It’s hard to believe that a whole year has gone by on This Is Us, but it has and the Pearsons are celebrating another birthday in the season 2 premiere. In “A Father’s Advice,” each of the Big Three is celebrating in their own way. Kate has her first audition, which doesn’t go according to plan. Kevin has to explain his relationship with his sister to Toby. And Randal and Beth disagree on an important decision. Meanwhile, a huge clue is revealed about Jack’s death in 1998.

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Everything Will Be Back to Normal

After Rebecca asks Jack to stay at Miguel’s for a bit, they gather the kids at a diner and explain the situation. They tell them about the incident with Ben on her tour and that they are now taking a moment to catch their breath. Kate gets upset and storms off, and Randall can barely look at them. As the kids digest this information about their parents, Rebecca tells Jack that she’s not ready to put the pieces back together yet.

At Miguel’s house, he rehashes his afternoon, and Miguel doesn’t seem too hopeful for his buddy. However, Jack remains optimistic. At some point, Jack drives back to the club where Rebecca performed to try and get her a few solo gigs, but all he does is embarrass himself.

After getting the silent treatment from her kids, Rebecca suggests going to a movie to clear their heads. Apparently, during the movie, Rebecca comes to a realization that she never should have let him leave in the first place. So she goes to Miguel’s to tell Jack this. However, he tells her that she doesn’t know everything about him. He tells her that he’s drunk and has been drunk for weeks. He thought he had it under control, but he’s been hiding it from his family. He adds that he needs to get a handle on his condition before he can walk back into their house. After he shuts the door on a stunned Rebecca, she knocks again. She tells him to get into the car and that if he has a problem, they will fix it together. Once in the car, she assures him that in a few months, everything will be back to normal.

And then, I guess, a few months go by, as she’s driving alone in the car with Jack’s personal items in a bag on the passenger seat. Kate and Randall are hysterical-crying at Miguel’s house, and Kevin isn’t there. Kate says they need to find him, and she needs to be the one to tell him that their father is dead. Then Rebecca pulls up to their house, which is now a crime scene, as it’s completely gutted by a fire.

Adjusting Plans

It’s now present day, and Randall is celebrating his 37th birthday. He’s excited for a meeting later in the day that Beth doesn’t seem too thrilled about. That meeting is at an adoption agency. Randall is amped up about adopting a baby boy, just like he was adopted. Apparently, as Rebecca explains to the agent sarcastically, Randall wants to save someone just like he was saved. Then she storms out. In the parking lot, Randall basically tells her to wrap her head around the idea of adopting a baby because that’s what he wants.

As he always does, later on he goes to see Rebecca and asks how she and Jack decided to adopt him. Reluctantly, she explains that at first she didn’t want to adopt him, but it was Jack’s insistence. She tells Randall that sometimes, in marriages, someone needs to push the other one. She adds that Jack wasn’t perfect, but he was pretty damn close because Jack pushed a stranger on Rebecca, and that stranger eventually became her life.

Meanwhile, Beth is still trying to figure out what’s right for her family. She sits at the park where William used to sit. Eventually, after Randall gets back, he basically tells her they don’t have to adopt because they have a perfect marriage already. However, she has another idea and says they should adjust their plans together. She brings him to the park, and as she gives him the book of William’s poems all bound together, they look on at some teens in the park passing around a bottle of alcohol. She suggest that perhaps they adopt an older kid who no one else would want to help; perhaps that’s a way to shape and change a child’s life.

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Three’s a Crowd

Over in Los Angeles, Kevin finds out that Sophie won’t be able to make it out to celebrate his birthday, so he heads over to Kate and Toby’s place unannounced just as she’s getting ready for an audition to sing in a cover band. Toby doesn’t seem pleased that Kevin barged in, but Kate ignores his comments.

At the audition, Kate gets self-conscious about her weight as she looks around at the skinnier girls. She walks out and doesn’t audition.

Later at their birthday dinner, where Kevin has rented out a fancy restaurant for the three of them, Toby grills Kate about the audition. Eventually, she tells him she walked out, and Kevin reveals that Kate told him first. This sets Toby off, and he storms out. When Kevin tries to talk to Toby about the situation, Toby explains that he wants to be Kate’s person now. He feels that Kevin coddles her and that she doesn’t need that anymore. Kate interrupts them as they get into a heated argument about her, and she tells them that she’s going back to the audition.

Even though the auditions are over, the band lets her try out. She performs “Nothing Compares to You,” and she barely gets the first verse out when they stop her and thank her for coming. Kate gets pissed, and she goes on a rant about how just because she’s fat doesn’t mean that she’s not good and that she’s probably better than the skinny girls.

The guy running the audition tells Kate that she didn’t get the gig because she’s not good enough, not because of her weight. Kate actually seems thrilled about this, and she runs to tell Toby and Kevin, who are waiting in the lobby.

While they’re waiting, Kevin tries to explain his and Kate’s relationship to Toby. He tells Toby that Kate was the one who told him that their father died when they were 17 years old. Toby says he understands. Kevin says he’ll try to distance himself, but he’s not ready to cut the cord yet. Toby seems to accept this.

Kate and Toby go their separate ways from Kevin to celebrate their birthdays, which seems to be okay because Sophie arrives to celebrate with Kevin anyway.

Inquiring Minds

Inquiring minds want to know about the fire at the Pearsons’ house! I can only assume that Jack was in the house when the fire happened and that’s how he died. But how did the fire start? Was it Kate’s fault? She has insinuated that it’s her fault her father died. Perhaps she had something to do with the fire?

Also, were things okay between Jack and Rebecca when he died? Were they still arguing? Was he still drinking? There are just so many more questions from the season 2 premiere of This Is Us. I can’t wait to get the answers, and I hope they come soon.

How do you think Jack died? How do you think the fire started? Does his death even have anything to do with the fire? What other questions do you want answered? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

This Is Us airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on NBC. Want more news? Like our Facebook page.

(Image courtesy of NBC)


Contributing Writer, BuddyTV