This is Us gives us Kate’s story in the second of their big three trilogy
Last week This is Us spent a little time with Kevin Pearson (Justin Hartley) as we got to know a lot more about him. This week it was Kate Pearson’s (Chrissy Metz) turn. In Kate’s day we got a glimpse at her in her teenage years as well as the day after she had a miscarriage. Kate as a teen is a puzzle. Sullen and quiet she keeps the secret of her music school application from her mother.
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After Kate’s miscarriage her reaction varies. At first she seems numb but then she runs out of work when she sees a mom and daughter. She totally avoids Toby (Chris Sullivan) and is ignoring calls until finally Rebecca shows up at her door and the two have a heart to heart. She encourages Kate to open up to Toby and she does and the two of them figure out a way to move forward.
What did we think of this second episode in the trilogy? On with the roundtable!
Andee (@andeesings): Writer for TV After Dark. Singer, very slow runner, and Disney fanatic. Andee loves tacos and Ethiopian food.
1) The DREAD when we first saw Kate and Toby creating their list of questions knowing she lost the baby. How did you handle it?
Andee (@andeesings): That was really tough. I’ve never been through something like this but I can’t even fathom the emotional toll. The MOST emotional part for me though was when Kate went to the buffet and loaded up her plate with food. Honestly the rivers of tears. As a overweight stress eater myself I have been there, hiding food to numb my pain. It doesn’t help but boy is it hard to stop me from doing it. When Kate pushed that plate away I didn’t know whether to cheer for her or be even more worried.
Mel (@musiccitymel): I was so……uncomfortable. I actually felt physically ill. Like I wanted to jump inside the television and shield Kate and Toby from the impending devastation they were about to face.
Jake (@Jake_Lester): That was rough, especially because they were so excited. It was a good interaction between the two of them though. Usually with Kate and Toby it’s a thing where he’s being goofy and she’s rolling her eyes at him questioning their relationship. So it was awesome to see them working towards something collectively.
Nicole (@NicoleBlades): I kind of had my lips pressed together (with a blanket over my head) waiting for when the awful thing happens. And then Toby planning out his “moves out at 18” joke kind of broke the tension for me, because I got to say, “Ugh, Toby.”
K.M. (@kwanawrites): That was so hard knowing what was to come. The writers do a really good job priming the viewers for a strong emotional moment. They grab you by the heart from the very start.
2) Teenage Kate is so cagey. Were all the Pearson kids so bratty with they were teens?
Andee (@andeesings): This killed me. Why was she so nasty to Rebecca? I can’t believe all of her life was that harsh. Also she maybe should’ve asked for mom’s advice with that audition material because she could’ve used at least some musical accompaniment.
Mel (@musiccitymel): I think most teenagers are bratty. Surely we were all this bratty at some point too, right? We were all just teenage dirtbags, baby.
Jake (@Jake_Lester): This is something that bugs me so much. Both Kevin and Kate are so disrespectful to Jack and Rebecca. It’s more than just normal teenage rebellion as well because, at least with Kate, it has spilled over into adulthood with no reason what so ever. Both Kevin and Kate act like they have the worst parents in the world for whatever reason, and we all know Jack and Rebecca are amazing.
Nicole (@NicoleBlades): Goodness! So entitled. When she said: “Maybe I should use this $50 to put a new lock on my door.” I was like, Whuuuut. Girl, you don’t own a door in that house! You better mind your manners. Jack and Kate are such loving, good parents, and sadly (as it is in real life) those kids don’t quite realize it until much too late.
K.M. (@kwanawrites): Once again kudos to the writers for getting that all teens are pretty much emotional horrors in some way or another and they internalize and then externalize those emotions so that there are mini tornados all around them. I will say though, I kind of really liked 90’s emo Kate. She was so cool. I’m eager to see how they handle the nearly perfect teenage Randall next week. Will his flaws come out?
3) The silence when Kate was getting ready for her gig and reliving the miscarriage was profound. What were your thoughts on those details this episode?
