This Is Us Episode Recap
Although some were worried that season two of This Is Us couldn’t live up to the excellence it delivered in season one, those worries are very quickly being laid to rest. Episode five, “Brothers” offered even more character development than we could have imagined, giving a whole new depth to characters such as Jack and Kevin and opening up entire new worlds for Kate and Randall. As always, the episode made you laugh, cry and of course, left you with a huge surprise! Follow along for the 8 can’t miss moments and a full recap of “Brothers.” Be warned, major spoilers ahead:
8. Kate Tells Toby
Although it seemed like last week’s pregnancy bombshell would create issues for Kate and Toby because she hadn’t told him yet. Luckily, the episode picked up two weeks later with her finally telling him she is eight weeks pregnant, and in true Toby fashion, he was ecstatic. It was sad when Kate quickly shut down his enthusiasm however and told him he couldn’t tell anyone and jeep all his hopes and dreams about the baby to himself until after it was born because due to both her age and weight, it is a high-risk pregnancy.
7. The Camping Trip
In flashbacks, Jack took 10-year-old Kevin and Randall camping in hopes of bringing the two brothers closer together, while Rebecca and Kate stayed home for some mother-daughter bonding. Unfortunately for Jack, the camping trip didn’t go as planned at first after Kevin refused to be nice to Randall and when Jack tried to understand what Kevin’s problem was, Kevin didn’t want to talk about it. Luckily, Kevin finally made an effort with his brother after he found a notebook of Randall’s that was filled with ideas on how to get Kevin to like him. Meanwhile, in the present day, Randall and Kevin shared another bonding moment where Kevin told Randall that part of his problem with him was how opposite they are, specifically that Randall “cares too much” and Kevin doesn’t care enough.
6. Kate and Madison
Those who watched season one, know that Kate has always had an issue with Madison who is in her over-eaters support group even though she is extremely thin. Once again, Kate wasn’t having any of Madison’s “problems” and snapped on her, again, leading to another argument between the two ladies in the parking lot. After telling Madison she doesn’t like her because she is annoying, the two got into a small fender-bender. Kate panicked and told Madison about the pregnancy, and although they just fought, Madison was very supportive and Kate realized how good it felt to actually tell someone about it.
5. Toby Tells… Everyone
After Kate admitted to Toby that she not only “banged up the car” a little bit, but also told Madison she was pregnant, she knew it was only fair to let him also tell someone. In the episode’s most random and adorable moment, Kate took Toby to a coffee shop and told him he could pick anyone in there to tell. Naturally, Toby couldn’t help himself and instead told the barista and then asked him to put on his “happy song” which was Hootie and the Blowfish’s “Only Wanna Be With You.” Toby then proceeded to dance around the entire coffee shop, complete with a Flashdance water scene, and tell everyone that he and Kate were going to have a baby.
4. Jack’s Dad/Whole New Era
Aside from brief clips about his alcoholism and abuse and Jack asking him for money, not much as been seen of Jack’s father. This episode he appeared again after Rebecca got a call from his nursing home after Jack and the boys went camping that he was dying. Since she didn’t want him to be alone, Rebecca went to the nursing home and met Jack’s father for the first time. The episode also took fans even further into the past, and after hinting they were jumping into even more decades, this episode revealed that they meant Jack’s childhood. Flashbacks showed a young Jack sitting in the car, presumably on a fishing trip with his dad, but instead telling himself over and over “he’s coming back” as he watches his dad drink beer after beer inside a bar. After Rebecca was finally able to get a hold of Jack through a park ranger’s radio, Jack said he wasn’t leaving his camping trip for his father, stating, “that man’s been dead to me for a long time.” Meanwhile Rebecca told the dying man, “You think you screwed him up, but you didn’t. You only made him stronger,” and told him that Jack is an amazing father.
