This Is Us: Number One

Welcome to my weekly review of This Is Us. Today: Season 2, Episode 8, Number One.. (The reviews will include spoilers, so don’t read if you haven’t watched and don’t want to know what happens!) My reviews are based on a single viewing. If I were to watch several times, as I can obsess over my favorite shows (I’m looking at you, True Detective, Season 1), I might be even more insightful (or over Randall-ing it all). But I’d rather write my initial impressions than take time dissecting after many views. So….


This episode is the first of three about The Big Three, so it’s mostly all about Kevin. Kevin has been getting on my nerves lately, but this episode tried to show what’s beneath his egotistic behavior and his drug addiction.

What we learned:

  • Kevin is still struggling with his dad being gone, in a big way.
  • Kevin is upset that he has struggled since then, and no one really sees his problems or helps him with them, partially because he has hidden them, but also because he’s always been a bit in the background of his family. Plus, he seemed to always get the breaks so people don’t tend to think people like that have problems.
  • His dad helped him during the worst part of his life — when he broke his leg and couldn’t play football anymore, but he’s not here to help him with this other worst part of his life, his pill addiction.
  • The fact that Kevin hides his addiction and his pain and suffers in silence shows he’s probably the most like his dad of The Big Three.
  • I, too, wanted to smack teen Kevin for his attitude about being too good to go to Pitt. Him seeing his dad work his 12 steps though — realizing Jack is human; realizing that what he’s going through isn’t easy; realizing that whiny narcissistic Kevin isn’t helping Dad deal with things that are already difficult… I think that started to sink in. And then months later, Jack would be gone.
  • Speaking of gone, the best moment of the episode was when Kevin realized he lost his dad’s necklace, the one last connection to Jack, he said. That scene was off the chain (no pun intended). But Kevin, YOU are a connection to Jack. I hope he realizes that once he gets help. And p.s. Jack’s dead and STILL saved Kevin — by his not having his dad’s necklace, Kevin ran back to the doctor he stole the prescription pad sheet from and therefore didn’t fill it. Even dead, Jack is still saving/helping Kevin.

When Kevin went to Randall finally to ask for help, Randall then, before Kevin can ask, spills the beans that Kate lost her baby (predicted by me as soon as the baby news was announced).

Poor Kevin — sometimes, people think the ones who have it all together (or did) don’t need help sometimes, but they do. If you’re relying on someone, take a minute to check in to make sure THEY are OK.

We’ll see what happens next week with Kate, and if Kevin asks for help, even though he seems to have been pushed to the back burner, again, unwittingly, by his family.

That being said, I’m not a fan of the whole addiction storyline. But like father, like son — I guess it had to be if they were going to explore this aspect of him, and of him and Jack.

2.75 stars out of 4 for a episode focusing solely on Kevin. What will Kate’s episode earn next week?

What say you?

Tune in here after the next episode for another This Is Us: Review for You. Read all of my reviews for this season here.

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I'm a writer who loves daisies, laughing, and smiling (hence the site name).

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