News

This Is Where We Are in This Is Us

Catch up with America's favorite new family with a quick midseason character update

by | January 10, 2017 | Comments

This Is Us (Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

The wait is over, and you’re so ready for the return of This Is Us season 1.

Let’s see: You’ve got your tissues for when the NBC drama makes you weep and bowls of crunchy snacks to ease the tension between emotional plot twists. And then it hits you — what happened on This Is Us before the show went on hiatus? It’s been a little over a month since the show last aired and the second half is roaring back Tuesday night.

But fear not. We’re here to help jog your memory with this friendly character refresher. Enjoy.


Randall Pearson (Sterling K. Brown)this-is-us-susan-kelechi-watson-sterling-k-brown

The last time we saw Randall he’d agreed to buy a boat from a coworker. Turns out, the coworker (played by guest star Jimmi Simpson, Westworld and House of Cards) sold him the boat because his marriage and career are over — he cheated on his wife and made some very costly mistakes at work. When Randall tried to renege on the boat purchase, he found his coworker just in time, while the coworker was contemplating suicide by jumping off a ledge of the building. Randall, being the all-around good guy that we know and love, agrees to buy the boat and talks the guy down. Back at home, Randall finds out his biological dad William (Ron Cephas Jones) is bisexual at the family’s Christmas Eve get together ― more on that later.


Kate Pearson (Chrissy Metz)This Is Us (Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

Just before Thanksgiving, Kate flew to the East Coast from Los Angeles to be with her family and left Toby (Chris Sullivan, The Knick) behind. She has decided to have LAP-BAND surgery and takes her mom Rebecca (Mandy Moore) with her to the doctor’s office. This is when Rebecca learns that Kate struggled with depression and used to take Prozac. Kate also confesses to binge eating recently. Rebecca is stunned and later in the car, apologizes for any role she played in Kate’s battles with food and weight. Having made peace with her mom, Kate is rewarded with a surprise visit from Toby, who flies all the way to New Jersey to tell her he’s going to keep losing weight. But this time, he’s shedding pounds for himself and not Kate. Toby also meets the Pearson family and plays with Randall’s awesome daughters. Kate is so happy to see Toby and hear the news, she kisses him under the mistletoe and hooks up with him upstairs. But this is This Is Us after all, and in one final act of heartbreak, Toby has a heart attack and collapses. Will he live? We’ll have to wait and see.


Kevin Pearson (Justin Hartley)THS IS US (Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

Love is a crazy thing especially when Kevin is involved. After arguing and breaking up with Olivia (Janet Montgomery, Salem) and hooking up with Sloane (Milana Vayntrub) the playwright, Kevin and Sloane return to New York and find out their stage play is dead. Olivia is MIA and the producers refuse to do the play without her. Mad at Kevin for the role he played in Olivia’s disappearance, Sloane tells Kevin he’s indebted to her and can only clear his debt by going to her family’s Hanukkah dinner as her plus one. At first, Kevin tags along to be nice but during dinner, he gets to know Sloane and truly starts to like her. Inspired by her family’s Hanukkah story, Kevin tells Sloane he will fund the play and that she can play Olivia’s part. Feeling all warm and tingly, Kevin brings Sloane to the Pearson family Christmas Eve gathering.


Rebecca Pearson (Mandy Moore)This Is Us (Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

This matriarch has her hands and arms full. Although the Christmas Eve family fete is at Randall’s house, things are still a little tense between them now that Randall knows Rebecca kept his biological father from him for 36 years. Making matters more complicated, Rebecca and Kate had a spat but made up after chatting and later chuckling over Miguel’s (Jon Huertas) over-the-top Christmas decorations. But Rebecca is still beloved and beams with joy as she proudly watches her children’s insane but love-filled lives. Through flashbacks, we also learn that Kate’s appendix burst one Christmas when the Pearson kids were little, but that Rebecca assured her that nothing bad can happen on Christmas. Here’s hoping Rebecca is right.


William Hill (Ron Cephas Jones)This Is Us - Ron Cephas Jones, Denis O'Hare (Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

In an attempt to keep his private life private, William goes back to the city to attend a Narcotics Anonymous meeting. While there, he tells the story of how love has redeemed him. Even though he’s dying of cancer, William says, he has a life worth living now that he’s clean and sober and has connected with his son and his son’s wife and kids. But William isn’t the only one with anecdotes to share. Another recovering addict named Jessie (Denis O’Hare, American Horror Story) tells the story of how he’d found love only to lose it. Jessie says he’s trying not to be a bitter man, but he wishes he had answers about why his lover didn’t say goodbye. As it turns out, William is that lover and when he tells Jessie about Randall and his cancer, Jessie forgives him and the two promise to spend as much time together as William has left. As a show of faith and commitment, William brings Jessie to his son Randall’s house for Christmas and that’s when Tess (Eris Baker) explains to her dad that grandpa is “gay or at least bisexual.”


