This Is Us season two, episode five hit on all the aspects of the show that have made it such a success.


It split up the action between three timelines, so it is a bit all over the place, but it has heartwarming moments, family bonding, some melodrama, and a great surprise reveal at the end. In the present, Kate is choosing who and when to disclose her pregnancy, Randall is struggling to connect with Deja, and Kevin is turning slowly to drug addiction. In the past, we spend with with Jack and his sons on a camping trip, as Rebecca and Kate are left at home to deal with a family emergency. And then back in Jack’s own childhood, we see a childhood fishing trip with his father go sadly wrong.

Kate tells Toby she’s pregnancy and he is extremely happy. She warns him not to be optimistic. “I’m 37, I’m having a ‘geriatric pregnancy,'” she tells him. “And because of my weight and because things just seem to happen to me… this is about hope.” Deep down she’s excited too, but she’s also scared of what could happen.

Later, Kate is in a minor car accident and ends up telling her enemy Madison about the baby, and she is similarly excited. Kate then allows Toby to show his excitement in a coffee shop, so long as they don’t go back there again. He tells the barista and does a happy dance, and viewers feel happy and worried for Kate.

The primary plotline of the episode, however, is the siblings’ camping trip. “Brothers” is a fitting title for the episode, as Jack forces Kevin and Randal to bond. The beginning goes poorly, with the kids bickering over putting the tent up, and Kevin sabotaging Randall’s work. When Jack asks Kevin why he’s so hard on Randall, he refuses to answer.

In the present, we see the brothers come together for a charity gala in which Kevin has auctioned himself off as a celebrity guest. Deja is drawn to Kevin and his relaxed attitude, and she expresses interest in attending. Randall is thrilled that his foster daughter is showing interest in something, and despite his wife’s uncertainty, he buys Deja a dress and takes her along. Kevin, on the other hand, is deep into his prescription pain pill addiction. He’s out of pills and searches through Randall’s medicine cabinet for more, but after finding nothing, calls his doctor for a refill. Meanwhile, he’s chugging a beer and Sophie warns him to slow down.

Things get worse for both brothers at the gala. Deja gives all her attention to Kevin while he gets drunker and drunker. Randall stops Deja from eating an entire shrimp that she probably would have choked on, but he grabs her arm and she runs to the bathroom afraid. And eventually, Sophie gives Kevin a warm introduction in front of the crowd, but he is too busy at the bar to notice and show up.

Kevin and Randall meet in front of the women’s bathroom where Deja is. Randall tells Kevin to talk to her, because he’s “good with people. I come on too strong.” But Kevin counters, “you care too much – you always have. You feel too much. I try not to feel anything at all.” Randall finally does barge into the bathroom, and Deja opens up (from behind the stall door) the abuse she sustained at her last foster home. Meanwhile, Kevin finds Sophie, hurt and embarrassed, and he leaves the gala alone. On the way home, he calls Dr. Miller and admits he’s “in a lot of pain.”

At the end of the episode, we spend some time with Jack as a kid. He and his father go on a fishing trip, when his dad pulls the car over to get water and Jack has to reassure himself that his father will actually return. We skip to the present, when Jack and his boys are on their camping trip, and we learn his father is dying. Rebecca visits the nursing home, but Jack says he doesn’t want to see him again, that “he’s been dead to me a long time.” Back in the far past, another boy wakes in the car and sits up – a boy we learn is Jack’s brother Nicky. And then later, when Jack returns from the trip with his sons, he digs up an old photo of himself and Nicky, both in army garb. The scene raises questions about Nicky’s fate, and why Jack blames his father for Nicky’s obvious death. Hopefully we’ll get some answers next week in episode 6.

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