) there.
Alright folks! That's all I have for you! Are you crying again? Because I kind of am. Let me know what you thought of this episode in the comments!
It's completely my bad that it's taken so long to write this recap. I took notes on this episode while watching it and then accidentally deleted it (stupid phones) and then in an attempt to recover said deleted note, I deleted it forever, because I don't know how to use technology. So not only is this post hella late, it's also going to be completely based from memory because I figured it would be more fun that way.
I am writing this obligatory SPOILER ALERT because I will feel very bad if I don't, but if you're two weeks behind on This is Us, that is nobody's problem but your own! Sorry for the sass, let's get to Kate's "Hell of a Week".
Up until this point, the show has been building up an incident between Kate and her older boyfriend, Marc. He's 23; she's 18. He hired her at the record store and she likes him because he's like a security blanket from all the bad things she's endured. EXCEPT, he's really causing a lot of shit in her life.
He gets mad at her for the smallest things, including her talking to a customer about music at the store THEY BOTH WORK AT. He's not driven, shows little to no interest in interacting with her family, and quits his job on a limb because he's pissed at Kate and then proceeds to get more pissed at her when she informs him that she won't be quitting with him. Side Note: I totally he said he quit smoking, when he said he quit his job. He said something about smoking in that same breath. I was probably just really tired.
Anyway, Marc seems to have some sort of mental illness/alcoholism because he is very back and forth. When Kate addresses his outbursts, he apologizes and kisses her like nothing ever happened. I've read people on line diagnosing him with BPD or Bipolar Disorder, and I don't want to just throw a label on his issues, but those two do seem to make the most sense.
Case in point, when Kate tells Rebecca that she and Marc are going to go stay at the family cabin the day after Bec's birthday dinner and Bec expresses minor discomfort, Kate and Marc take off, skipping her birthday celebration all together. On the ride there they seem to be having an okay time, singing Ben Folds and holding hands, until Marc snaps and begins to swerve off the road in the snow. He leaves Kate on the side of the road, with nothing but her overnight bag.
Now's a good time to mention that not only is Marc emotionally abusive, he verbally harasses Kate on multiple occasions, typically resorting to calling her 'fat', which of course is triggering to her because she has always struggled with her weight, but having the person you love call you ugly and fat...that's just not right.
Kate runs to the nearest gas station where she calls her mom, and this is the scene we've watched several times of Bec cancelling her birthday dinner and Kevin phoning Randall so they can go rescue Kate. Shortly after hanging up the phone, Marc pulls up to the gas station with a blanket for Katie girl, and they go back to the cabin before his next outburst.
In the present day, Toby is sucking majorly and skips out on the blind children retreat because of 'work' and because he isn't really feeling having a blind son. Old Rebecca rules, and she decides to step up and go with Kate so they can spend some time together.
Kate and Rebecca manage to go an entire trip without fighting, actually they bond instead. When Kate refuses to go swimming because of how she will look in a bathing suit Becca exclaims, "You're fat, I'm ancient, we're gorgeous!" I gasped as I watched such a positive, hilarious mother-daughter moment on TV and wept as they finally seemed to get each other. Becca heartbreakingly reveals her medical diagnosis, and Kate feels jipped because of course Bec's health is failing just as their relationship is back on course. There's a moment where the two of them sing "You Oughta Know" by Alanis Morrisette at the karoke bar and it's so wholesome and beautiful.
Side side note: Kate calls Gregory (her neighbor) to check in back home instead of Toby, and while I'm not sure it's anything romantic, I sure do love their dynamic.
Oh! I totally forgot to mention that this whole time Jack is reading toddler Kate a bedtime story, one that she helps tell. It's all about a princess who just wants her mama. It's so fitting and perfect for everything that happens. She just needs her mom.
Finally, the trilogy ends with Kevin and Randall calling Kate when she arrives back from the retreat and telling her that they want to take a 'Sad Three' trip to the cabin.
What did ya think? Did you think the Marc stuff would be more or less extreme? Which episode of the Big Three Trilogy was your favorite? (Mine was Kevin's, obviously). Tell me in the comments!
And if you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse, don't be afraid to the domestic abuse hotline at 1-800-799-7233. Everyone deserves help. It's not your fault.
