We all knew this was coming but boy, were we not prepared for the emotions we were going to be grappling with during that fire.
This Is Us spent tonight’s episode exploring Jack’s (Milo Ventimiglia) last day before the fire started that apparently ended his life, and we’re starting to understand more and more why his death was so deeply affecting for each of his kids.
All Jack wanted to do was enjoy the 1998 Super Bowl with his family and their new entertainment system that he built, but all the kids had different ideas. Kate (Hannah Zeile) was struggling with her self image as she had to submit another audition piece to get into college, and didn’t want Jack to film her or to keep telling her how beautiful he thought she was.
She finally came around to realizing she needed him to keep seeing her that way, but she did skip the game to go watch at a friend’s house.
Randall (Niles Fitch) wanted to skip the game to hang out with his new girlfriend, and take her on their first date to see Titanic (for her seventh time). It went well and they shared their first kiss, and Randall got the chance to tell his dad that when he got home.
Kevin (Logan Shroyer), however, had a fight with both of his parents over college, especially after finding out that Sophie got into NYU. With his own dreams dashed, he lashed out, insulting Jack’s hard work on the entertainment center and yelling about how he was supposed to be in the Super Bowl, not watching it. Then he went to Sophie’s, but eventually called home to tell his mom he was sorry. But of course, he’d wait to talk to Jack in the morning.
Before going to bed, Jack dried some things with a dish towel, gazed at the wall where the kids’ heights were recorded, and turned off the crockpot. But then we got a flashback to Jack and a pregnant Rebecca (Mandy Moore ) receiving the crockpot from a neighbor, who told them that the switch was a little wonky. So then we watched the crockpot light go on and off, before it finally caught fire, which set the dish towel (a gift from Jack to Rebecca, wrapped around a bracelet) on fire, which eventually got to the wall with the heights, and it was actually the most emotional fire we have ever seen as it was peppered with happy family flashbacks.
Thanks to last week’s episode, we know that the smoke detector is out of batteries, so now all we can do is wait two weeks to find out how many tears we’ve even got in our bodies and if we’re actually ready to have “all our questions answered.” We kinda feel like we’re not!
This Is Us airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on NBC, but the next episode airs after the Super Bowl on Sunday, February 4.
(E! and NBC are both part of the NBC Universal family.)