This is Us
Original Air Date: Mar 14, 2017
Jules – Senior Managing Editor
Tonight is the season one finale of This is Us. This season the show has taken us to very emotional times for the Pearsons. This week we are almost all in flashbacks as we pick up where last week left off and we get to know Jack a little bit more.
We start the episode where we left off last week with an inebriated Jack driving to Rebecca’s show. It’s not looking good, but thankfully, Jack makes it and in one piece.
Then we roll it back to over a decade prior. A clean shaven 28 year old Jack helps Mrs. Peabody fix her car. We learn that Jack is doing odd jobs to pay rent at his parent’s house and saving up with his buddy Darryl with dreams to open an auto repair shop. He’s also a Vietnam War vet and Mrs. Peabody is interested in setting Jack up with her best friend’s granddaughter. To earn some extra fast cash, Darryl tells Jack about a backroom poker game. The pair go and Jack plays one hand and wins $1500. Jack can’t believe his luck and the pair soon leave with their winnings. As the leave the alley, the pair are attacked by some guys, money stolen and told never to come back or be killed.
Meanwhile, in the same timeline, Rebecca and her friends are preparing for a wedding and her friends want to set her up and “diversify” her life and not put all her baskets into her burgeoning music career. Rebecca is not up for it yet, but after a music rejection from her demo, Rebecca is open to diversifying and agrees to this first date. Only thing is that the guy is not Jack, but Ethan. He’s boring and in the middle of the date Rebecca actually leaves because it’s open mic night and she rather be singing.
Wanting to get his money back, Jack hatches up a crazier plan than the poker. He decides to steal from a bar that is owned by poker guy with a timed phone call from Darryl to the older bar man. When the bar man leaves to get the call with the register open, Jack gets ready to steal the money when he’s taken aback by a beautiful Rebecca singing Moonshadow. It stops Jack from stealing money! And he and Rebecca have their meet-cute. I knew they would meet at the bar!
Back to the 90s at Rebecca’s gig. Backstage, Rebecca’s nervous and Ben tries to kiss her! Rebecca immediately pulls back and realizes Jack was right. With Jack at the bar, Rebecca walks by to call home leaving Jack a message saying she wish she was there or he there. If only they caught each other in this moment, but they don’t. Rebecca doesn’t see Jack until later when drunk Jack goes looking for her and instead finds Ben who mentions the hitting on. Then Jack clocks Ben in the face a few times. Rebecca catches the end and is appalled, but decides the gig is over and drives Jack home.
When they get home is when it gets real, very real. It’s start slow with Rebecca wondering how long the drinking has been going on and that she didn’t know and then questions Jack if he’s driven the kids while drunk. Rebecca wonders why this bad stuff is happening just as she has something good happen and wonders why Jack started to drink after stopping seven years ago. Jack asks about Ben and then it goes up a few notches.
The whole sequence is emotional, loud and real as Rebecca and Jack full-on fight. Rebecca claims she had no life until now and Jack fires back saying that a 40 year old woman singing cover songs in pubs is not a career. Ouch. Rebecca then urges Jack to “let your father out.” The whole fight ends when Rebecca asks Jack to say what he loves about her because she hopes Jack doesn’t keep saying “I love you” because of habit.
The next morning both know that last night was bad. Jack offers to stay at Miguel’s while they figure out what’s next for them. Before Jack leaves Rebecca wonders if this will ruin their kids. Jack responds the only way he knows saying “The kids are gonna be fine. We’ve shown them a healthy marriage. This is just gonna be a blip on their radar years from now. We’re their parents, Bec, but at the end of the day, what happens to them, how they turn out, it’s bigger than us.” In another moment before Jack leaves, he tells tells Rebecca about his date that didn’t happen the night they met. Rebecca wonders who she was and Jack says he never has. He then tells Rebecca all the reasons he loves her from the great mother she is and that she’s the “same woman who ran out of a blind date because she had to sing.” Jack ends by saying “You’re not just my great love story, Rebecca, you are my big break. And our love story? I know it may not feel like it right now, baby, but I promise you, it’s just getting started.” Jack leaves and Rebecca is in tears fiddling with the necklace he got her.
In the present day we get quick updates on the kids. In Los Angeles, Kate tells Toby that she wants to pursue a singing career. Kevin tells Sophie that he’s just taking a meeting about the Ron Howard movie in LA, but both act like it’s a long goodbye. Randall places a photo of William into his old family album and then tells Beth he wants to adopt a baby.
And there is was, the season one finale. What did you think? Did it emotionally wreck you? Milo Ventimiglia was knocking it out of the park this week. What does the future hold for our adult Pearsons? And how close are we to Jack’s end? Share your thoughts below as we wait a few months for season two.