What did you think about the season finale of This is Us? As much as it pains me to say this, I was disappointed. Perhaps it's because there was so much hype leading up to the finale and then getting no answers to the big question. How did Jack die?
It's opening night for Rebecca and she is nervous. Jack arrives safety to see her show. He continues drinking. Meanwhile, Rebecca gets a pep talk from Ben but he crosses the line when he tries to kiss Rebecca. Rebecca is furious and realizes Jack was right about Ben's intentions and now doubts whether she should have agreed to the tour at all. She heads to the phone and calls Jack. She doesn't see Jack at the bar and he is looking the other way when she heads to the phone. Rebecca leaves a message for Jack telling him that she loves him. Jack is now extremely drunk and starts looking for Rebecca. He opens the door to her dressing room and finds Ben. When Ben alludes to the fact that he kissed Rebecca, Jack takes a swing and a fight ensues. Rebecca comes into the room and finds the band trying to pull the two men apart. The bouncers take Jack from the room and Rebecca tells Ben that it's over. The tour, for her, is over. She drives home with Jack.
There are a lot of flashbacks in this episode starting with Jack working on an elderly woman's car. Jack has just come home from Vietnam and is doing odd jobs to earn enough money to start his own business. The old woman can't pay him much but wants to fix him up with her friend's granddaughter. Jack reluctantly agrees. We assume it's Rebecca, of course. Jack has been living with his parents since he returned home and it's clear that his father is a mean, nasty drunk who doesn't think much of his son. Fast forward to Jack and his friend joining a backroom poker game for some fast money. When Jack wins the first hand, he and his friend leave with their winnings. As they head to their car, Jack gets the snot knocked out of him by thugs from the game and they take all the money. If they see Jack there again, they will kill him.
In another flashback, Rebecca is out to lunch with her girlfriends. The girls feel sorry for Rebecca because she isn't engaged or married at this point in her life. Rebecca explains that she's focusing on singing. She tells the girls that she made a demo tape and knows someone who works at a record label and will make sure they listen to it. One of her friends tells her bluntly that she needs to "diversity" and have a back-up plan if music doesn't work out. Rebecca returns to her apartment and opens a letter from the record label rejecting her demo. She goes to the phone and calls her grandmother who has a nice man to fix her up with. We assume it's Jack.
Jack and Rebecca arrive home and have a horrible fight. They say awful things to one another. They each are harboring resentment towards each other. Rebecca resents Jack for not supporting the one thing that she wanted just for herself. Singing. Jack is angry because she chose singing over her family and that she did not tell him she had a past with Ben. At one point Rebecca asks Jack what he still loves about her. Finally, exhausted from the drive, what happened at the club and the fight, Rebecca goes to bed. Jack does not follow.
We flashback again to Jack before Rebecca. Jack has come up with a plan to rob the bar where the poker game was to get his money. His friend will call the bar and when the bartender walks away from the cash register, Jack will grab the money and run. They arrive at the bar and Jack goes inside. As he sits at the bar, he finds a note in his pocket and remembers that he is supposed to have a date tonight.
At the same time, Rebecca is on her blind date. It's not Jack as I first suspected but a handsome, perfectly nice man who seems to love talking about himself. Rebecca apologizes and leaves the date to go to open mike night.
Back at the bar, it's time for Jack's plan to go into action. As planned, his friend calls the bar, the bartender leaves the register open as he answers the phone. Jack starts for the register but stops when he hears Rebecca singing! This is how they meet!!! As she sings, their eyes meet, they smile. When she leaves the stage she approaches Jack, It's the beginning of Jack and Rebecca's love story.
Though the finale episode focuses mostly on Jack and Rebecca, monumental decisions are made by Kevin, Kate and Randall as well. Kevin decides to take Ron Howard's film offer, Kate finds a photo of her mom singing and decides that she wants to sing too and Randall tells Beth that he wants to adopt a baby.
Back to Jack and Rebecca. It's the morning after their terrible fight. Rebecca finds Jack in the living room and they both apologize. But the reality is that they both regret the manner in which things were said, they each meant every word. Rebecca asks Jack to stay with Miguel for awhile. Jack agrees. As he prepares to leave, Jack pauses and tells Rebecca what he loves about her. He loves that she's a good mom. He loves that she laughs with her whole face and that she dances funny. He turns, picks up his bag and walks out the door.
Personally, I give this episode a 7. I think that last week's episode with Jack leaving the bar, calling Kate, getting in the car and driving away as a better cliffhanger. That being said, though not the ending I was expecting, we definitely have lots to contemplate in the months until S2 returns. What will happen with Kevin and Sophie? Will Kate have success as a singer? Will Beth and Randall adopt a baby? And, of course, the big one...how does Jack die?
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