‘This Is Us’: Three new developments from Season 3, Episode 5


Screenshot from “This Is Us” Season 3, Episode 5. (Hayley Solomon/Amherst Wire)

It’s a new week which means there is a new episode of “This is Us.” What unraveled this week came as a surprise, as it wasn’t expected that Toby’s storyline would unfold as quickly as it has, after being teased at the end of Season 2. We get a glimpse of all the big three storylines and where they may be headed, and we might be getting closer to finding out who the “her” is that was teased at the beginning of the season. Here are three new developments from this week’s episode, so make sure you watch before you read or beware there are major spoilers ahead.

1. Past & Present: Kate is officially pregnant, but Toby’s depression returns.

Four o’clock is the official time Kate and Toby were told they were going to find out if they were pregnant. Everything has lead up to this moment, including their anxiousness that morning over how they were going to get through the eight hours of work to get the call. Toby tells Kate that morning that they will be able to get through the day as Kate was performing for a birthday party and he was going to go to work as well. While Kate went about her day, Toby starts to realize his withdrawal from antidepressant medication is kicking in, as he has been off of it for five weeks.

From the very beginning of the episode, we see how Toby’s depression has grown over the years. His mother suffered from depression as well, and his father left them when they were young, telling Toby as a young kid to get his “sad sack” routine under control. His depression also affected his relationship with ex-wife Josie, as he begged her not to leave him. Soon after, he met Kate and everything changed.

We see signs of Toby’s withdrawal from his antidepressants in the way he is biting his fingernails to the constant twitching and constant mood swings. Toby goes to the local pharmacy, explaining the situation to the pharmacist and asking them to re-prescribe his medication. After telling him no, he calls his therapist and goes to the local arcade aimlessly, missing that 4 p.m. phone call.

Although he misses the call, Kate tells him she is pregnant. They both are extremely happy, but eventually Toby breaks down, hitting rock bottom and admitting to Kate he’s been off his medication for five weeks. Kate tries to calm him down, completely in shock of this, but eager to get Toby back on track.

At the end of Season 2, we saw Kate trying to help Toby get back on his medication. Everything that has happened has led up to this moment, and where they go from here is uncertain.

2. Present: Kevin and Zoe dig into Jack’s past while developing their relationship.

Kevin and Zoe have made their way to Baltimore, where they connect with Mr. Robinson who served in Vietnam with Jack. Robinson tells Kevin about his father’s dark times during Vietnam, including the fact that he was a sergeant. While Kevin is learning this new information, Zoe worries about their relationship, telling Mrs. Robinson that she does not think that she is ready to commit to Kevin because as a white male, he has not had the experiences that she has with racism. She realizes that he may be worth it when he has a silk pillowcase delivered to their hotel room. She had left the pillowcase home, which was a big deal for her because it helps her hair which Kevin did not realize, and it made all the difference.

Later the next day, Robinson delivers letters to Kevin from Jack about his time in the war as well as a photograph of Jack and a Vietnamese woman who is wearing the medallion that Jack had given to Kevin.

3. Present: It will not be easy for Randall and Beth in the coming weeks.

Randall is about to start on the campaign trail for city council, heading to Philadelphia, while Beth goes in for a job interview. Randall’s BBQ luncheon did not go as planned, as he was booed and the people did not care about what he had to say. Randall calls out the people in the restaurant for their loyalty to Councilman Brown while he has done nothing to support them, but the people fire back and say they owe their lives to the councilman.

Randall talks to one of the eatery owners, having a hard time understanding their loyalty. The owner angrily informs Randall that Councilman Brown supported them 15 years ago when their rent skyrocketed and he helped get their monthly rate lowered as well as keep their business alive. For that reason, the owner tells Randall that they don’t owe Brown their loyalty, but they “owe him our lives.”

Meanwhile, Beth goes to her job interview, clearly still shaken up from losing her job, as she gets teary-eyed during the interview and has to leave the room. We see in the preview for next week that Beth is still struggling with losing her job from the business she basically helped build, losing control around her kids.

The questions we have are slowly unfolding week by week, and we’ll just have to wait and see what is thrown at us next.

“This is Us” airs every Tuesday on NBC at 9/8c.

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