Kevin Also Has "A Hell Of A Week" As His Love Story With Sophie Comes To A Possible Close (S4, Ep12 Recap)
Hi, my dear readers and This is Us fans! I want to apologize deeply for the delay in getting this recap up, school has been kicking my butt and this is the first chance I am having to write about, what I personally consider, the best episode of This is Us all season. Actually, it might be the best episode since Season 2. I know, I know, I'm getting crazy.
In "A Hell Of A Week: Part 2", we get to see Kevin's difficultly to let go of the past and perhaps finally move on from his great love story. THIS IS YOUR SPOILER ALERT, ALTHOUGH THIS EPISODE AIRED LITERALLY TWO WEEKS AGO SO LIKE, YOU'VE WATCHED IT BY NOW.
In an effort to continue incorporating Jack in the show, we learn that the night that toddler Randall couldn't fall asleep, neither could toddler Kevin. He wants his little sheep mobile that Rebecca has already donated. Jack tells him, toward the end of the episode, that he's going to "find something else to love" and if that isn't putting the nail in the coffin for Kevin/Sophie, I don't know what is. Oh wait! Yes, I do! The rest of the episode! That does it!
We know by now that Sophie called Kevin because her mother, Claire, passed away. In flashbacks, we as viewers meet Claire for the first time and she's...eccentric. She's irresponsible with money, Kevin's biggest fan, but she also is somewhat realistic. She refuses to give Kevin her mother's engagement ring, a beautiful emerald ring that Sophie wants badly, because she wants him to earn it. He never does.
The whole episode is incredibly meta. As Kevin is working on night shoots for his movie, he insists to the director that the "ending we already shot was pretty good,". But, the director persists, "This is the ending everyone wants and they still won't see it coming." We thought that we were done with Sophie when she announced her engagement to Grant (whose face we don't see in this episode), but this episode proves there's more to be told when it comes to Kevin's greatest love thus far.
Additionally, a running gag between teenage and adult Kevin and Sophie is predicting an ending when things get sad. To what? Well, we learn that the night of the horrific Pearson house fire, Kevin and Sophie went to a party in the woods. They got bored and decided to get donuts and go to the movies instead, where they saw MOST of Good Will Hunting. The power goes out and they aren't able to see the end so they make it up for the next 20 years, vowing to never watch it. After showing up at Claire's funeral and then again at her old house for the reception (with powdered donuts!!), Kevin whisks Sophie away to that same spot in the woods, where they finally watch the ending.
I love so much of this because Kevin and Sophie as kids and as teenagers are perfect for one another. They compliment each other so well, and I could watch an entire movie of teen Kev and Soph's love story. I also love the realism that this episode has. Yes, they were perfect, but Kevin messed it up. He cheated on her during their marriage and they were never able to come back from it. They tried, but his alcoholism got in the way and eventually she found someone else. I like to see them as the anti-Jack and Rebecca. They just didn't work out, and while it's so sad, it's okay. They had some really beautiful moments.
Speaking of beautiful moments, I LOST it when teen Sophie hands Kevin a napkin during his father's funeral with an alternate ending to the movie. What a perfect, emotional moment between two vulnerable people. Also, the scene when Kevin talks to Claire's grave and leaves his headshot and then takes it away is so sad and funny at the same time. I can't stop thinking about how amazing Justin Hartley is.
After Kevin and Sophie say their goodbyes, Kevin heads back to LA and to Kate's house to hang out with her and baby Jack. When he arrives, Kate's bff Madison opens the door. Apparently Toby is at work, Kate and baby Jack went on the retreat she originally got as a birthday present for Toby, and Madison is dog sitting Audio.
They have a cup of tea and share their romantic struggles. Kevin tells her not to focus so much on being left and instead celebrate the fact that she's the one who wants to stay. One thing leads to another and it sure looks like they sleep together. I mean, we don't see them kiss or anything sexy but Kevin does wake up shirtless in the bed next to her when he calls Randall the next day. He suggests the three siblings go back to Pittsburgh to the old cabin.
As Sophie goes through her mother's things, she is finally able to have the emerald ring she always desired. She looks at it and compares it to her current engagement ring from faceless Grant and cries to herself. Some may take this as the Kophie story not being over, but I think it is. I don't think Kevin will ever earn that ring; it's Sophie's to keep now. When you think about it, it's really gut-wrenching and brutal, but life is like that sometimes and it's nice to see that play out on TV.
