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THIS IS US: “Brothers” discussion

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On this week’s THIS IS US, Jack takes the boys camping while Rebecca and Kate look forward to a girl’s day, which is then disrupted by some unexpected news. In the present, Randall continues to try and bond Deja while Kevin can’t face the truth about his recent injury, which leads to him disappointing Sophie. Kate also shares her news with Toby. Join Ange and Melissa as they discuss this week’s episode of the NBC drama, including that surprise at the end!

THIS IS US — “Brothers” Episode 205 — Pictured: (l-r) Parker Bates as Kevin, Milo Ventimiglia as Jack — (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

Ange: This episode is called ‘Brothers” and the flashbacks this week took us back to when Jack decided to take the boys on a camping trip in an effort to get them to bond better, which was really more of an attempt to get Kevin to be nicer to Randall. Man, little Kevin was mean! His behavior probably stemmed from insecurities but still. When Kevin found Randall’s notebook with his list, my heart kind of broke for little Randall because you could see how hard he was trying with Kevin, so it was nice that it did end up bringing them closer.

Melissa: Little Randall tried so hard! I wish we knew this was a real turning point for them, but we’ve seen Kevin be a jerk to Randall a lot, including the teenager flashbacks. I still don’t have much sympathy for Kevin. He was loved by his parents and his siblings, he was provided for, he’s a straight white male in a society already set up for his success. Get over it, dude.

THIS IS US — “Brothers” Episode 205 — Pictured: Justin Hartley as Kevin — (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

Ange: In the present, Kevin and Randall’s relationship is a lot healthier but it was interesting to see the parallels between the two versions of themselves in the scene where they’re kind of having the heart to heart – Randall admitting that he comes on too strong and Kevin telling him that he cares too much unlike himself who tends to shut off his emotions. They’re both traits that apply to the past and present Randall and Kevin.

Melissa: Yeah, still not seeing why Kevin needs to “shut off his emotions”. Also? He’s an actor. Aren’t emotions his stock in trade?

Ange: This is true, oh the irony. Speaking of traits, oh Kevin, what are you doing with the pills and drinking? A disappointed Sophie? Not good man. Please don’t go down this road!

Melissa: Again, still not happy with Kevin.

THIS IS US — “Brothers” Episode 205 — Pictured: Sterling K. Brown as Randall — (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

Ange: On a happier note, we finally got a breakthrough with Randall and Deja  as she opened up to him in the bathroom of a swanky New York gala nonetheless. Am I being too optimistic thinking things will get better from here now? P.S. Does Deja actually have a crush on Kevin or does she just appreciate that he’s not walking on eggshells with her like Randall and Beth do?

Melissa: I think Deja has a crush on Kevin, which is cute even though I’m not happy with Kevin. Having Kevin for a brother definitely upped Randall’s cool quotient. I hope that was the beginning of better relations between Deja and Randall. She so obviously NEEDS a father figure who “cares too much” to make up for all the ones who cared too little.

THIS IS US — “Brothers” Episode 205 — Pictured: Chrissy Metz as Kate — (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

Ange: Let’s not forget about Kate! I called it last week when I said Toby would be over the moon when he found out. His happy dance had me cracking up – always good to have more light-hearted moments with this series (side note, this episode did not make me tear up, how about you? Another temporary reprieve?) When Kate broke the news to him at his workplace, it made me realise that up until now I actually had no idea what he does, so it was nice to see him with a life outside of Kate.

Melissa: But what DOES he do? Something with graphic design? His happy dance/Flashdance move was pretty funny. I love that side of Toby and how it balances Kate’s tendency toward seriousness and overthinking. Oh, and how about her interaction with Madison at the meeting and then in the parking lot? Could we be seeing the beginnings of a friendship? Does Kate even have girlfriends? (Nope, no crying from me this week. Little Randall’s notes about how to interact with Kevin almost got me, but not quite.)

Ange: Agreed, love seeing that side of Toby! It reminds me of the Toby we (and Kate) first met who made us smile. Ha, Madison! I had a bit of a giggle at the faces Kate was pulling during the meeting while Madison shared. The shift in emotions in parking lot was pretty funny and I think it could be the start of a new unique friendship. Good question about Kate even having girlfriends – we know she and Sophie were friends when they were younger but they’re obviously not that close anymore. We haven’t met anyone from Kate’s world outside of her family and Toby. Who are her other friends?

THIS IS US — “Brothers” Episode 205 — Pictured: Milo Ventimiglia as Jack — (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

We of course we have to talk about the revelation dropped in the final scene – we thought the title of this week’s episode was referring to Randall and Kevin but it brought on a new meaning in that final scene when it was revealed Jack has a younger brother named Nicky – say what?! Why are we only just meeting him now? My theory? He went to war with Jack but died over there and being the big brother who promised he would never leave, Jack has felt guilty ever since. What do you think?

Melissa: I think your theory is spot on. We haven’t delved too deeply into Jack’s time in Vietnam, which is true to form for veterans of that war, and if Jack’s experience was compounded with the loss of his only brother, you know it’s even harder for him to discuss. I’m thinking back to that scene where Jack is watching TV and his dad comes home or they’re eating dinner or whatever. At the time the way it was shot – really tight on Jack, his dad, and his mom – made me wonder what we weren’t seeing, but it didn’t occur to me that there was another kid in the room.

Ange: Never occurred to me either! Did you have any favorite moments or lines from this episode? I had a bit of a chuckle at Randall’s “No black man will ever be jealous of being auctioned. #americanhistory”

Melissa: He actually said “hashtag”! Randall is awesome! Speaking of, Beth admonishing Randall not to be cool made me giggle.

Ange: Yes, that was a great scene!

This is Us airs Tuesday 9/8c on NBC.

THIS IS US — “Brothers” Episode 205 — Pictured: (l-r) Mandy Moore as Rebecca, Mackenzie Hancsicsak as Kate — (Photo by Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

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Ange is the Girl from Oz who travelled the States. Teen dramas, rom-comedies and superhero shows are her weakness. She also loves a good crime and medical drama and probably watches more TV than she can handle…
You can contact her at ange@nicegirlstv.com.

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