It literally has not even been 48 hours since Jack Pearson’s death, and This Is Us is already back with a brand new episode, because this show will not rest until we are all hollowed-out shells of our former selves.
As we do every episode, we’re going to single out the show’s most powerful moments, scoring them by how many tissues we tore through just to watch them.
Randall was never as close to his father as his mother, but how did he deal with losing the one man he had in his life who always tried to understand him and make him feel better, whether that be about girls, his siblings, or even being adopted and being black in a white family?
The Pearson family is winning over Americans-and it’s no surprise. Seriously, which screenwriter’s idea was it to make the Pearsons go to a Weird Al concert?! When Rebecca had a health scare, Jack took her to what would be known as “his tree” to reassure her everything would be okay.
We see Rebecca’s frustration, as she copes with three teens, that she neglected her own dreams of becoming a singer, and we learn that Jack, too, abandoned his dreams of owning his own business. After getting an MRI, Jack takes her for a drive to his favorite tree while they wait for the results. She had to be strong for them. After bonding over Springsteen, Jack tells Kate he’ll get them tickets sometime. There’s that whole ten-year chunk of time that we have yet to see how all of this manifests itself and unfolds for Rebecca and the kids. And why she was so determined to make sure she got to the service first, is because she left him before and he died alone. Jack catches Kate skipping school on her way to go see Alanis signing records at a local shop. Kevin is teasing him and nearly causes a crash of their own after running a stop sign. Jack thought he’d be around for years to come – he was planning on launching a new business for goodness sake. When they get home, Jack reminisces about his brother, who he rarely talks about.
Rebecca and Jack take the kids to the auto dealership, but it isn’t until Jack sees Kevin, Randall and Kate playing in the Wagoneer that he knows he must have the vehicle – despite the price. Rebecca faced her fear of bridges on her own. He just asked her to put him outside… She gets passionate about the music, and Jack tells her she should seriously thing about pursuing music as a career. It’s a symbol that Jack will be there for his family wherever they are. She scoops it up and tells the kids to follow her.
Quiz: Which TV Scooby Gang Do You Belong To? . It was at the end of the episode with Rebecca and the kids standing by Jack’s favorite tree. Kevin gets the dream of being a movie star, and winning back the love of his high school sweetheart and ex-wife, only to discover that even with all that, he can not ignore the lure of drugs.
Rebecca and the kids arrive at the cemetery.
Not to mention, when Randall tells Tess she’s his number one during the “Super Bowl Sunday” episode, people couldn’t help but make the parallel to Jack calling Kevin his number one when he was younger. He tells Randall that he’s exhausted of Randall acting like the man of the house now.
As she sits outside, Dr. K and his wife come to pay their respects. We find out that Jack apparently kept coming to the hospital for advice after the kids were born, which Rebecca didn’t know. Telling her that Jack was scared turned out to be a great thing to do, as she was nearly crippled by the fear of having to go on without him. He tells Rebecca that she will be fine. Ahhh, so all of this was to show the significance of the tree where they’ll eventually scatter Jack’s ashes. In Jack’s head it was one last memory to be made, a big family outing before they all went off to college over the summer.
Jack fights his demons, spending his time as a recovering alcoholic building shelves for his home so his hands are busy. And then they scatter his ashes, and suddenly, they’re the little family that could, trying to move on.