I haven't decided whether or not I'm okay with this Madison thing yet, or if I believe that she's his baby mama and future fiancé. It would be nice to see the story unfold, and no matter how much I love Sophie and Kevin's story, I think it's time to finally let it go and move on.
What do you think? Are you still team #Kophie or are you ready for Kevin's next great love story? Let me know in the comments!
Oh wow, y'all. Oh wow. Where do I even begin? I truly feel like this is the first This is Us episode in like 2 seasons where I truly was at the edge of my seat and the cliffhanger blew my mind. Remember when we found out that Rebecca was married to Miguel at the end of the second episode of the series? This felt like that.
I CAN'T REALLY SAY MORE WITHOUT MAKING A VERY BIG, VERY BOLD SPOILER ALERT FOR "SO LONG MARIANNE". IF YOU CONTINUE READING THIS AND THEN YOU'RE MAD THAT YOU GOT SPOILED I WILL NOT FEEL BAD FOR YOU. K, THANKS.
It's Thanksgiving and you know what that means! Randall is hosting! Well, Beth is hosting and Randall is going on a wild goose chase to Jersey for their Thanksgiving decor (i.e. The Pilgrim Rick hat) with Annie and a very anxious Uncle Nicky at his side. Nicky feels uncomfortable in the Pearson home, especially given that Jack killed him off in his life's story. I cannot stress this enough, I LOVE Uncle Nicky.
One of my favorite Uncle Nicky moments this episode is when he tries to convince Kevin to let him go with Randall, saying, "It gives me some time to get to know Russell." Only to be corrected by Randall himself, "Randall." Nicky then proves his own point, "See?". As for my other favorite Uncle Nicky moments, well, they come in the form of some flashbacks that we'll get to later.
Toby and Kate take baby Jack on a plane to Philly where Kate decides to come clean and tell her husband that their son actually tried avocado for the first time with their neighbor Gregory. Toby is mad, but quickly gets over it, and I've now realized he has no place to be mad. He lied to Kate for MONTHS about going to the gym, getting jacked, and joining Crossfit, but she lets him believe for 24 hours that his first time eating solid food was with his dad and she's the bad guy? I don't love it. And you know things must be bad if I'm taking Kate's side.
ALSO on Thanksgiving when Toby asks Kate to take a photo with his phone, she finds a message from someone named "LadyKryptonite" that says something along the lines of "Don't let her get you down." First of all, who puts someone in their phone as LadyKryptonite (No spaces either) and second of all, EXCUSE ME? Toby Damon, go home, you're drunk on Crossfit.
In the flashybacks a much younger and pre-Vietnam Nicky and Jack decide to skip their family Thanksgiving because their parents are fighting. They spend some time together, listen to Leonard Cohen, and order five pounds of shrimp. The back and forth between Randall explaining what "So Long, Marianne" is about to old Nicky as young Nicky explains what it means to young Jack is truly heartbreaking. Nicky feels erased, but he also feels his brother's love, all in one breath. I cried, obviously.
Nicky brings the 5 pounds of shrimp out again at 2019's Thanksgiving dinner. He says, "It's for Jack. My brother." And then I exploded into a puddle of tears, you know, as one does.
Also on the guest list is Shauna, Deja's birth mama, and she's doing fantastic, which should cheer everyone up, but in reality bums them out. Beth is scared that Deja will long for her mom, and Deja breaks down and asks Beth why Shauna couldn't be like that for her. It's hard to watch.
Rebecca is still pissed at Randall for recommending that she see a doctor for her memory issues, and when he tries to apologize she shuts him down. She insists on going to a movie alone, and I'm irritated by Miguel's silence in all of this. He just stays out of it, which is weird. I feel like as her husband he should tell Randall and the other kids what is going on with their mother's health.
We watch as Becca goes searching for a bakery to bring to Thanksgiving dinner. She mistakes a young black man for a young William, and then loses her phone at the grocery store checkout where she buys flowers instead of cake. Then she goes and gets Chinese food (it's Thanksgiving, sis) alone and finally realizes that she doesn't have her phone which sends her spiraling. Honestly, the whole thing is very difficult to watch and I give props to Mandy Moore for her performance.
I wrote in my notes for this episode that the new live action Cats movie looks terrifying. They must've show a commercial for it. I stand by that statement.
adorablenessYou guys! Kevin has a really good episode (well, almost)! He is Uncle of the Year by taking Tess out and supportively urging her to come out to her friends at school. He is just so real and honest and grown-up with her and I love it.
