The Tuesday, October 17, episode of This Is Us played out like any other, but the seemingly normal outing was building up to a shocking reveal. Read on to find out what happened in “Still There.”
The ‘R’ Word
Flashbacks took us back to when the Big Three had chicken pox. And if you thought the chicken pox would be the most painful part of this storyline, you obviously forgot about Rebecca’s (Mandy Moore) mother. Yes, mommy dearest came to help Rebecca care for the kids, and things got ugly.
From the moment she arrived, Janet (Elizabeth Perkins) triggered the kids’ (and Rebecca’s) biggest insecurities — worst of all, Randall’s. After Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) caught the sickness, he could no longer be Rebecca’s buffer, which led to a nasty fight about Janet’s bias against Randall. For years, Rebecca admitted, she’d wondered why her mother hadn’t bonded with Randall like she had with Kate and Kevin. But she finally realized it was because Janet’s racist — an accusation Randall overheard.
This led to Jack and Rebecca explaining to Randall the subtle racism Janet was guilty of. There was also slight confusion over a Martin Luther King analogy that left Randall thinking his grandmother was responsible for the civil rights leader’s death (“Did Grandma shoot him?”). By the time Rebecca’s mother left, she and Randall seemed to be getting closer. We echo Randall’s sentiment: Took her long enough.
Bad Hair Day
Present day, Randall (Sterling K. Brown) and Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson) were still adjusting to foster kid Deja — that included trying to find a nice way to tell her to wash her hair, which had been dirty for two weeks. Randall took the lead, wanting to ease into the conversation after a game of bowling. But when a young girl commented on Deja’s hair at the bowling alley, Deja pushed her and Randall almost threw down with the girl’s father to defend Deja.
Once cooler heads prevailed, Randall decided Beth should take over the hygiene talk, and she and Deja bonded when she let Beth do her hair. Beth discovered Deja had alopecia — bald patches caused by stress — and offered to braid her hair to cover up the spots. Randall, wanting to connect with Deja, told her about his stress-induced mental breakdowns, but when Deja realized that Beth had told Randall about her alopecia, she became closed off and cut out her braids.
Kevin (Justin Hartley) was still suffering from the knee injury he got while filming his war movie with Sylvester Stallone. A producer forced him to see a doctor, and he found out he had a large tear in his meniscus, which required surgery.
As soon as he was recovering at Kate (Chrissy Metz) and Toby’s (Chris Sullivan) apartment, Kevin took his knee brace off and began exercising to try to speed up his healing. Toby begged him to take it slow, but Kevin was determined to not let his knee ruin another of his dreams. He told Toby about his high school football career — how he’d been a great player who was being scouted by colleges when he first injured his knee. Once his knee was damaged, so were his chances of playing professional football.
Kevin refused to take his pain pills at first, but after watching a reel Jack had filmed of his football games and hearing his father say how tough his son was, Kevin gave in, took the pain pills and rushed back to work.
Kate was preparing for a big bar mitzvah gig and taking her health very seriously. Toby voiced his concern (poor Toby — having to take care of two stubborn Pearsons in the same week), but Kate kept exercising nonstop and sticking to a strict diet. We, like Toby, were worried Kate was taking it too far just so she could fit into a dress, but that’s when we got a huge shock.
At the doctor’s office, Kate was feeling uneasy about her health due to her age and weight. She cautiously asked her doctor, “Is it still there?” It’s still there. “It” being a baby. Surprise: Kate is six weeks pregnant!
This Is Us airs on NBC Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET.
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