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This Is Us - R & B - Review: Better Together? + Poll


"Let's do this."

This episode was an intense one, in this timeline of the show, Beth and Randall have been the backbone of the family drama, so seeing them fight is heartbreaking. We pick up exactly where we left off, Beth and Randall decide to finally have it out. And after watching the whole episode I see how she was about to table the issue again, but then Randall decided to push her on it and for the first time, she said: "okay, let's do this".

At first, we only hear things we already knew, we know she’s always supported him in his craziest dreams, maybe because he’s convincing AF, but still. We know this is the first time Beth is the one with a crazy wonderful idea and it seems like he can’t get on board with it, he says he still has been killing himself for her, going back and forth to see her recital, to be with the kids when she’s teaching, which is also true. But the truth is she asked him not to run in the past and he chose his new career over her, they made peace eventually but only because, once again, she caved. Then Beth says they’ve been having the same fight since they met, and this cues in the flashbacks of this flashback sandwich.

We see a little of that first day he saw her and was immediately captivated. And then a little while later, we see him talking to Kevin about her, asking for advice, and I have to say the brothers are so adorable. Kevin proposes Randall calls Beth while he listens in so he can give Randall some of his game. We’ve heard of this scene, and even though I should’ve imagined we would see it eventually, I didn’t, I’m thrilled to see it, of course, but I’m not sure I ever wanted it to be under these circumstances.

Their first date has some awkward moments, and also some cute ones., but then when the waiter asks for them to pay for the meal in advance, in case they run without paying, and Beth gets furious, she gets up and says she won’t stand for it. Randall tries to get her to stay, but she's not only mad at the guy, she also thinks Randall is a bit too intense, since from the get-go he started telling her about his past trauma. He says he thinks she deserves everything but she just goes home. Still, he goes to his dorm convinced he’s going to marry her because in the check he was writing for the restaurant he listed it as the first date with Beth Clarke.

Around seven years later, we see one of Randall’s many proposals and they fight about how close he is to Rebecca, telling her every little detail about their lives and going to dinner every single Sunday. She’s so angry she finally says why she doesn’t want to get married, she says she doesn’t want her life to be consumed by her husband’s and with Rebecca there this is painful, but this doesn’t mean she’s wrong. Randall feels hurt, and goes to the car which gives Rebecca the chance to have a chat with Beth, she says she’s glad her son won’t end up with a wallflower, but then she tells her about the first time he talked to her about Beth, how he felt like he’d found his place in the world, and thins prompts Beth to take Randall to her perfect date and ask to be proposed to again, this time to say yes.

After another time jump, we get to their wedding, Beth is writing her vows five minutes before walking down the aisle. Kevin (AND THAT GOATIE) help Randall figure out a way to trim down his 6-minute vows and they realize he didn’t actually write vows but a long ass dissertation on marriage. When Beth hears this she goes to the room and though they look away they write their vows together, and at the same time, we see them say them in front of everyone else.

We jump ahead again, to the time Tess was a baby, and though they fight about the stupidest things, they find the time to be with each other. But while they seem to be doing great it does look like they’ve been tabling the same fight for years. We see how Beth has been raising the same argument time and time again over the years but Randall was so offended by it that she always ended up dropping it. And you can see her point, or at least I can; no matter how sweet and romantic Randall is, he does suck the air out of the room, and even though what they built together is its own kind of wonderful, a woman like Beth can’t be happy putting the needs of others ahead of her own forever. She needs to breathe; she needs to shine in her own light.

We get another time jump, now to the time William was alive and staying at Randall's, as was Kevin, and I have to say it was awesome to see William again, it was short-lived this time, but their conversation made me think perhaps there's more of him to come. Beth was trying to get a night at a hotel all by herself and they catch her buying groceries for that purpose, Randall after some confusion says he’s okay with her needing her day away but then he makes her laugh and she realizes she doesn’t want to do it without him. And though it might look confusing, it happens often in relationships, you can want opposite things at the same time, having some space, but not missing anything from your loved one’s life.

Back in the present, Beth says he should admit he thinks his job is more important, he refuses as he remembers a fight he saw between Jack and Rebecca, back when he was angry that she was touring with the band. This comparison was amazing and spot on. Beth feels like, for the first time, she has found a passion that is her own, no one else’s and she’s not willing to give that up. She says this time she won’t bend for anything, and their whole life has been built on her being the one who caves, so maybe if she doesn’t it just won’t work anymore.

At first, he tries to find the right words to fix everything but she says she doesn’t want that, she doesn’t want to be convinced by his charm again, and truly the speeches tend to only mend things for a while, not fix them. Randall gets angry, he says he won’t stand for her revisionist history, he says she’s self-protecting by putting this on him and he won’t apologize for her having her awakening twenty years too late. She’s furious and says there was never time for her, not only because of the life they built but also because of his anxiety; he’s hurt by this so he decides to go sleep in Philly.

Part of me really wants them to reconcile at some point, because they are awesome people and they make an amazing team, but I also understand Beth completely, and Randall doesn’t really seem willing to understand what she’s saying. It doesn’t mean that this is all on him, sometimes, there’s nothing you can do to fix these issues, at least not something that won’t create new problems in the future; usually, the perfect balance doesn’t exist. There’s a reason there are so many couples that don’t make it all the way to the end, many reasons in fact, but one of them is the balance, or lack thereof, between changing and growing to accommodate to the person you love, and getting yourself lost in it all.

"I’m all out of speeches."


What do you think about this outcome? Are you as torn as I am? Or do you just want them to get back together? I look forward to your comments and I leave you with the poll.

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