For the last two years, there’s been a Parenthood size hole in my heart where the Bravermans used to be. Truth be told, I had given up hope that I would ever be able to love a show the same way again.
But that was all before I met The Big Three (and I’ve been crying every Tuesday night since).
This is Us jumps back and forth from past to present day, following the journey of Rebecca (Mandy Moore) and Jack’s (Milo Ventimiglia) three children (also known as The Big Three), who were born on the same day as Jack’s 36th birthday. The story is presented at different times throughout their lives, but consistently comes back to the present, when all three children have just turned 36. It’s a tale of family connections, tragedies, and triumphs, and easily one of the most heartwarming stories to ever grace the small screen.
If you have yet to jump on the bandwagon, allow me to tell you why you need to ASAP:
1. You’ll either totally relate to the sibling relationships or live vicariously through them.
Whether you have two siblings or none, the journey of navigating life with those closest to you is nothing short of a rollercoaster. Some days you find each other insufferable, and some grudges are held longer than we’d like, but at the end of the day, you share the one thing that bonds us all more than anything else: our past.
2. Jack and Rebecca will make you believe in love again.
When Rebecca is at the end of her pregnancy with triplets, she becomes me when I’m hungry: vicious. And you know who still goes out of his way to be husband of the year? Jack. The strength of their marriage is one we can all aspire to, all without the writers making it too perfect (as in, you can totally relate to the characters). Rebecca and Jack deal with some of life’s most difficult trials: loss, financial stress, and the growing pains of expanding a family, all while keeping close the most important thing: each other. (Fine, we also appreciate that Jack happens to be a really ripped and good looking dad.)
3. The writers don’t gloss over the hard stuff.
Whether it’s racially integrated families, addiction, or obesity, it’s refreshing to see that the writers aren’t afraid to touch on the real issues. They portray an honest depiction of a diverse family navigating past and present problems. The fact that a top show on television is shining a light on these otherwise underrepresented subjects is reason enough to tune in and support.
4. It gives you something to root for.
The characters are flawed, and not just in a cute and quirky sitcom way. While they make mistakes and have considerate setbacks, you can’t help but root for them, because while they’re not perfect, they are human. Don’t be surprised to find yourself wrapped up in their misunderstandings and wanting to mediate their issues while standing on top of your bed yelling at Randall that “SHE WAS TRYING TO PROTECT YOU!” Which brings me to my next point…
5. It might make you forget this isn’t actually your life.
Once in a blue moon you come across a show that makes you so invested in the characters that you start to miss them while they’re away (you know, when they’re not on television). You think about their problems even when the show isn’t on, and you’re affected by the outcome of their fallouts and celebrations as if they are you’re own. That’s the power of good characters and storytelling, and This Is Us has it in spades.