NBC’s new series “This Is Us” may not be all about twists and turns, but creator Dan Fogelman certainly wasn’t through toying with viewers emotions after episode 1.
The show’s second Season 1 episode aired Tuesday, providing fans with the answers to questions they’ve had about Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) and Rebecca’s (Mandy Moore) marriage since the premiere. Viewers are first introduced to the expectant parents on the delivery day of their triplets. Tragedy strikes during the delivery and one of Rebecca’s three babies is stillborn. Episode 2 takes place several years later and it quickly becomes clear to viewers that the strain of having multiples has taken its toll on Jack and Rebecca’s marriage. Jack has begun drinking, which is creating more tension at home. During a sit-down with his close friend Miguel (Jon Huertas)— who also serves as something of a life coach — Jack is reminded that Rebecca is out of his league. Miguel warns him “not to give her a reason to notice.” He decides that he’s going to try and fix his marriage, but is he too late?
Jack makes his way home stumbling drunk, stopping in for a gift for his wife along the way. When he gets there, Rebecca is armed and ready with a lengthy speech about how he needs to get his life together, which throws a wrench in his repair plans. Jack promises to be better for both his wife and kids. “This is Us” then flashes to present day, preparing viewers to see where the couple’s marriage is. One of Randall’s (Sterling K. Brown) kids can be heard shouting in excitement, “Grandma and Grandpa are here!” The front door opens and Rebecca is seen standing next to none other than Miguel. Now a new question remains — is Jack dead or did he and Rebecca call it quits?
Mandy Moore was asked about the second “This is Us” twist during a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly. She revealed that while she knew it was coming, she was not aware that it was happening so soon. Moore told EW that she continues “rooting for Jack and Rebecca,” but knows as much about what’s to come as viewers. She, like us, is “anxious” to learn more about their story as the season continues.
“The fact that she would be with somebody else...feels like a betrayal in some way,” Moore said. “In my mind I don’t feel like it is. I don’t know the answer to that definitively at this point.”
Fogelman has assured viewers that more surprises are in store this season on “This is Us.” During an interview with Entertainment Tonight, the creator was clear that he and the writers did not intend to create a show full of twists and turns. In fact, he told the publication that would be “impossible” to do. Fogelman said that those tuning in should not expect another “gigantic twist” for quite a while. The biggest surprises for the remainder of the show, he suspects, will be how characters are or aren’t still connected years later.
“It’s very hard. We’re not doing a big, gigantic twist every week; the best way I’ve been able to describe it is if somebody took all your home videos of your life and your childhood, particularly, and your family and mixed them in a bag, things would surprise you: Who is still in the videos five years later, who’s not in the videos, where relationships are years later versus where they are in the beginning,” he said. “The show will continue to challenge the audience and subvert their expectations a little bit and there will be surprising choices made.”
“This is Us” airs Tuesdays at 10 p.m. EDT on NBC.