This Is Us impressed us all with its series premiere last week but today was the ultimate test: Would it keep us interested? Based off the ending alone, I think the answer is a definite yes.
When the episode ended I found myself staring at my TV with my jaw dropped wide open. For a show that is only two episodes in that’s a fantastic thing. I had a lot of expectations for This Is Us after the series premiere blew me away and tonight I think it’s exceeded those expectations. Again.
Seeing Kate struggle with her weight loss is something I think a majority of us can connect with. It’s not just about her wanting to lose weight but also about her going on a mission and bettering herself, going after a healthier lifestyle instead of being satisfied with where she is.
I appreciate the fact that not only has Toby helped her actually start working at the gym but also that it’s not easy easy as 1-2-3 for her. Had they shown her immediately succeeding and being really great at this whole gym thing we would’ve lost that connection we have with her, and I’m glad they realize that.
Later we see Kate attend Kevin’s network party but hold back for fear of being judged and I don’t know about you but in that moment I felt for her 100%. While Toby doesn’t mind dancing and being himself, a trait I’m sure we can all admire, Kate is afraid and doesn’t want to dance but instead turns to booze for some liquid courage.
I’m hoping that in her character arc we don’t see just a physical transformation but rather an emotional one as well, where she finally feels like she can be herself without judgement. I’m personally more invested in seeing Kate become more confident than seeing if she loses weight — it’s all about making sure she’s happy with who she is.
Where do you even get drugs?
Randall’s arc is one that I’m most excited about not only because I love Sterling K. Brown but because I want to see how Randall’s relationship with his father grows. At this point in the series we really know nothing about William or if we can trust him but in tonight’s episode those feelings are mirrored by Beth, who begins to wonder where William goes all day.
If my recently discovered biological father who I allowed to stay in my house was disappearing for half the day I’d want to know exactly what he’s doing too! Randall expresses concern but doesn’t seem to be taking it as seriously as Beth, and when we realize that William’s affect on the kids is stronger than we thought, it’s no longer just about William but about the entire family too.
You don’t want an ex-possibly-still-current-druggie giving your kids ideas about drugs or where to get them, so I absolutely supported Beth in asking where William has been, even when she was about to tell him he’s over-stayed his welcome.
Then Randall comes in and addresses his concerns too and we learn that William has a cat at his old place in Philadelphia, which is why he’s been gone so long. That’s a three hour trip each way. While his reasoning makes sense, I’m left still wondering if I can trust the man who used to be on drugs for so long. Something doesn’t feel right about William, and I want to love him but I just can’t let myself do that yet.
Kevin may think he’s quit and left it all behind but his agent has other ideas. With such a public outburst last week it’s going to be hard for him to move on and things only get harder when his agent tells him that he’s contracted in for two years and the only person who could possibly help is the network president. She requires that he go to the party where the network execs will all attend, and things don’t go as well as we’d hoped.
Turns out the network president is going to be retiring in two years and wants to coast through them as easily as possible, which means he doesn’t want to re-cast the lead role in his sitcom. Kevin is told that he has to stick it through but at the end of the episode we learn he told them he’s going to quit anyway and wants to move to New York to do theatre.
I’m not a huge fan of seeing Kevin move away from Kate, seeing as they’re such a great duo. She needs him and he needs her, and we saw Kate’s concern on her face when he told her about his plans. This is something I hope doesn’t work out for Kevin because I want him to stay with his sister! Also I feel like he can’t just up and leave a two year contract without some sort of serious repercussions.
One of my absolute favorite things about this show is that we get to see all our characters in an assortment of time periods. We started the series with Jack & Rebecca in the ’70s and as the show progresses we will see them raising their kids through-out those years as well as, I assume, the ’80s and ’90s.
This was our first look at a time-jump flashback from when the kids were eight years old and it’s made me so interested to see what their family dynamic was. We learned that apparently Kevin never treated Randall well as a brother, which seriously hurts my heart, and also that apparently Jack had some serious drinking problems while he was a father.
Rebecca’s whole speech about their parenting score only echoes my own thoughts about how I want to parent. I want to be performing with a score of at least a 9, and I want my partner to do the same. If I feel like I’m doing all the work you best believe I’ll call my partner out on it and that’s exactly what Rebecca does. This episode made me want to punch Jack in the face a few times up until he and Rebecca make up, where he finally announces he’s going to quit drinking. Aw, so cute!
That’s it. Happy couple, right? Apparently not, because when present day Randal gets a visit from his parents, “grandma and grampa” according to the kids, we see Rebecca make her appearance but then the man next to him is 100% not Jack, but rather his best friend Mike. I knew I didn’t trust that guy in the flashbacks!