He also comes to the conclusion that in 9 months time (The Big 3's 40th birthday), he wants to be settled down. He wants to be married, or engaged and he wants a baby. Randall is like "Okay my dude please slow down" but Kevin is like "Nah, enough of this waiting bullshit" (This is exactly how their conversation goes, don't try to argue with me).
So guess what? We see into the future, many parts of it actually. Grown-up Jack Damon and his wife make an appearance on a Thanksgiving probably 20+ years from now, where Lucy is pregnant with their child and stressed about hosting. Jack tells her not to worry, eat some shrimp adding, "There's five pounds." MY HEART. (If you don't understand what any of this means: remember the flashback from earlier? The adoreableness?)
Do you also remember earlier when Rebecca's dumbass went and got Chinese food on Thanksgiving? Well, turns out she didn't. She actually wandered off on August 31st, 2020, 9 months into the future. On Thanksgiving she really did go to the movie, but by the time she got the previews she forgot what she had come to see. She reluctantly asks Randall to help her navigate whatever illness is plaguing her.
But in the flash forward, she's doing much worse. That's where she got lost on her way to the grocery store, left her phone there, and had an afternoon lunch for one. After her meltdown in the restaurant, the police escort her home...to Kevin's home.
Yes, Kevin's home where he is celebrating his 40th birthday with his sister Kate and his pregnant fiancée (this mystery woman is offscreen, suffering bouts of morning sickness). Miguel is also there, but I don't care because clearly he is no help with this Rebecca thing. Kate signs the legal documents as "Kate Pearson" which raises several red flags like; Where is Toby? Where is baby Jack? Why didn't she sign it Kate Damon? Do we care?
And finally, when Becca asks Kevin where Randall is, he painfully reminds her, "We aren't speaking." FOR WHY, Kevin? FOR WHY?
Aaaaaand that's a wrap on the first half of Season Four. What do we think so far? Got any wild predictions? Who is Kevin knocking up and marrying (if it's Sophie, we RIOT)? Why aren't he and Randall speaking? Surely, it's got something to do with Rebecca's health. And are we on the road to a KaToby divorce? Let me know in the comments!
Thanks for reading and happy holidays!
This Is Us returns Tuesday, January 14th at 9PM on NBC.
Sorry. It's both a powerful word and a word with no meaning at all. It depends on the context and the emotion behind it, I suppose. I don't really believe anyone who said "sorry" on last night's This is Us. The word is thrown around so much there doesn't seem to be much truth behind the 'I'm' that comes before it.
IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN SEASON FOUR, EPISODE EIGHT "SORRY" OF THIS IS US I STRONGLY SUGGEST BOOKMARKING THIS POST AND SAVING IT FOR LATER OR ELSE YOU'LL BE...SORRY. PLEASE APPLAUD ME THAT WAS A GOOD ONE.
Well, we're one week away from the Fall finale of This is Us and you know what that means? Draaaaaama. No seriously, all the drama is about to come pouring in and I don't know how invested I am in it? I guess we're saying farewell to Jennifer Morrison's character? I guess Randall and Rebecca are fighting now? I KNOW for a fact that Kate and Toby's marriage is going downhill. All the drama is just kinda sad. I want something happy!
But I guess you can't always get what you want and that's the truth in this episode. After sleeping with Cassidy a few weeks ago, Kevin realizes he fucked up a pretty solid friendship and Uncle Nicky yells at him so bad he starts imagining that the words are coming from Jack Pearson himself. So what does Kevin do? He goes to the fucking bar. He doesn't drink, but he wants to. Then he gets punched in the face (he totally deserved it). Cass and Nicky come to his rescue, but it's all so manufactured and done before. We've seen this Kevin a million times. Will he ever change?
My favorite Kevin is a changed one, and for most of this season we've had it. But he totally blows it every single time. After thinking about it some more, I've decided I'm not happy that Kevin and Cassidy slept together. It ruined their dynamic. I wish they had fallen in love before the sex. I wish it was a slow burn. Instead now it just looks she's another name on Kevin's list. Especially now that she's headed home.
Which brings me to Nicky's trial. He doesn't get jail time for throwing that chair through the window. He's just on probation (I think). Afterward, Cassidy, Kevin, and Nicky have a long talk about how Cassidy should try to make amends with her jackass husband for some reason, and so she does. She walks into the restaurant they always go to on Wednesday nights after Matty's swimming lessons and sits down with her family. Kevin and Nicky watch from afar, rooting her on. She hopes that Kevin gets his happy ending.
