Monday, January 24, 2022

What I’m Watching: This Is Us

This Is Us: Season 6, Episode 3 “Four Fathers” (B+)

This was a very compelling, and often unsettling, portrait of fatherhood, showing how determined all of these fathers are to be there for their kids and the many obstacles that get in the way. Starting with grown-up Baby Jack in the future grilling meat and remembering, as Lucy put it, the moment that his parents’ marriage fell apart, was interesting, though we’re still just getting tiny little flashes of that time and no indication of whether Jack still maintains any relationship with Kate or Toby. The frequent traveling he was doing wasn’t necessarily the problem, but his resistance to staying on the same schedule got him into trouble and resulted in him skipping Kate’s recital, where she bonded with her future second husband when he showed a modicum of emotion. Kevin had the same issue, expecting Madison to keep the babies up so that he could see them when he got home, and he made a very healthy choice to call Cassidy rather than sleep with his young costar. Jack made up his movie theater misstep, which Rebecca didn’t even seem to mind since she knew that Kevin’s phone number was written in his shoe, with the perfect at-home movie night to give them all great memories, save for Jack since he ended the day by getting the call that his mom died. Randall teaching Déjà to drive was sweet, but one of the most important rules of driving with a parent is to turn off your read-aloud texts. It was fun to see Randall and Beth flail about as they tried to process what to do, and I love that Beth had Randall drink her wine as she told him that she was going to take her to get birth control. His speech to Déjà was also mostly good, but her saying that not being able to visit Malik would be a problem is ominous, even if we know from the glimpses of the future that we’ve seen that the two of them get along just fine.

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