Andee (@andeesings): That was my favorite scene the whole episode. It’s so interesting what happens when you leech sound from a television show. Often times you don’t even notice it so when it disappears it really stands out. I really loved that part.
Mel (@musiccitymel): It was so painful to watch. You can feel her analyzing every second and thinking she somehow has caused this to happen. Again, I just wanted to crawl inside the television, wrap her up in a hug and tell her this wasn’t anyone’s fault.
Jake (@Jake_Lester): It has to be traumatic for someone to go through with that,
and then try and go on as if nothing ever happened. That’s not healthy, and I was borderline screaming at my TV for her to call Toby so they could talk this out. Her bottling up all her emotions, and then thinking about eating them, is not healthy and I’m glad she was able to push through it.
Nicole (@NicoleBlades): That whole scene was heartbreaking. Having a miscarriage is absolutely devastating and the guilt and blame and relieving that’s involved can break you in half. I really felt for Kate, but I knew her “I’m fine; everything is fine” facade was going to crumble soon enough.
K.M. (@kwanawrites): It was really well done with the flashbacks to the shower and the bar. Very hard to see and a bit jarring but that’s how hard memories come back to us. I’d have to seriously consider changing that curtain.
4) Talk to us about Toby this episode, cleaning up and going to the shipping company to get the baby bath before it was delivered.
Andee (@andeesings): I don’t love Toby but he was my hero this episode. Taking down the shower curtain was such a thoughtful gesture and he didn’t even complain when she wanted it returned at the end. Amazing. And the baby bath was pretty awesome too. But I would’ve told it on ebay, Toby. Baby stuff is expensive.
Mel (@musiccitymel): Let it be written that this is the episode where I started rethinking my feelings on Toby. I know he has been questionable at best before now, but I felt like this brought out a side of him we hadn’t yet gotten to know. He wanted to save her from any heartbreak he could possibly control. He is hurting too, but he’s out here hunting down this package to protect Kate’s heart as much as he can. It was such a loving and selfless thing to do. And I LOVED everything he said to her when she was really taking her feelings out on him. He handled it so tenderly but let her know he was hurting too.
Jake (@Jake_Lester): I’ve always had one foot off and one foot on the “I Hate Toby” bandwagon. This episode I jumped off, and I hope that I’m not on it again anytime soon. While nobody is Jack Pearson, Kate seems to have found someone who is willing to do whatever it takes to make her happy. She’s had some issues accepting Toby from doing this, but this episode was a really good growing moment for Kate and accepting how great Toby is to her.
Nicole (@NicoleBlades): I actually tweeted, in near ALL CAPS, if This Is Us was trying to change my mind about Toby—and sincerely questioning if it was working! But I have to give it up to Toby; he really put in the work to ensure that his financé’s heart wouldn’t get broken even further by receiving that delivery or having to see the horrible reminder of the shower curtain.
K.M. (@kwanawrites): Oh boy, how is it that Toby is having so many winning scenes? This is two episodes for me that he came out so good. Quietly understated but so powerful. His love for Kate really showed through in his sacrifice to intercept that baby bath. And then when he had his car meltdown but came back from it calmly to deal with the shipment worker, it really showed how he’s such a good and grounded man.
5) Finally Kate was able to connect with her mom. They needed some bonding/connection time! What were you feeling when Rebecca showed up at Kate’s apartment?
Andee (@andeesings): It’s about time! I was so happy that Rebecca didn’t just listen to Kate and she showed up for her. I always thought that Rebecca really was coming from the right place with Kate and this really proved it. I also had forgotten that Rebecca knew what it felt like to lose a baby so she had experience with it. I think it was really meaningful for Kate. She definitely needed her Mama.
Mel (@musiccitymel): Y’all. It was Boo Hoo City up in here when we got to this moment. Do you ever really outgrow needing your mom? I loved that Kate allowed herself to surrender to that feeling and really lean on her mama for comfort. How perfect were Chrissy and Mandy in this scene?! I felt every single line.
