This Is Us S2 Episode 9 Recap: 8 Can’t Miss Moments From ‘Number Two’
After the eighth episode of season two brought fans one of the most powerful This Is Us episodes yet, fans weren’t sure if they were prepared for Kate’s episode “Number Two.” After learning in “Number One” that Kate had suffered a miscarriage, “Number Two” focused on Kate and Toby dealing with their loss in the present, while the episode also brought fans closer to teenage Kate and gave a better understanding of Kate and Rebecca’s complicated relationship. As was expected, the episode was emotional, heartbreaking, yet also hopeful, take a look back on “Number Two” with a full recap and the episode’s eight can’t miss moments:
8. The Song
The beginning of the episode was especially jarring, because although fans had learned at the end of the last episode Kate had lost the baby, that is not where the episode picked up. Instead the episode started with Kate excitedly talking to her baby, taking her prenatal vitamins, and even singing a goofy song. She then talked to Toby about her excitement as she wrote down questions to ask her doctor so that she wouldn’t forget at the next appointment and confirmed with him that the fancy baby bath they wanted was en route. Seeing the two prepare for their baby with excitement while fans knew what was going to come was difficult and made the moment where Kate desperately calls for Toby after experiencing pain while measuring the tub for her baby bath, completely heartbreaking.
7. Moving On
After going to the hospital where they learned Kate had miscarried, the doctor reassured them they could try again after a few weeks, and that Kate wouldn’t need an operation — and added they could live their lives like normal, which of course was not going to be easy. Right away the separation of Kate and Toby dealing with the experience was noticeable and as Kate got ready and headed out to her singing gig less than 12 hours later, Toby was preparing for them to stay at home and mourn. It was devastating to see the solid couple deal with something so difficult separately instead of together, but also made it clear there is no right or wrong to deal with something as devastating as a miscarriage.
6. Toby’s Effort
While Kate went off to her gig at the cafe, Toby took it upon himself to not make things worse for Kate after he got the notification that their baby bath was going to be delivered that day. Toby, being the man that he is, raced down to the parcel distribution center where he was intent on making sure the baby bath never made it to their door. Toby was so resolute about stopping the package, he even threatened the poor worker Carl who informed him it wasn’t a customer service center, and despite being the sweetest, kindest man, Toby said, “I am a large and powerful man, Carl, and I don’t know how much longer I can stay this calm.” Eventually Carl found the package and Toby gave it to him after Carl said his sister was expecting her third baby any day now and Carl said he was sorry for whatever happened. While Toby was desperately trying to stop the package, Kate’s gig fell apart as a little girl came up and danced to her song, causing Kate to become overwhelmed by emotion and walked away from the stage. As Kate sought solace at a buffet, she realized after piling her plate with food, that it wasn’t the answer and left.
5. Kate’s Music
In flashbacks to Kate as a teen that were mirrored with the previous episode which centered around Kevin and his visit from a college coach and his football game, Kate is seen as having a strained relationship with her mom, Rebecca. Rebecca pleads with Kate to make a list of her top five colleges, and Rebecca tells her it is fine she doesn’t have her college or future planned out like her brothers Kevin and Randall do, and suggests she go to a Liberal Arts college and study many things to find her passion. After Kate leaves for school suggesting Rebecca meant that she was “passionless,” Rebecca finds Kate’s filled out application for the Berklee School of Music along with her audition tape in which Kate sang “Summertime.” At Kevin’s football game later that day, Rebecca slipped Kate a $50 check for her application, revealing she had found it along with the tape which only angered Kate more. No matter how hard Rebecca tried to be supportive or compliment Kate, it seemed Kate always resisted, which of course plays into their relationship in the present which fans had seen as still being tense.
4. It Happened To Me Too
While emotions were running high for both Kate and Toby throughout the episode, they were mostly dealing with their grief separately until one altercation, and one of the episode’s most powerful moments. After Toby goes to pick Kate up from her gig only to be told she left mid-way through he is understandably concerned, and is angered when he finds her at home and hadn’t called him to let him know she was okay. “Oh, I’m sorry. Were you put out? Did you have a couple of emotional hours? ‘Cause I’m going to be a raging hormone machine for weeks while my body still thinks it’s pregnant, so that’s fun,” Kate yelled at him. She then got angry with Toby, blaming him for pushing her to get excited about the baby and after he said that wasn’t the reason why they miscarried, she emphasized it didn’t happen to him, it happened to her. Toby however emotionally stated, it very much happened to him too even if it didn’t physically happen to his body, and he of course said he will be her support system through everything, but she cannot deny him his own grief in their shared loss. The moment was heartbreaking, but also a very important as a reminder that miscarriages are tough on the fathers too which is often overlooked in discussions.
3. Arms Wide Open
While Kevin’s episode focused on his relationship with his father, this episode had a lot to do with Rebecca and Kate’s relationship, especially in the past. This was explored even further in an interaction between the two while waiting for Kevin to get his MRI at the hospital after his knee injury at the football game. Kate opens up to Rebecca that she didn’t tell her about the audition tape or wanting to go to Berklee for music because she didn’t want to disappoint her mother if she didn’t get in, and after Rebecca assured her she would only be disappointed for her and not in her, Kate said, “sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference.” The line hurt Rebecca and she told Kate that after having such a hard closed off mother herself she was determined to have a better relationship with her daughter, and while they had never been as close as Rebecca had hoped she told Kate she would continue to be there for her no matter what and no matter how long it took, saying, “It’s my job to keep standing there with my arms wide open.” Unfortunately the beautiful moment was interrupted by Randall and Jack’s arrival at the hospital, but would hold extreme significance for what was to come in the episode.
2. Kate and Rebecca
In the present, following Kate and Toby’s argument, Kate wakes up to find Toby had left to get “fresh air” and then hears a knock at the door to find her mother there with “arms wide open.” This time, her mother is exactly what Kate needed as she fell right into her mother’s arms and finally let go of all the sadness she had been trying so hard to hold in. Kate sobbed as Rebecca held her and told her “I am right here,” and the two had an even deeper connecting moment. As Rebecca made them tea, Kate finally said everything she needed to about the miscarriage, telling her mother she felt it was her own fault and couldn’t deal with her extreme sadness even though she had never physically held the baby. In turn, Rebecca opened up to Kate about losing the third triplet, Kyle, and shared how she tried to keep her grief from Jack which resulted in a break down in the grocery store a few weeks later. Rebecca listened to Kate, bonded with her, but also gave her the advice she needed to open up to Toby and let him in. After so much time spent in this episode as well as previous ones on how strained Kate and Rebecca’s relationship was, this open and emotional talk was a huge moment not only for the episode but the entire series.
Through all of the tears, grief and anguish in the episode, it actually wrapped up on a surprisingly hopeful note which impacted fans just as much as all the sadness. In taking her mother’s advice, Kate finally opened up to Toby about how she felt including that she felt like she failed him, and added she did want to try again for a baby, not right away, but soon. Toby then told Kate she never could fail him and the two came together in their loss but also agreed to the hope of trying for another baby in the future. They then worked together to put the shower curtain back up which Kate had pulled down when the pain hit her, and agreed they would not let this break them.