Warning: Major spoilers ahead from This Is Us Season 1, Episode 2
Ugh, This Is Us just keeps hitting us with all the feels — and wicked twists. In the Season 1 opener, we were introduced to the totally relatable struggles of Kate, Randall and Kevin, and then were slapped in the face (in the best way possible) in the last 30 seconds of the show when we finally figured out they are all siblings.
Then in Episode 2, we laughed — and ugly cried — through William’s revelation that he disappears every day to make the six-hour-long journey to care for his beloved cat, Jack and Rebecca’s struggles as a couple as they fight to raise their family and Kate’s heartache as she continues to battle for her health and self-confidence.
And once again, This Is Us gut-punched us in the final seconds of the show by revealing that Rebecca is not married to Jack in 2016, but instead is with his best friend, Miguel.
It’s sad to think that Jack and Rebecca have broken up because of Jack’s alcoholism, which is certainly plausible, but the devastating reality is much worse than that. We’re 99.9 percent sure that Jack and Rebecca didn’t just get a divorce. That’s right, Jack is dead.
We pieced together some evidence from Episode 2.
First, let’s start with Miguel. Obviously, Miguel has stepped in to fill Jack’s marital shoes. It’s not a huge surprise, considering we know how highly Miguel regards Rebecca from the scene in which he sings her praises in the bar with Jack. However, in the few short snippets we’ve seen Miguel in so far, it’s evident that his and Jack’s friendship is pure. Marrying your BFF’s wife after divorce is not the move a close friend would make. Marrying your BFF’s wife after he dies to step in and take care of her and the family… that’s a best friend move. It’s so very Ben Affleck/Josh Hartnett in Pearl Harbor.
Then there’s Rebecca’s moon necklace. It was a special gift to her from Jack after Miguel talked some sense into him, and it pays tribute to Rebecca and Jack’s song. When we see Rebecca on Randall’s doorstep with Miguel at the end of the episode, she is still wearing the necklace. If your husband was an alcoholic who forced you to divorce him, would you still be wearing sentimental jewelry he gave you, even though you are remarried to his former best friend? I think not. It’s far more likely that Rebecca wears the moon necklace as a tribute to Jack, and Miguel — her new husband — warmly regards the sentimental value of it, as well. Because Jack is dead.
More subtly, it’s also kind of evident from the nostalgic way that Kate, Randall and Kevin recite “The Mighty Three” poem Jack taught them that something happened to their father. There’s some bittersweetness in there. The triplets don’t talk about Jack in a way adult siblings recall an absentee father. They talk about him with respect and longing.
Besides the clues we’ve picked up from the show, there are also hints that have been dropped by series insiders.
Chrissy Metz, who portrays Kate in the series, recently chatted with SheKnows and gave us some nuggets about the family dynamic of the main characters on the show.
“Everyone’s like, ‘Milo’s bottom!'”… I’m like, ‘That’s my dad!’ We’re not talking about my dad like that because it’s a little traumatizing,” Metz told us. “Even in life, Milo is so nurturing to me and we definitely have a dad-daughter thing. He gives me life advice and I’m really just partial to Jack and Rebecca’s love because it’s this sure, real love that no matter what — at any point in time — they’re there for each other. And I think it’s so beautiful. I’m just obsessed with them.”
Yeah, that sure doesn’t sound like divorce to us.
Perhaps the most damning evidence was given by series creator Dan Fogelman at the This Is Us Paleyfest panel in September.
Early on in the panel, Fogelman oh-so-briefly mentions something about dealing with the loss of a parent. Then, while discussing how Jack and Rebecca’s relationship changes from Episode 1 to Episode 2, Fogelman went off a tangent about his own loss.
“My mom passed away eight years ago,” he said. “I have subsequently gotten married… I have this whole life in front of me that the person who I was closest with won’t be sharing in in the flesh. But I think it’s a really interesting thing to play in the fabric of time, and how we kind of form one another in families or in friendships, that’s what the series is about.”
Hmmm… So basically, what Fogelman is trying to say is, the series is about how familial loss and those close to you shape who you are.
Believe us, we hope we’re wrong about Jack dying because there aren’t going to be enough tissues in the world to get us through the episode in which we see it happen.
Do you think Jack is dead? Or are he and Rebecca just divorced?
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