This is Us episode 10: Hooking us in for a January comeback

Why must folks threaten to kill off characters to keep us coming back for another go-round? Gets on my nerves. But it works.

So we see the good doctor again, the one who delivered Kate, Kevin and their wee little brother who passed away. He’s also the one who was partially responsible for getting Randall to Jack and Rebecca.

It’s Christmas time. No, not in Hollis Queens… But in 1989.

So we see the good doctor again, the one who delivered Kate, Kevin and their wee little brother

Kate gets a tummy ache and they have to take her to the hospital, which is where they see the good doctor. He had gotten himself into a car accident… Skidded on an icy patch and sustained some internal injuries and bleeding… a slow bleed between the heart and lungs. Doc seems to think he won’t make it out of the needed surgery.

Of course Jack reeks of positivity. He thinks the doctor will be just fine. It was Christmas Eve, the good doctor’s family was not around… So the Pearson’s stood in as Doc’s supportive family. And Randall, the sweet young man that he was (and still is), used his allowance money to buy a snow globe to thank the good doctor for bringing their family together.

Stage Drama
So Kevin and the playwright, Sloane, slept together. And she tells him he needs to go to Hanukkah dinner with her. Because he owes her. And her family’s piece of work. But so is his, so he’s in great company.

So what happens is that he spills the beans about Sloane’s play is a no-go. Olivia disappeared, they don’t have a star, so the folks who are (were) funding the play pulled their money. So Kevin, in the spirit of his dad who was the EEEEEEternal optimist, he suggests they put the play on themselves. Kevin offers to back it with his money… And encourages Sloane to play the starring role. She’s familiar with it. She wrote the play, and played that while work shopping it.

Meantime Kate is meeting with a counselor about gastric bypass surgery. She’s listening to all of the risks… Rebecca is also present and seems unconvinced this is the best move for her daughter. Rebecca also learned a little more about Kate’s medical history. Like how she’d been on Prozac. But she stopped because it made her gain weight. Rebecca also learned about Kate’s binge eating.

So what else is up with their disconnect? It can’t only be because Kate mom is skinnier than she is…or is it? What else happened to Kate or to Rebecca that makes the relationship so fractured? I wonder if they’ll go into that more when the show returns on January 10. Rebecca wonders if Kate’s food problems are her fault, and tells Kate she didn’t know if she was bringing it up too much or not enough… she never knew what to say. Kate hasn’t put her finger on it either, and says she doesn’t know if her mom caused her food issues.

William is at a support group. And he speaks about taming his addiction from the inside. And then another man named Jessie speaks afterwards. As he talks about a man he loved. And a man who left. And left his heart in shambles. That man… William.

Yes sir, William is gay. He’s like the kid with two dads—like in a book at school. That’s what one of his granddaughters noted later on in the show, after William showed up at Randall’s house with Jesse. Grandad is gay. “Or at least bi,” she schooled her parents. Out of the mouths of babes who know what’s really going on, and have no qualms about love in all its forms.

Earlier in the evening, Randall and Beth are at his work Christmas party, when he lets Beth know he bought a boat. Turns out the sale was from Andy, a coworker who was about to jump off a ledge. Randall, the good soul that he is, talked the man down, instead of un-buying the boat. Actually, Beth interrupted them, and the man walked away from the ledge.

Convergence again
So Kevin brings Sloane over to Randall and Beth’s house. And Rebecca, Miguel, and Kate make it over to the house, too. Randall welcomes Rebecca… Not sure where he is in the forgiveness process… but he seems to be slowly coming along.

And guess who shows up? Toby! With gifts for Randall’s daughters. Kate was so surprised to see him… They make up… He mentioned spending six hours in the middle seat on some cheap airline. Zoom, he said. I think that is a harbinger for what happens later in the evening. Toby wants to be with Kate. He said so. He’s back on his diet. He said so. And they steal away from the festivities to knock boots right-quick.

So let’s go back to 1989 where another set of stories overlap. Kate’s going into surgery for appendix removal… The good doc is going into surgery as well. Seems like quite the dramatic Christmas Eve back then… In 2016 folks are having a good-old time. Randall was about to put his daughters to bed. Toby stands up, likely to help clean up. But he’s looking really sweaty, drops the two plates he’s holding and falls over the table and he’s out. I suspect that six hour plane ride caused a blood clot.

Back in 1989, they’re waiting for the results from Kate’s surgery and the good doctor’s surgeon. But the good doctor goes back to his room and wakes up. And of course, I know Kate does well because she’s with everyone in 2016. But my spider sense tells me just because the good doctor wakes up doesn’t mean he’s going to be OK in the long run. The last shot in this episode is of an intubated and unconscious Toby and ER doctors who are working to  make him okay again.  It doesn’t sound like he flatlined,  so I’m not sure what they’re trying to set up for the next episode.   But someone want us to want to come back. Methinks it’s working.

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