Unlike the ubiquitous influence of superheroes, time travel, remakes and flawed protagonists in most series, NBC’s ‘This is Us’ revolves around a simple aspect: family. The impact of a family is felt by everyone as it brings out cherished memories, filled with joy and sorrow. It contains every aspect of our unfiltered lives, from our best attributes to our worst secrets. Likewise, I was extremely fortunate to witness a timeline of the aforementioned phenomena through major moments in an American romantic family television series.
The first episode into the series, one can’t help but fall in love with Jack Pearson, the patriarch of the Pearson’s. He who is a perfect husband to his wife, Rebecca and a perfect father to his three kids and a remarkable human being, could be regarded as the ‘Jack of all trades.’ As we progress, we find that the life of our beloved patriarch is a short-lived one. The show highlights the journey of his three children and how they process the loss of the most important person in their lives. Kevin, an eye-candy television actor, is constantly disoriented and unsatisfied with everything he is doing. His twin-sister Kate desperately tries to battle her obesity and identity issues. Randall is discontented and feels out of place in all aspects of his life.
The three of them go through different battles in their lives individually but I couldn’t help but wonder, why there was repressed unhappiness amongst them. A few episodes into the show one would realize that their repressed emotions, deep insecurities, unhappy and lost feelings could be traced back to the untimely demise of their most beloved father when they were mere teenagers. All three of them dealt with their loss differently. They seemed to think that they were over it, when indeed they couldn’t be lying to themselves any more.
My favourite aspect of the show is the way in which the three of them journey together on a path of unsureness, fear and deeply sown insecurities. Yet, they always seem to find the right way. They couldn’t be more different from each other, but they support one another, play to their strengths, and try their best to ‘be a family’ amidst all the indifference and sorrow. The show is structured and presented in a very unique manner. The parallel comparisons of three people at different stages of their lives are what keeps the story interesting. This show teaches us that memories with loved ones will never leave us. We continue to carry them with us in our hearts. It also teaches us that loss is inevitable and the only way to heal a broken heart is to give it a little time.
For viewers to have a desire to continue watching the series, they need to connect with a character or the situations in storylines. As this show brings out different aspects that people can relate to, there is no doubt it can appeal to a diverse group of viewers. Seldom do we come across stories that have the potential to satisfy us, and ‘This is Us’ will make you feel content with life!