Once the mystery of how Jack died was resolved during season 2 of This Is Us, the show found the perfect way to introduce another mystery that would have fans guessing. In the season 2 finale, we flashed-forward to an Old Randall and Tess talking about going to visit a mysterious “her” who Tess says she’s not ready to see and Randall responds with “I’m not either.” Now, we’re all left wondering who is “her”?
Their scene was also mixed into some other Big Three flash-forwards including an extremely depressed Toby and Kevin traveling to Vietnam. While we thought they were all hints as to what to expect next season, it looks like the Randall and Tess storyline won’t be getting a definitive answer until This Is Us actually ends, meaning that Old Randall is as far as the This Is Us timeline will go.
“I don’t imagine us going past this time period in the future so, in terms of a timeline, this is our ending timeline, but we may have other past timelines we’re going to introduce in the course of the series, and also other future storylines that we might introduce as well,” Creator Dan Fogelman shared with EW.
Fogelman has a clear vision as to where the series is heading and where it will be ending. He even teased earlier this year that they cast had already filmed some of their scenes for the series finale. The mystery surrounding Jack’s death nearly consumed audiences, often taking them away from the viewing experience with them just wanting to know when and how he died. It looks like Fogelman is taking a different approach when it comes to “Her” saying that yes, they’ll be playing with time, but we’ve still got a long way to go before we really get into the meat of that story.
[row]“It’s a mystery that won’t play out over seasons. There will be answers given in the course of the season. Part of the fun of any family is looking at somebody in a certain time frame or a family in a present-day time frame and hypothetically jumping forward 15 years and [seeing] who’s still in the picture, who’s not in the picture anymore, who has become ill or other. We’ll be slowly getting pieces by process of elimination or more questions…until we get to the answer — and not string it out too long.”[/row]
While theories were quick to assume that going to “see her” meant that something had happened to Beth or Deja, Fogelman wants fans the focus to be on how all of the present days Pearson’s are informing these future time jumps.
“The mystery is actually informing a lot of stuff that is happening in the present day as well. The interesting part is in the course of the season as we mention this mystery, we’re going to be putting a lot of those things in the stories that it’s not. So it’s not just one — estrangement, death, love, marriage — all those things are part of jumping a family [deep] into the future. The question isn’t just who’s estranged, or who’s in prison, or any of the other theories that I’ve heard from people, it’s about where are all the other characters at that point in their lives. And that’s going to be also spoken to by what their stories are in the present day. So that’s really exciting for us as well.”
Of course, despite all of that hoopla surrounding who “her” is, Fogelman has promised to dive into some stories of the past that fans have been wanting to see such as Jack’s days in Vietnam, Miguel’s backstory, and the early days of Jack and Rebecca. We should all still expect to cry though.
[row]“There’s humor and love and levity after a very heavy season which I always like when we do, and then… some wallops. It’s our most ambitious season. It’s going to pack a great deal of emotion, and the storylines are going to surprise people.”[/row]
What are your theories on the “her” story? Let us know!
This Is Us returns for season 3 on NBC Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 9/8c!
Having studied Media & Writing at James Madison University, I always knew that I wanted to do some type of creative writing, but being able to write about zombies, Starks, and superheroes on a daily basis for Fan Fest is my actual dream. While I probably shouldn’t be as proud as I am to be so similar to Nick Miller, I do hope to one day write my own “Pepperwood Chronicles’.