Finally, after a full season and a couple of episodes, our tear ducts were given a rest during this week’s episode of This Is Us.
The episode titled “A Manny-Splendored Thing” is not the gut-wrenching emotion that we had last week (and every other episode proceeding it). This week, we actually laughed! And, it was a welcome change of pace for This is Us, proving it can do light-hearted just as easily as heartbreak.
This week, we travel with the whole family to Los Angeles to support Kevin as he films one last episode of “The Manny.” Kevin works on his abs — which he seems to have a good handle on — while contemplating what it means for him to be doing another episode of the show that made him famous while slaughtering his integrity. He decides he will handle it like George Clooney would, but I don’t recall Clooney ever having to crawl on the floor wearing diapers.
Kate prepares to fill in at a singing gig (we knew strep throat had a purpose!) but is plagued by feelings of inadequacy while preparing for her mother’s visit, the dipping sauce is made with nut cheese! At least Miguel gets some love, a plate full of pigs in the blanket is more than adequate. Rebecca insists on accompanying Toby to the gig where she goes a bit overboard while gushing about Kate’s performance. When Kate reacts badly, Rebecca attempts to coerce Toby over to her side, the greatest fiance in the world replies that he is Team Kate forever. Swoon!
Randall “Randalls out” by avoiding filling out his foster parent paperwork and admits to Beth he doesn’t think he can handle an imperfect child, but, come on, the perfect couple can handle anything.
Our flashbacks are made up of Jack struggling to find new ways to deal with his alcoholism, and we get the briefest flash of how Jack may have actually died. On the other hand, we’ve been misled before and I’m sure the writers have many more tricks up their sleeve.
We got a week’s clemency from the tissue box, but don’t suppose This is Us has gone soft and gooey. The stomach flipping turns of this ride are surely just around the corner.