3. Deja Opens Up
Although Deja had been making progress with Beth, Tess and Annie, Randall was still having trouble getting her to bond with him. Understandably, Deja did have a crush on Kevin and wanted to go to a gala with Randall that Sophie was organizing. While things went well, it took a turn after Randall sudden grabbed her arm in order to stop her from eating a shrimp tail because she had never had shrimp before. The move scared Deja and caused her to run off to the bathroom, and while Randall waited outside for awhile he entered the women’s restroom in order to get her to talk to him. For the first time Deja explained to Randall “you can’t just grab me like that” and revealed that in one of her previous foster homes, the mom’s boyfriend would use magazines to beat the kids. The moment was huge for the pair, and seemed to put their relationship on the right track going forward as Deja’s trust with Randall grew.
2. Kevin’s Problem
Since the beginning of the season, there have been hints about Kevin’s possible addiction problems like his father and they hit an all-time high in this episode. After traveling to New York for Sophie’s charity gala which featured him, it was clear that Kevin had become dependent on the pain pills from his knee surgery. As he was desperately trying to get his doctor to refill his Vicodin prescription again, Kevin drank more and more, and was so wrapped up with trying to get pills, he completely missed his part of the auction. After Sophie confronted him about his behavior, Kevin took off and began calling his former New York doctors in an attempt to get anyone to give him pills.
1. Nicky Pearson
If last week’s pregnancy bombshell wasn’t a big enough twist, then this week’s certainly was! Fans quickly found out why the episode was called “Brothers” and it wasn’t because of Randall and Kevin trying to get along when they were younger. After flashbacks showed a young Jack waiting in the car for his dad to stop drinking, another flashback to the moment saw another young boy with glasses waking up in the backseat. Immediately Jack reassured, the young boy who was none other than his brother, Nicky! The moment blew Jack’s backstory wide open as fans understood that Jack was such a great father because he had been taking care of his brother for years, but the question remains why doesn’t Jack ever talk about him? A flashback to after the camping trip then showed Jack going through boxes in the garage where he pulled out photos from his time in the Vietnam War and beside him is his brother, Nicky Pearson. So, did Nicky die in the war? Is he out there somewhere, and why doesn’t Jack ever talk about him? Either way it also revealed that Kevin is much more like his father than anyone though with his tendency to bottle emotions and not talk about the difficult things, such as not wanting to talk about his father’s death.
The creators, writers and crew of This Is Us have mastered the art of the twist, and they don’t wait until season finales to pull them off either. Season two’s fourth episode, “Still There,” packed a lot in to the hour long episode and there was a lot to take in when it came to Kate, Kevin, Randall and Rebecca and Jack, but it was the episode’s last shocking reveal that will play a major part in episodes to come. Read on for a full recap of “Still There” with the episode’s 8 can’t miss moments. Warning, spoilers ahead:
The episode kicked off with a flashback to the Pearson’s at a local video store with everyone trying to pick out their favorite movies to rent and watch while a big snow storm hit. A 10-year-old Kevin however got frustrated fast when all three Karate Kid films were already rented and complained of it being “too hot” and his parents realized he had come down with a bad fever. A trip to the doctor revealed that Kevin and Kate both had the chickenpox while Randall was fine, but the doctor said it would be easier if all three kids got it at once to “get it over with,” which Randall was not happy about.
7. Grandma Janet
Since Rebecca wanted to make sure she had had chickenpox as a child to ensure she wouldn’t get it from her kids, she called her mother Janet, who took it as an invitation to come help with the three sick kids. Right away the tension in Janet and Rebecca’s relationship was clear, but things would only get much worse. Janet brought the Big Three gifts, including a new football helmet for Kevin, a Little Mermaid dress for Kate, and a basketball for Randall. Problems began after Kate mentioned the dress would be too small and her grandma said she could use it as a “goal dress,” while Randall stated he didn’t really like basketball, but Janet responded with, “I think you’d be a natural.” After a few more comments from her mother, Rebecca finally called her out for being racist, an accusation which Randall unfortunately overheard, and Jack and Rebecca had to explain to Randall what subtle racism was because he couldn’t understand how his grandma was racist. Janet tried to explain to Rebecca that she doesn’t think she is racist, but she was raised in a “different time” and at the end of the episode made an effort with Randall who was very excited about his science project with Janet stating, “you are a very special young man, aren’t you?” to which Randall responded, “Took you long enough.”
