Wednesday, November 20, 2019

This Is Us 4.09: “So Long, Marianne”

“Hey, you might not have gotten the fireplace but don’t’ forget about all the times she was absolutely perfect.” –

What a way to end the mid-season finale of “This Is Us”. We always know the show is going to do something moving when it comes to episodes before the break and this was no exception. It was also our yearly Thanksgiving episode. Everyone in the family is converging on Beth and Randall’s new place to celebrate the holiday. Rebecca is still mad at Randall for thinking she needs to see a doctor and after telling Randall not to share it with his siblings, she goes for a walk to clear her head. We see Rebecca out and about, looking very lost. She sees a man she thinks is William but it’s not (obviously). The guy she stops points her in the direction of a grocery store because she needs a baked good. But once she stops to look at some flowers in the store, she seems to forget what she was doing. She buys the flowers but leaves her phone at the cashier line and then after she’s had a nice meal at a Chinese restaurant, she realizes she doesn’t have her phone and panics. Next we see her, she’s in the back of the police cruiser being driven home.

While Rebecca is dealing with her symptoms, we have some other family drama unfolding. Tess tells Kevin that there’s a mem going around school on Instagram to post a picture of your celebrity crush. After Kevin takes her to a drive through where she comes out to the speaker (which I thought was a pretty cool idea), she posts a picture of Zendaya. Girl has good taste! Kevin is also dealing with bringing Nicky along for the ride. Nicky was nervous that everyone was going to not be happy to see him but that’s the opposite of what happens. Everyone welcomes him in, even though the kids don’t know who he is. He looks at all the photos of Jack and Rebecca and the kids and you can tell he feels left out. He even tells Annie that Jack erased him which is why they’d never met. But really, Jack found other ways to share his brother with his family.

In the past, we find Jack and Nicky right before Nicky heads to basic training. Their dad and grandfather are both drunk and yelling at each other so the guys take off to a bar to watch a football game. Nicky bet $200 on the Cowboys and because the bet was based on the point difference at the end of the game, he ends up winning the bet and he and Jack go to a fancy restaurant and eat five pounds of shrimp cocktail. That’s a lot of shrimp, guys! We see that Nicky thought it was the best Thanksgiving ever and I’m glad Jack found a way to keep Nicky in their lives, even if no one realized it. WE also see that one of Jack’s favorite songs was actually a song that Nicky really liked. Nicky gets rather emotional listening to it in the car with Randall and Annie (they had to make an impromptu trip to New Jersey because they left the box of thanksgiving stuff (including the Pilgrim Rick hat) in the attic. But, by the end of the episode we see that Nicky introduces the family to the tradition he and Jack were supposed to have had the war not ruined everything. And in a flash to the future, we see that baby Jack (now all grown up) continues not only the hot dog tradition but also the five pounds of shrimp.

Speaking of baby Jack, on the flight from California to Pennsylvania, Kate comes clean to Toby about how Gregory was the first to feed Jack avocado. Toby is upset by this revelation mostly because Kate lied to him. He also was rather obsessed with the video going crazy on Instagram. Kate and Beth end up having quite the conversation through a little later in the episode. They are both feeling bad about what they’re feeling. Kate hates CrossFit Toby because they had said they were going to lose the weight together and he went and did it without her. Beth explains that she hates that Shauna is doing so well with a new apartment, new job and new friends. Beth is glad that she’s doing it but she feels like after watching Shauna and Deja interact and share little moments that only the two of them get, Beth worries that she’s being replaced. But it seems Deja isn’t that happy either. She is feeling like “why couldn’t she be all these things with me?” That’s such a hard place for a child to be in. Beth implores Deja to focus on the times her mom was perfect with her and it seems that potential crisis is averted. Unfortunately, Kate doesn’t tell Toby how she feels and then when she grabs his phone to take a picture, she sees a text from a woman telling Toby not to let Kate bring him down. Yeah, the more I see, the more I’m thinking Toby and Kate don’t make it as a couple.

It wouldn’t be “This Is Us” without some sort of twist in the episode. We see Kevin tell Randall that by his fortieth birthday, he wants to have a wife and kids. That’s only nine months out Randall reminds him. And then we see that the police have dropped Rebecca off not at Randall’s place but at the cabin where Kate and Kevin and Miguel are waiting to celebrate their 40th birthday. Randall isn’t there because they aren’t on speaking terms. Kevin also has a pregnant fiancée at this point, too. Given that it’s so soon from where we are timeline wise, I really am wondering if Cassidy is the mother/fiancée. And in the present, we see Rebecca return home with a pie and she confides in Randall that she was halfway through one of the previews at the movies when she couldn’t remember what movie she’d gone to see. So, this is definitely the start of her decline and it’s not going to be pretty.

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