So what exactly was the point of Jennifer Morrison's character on this show? She had like a four episode arc that just led to her getting back with a man who was not kind to her and wanted her to be the old version of herself. I loved her friendships with Kevin and Nicky, but it was so short lived. Is she coming back? What is happening? I'm so confused.
Anyway, Kate and Toby are definitely gonna get divorced. They don't communicate well, and Toby is missing all of baby Jack's firsts. Gregory the neighbor who had a stroke but is now Kate's walking buddy is there when baby Jack eats food (avocado!) for the very first time, but Kate allows Toby to think the first time is later that same day. It made me feel icky. That's that entire plot line there.
Moving on to my precious babies Deja and Malik. They're having a ~supervised~ date while Beth is in the kitchen but oh no! The kids are fighting! Beth gets Malik to spill what exactly they're fighting about and it turns out it's a pretty mature argument. Deja wants to see her birth mom but doesn't want to bring it up to Beth and Randall, since they kinda swept it under the rug last time. Malik wants her to say something, Deja doesn't want to. Beth confronts Deja and says that they will most certainly make time for her to see her mother. Deja asks if she can invite her to Thanksgiving. Beth says yes with a kind of strained smile. She lets the teens have 30 seconds of unsupervised time to kiss, and it's sweet. I love Beth. I love Deja. I love Malik.
Now for the juicy stuff. Rebecca comes to town and wants Randall to show her his office since he's a congress-erhm-councilman. She's super odd this episode. She has a new phone and wants to take pictures of literally everything. When she momentarily misplaces her phone, she acts like it's the end of the world. Becky, calm down.
In flashbacks, Randall initiates the very first "R&R" time when he comes home to do laundry and offers to look over Bec's resume so that she can get a job to help with her finances. When her interview goes poorly, he goes in and advocates on her behalf. Randall is son of the year, any year. She gets the job, they laugh and bond and it's so good to see them like that.
But in the present day, Rebecca isn't doing so well, and no amount of R&R time is going to fix that. Randall addresses his concerns about her health, but she immediately gets irrationally defensive over literally nothing. She tells him that she is still the parent and he is still the child (who hasn't heard that line before, am I right?). Randall counters, but restrains himself from saying, but still implying that he has been the parent in this relationship for the past 20 years. Rebecca says that he is being cruel and TBH I kinda agree with her, even if she's acting completely irrational.
Here's what I think: I think Randall is the BEST son. I think he's done everything right. When Rebecca's world came crashing down, he stepped up. He didn't have to, but he's Jack Pearson's son and he did. Was it a healthy move? Not necessarily. That doesn't mean it was wrong. I do think maybe Bec should've set better boundaries and not relied so heavily on her son, but they had/have a good relationship and it thrived on mutual love and respect for one another. I don't think he became the parent, I think he just matured quicker than Kevin and Kate and did more for his mother. That's not to say she didn't do anything for him.
I don't think Randall's argument here is unfair. He has done a lot of heavy lifting for the family since Jack died, and insinuating that he has been the parent for the past 20 years isn't complete bullshit, but it's still really hurtful, and there's other ways he could've said it. He shouldn't have done it right then and there, when Rebecca is obviously going through something. As I've written this, I've realize I've contradicted myself like 20 times, and rather than go through and make a clear argument, I'm gonna let it be. Life and family is messy. There's no good answer to this. It's so many things.
I'm worried about Rebecca. I worried about her relationship with Randall. When he goes to say sorry she shuts the door in his face. I wish she had Jack. I wish they had all went to therapy (together) back in '98. I wish I wish I wish. What do you wish? What do you think? What's going on with Bec? Was she out of line? Was Randall out of line? Tell me in the comments.
It's all about sex and golf on this week's This is Us. Think I'm kidding? Think again. The plots go as follows; 70s Jack goes golfing with Rebecca's dad, Randall goes golfing with work folks, Toby and Kate are just tryna bang post-baby, and Kevin has a date and a spur-of-the-moment hook up. Let's talk more!