6. Bowling Alley Brawl
In present day, it had been a couple weeks since Randall and Beth had welcomed Deja into their home, and things weren’t necessarily getting any better. With Beth working full time and Randall staying home, he mentioned he wanted to be the “lead parent” and use his methods to try to make Deja feel like a part of the family, and decided to take the girls to the bowling alley. Unfortunately, it certainly didn’t go as planned when Deja first refused to give up her shoes to the cashier and then pushed a young girl who made a rude comment about Deja’s hair. The girl’s father stepped in causing Randall to almost fight the man in order to defend Deja.
5. The Deja Issue
It seems when Randall and Beth take one step forward with Deja, they then take two steps back, and it happened again in this episode. After an earlier discussion that Deja hadn’t washed her hair since she had been there, Beth decided to have a hygiene talk with her and said it is important to present yourself well on the outside to feel good on the inside, which resulted in Deja asking Beth to do her hair. The pair ended up bonding while Beth discovered that Deja had alopecia, which are bald patches caused by stress, which Beth’s sister had dealt with growing up. Deja opened up about her mom a little while Beth washed her hair and put it in braids to hide the spots, and there seemed to be progress being made. After Beth told Randall, he went to Deja and told her about his stress-induced nervous breakdowns he had had in his life and offered to go running with Deja if she wanted, because that is how he coped with stress. Instead of another bonding moment, Deja became angry that Beth had told Randall about what they talked about including her alopecia and stress and angrily cut off all her braids.
4. Kevin’s Knee
For fans who had grown tired of Kevin’s surface level character, the past few episodes have delved deeper into why he is the way he is, and “Still There” offered an even deeper look at Kevin and Jack’s relationship. After severely hurting his bad knee while working with Stallone on his film, Kevin tried to “tough it out” until his producer asked to see his knee which was obviously very injured and caused Kevin to undergo surgery. Afterwards Kevin insisted he could get better faster and took his brace off, and began using the treadmill only hours after surgery. Flashbacks showed that it was Jack who had taught Kevin to be tougher than the pain starting from when he had the chickenpox and couldn’t stop itching. Kevin then revealed that in high school he had been an amazing football player and colleges were starting to look at him before an injury to that same knee ended it all, and he explained to Toby the reason he was pushing himself so hard was because he wasn’t gong to let his knee ruin another dream by keeping off the movie set. After Kevin’s insistence that he didn’t want to take painkillers, he finally resorted to doing so, and yet again it was hinted that Kevin might have addiction issues like his father did with alcoholism.
3. Kate’s Weight Loss?
One of the biggest ongoing stories throughout the episode was Kate’s sudden obsession with being healthy. While she had been doing well, along with Toby, with eating right, even he mentioned how much more intense she had gotten about working out, eating and going to her group. All the while Kate maintained her obsession was because she wanted to look her absolute best in the dress she was performing in at her big bar mitzvah gig. It seemed like a very plausible answer because of Kate’s constant struggle with her weight, but there was a lot she was hiding about what her health kick was really about.
2. Kevin and Jack
As the episode gave fans a better understanding of Kevin, as he recalled his football glory days to Toby, the episode also featured more moments between Kevin and Jack. It became clear that it was Jack who gave Kevin the impression he always had to be tough and to battle through the pain, but to a fault. After Jack also came down with the chickenpox, he still got out of bed and started shoveling the driveway so that Rebecca’s mom could leave, and Kevin followed his dad’s example and joined him in moving the snow despite being sick as well. In the present, Kevin watches his dad’s tapes of his football games with Jack exclaiming how amazing his son is, and with Jack’s face frozen on the screen, Kevin turns to his painkillers and is next seen driving to the movie set appearing to be just fine.
1. Kate’s ‘Little’ Surprise
Through it all, the episode ended with one huge surprise. After making it seem as though her renewed and invigorated focus on her health was just in order to fit into her dress for her gig, the end scene revealed that wasn’t the reason at all. With Kate lying in a doctor’s office, the doctor compliments her with how well she has been doing with her weight and health, to which Kate looks relieved and says, “is it still there,” and the doctor responds, “yes, it is still there. You’re little poppyseed is about the size of a lentil, you are six weeks along.” Kate’s pregnant! Of course, this is going to throw a whole new twist into the rest of the season, especially because she hasn’t told Toby yet.