It’s cold out there. Stay in and turn to these shows coming to your TV this winter.
Spoiler alert: This recap contains significant details from Tuesday’s season finale episode of This Is Us.
Well, they did it.
After a sometimes rocky relationship, a heart attack, a miscarriage and a depressing bachelor/bachelorette weekend, Kate (Chrissy Metz) and Toby (Chris Sullivan) made it down the aisle.
If only they hadn’t made us so worried first.
The season finale of NBC’s hit This Is Us was a whirlwind that demonstrated the best and worst of the family drama. It was beautifully acted and emotionally satisfying, but it also deliberately (and frustratingly) kept things from the audience in order to up the melodrama and create new mysteries. Still, it was a quintessential episode that managed to close the book on the “Jack’s death” era of the series while opening up a new one. Because if there’s one thing the Pearsons know how to do, it’s keeping the drama alive.
More: Deja returns to ‘This Is Us’ fold ahead of the season finale
A deep breath of relief
Well Kate, you definitely scared us.
For most of the episode, it seemed Kate was on the verge of pulling a Runaway Bride and leaving Toby at the altar. Things only get worse when Kate, Randall and Kevin can’t find a T-shirt of Jack’s (Milo Ventimiglia) to use as her “something old” the night before the ceremony at the Pearson cabin.
On her wedding morning, Kate dashes out and doesn’t answer her phone, leading Kevin (Justin Hartley), Randall (Sterling K. Brown) and Rebecca (Mandy Moore) to worry that she ran away from the wedding. Kate eventually calls Rebecca to tell her about dreams she’s been having of an alternate future in which Jack was alive (Ventimiglia is seen in old-age makeup, tugging hard on our heartstrings), but Toby was absent from the dreams, which causes Kate to freak out again.
Eventually, she finds the tree she and Jack used to sit near when she was a kid. She pulls out Jack’s urn and spreads the remainder of his ashes, explaining that she needs to make room in her heart for Toby.
Toby had his own drama, as his parents try to warn him off the wedding, fearing Kate is “unstable” and that he will spiral into depression if something goes wrong. But Toby defends his love for Kate, and eventually they back off.
At the reception, Randall and Kevin offer toasts that (of course) are more about themselves than the bride. But Kevin encourages the family to let go of their grief for Jack. It may not have been appropriate for a wedding reception, but it felt like the right way to conclude the era of This Is Us defined by his death. The Pearsons are ready to move on. And boy, do they have some new problems to worry about.
Deja all over again
Although most of the Pearson clan has a great day, Deja (Lyric Ross) does not. We learned her backstory last week, and the finale confirms that her mother relinquished her parental rights and Randall and Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson) are once again hoping to adopt her. But ever since her mother gave her up, Deja has been lashing out at her foster family.
There are a few brief moments of a happier Deja after she has a talk with Beth’s cousin Zoey, whose mother also left her. But after Toby’s mother compliments Deja for looking “just like” Randall, she loses it and smashes the windshield of his car with a baseball bat.
More: Everything’s Deja new for ‘This Is Us’ star Lyric Ross
You can’t control the future
So Kate and Toby are married, and now everything’s fine, right?
Of course not. This is This Is Us.
While Randall gives his toast at the reception, the episode flashes forward to two scenes that seem to take place a year later, and one that takes place further into the future. In the first, Kevin is on a plane to Vietnam, holding a picture from Jack’s time there and cuddling with Beth’s cousin Zoey (we’re sure that will go over well with Beth).
The second scene shows Kate and Toby, who’s lying under the covers of his bed in the dark, apparently in a fit of depression, just as his parents warned.She’s there, of course, explaining that she spoke with his doctor about adjusting his meds.
Finally, the series takes us back to the far future, when Randall and Beth’s daughter, Tess, is a social worker, a timeline we first visited in the post-Super Bowl episode.
“It’s time to go see her, Tess,” Randall says as he visits his daughter’s office.
Is he referring to Deja? It seems so, suggesting her life turned out like the “worst-case scenario” Randall and Beth feared at the top of the episode.
But you never know anything for certain on this series, even when it seems obvious. We’re just going to have to wait until September to find out.
Read or Share this story: https://usat.ly/2paEWJI