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We Need to Talk About That Huge ‘This Is Us’ Reveal

All summer we’ve watched the emotional and uplifting trailer (featuring Milo Ventimiglia’s toned behind, btw) for NBC’s new drama This Is Us. Last night the show finally premiered, and it did not let us down.

The hour-long episode followed four characters celebrating their 36th birthdays: Jack (Ventimiglia), who is married to Mandy Moore’s character, Rebecca, and expecting triplets; Kevin (Justin Hartley), an unhappy sitcom actor; Kate (Chrissy Metz), Kevin’s sister, who is struggling with body issues; and Randall (Sterling K. Brown), who’s on the search for the biological father who left him at a fire station the day he was born.

It was an hour filled with such heart and happiness (and groans every time a commercial came on) that we just didn’t want it to end. But the end came, and it was not what we expected at all. The final few minutes of the episode revealed a plot twist so enormous and unexpected, yet perfectly designed, that connected all of the characters and left us shouting, “What?!” over and over at the screen. 

Here’s the twist. *Spoiler alert OBVI*

Jack and Rebecca are parents to Kevin and Kate, two of the triplets they were expecting, and Randall, whom they adopted after they lost their third baby during a complicated delivery. That means Jack and Rebecca’s story takes place in 1980, 36 years before Kevin, Kate and Randall’s story, which is set in 2016.

Our mind was blown. We spent the rest of the night and even today thinking about the reveal—how much sense it makes and how well it was pulled off. Then, we started to read up on the show and discovered something that now makes oh-so-much sense: Dan Fogelman, the show’s creator, also wrote Crazy, Stupid, Love. So we should have seen a crazy twist like this coming!

With the surprising end of the episode, we were all left wondering: where will the show go from here? Fogelman has an answer for that, TVLine reveals.

The series will continue to follow the characters in their respective time periods, along with some time-jumping for Jack and Rebecca. We’ll see the couple both before the pregnancy and after, with their three kids.

“You might even meet them in the present day,” Fogelman hinted, “as older versions of themselves.”

No matter what future episodes hold, we’re excited to tune in every week to stay caught up with the lives of these people whom we already feel attached to. Well done, This Is Us!

Sarah Nelson is senior at the University of Iowa pursuing a Journalism major, English minor, and Fundraising and Philanthropy Communication Certificate. When she's not binge-watching One Tree Hill or Jane the Virgin on Netflix (again), she's is probably rereading the Harry Potter series or writing for her blog, SarahNdipity. With an addiction to books and coffee, Sarah hopes to take the world by storm as a book editor. Or social media marketer. Or blogger. (She hasn't quite made up her mind yet, but that's okay because who says you have to be just one thing?)