SPOILER ALERT: I'M SO LATE POSTING THIS BECAUSE I'M ON A TRIP THIS WEEKEND BUT IF FOR ANY REASON YOU HAVE NOT SEEN SEASON 4, EPISODE 6 "THE CLUB" I'D ADVISE YOU TO STOP READING BECAUSE A LITTLE PLOT ADVANCING STUFF HAPPENS TOWARD THE END OF THIS PARTICULAR EPISODE.
In the early days of Jack and Rebecca, the two lovebirds wake up in bed and are so gorgeous it's sickening. They look so happy too! Bec gets a call from her mama about going to brunch, and she asks Jack to drop her off because her car is with her sister. Jack obliges, but is cornered by her dad asking him to play golf at the ~country club~. Jack is like "No thanks, man" and Bec is like "Please this could be IMPORTANT and good for BONDING". So Jack says fine and embarks on a very, very awkward day.
Randall has a political storyline in the present day, which means I'm slightly confused and mostly bored. The moral of the story is that he's playing golf, and flashbacks from '92 show him learning how to play from Papa Jack. There's a very important scene where Jack claims he doesn't see Randall's color, just him as his son. But Randall says if he doesn't see his race, he doesn't see him. Daaaaamn.
Truthfully, Jack has become jealous that Randall is really getting along with his new teacher (the one who wrote him a yellow slip for wearing shoes outside the dress code). Jack seems uncomfortable that Randall has found a potential father figure in someone who isn't him, and someone that he shares a race with. By the episode's end, Jack realizes how important he is for Randall, and invites the teacher and his wife over for dinner. It's sweet.
70s Jack has a few too many drinks at the club under pressure to do better at sports and ends up kind of embarassing himself in front of Mr. Malone. Jack then tells him off and says that he is going to marry his daughter, and that he is good enough for her. Hell yeah! But also lay off the booze, Jack (please).
Grown-up Randall takes some time alone on the golf course to hit a ball into the water just like Jack always used to. He says, "This one's for you pops," and then I ugly cried. That's the end of that.
Toby and Kate haven't had sex since before baby Jack was born, and are having a hard time connecting due to the demanding needs of their newborn.
Additionally, they haven't had sex since Toby lost weight, which makes Kate feel self-conscious. She pleads with him to keep an old pair of pants, and they argue over her motivations. They plan a night out with Rebecca and Miguel babysitting.
But it's awkward because Toby can't get up and Kate thinks it's because of her and they sit in a romantic hotel room in silence. When they go home, Kate rips up a pair of pants (not THE pair of pants, much to Toby's disappointment) and they finally get something going. Yay! Happy married couple sex! We love to see (hear about) it!
In the adventures of Kevin-and-Nicky, the trailer park boys are enjoying the outdoors and looking at pictures of Kevin's ex, Zoe. Her documentary finally premiered, and Kevin shows Nicky a picture of her and a male friend and asks if he thinks they're dating.
He says, and I quote, "They are just friends," PAUSE "Who are definitely having sex." Welp. Poor Kev. He asks Nicky if he wants to go on a hike, he respectfully (well, as respectful as Nicky can) declines.
Kevin goes to the gym with Cassidy where a young woman who knows Kevin's order by heart gives him her phone number. This woman's role is so insignificant I don't even remember her name. Anyway, Kevin tells Cassidy that they say you shouldn't enter a new relationship within the first year of sobriety, but he goes out with what's-her-name anyway. They are bored with each other, and when Kevin asks what there is to do in her small town, she says all anybody does is do drugs and have sex. Beat. "And I don't do drugs,"
Kevin reluctantly takes her back to his trailer but finds Cassidy there waiting for him. She's fighting with her jackass ex husband and wanted to talk about it. Kevin sends what's-her-name away and then tells Cassidy that just because she's made mistakes that doesn't mean she's unloveable, it just means she's human. Awwww, I guess. Then they hook up.
Nicky seems to know, and he tells Kevin that he wishes he had taken that hike with him today. Is this sad foreshadowing about Kevin and Cassidy rushing into a relationship (while they're both still struggling to get sober and she's ya know, still married)? I don't know, but I'm tired of Kevin having meaningless season-long storylines with women that just turn into nothing. Introduce us to Kevin's future wife, dammit! (Kinda secretly hoping it's Cassidy, kinda unsure of how I feel about them right now).
So what did y'all think? Are you a fan of Kevin/Cassidy? What do you think the future status of Kate and Toby's marriage is? And did you ugly cry when Randall swung one out for Jack? Tell me in the comments!