Jack Pearson (Milo Ventimiglia)

This Is Us, Milo Ventimiglia (Ron Batzdorff/NBC)
Still the hottest dad on the block. Still dead. When This Is Us returns with episode 11 “The Right Thing to Do,” the series looks back at Jack’s prep work for delivery of triplets.
This Is Us returns 10 p.m. Tuesday Jan. 10 on NBC

Tag Cloud

LGBTQ supernatural political drama Thanksgiving The Arrangement Fall TV parents romantic comedy hispanic movie Musicals Toys sports Funimation latino comedies Netflix DC Universe 007 2016 singing competition Hulu natural history streaming Music DC streaming service Star Wars CW Seed crime Classic Film book El Rey Television Academy period drama Amazon Studios spy thriller politics Rock werewolf zero dark thirty VOD ratings Arrowverse DGA all-time Film Festival spain Disney+ Disney Plus 21st Century Fox YouTube Logo Vudu halloween Action ghosts die hard Academy Awards zombies CBS All Access Western stoner screenings movies a nightmare on elm street Universal TLC canceled TV shows elevated horror Box Office NYCC 45 Apple TV Plus dragons Binge Guide Nominations directors WGN hollywood ITV VICE Hallmark ABC Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Syfy Reality Competition joker films Set visit Disney Plus documentaries kids FOX DC Comics Christmas Amazon Prime Video Warner Bros. Shondaland cartoon Mindy Kaling unscripted BAFTA Drama critics 72 Emmy Awards Biopics classics Lucasfilm Endgame indie SDCC Awards Tour space mockumentary Trophy Talk TV Fox News Tarantino batman Dark Horse Comics sitcom Avengers biography tv talk reboot Musical AMC Apple A&E game show Rocketman science fiction laika Sci-Fi IFC police drama MTV Grammys adaptation Shudder Film OWN Schedule MSNBC documentary Black Mirror Country award winner Ellie Kemper Paramount Network rotten movies we love Pixar Brie Larson Tomatazos USA Showtime Baby Yoda Lifetime free movies Walt Disney Pictures TCA Awards Reality miniseries Winter TV blockbuster USA Network The Witch Martial Arts Animation Fantasy Best and Worst HBO Max Star Trek christmas movies Disney streaming service BET Awards vampires true crime Comedy Central witnail cinemax ABC Family E! 20th Century Fox cancelled TV shows nbcuniversal Ovation GoT Interview mutant Superheroe New York Comic Con cults FX CBS theme song Epix Trailer Peacock Kids & Family thriller Captain marvel boxoffice child's play television breaking bad GLAAD Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Character Guide worst TruTV twilight Nat Geo Stephen King justice league composers Spectrum Originals spinoff comics Rom-Com First Look Pop TV SundanceTV Heroines Teen TCA 2017 serial killer APB crime thriller comiccon best Tumblr medical drama richard e. Grant psychological thriller comic quibi Turner Classic Movies Sundance binge TV Land Masterpiece TCA YA Red Carpet San Diego Comic-Con slashers 2018 Discovery Channel Adult Swim HBO independent scary movies stop motion The Walking Dead TBS Emmys Marathons Writers Guild of America Mary Tyler Moore Sneak Peek Marvel Television facebook Turner Starz Rocky First Reviews Infographic YouTube Red Marvel Studios Horror Hear Us Out aliens Extras 2020 cancelled television Crunchyroll Sundance TV Paramount OneApp Crackle revenge Pride Month robots screen actors guild Holiday Pet Sematary SXSW Travel Channel romance Bravo TNT VH1 emmy awards dc Calendar GIFs Columbia Pictures dark travel Amazon Prime green book CMT FXX social media historical drama sequel National Geographic Cartoon Network what to watch series talk show dramedy Opinion Freeform Summer doctor who nature Premiere Dates cooking Chernobyl Black History Month Quiz Mary poppins Ghostbusters Polls and Games Oscars video obituary Comedy Superheroes asian-american WarnerMedia YouTube Premium concert 4/20 BBC America Election Disney Hallmark Christmas movies Disney Channel President American Society of Cinematographers toy story criterion indiana jones renewed TV shows psycho Britbox spider-man diversity zombie Photos Lionsgate CNN jamie lee curtis based on movie Food Network blaxploitation TV renewals teaser cats Watching Series 2019 golden globes Creative Arts Emmys The Purge docudrama Nickelodeon History IFC Films cancelled Elton John Countdown sag awards Cannes Valentine's Day Tubi crossover anthology Sundance Now TCA Winter 2020 Mystery rotten Holidays Mudbound Awards Family hist game of thrones BBC One Pop Video Games strong female leads Marvel south america TIFF ESPN stand-up comedy foreign Television Critics Association anime The CW Trivia video on demand LGBT RT History Women's History Month RT21 TCM dceu PaleyFest Comics on TV Mary Poppins Returns children's TV Spike E3 Emmy Nominations Anna Paquin Lifetime Christmas movies Apple TV+ Spring TV Podcast See It Skip It mission: impossible casting satire cops disaster animated universal monsters 2017 Super Bowl Sony Pictures PBS PlayStation A24 fast and furious news crime drama Cosplay transformers cancelled TV series harry potter Amazon DirecTV Esquire MCU Pirates BET war Acorn TV versus cars franchise adventure 2015 reviews Winners finale name the review Year in Review NBC festivals Certified Fresh 24 frames Comic Book FX on Hulu superhero chucky 71st Emmy Awards spanish language HBO Go BBC canceled Netflix Christmas movies dogs discovery Song of Ice and Fire technology X-Men