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This Is Us - Pilgrim Rick - Review

24 Nov 2016

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There were so many things that I was excited for in this episode but unfortunately I didn’t get to see a lot of them. After learning about Rebecca and Kate’s strained relationship I was looking forward to seeing their interaction, which didn’t happen. I was also really excited to finally see scenes with all of the siblings together, which almost happened and then didn’t. I guess we’ll just have to wait a little bit longer. I’m definitely not disappointed with this episode because each week continues to be beautiful and heartwarming in so many ways, however, I was expecting a bit more drama.

I expected this week's episode to be absolutely crazy because obviously, the Rebecca and William news was going to come out and also everyone would be together for the first time since the show began. However, most of the episode was devoted to a recap of Thanksgiving family traditions. This was very cute and I enjoyed seeing the family then and now, but it just wasn’t what I was expecting. Throughout the episode, we saw flashbacks to a Thanksgiving when the kids were eight-years-old. This was the start of all their current family traditions. The flashbacks are mirrored by the activities that are happening in the present day, where everyone is gathered at Randall and Beth’s home for the holiday. Their traditions really are so cute. Every year they go on a 3.4-mile hike because that’s how far they had to walk to a gas station after their car crashed that first Thanksgiving. They also always watch the same movie and share a Thanksgiving story from Pilgrim Rick, while wearing a Pilgrim hat. This role used to be exclusively Jack’s, but we learn that Kevin and Randall have been sharing the responsibility since he passed away. The episode wasn’t without some tension, though. Miguel, who we discovered does not have a very good relationship with Kevin, asks if this year he can wear the hat and Kevin immediately refuses. However, by the end of the night, he gives in and allows Miguel to wear the hat, although I’m not really sure what convinces him to change his mind. Also, at the start of the day Beth gave Rebecca an ultimatum that she had to tell Randall her secret today or Beth would tell him herself. Throughout the day Rebecca tries to get some alone time with Randall to talk but he ends up having to go to William’s apartment to get music recordings, which I’ll talk more about later. On a random side note, I really have enjoyed how William seems to be this wise life coach that everybody goes to when they need help or advice. I love how he’s helped Kevin and now Olivia this week, and also how he never judges anyone for their problems. Even though a lot of his interactions and dialogue are getting very depressing, he’s definitely become my favorite character and I’m going to be absolutely devastated when he dies.

Meanwhile, at the beginning of the episode we caught up with Kate and Toby and it seems like he has abandoned all his promises to at least try to eat healthier when Kate is around. They’re out at dinner and he’s indulging in a delicious plate of pasta while she has a salad. When the topic of their trip to New York for Thanksgiving is brought up, Kate un-invites him and actually ends up breaking up with him as well. Just like I thought, this is just horrible timing for them. She needs certain things that he can’t give her and she needs them for herself. It was weird because I actually didn’t really feel bad for him at all because I understand she needs this and I’m completely on her side. I really loved them together but I love Kate more. Kate ends up being late to Thanksgiving because of plane trouble - which is why we were neglected our potential amazing sibling scene. Anyways, some scary in-flight turbulence causes her to evaluate what she wants and she announces to the family, at the most inopportune time, that she’s going to get gastric bypass surgery to help her lose weight. I’m interested to see if she follows through on this or if her family convinces her not to.

Now for the real drama. Although most of the episode was pretty light and cute, the last few minutes had enough drama for the whole episode. Randall ends up finding a letter from Rebecca to William at his apartment so now he knows that they were in contact. When he gets back, he’s clearly very upset and all his emotions boil up at the dinner table. It’s an incredible moment of acting for everyone involved and we got a lot more insight into the extent of Rebecca and Williams relationship. It seems that Rebecca has been in contact with him more than we originally thought. She’s written to him and visited him over the years, and we find out she even lied to Randall when he specifically asked about his parents. Randall is obviously furious and heartbroken to learn his mom lied to him, especially because if he hadn’t found him now he might have been too late and never gotten to know William at all. I don’t know how they’re going to come back from this, but from what we’ve seen so far, this family is resilient and they’ve stuck together through a lot. I can’t wait for next week’s episode and whatever drama or resolution that will bring.

I really loved the emotional ending of this episode and I enjoyed getting to know the family a bit better in a more light-hearted way. Although the flashbacks were cute and sometimes funny, they also left me a bit sad. It gets harder and harder each week, seeing Jack in these flashbacks, but seeing these happy memories of Jack just makes it even more difficult to accept that he’s dead. It seems like Rebecca still really loves him though, which makes me think that they were still together when he died. I really don’t know what I think though, because there have been hints both ways. I guess it’s just a testament to their writing that they have us all guessing so much. Overall, this episode was everything you could want from a Thanksgiving-themed family drama. I think Olivia’s closing line, “Your family’s amazing”, pretty much sums it up best. Their family is filled with unconventional traditions and drama but Thanksgiving is still just as great because it means something special to all of them.

What did you think of this episode? Let me know in the comments and thanks for reading! And for all the Thanksgiving celebrating readers, I hope you have a great Thanksgiving filled with your own fun family traditions, tons of good food, and hopefully way less family drama!