I can’t even...
This episode may have me sniffling for the five weeks it takes us to get back to the show. I knew the Randall episode would get under my skin the most, because he’s the triplet I most relate to. He’s like my Tv brother from another mother–for real!
However, allow me to collect myself so I can recap this for you all. Perhaps it will be cathartic for me, therapeutic and all that.
Big sniff and here we go:
1. A moment of levity–Lord, how we needed a moment of levity–from that cheeseball, Randall: “Why did the iPad go to the dentist? He had Blue Tooth…” Bada boom, bada bing! Hey, he’s there all week, or he will be again on January 2.
2. Deja, so cute in her flowered sweatshirt, which I could swear I was thisclose to buying at Target, nurtures her school project under the watchful eye of Randall. Everyone is seriously rattled when Deja’s mom, Shauna, shows up out of the blue (and fresh out of the Big House) and gets pretty aggressive with Beth at the door, demanding she get her daughter back. Uh oh.
3. It’s the same day as Kate’s day and Kevin’s day, both in the present tense and in flashback, so I am wondering why they are making such a big, fat, hairy deal over the fuse box and the power going out. Yeah, they really want us to know that the house has fuse issues.
4. Seems like a good time to say we need to pay our social workers more. What a difficult job requiring so much wisdom! Although, Randall and Beth don’t see the wisdom of Linda, Deja’s social worker, recommending that Deja be placed back in her home with her mother. Not one little bit. “We knew what we signed up for,” Randall says, furious and scared that the child he has come to care for might be plucked from their home. But does anyone really ever know what they signed up for?
5. Can I just say I LOVED teenaged Randall’s road trip with his dad? His glee at the outset–who doesn’t love the lure of the open road? And they go on a college visit to Howard University, an HBCU (historically black college/university). College visits are fraught anyway (those of you who have done this are nodding your heads). Add the awkwardness of a white dad of a black prospective student on a majority black campus and you have serious potential for cringe-y-ness. “Do you want me to go with you?” Jack asks Randall who is about to take flight and tour the campus less formally with some friends. Insert emotionally laden pause here. And–stab to the heart!–that would be a “no” from Randall. (BTW, interestingly enough, my son, Ezra, visited Howard as part of a “college and justice tour” with our church youth group. As one of two white kids on the trip, he had some Jack-like moments of feeling a little off balance. But he loved it. “Mom, Howard has the BEST food and merch!” he told me. And what a beautiful campus…)
6. Jack and Randall have the kind of pivotal, intimate talk that so often only happens in the car. Jack takes a detour to the Vietnam War Memorial, where he unzips his heart to his son about his horrific time in the war. Randall’s stricken face…Actor Niles Fitch brought it HOME!
7. Back in the present, Randall remembers a conversation he had with William before he died. “Who was I to insert myself into your life against your mother’s wishes?” William asked, rhetorically. In that moment, Randall begins to see Deja’s future in a different light. (I blubbered at the bike scene–you?) But I will take any chance I can get to have William back. Dear William!
8. Randall talks to Beth about dropping their fight to keep Deja. They want to do the right thing, but it will cost them dearly. Soon after, they show up at Deja’s school and watch her proudly as she gives her presentation. You can tell the teacher is impressed (and maybe surprised). “My foster dad helped me,” she says, shyly cutting her eyes to a beaming Randall. Oh, my heart!
9. When Deja says goodbye to Randall…Yeah, that was rough. I found myself hoping and wishing that Randall and Beth could somehow still be a part of her life. I loved the little teaser they threw in, with the cute little guy looking for a family, but I predict we have not seen the last of Deja.
10. Finally, the three stories spiral and line up at the same place. Randall reaches out to Kate and thinks she will be okay. Kate wants to try for another baby. And Randall and Beth want to try for another foster child, maybe a boy this time…
But Kevin is the one bereft of hope. Chugging OJ and vodka, he takes off from Randall’s place, loaded, in his car. BLURGH!! As he weaves and swerves, he has no idea his niece, Tess, has snuck into the back seat. He almost gets them both killed, when blessedly, he gets pulled over. However, I doubt Tess’s parents will see anything “blessed” about Kevin for a long time to come. Hope the cops throw his rear DUI butt in jail. He deserves it. And then I hope he finally gets the help he needs.
Well, how many tissues did you go through this episode? What do you make of the constant fuse box references? Do you think Randall and Beth made the right call to let Deja go without a fight?
And FOR THE LOVE–what will happen to Kevin????
Favorite scene? Favorite line?
KATE episode recap, HERE.
KEVIN episode recap, HERE.
The week before last week’s recap–Will Jack and Rebecca be able to guide Randall through a racist world?– HERE.
Check out the week before that–the Halloween episode where Tess is born– HERE!
And the week before THAT–with the big Nicki Pearson reveal– here.
Comment below for your chance to win a This is Us Season #1 soundtrack! I’ll pick a random winner when This is Us goes on hiatus in November, let’s say one week from tonight! Unfortunately, that moment has come. We are on hiatus from our SHOW! I’ll miss you guys. Don’t be a stranger now! I’ll still be blogging–just not about #US.