Jake (@Jake_Lester): I was elated that this happened, just so happy. I’ve been hard on Kate for a while about her terrible treatment of Rebecca. This episode started out this way with Rebecca trying to be there for her, and Kate was typical Kate and not only shutting her out, but did it in a really rude way. Rebecca showing up, to quote Michael Scott, “made my heart soar with the eagles nest.”
It was a really great moment for both characters, I hope that Kate is over her made-up Rebecca feud.
Nicole (@NicoleBlades): I was relieved. Kate needed her mom, and moreover, she needed to hear her mom tell her it’s not her fault. Rebecca’s story about the yellow onions was great. It helped her to seem less “perfect” in Kate’s eyes, more human and relatable.
K.M. (@kwanawrites): When Rebecca showed up is when I really lost it. Tissue time! The writers did a good job of showing how turbulent she and Kate’s relationship was and the talk and the football game really hit hard, but somehow when there was the knock on the door I knew it would be her. That was a wonderful moment and a healing that Kate really needed.
6) Kate and Toby REALLY needed to talk this out. What did you think about this resolution to this heartbreaking miscarriage for them?
Andee (@andeesings): I was happy they want to try again but I think it would be interesting if they adopted a baby like Randall wanted to. I do think this showed some cracks in their relationship though and I hope they are able to continue to work it out.
Mel (@musiccitymel): I loved this so so so so much. I love that they are giving themselves room to grieve but I also love that they are going to try again. I think a loss of this magnitude can strengthen or fracture a relationship simply because of how the couple cope with the loss. Kate and Toby ended up finding solace in each other and I think it’s going to ultimately draw them even closer together.
Jake (@Jake_Lester): Rebecca gets a major assist for making this happen, and letting Kate know that she needs to make good with Toby. The episode started off with them working together and being great together, and then Kate went full Kate and pushed him away. It was nice to see them recover, get their wits about them after this terrible thing that happened to them, and embrace each other. I loved that Kate was the one who looked at Toby and said, “This will not break us.”
Nicole (@NicoleBlades): I like that Kate said, “This will not break us.” Going through a miscarriage is incredibly difficult on any couple. And the fact that they are willing to, after some time, try again is healthy and encouraging.
K.M. (@kwanawrites): I think it was a good start at a resolution and Rebecca helped a lot but something in me doesn’t feel like it’s the end for them. This healing will take time and they have a lot to get over. I don’t see this as a total end for their troubles.
7) That TINY glimpse of Jack and Rebecca in the parking lot with Kate looking on was total #relationshipgoals. It made us think about what effect seeing that had on Kate…
Andee (@andeesings): I cannot with these two. Even though they struggled a little watching the two of them hug in the parking lot after their most recent difficulties made my heart just swell. Sometimes I think this show is total emotional manipulation. Thing is it’s things like this that make me on board for that manipulation!
Mel (@musiccitymel): Listen, Jack and Rebecca have certainly had their ups and downs and neither of them are perfect. But they love each other so much. Their love has been the constant thread throughout the series and in the lives of the Pearson family. I think they gave all their kids such a wonderful example of what true love is and how to recognize it. I think we saw Kate recognizing that love her parents had in the love she has with Toby. And after seeing Toby this episode…..I think I might be here for it.
Jake (@Jake_Lester): For Kate in that moment it had a decent impact, but going forward in her adult life not much. Jack and Rebecca share their heart aches with one another, and the moment something bad happens to Kate she tries to push Toby out. However, this episode was a major step in the right direction for Kate, and I’m actually excited to see her and Toby’s story progress.
Nicole (@NicoleBlades): It was so touching. And it helped to see Kate seeing that moment between her parents. It kind of gave you some background for how she approached Toby the second time, with renewed kindness and care.
K.M. (@kwanawrites): It was a good moment for Kate, seeing Jack and Rebecca holding each other up like that has probably had a lasting effect on her and may have played a part in what she ultimately wants in a relationship. Though who knows, Kate has chosen unavailable men in the past.
8) Talk to us about your overall thoughts about episode 2 in this trilogy: How it connects to 1 and what you’re expecting from 3!!!
