Since very early on in This Is Us, fans knew to expect the death of Jack Pearson, one of the strongest men in pop culture televisi0n and the kind of everyday hero you hope to come across in your own life. He’s not a man without faults, he’s a man who embraces them and moves forward and tries again, no matter how many times it’s hard to keep going.
So, knowing that his death was imminent has been hard on fans, who have spent some of the series looking for hints and clues and trying to fit pieces together. However, if you spend all of your time doing that, you miss out on every good part of the series, all the substance that makes This Is Us the show that unites fans across the world. So that death, it’s been bubbling under the surface but we have to say personally, we’ve done a good job at taking in everything else.
Until now. On last week’s episode, we were given the set up for the next episode, the one that brings Jack’s death. Now that it’s here, we aren’t ready.
While Milo himself, and other cast members as well, have promised that Jack isn’t leaving the series, it’s hard to imagine that in every episode from here on out, we’ll feel that weight. He spoke on this in a recent interview with EW.
‘It’s very respectful as well as kind because I don’t want to sit there and deflect too much, because I’m sure at some point someone’s going to say something that’s going to ring true, and then my talent as an actor is really going to come to the forefront. It’s the hardest position to be in, because I want people to know, but I also want them to wait for it.’
Ventimiglia doesn’t just mean waiting patiently, he means taking in every moment until Jack’s death and accepting all the moments that we’ll still get with his character. While it’s important to accept and experience his death, it’s going to be an event you won’t soon forget.
‘It’s just an absolute soul-crushing event. Once you figure out the moment where it’s going to happen, you may get some hope — and then it’s all going to go away. I think the best thing I can say — or the worst thing I can say — is: It’s going to be f—ing painful.’
He went on to ask how you celebrate a man’s death, especially a man like Jack? Not that a celebration is what fans have been anticipating upon finding out what happens, but it’s a slippery slope. There’s a point of an over-obsession with one event that can totally block out everything about his incredible story.
‘How do you applaud a man’s death, especially a good man? People should just understand that it’s coming and wait and process it when it does. Not everybody has the luxury to know that death is coming — but we all know that Jack’s death is coming.’
While we won’t know what happens until after the Superbowl, which is all too fitting, we have seen the setting for what takes Jack. It’s just as heartwrenching as we imagined. In the same breath, it’s heroic, as we saw him trying desperately to save his family. He’s been a husband, father, and man in the most important ways and that’s the lasting legacy he’ll leave behind.
This Is Us returns with that fateful episode on Superbowl Sunday.
‘…but I knew him’