While we now know the cause of Jack's death and have seen his death on-screen, there's so much more story to be told. Following his death and during the funeral, the series has focused on Rebecca's grief and how she's coping on with life post-Jack Pearson, but the series hasn't really touched upon the kids outside of brief moments to cause Rebecca frustration, heartbreak and even anger as she copes. Before This Is Us
returns to stories outside of Jack and his death, we need to see more.
There's nothing wrong with keeping the focus on Rebecca as she copes with this loss, but this should be something we see follow Rebecca well into the future. Not just after Jack's death and how she deals with the funeral, but as she prepares the kids for college on her own, has to get a job to support the family, and as she attempts to move on from the love of her life and deal with the loss of her kids' father. Jack's death changed Rebecca in so many ways to make her into the woman we've seen in present day scenes. As much as we would all love to see Rebecca and Jack happily together and pretend the fire never happened, it did, and it's important to maintain the story and even have episodes where Jack isn't present and the past timeline focuses on the aftermath of his death.
This Is Us Recap: A Blast from the Past Pays His Respects to Jack>>>
Anyone who has lost someone knows how difficult it can be, how numbing the pain can be, and, for better or for worse, we need to see Rebecca's life played out to the present day. Even though it may be difficult, and Rebecca might not have been the best mother at times, Jack's death forever changed Rebecca's future.
Kevin, Kate and Randall
Focusing on Rebecca is arguably the most important part of Jack's death (other than, you know, his death) because they spent more time together than the kids ever had with him. But we need to see more focus on each of the kids, too, as they cope with the loss of their father.
Rebecca on This Is Us Deserves More Respect for Her Strength as a Mom>>>
As the show has progressed, we haven't really seen any of the kids deal with the loss of their father or talk about how it changed them. Kate's repeatedly said she feels guilty and blames herself, and we now understand why, but has she ever tried to forgive herself for what she believes her role was? Has Kate had conversations with her father like Kevin did at his favorite tree? Has Kate gone to therapy to discuss the traumatic loss of her father?
What about Kevin? Kevin seems like he wouldn't be as affected by the loss of his father as Randall, but that's more of a reason to delve into his pain and discover what he's feeling. How did this loss impact Kevin's future, just like his injury did? Did it drive him and Randall further apart? Does Kevin blame himself, too, since he wasn't there the night of the fire? Did Kevin's pain intensify once he realized what his last interaction with his father was, and he realized he could never fix their relationship?
Randall was never as close to his father as his mother, but how did he deal with losing the one man he had in his life who always tried to understand him and make him feel better, whether that be about girls, his siblings, or even being adopted and being black in a white family?
Milo Ventimiglia Explains Why This Is Us Has Much More to Tell About Jack>>>
We've seen episodes focusing solely on the children and their lives in the past and present before, and this would be another great opportunity to revisit that episode formatting and tell the story of Jack's loss from each kid's perspective. As much as Jack's story is important to the show and shouldn't be over (as the preview for the rest of the season has said), it's also time to focus on the loss of Jack and see the story progress without him, if just for a few episodes, as the Pearsons' lives are explored without him.
What do you think? Should the show focus more on how the kids reacted to Jack's death? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.
This Is Us
returns February 27 at 9/8c on NBC. Like our This Is Us
Facebook page for news and updates!
(Image courtesy of NBC)