Andee (@andeesings): I was happy that they showed a bit of a bridge between Rebecca and Kate. It was easier with Kevin because I don’t think that the show developed him enough. It made his episode just seem really thorough. Kate is a little more developed in the first place so we stayed in the present with her a little bit more and didn’t find out a great deal of new stuff. It would’ve been nice to really see what made teen Kate so salty. I sort of expect Randall’s story to be the absolute greatest!
Mel (@musiccitymel): This was such a heartbreakingly beautiful episode and it definitely secured a spot in my top 5 favorite episodes of the show. Can we please just give Chrissy and Mandy all the awards? I think we are seeing how all three of the Pearson kids struggled with fear of disappointing their parents and also themselves. This is such a relatable struggle! As for the next episode, y’all all know Sterling K Brown is gonna bring the fire. I don’t have to expect anything. Because he is going to deliver greatness in what is sure to be one of the best episodes of the series.
Jake (@Jake_Lester): I’ve been surprised with how these episodes have made me feel about Kate and Kevin. I borderline loathed every-time they were on screen. These individual episodes have given the writers a chance to rectify some of their personality flaws.
Based on the preview, it would seem we are in for a bumpy one when it comes to Randall’s episode. Not sure how Deja’s mom get their address, but that’s going to be interesting to see how it all plays out. I’m really looking forward to getting to spend time with teenage Randall as well, as I feel like out of all the versions of the Big Three he’s the one that we haven’t hardly spent any time with.
Nicole (@NicoleBlades): I liked this episode, but I still feel like I needed more about why Kate was so angry and bristly as a teen. Was it your average teen angst stuff or more? Kev’s Episode really dug into the roots of him and gave you insight into why he is how he is. Didn’t quite get into the roots of Kate as deeply here. And it didn’t really connect with episode 1 as much as Kev’s story did with Kate’s, especially at the very end.
I’m so ready for the “Number 3” episode! Sterling K ‘bout to bring it. Tissue box is in position (hell, are these tears already brimming??). I don’t know what to expect. It will likely lean hard on Randall’s rather rigid attitude toward “the way things should go” in life. He’s a very principled man, and I can’t wait to see how he deals with Deja’s mom and the potential fight for Deja.
K.M. (@kwanawrites): I thought it was a good episode though I would have liked it to go a little bit deeper I felt Kevin’s did. For me we could have delved into Kate’s past to get deeper into her psyche. Though I get why they needed to stay in the present I needed a bit more in the past. Kate did seem pretty strong though. I was so worried about her at the buffet. I don’t think I would have been as strong as she was and left that full plate there. She’s come a long way. Still I would have liked a little more as to her past development. Now as for Randall next week, I’m really looking forward to seeing what the writer’s do. It seems they want to tackle him looking at HBCUs and I’m all for it! It should really impact the entire family also Deja’s mom is back so fireworks!
Final Verdict: Kate’s miscarriage was really sad and we appreciated that it ended with hope
This is Us went there with an issue that’s common for almost 1 in 2 women. And it was really very effective. The time with Kate spent in the present struggling with burying her feelings (a Pearson family trait) was really tough. Thank goodness Rebecca saved the day by understanding how she’d feel and not leaving her alone.
One of the questions we’ve still got is what’s going on in teenage Kate’s head? It seems like she hates Rebecca but we’ve really only seen some low key things and we’re not sure how much they warrant her extremely disrespectful reaction towards her mother. We know she’s always connected more with Jack but her mom hasn’t really been that horrible. Not that we want to see Rebecca be awful to Kate but some consistency would be nice.
Toby was the hero of this episode. For once he wasn’t totally extra towards Kate and really did everything he could to support her. He even didn’t get on her for completely ignoring his feelings. How will their relationship continue to handle strains? Not all of us are convinced it’s going to be smooth sailing for Kate and Toby.
This is Us continued with a second strong episode of this trilogy leading up to next week’s fall finale. Randall’s story looks as if it’s going to be incredibly intense as the fight for Deja is going to be on. And we’re dying to know what went down on his college trip!