TV review: Jack faces his grief on ‘This Is Us’


Grab the tissues, because the most recent episode of It’s us is one of the most moving installations in the series that we have seen in a while.

Last week on It’s useveryone had relationship issues, but in the Pearson family flashbacks, Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) learned that his mother, Marilyn (Laura Niemi), had died.

This week, Jack is in the spotlight as he travels to Ohio to take care of his mother’s funeral arrangements. He meets his cousin Debbie (Camryn Manheim) and discovers that his mother had a whole life he knew nothing about, since she only made one trip to see him and he didn’t really talk about it. of his own life than during their weekly Sunday calls.

As Jack learns more about his mother, he realizes what a blessing it is for them to have both made the lives they did. Jack is with Rebecca (Mandy Moore) and the children, and Marilyn is with her boyfriend Mike (Jim Cody Williams), Debbie and her town of friends.

Jack praises his mother and is extremely heartbroken by her passing. Audiences really get some much-needed screen time from Jack, and we really see Ventimiglia’s range of emotions. From his happiness being with his family, to his anger talking with his dad, or his heartbreak praising his mom, Ventimiglia once again proves why he’s an amazing actor and why he’s the best character in the movie. series.

There were some positively haunting moments of A+ cinematography throughout this episode.

First of all, the flashbacks that Jack has to deal with when he was a young child and he was sledding are so full of tension and a desperate attempt for a child to have fun that it’s heartbreaking . Not only was it beautifully shot and edited, but it gave more context to the nature of Jack and his mother trying to survive in their abusive household and finding that love and companionship with each other.

Second, the funeral scene contrasts sharply with the show’s usual color correction of flashbacks. Typically, current scenes are presented with a normal-looking color palette, while flashbacks with Jack and Rebecca showing idyllic childhood even through the bad times are filtered with warm tones and slightly overlays. blurry. However, most of this episode, and especially the funeral scene, shows no sign of that heat and haze. There are only brutal grays and a harsh focus on Jack’s emotional grief, which is plastered all over his face.

Third, the scene where the kids bond with Debbie and Mike as they skate on the pond is touching and thought-provoking. It’s so beautifully executed with the nostalgia of being a kid while perfectly showing the delicacy of life itself – we’re all on thin ice so we can make the most of it and have fun while we skate , but remember how tricky that is.

Finally, at the end of the episode where Jack makes the family’s tomato soup and hot dogs, just like his mother used to. The scene is juxtaposed with young Jack enjoying the same dish from his mother, another heartbreaking tale of finding happiness in abusive terror. Seeing the two scenes mixed together is extremely heartbreaking, but perfectly done.

This entire episode had some of the best cinematography the show has seen, making the emotional storyline all the more bittersweet.

It’s us airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on NBC.


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