By: Chaviva Freedman | Features  | 

This Is Us: The Show That Transcends All Generations

It’s a cultural phenomenon. We’ve all heard the constant discussion about boxes of tissues. Crock pots are being thrown out the window. Celebrities tweet about it on a weekly basis. You can’t go anywhere without hearing some woman say that all she wants to do is marry Jack Pearson. This Is Us is the television show that brings up real issues while still being relatable to all generations and demographics.

Created by famed producer and screenwriter Dan Fogelman (most known for writing the script for the movies Crazy, Stupid, Love and the Disney phenomenon Tangled), the premise of the show is quite simple: it depicts of the lives of the Pearson family. The show jumps between the 1980s and 1990s with parents Jack (played by Gilmore Girls alum Milo Ventimiglia) and Rebecca (Mandy Moore, best known for her role in A Walk to Remember) and the present with the “Big Three” kids Randall (Emmy-Award and Golden Globe winner Sterling K. Brown), Kate (Chrissy Metz) and Kevin (Justin Hartley). With Chris Sullivan and Susan Kelechi Watson rounding out the adult cast, the show has been able to touch people’s hearts in a way that we haven’t seen on television in a long time.

Since This Is Us premiered on NBC in September 2016, the show has been able to appeal to all audiences. The show has done so well that not only has it been able to maintain the prime time Tuesday 9PM slot, but it was renewed for seasons two and three before season one had even finished. The show has become so popular with audiences that it received the coveted slot right after the 2018 Super Bowl, the biggest night on television this year. One can find teenagers and young adults sitting around in a cafeteria discussing the show one day, and then find his/her parents recapping the same episode with their friends the next. All the generations have been able to relate to the show in some shape or form. Whether it’s how much they want to marry Jack Pearson (let’s face it - Milo Ventimiglia is an extremely good-looking man, which never hurts the eyes) or one of the characters does something to make the audience viewer cry, there is an inherent charm about this show that everyone seems to love about it.

This Is Us has a unique way of dealing with family issues that we don’t normally see on television. The show handles death of a parent, foster care, adoption, drug/alcohol addiction, and racism with such care that the audience feels like they are becoming a part of the Pearson family as well. All the actors (specifically Ventimiglia and Brown) are able to take these very sensitive subjects and bring them to life in a way that brings the audience to tears each week. The words might be in the script, but they bring the words to life.

One thing to look out for when taking the time to watch the television show is the character development. Through the intricate writing from the team of show writers, the characters’ lives go through twists and turns that affect them as the show goes on. There is an underlying current of pain that all the characters go through, even if it’s not explicitly expressed in each episode. There is one life-altering event that the show consistently touches on (even having two episodes dedicated to it) and the writers take great care in showing how this event affects each character in a different manner, especially from the Big Three.

At the end of the day, the moral of the story is simple: no matter what happens in your life, you’ll always have your family to support you and have your back. Take the time out of your busy schedule to watch this show - you will not regret it. And who knows? Maybe you’ll have a good cry and discover why the world has fallen in love with This Is Us.

This Is Us is finished for Season 2. You can catch up on the show on your devices or the NBC mobile app.