This Is Us has been on such a tear of superb episodes, it was bound to fall back to Earth eventually. It’s just a shame that this particular episode also happens to be the season finale. “Moonshadow” doesn’t necessarily leave a bad taste in your mouth, but it might leave a quizzical look on your brow — as in, “Hmm, okay … but did we really need that extended scene of Young Jack playing poker?”.
The Wrong Choice – This Is Us Season 1 Episode 18
This show has demonstrated time and again that it doesn’t need a huge twist ending to tell captivating stories. It was smart to juxtapose Jack and Rebecca’s first meeting with their separation to amp up the emotional intensity, but it all feels a bit lackluster for a season finale. Not to mention very depressing. No one likes to see Mom and Dad fight, and the bulk of this episode is exactly that. For such a hopeful, earnest show, it’s a strange note on which to end such a strong debut season.
• It was a nice touch to have Rebecca come out of her bedroom the next morning and look for Jack on the hallway floor. This time, he didn’t sleep outside the door — and that says everything about where their relationship is.
• The mystery of the moon necklace has been solved: Rebecca knew Jack picked a moon for her because of “their song,” and it turns out that song is also the title of the episode: “Moonshadow.” It’s the song Rebecca was singing when she saved Jack from a life of robbing bars.
• Kate, back in LA with Toby (no!), finds an old picture of her mother and decides she wants to pursue music. At least that entire storyline hasn’t been completely forgotten!
• Kevin heads off to Los Angeles for his big Ron Howard audition. Sophie seems supportive; I seem to be falling asleep.
• After Randall takes a trip down memory lane via an old book of photos, he’s struck with an idea: He wants to adopt a baby. Beth seems a little hesitant, but I love this idea!