Okay, well, here we go!… Here are the bunch of cards I designed based on last week’s Halloween-themed episode entitled ‘The 20’s’ and you guys: it was the best episode of the season so far. Hands down, so good. That true-to-form season 1 magic is officially back in our lives – the magic that is made on screen when the writing is at that high level, and the acting out of the writing is spot on, and the stories we are so familiar with are taken a little further into new territory we’ve yet to explore with the characters, and the cherry on top of this magic is the sound track. Goodness gracious! The muuuuusic in this series is so. dang. powerful. I legit can’t get enough.
This week I created three pages of printables.
You can download them with the following links:
I knew a printable was going to come out of the exchange between Randall and Garutta at the hardware store. I thought this scene was so interesting because when you think about it – Randall has no male in his life that he can turn to and discuss his fears with. He hasn’t met William at this point, Jack has long since passed, we can assume Beth’s father has also passed, based on season 1 and how Randall is at his job we can assume he doesn’t have his own version of Miguel there – a best guy friend at work, and Kevin is not a father and is not really the type to open up.
Meeting this man in the hardware store – who happens to have 5 kids of his own – is the first man Randall entrusts to fill this void, even if only for a few minutes. I don’t even think Randall would have opened up under normal circumstances, but the desperation of the ‘baby coming tomorrow’ is what compelled him to. UGH! Soooooo interesting! SUCH. GOOD. WRITING.! …and what Garutta replies with ends up being exactly what Randall needed to hear, and because I identify with Randall’s need for structure and predictability, some of what I needed to hear too. The idea that babies tell us who we are will resonate with me for the rest of my life. Those words are a part of me now.
P.S. – “Eastern wisdom? …Yeah, East Trenton” made me literally L.O. friggin’ L. …and Randall ending up naming Tess after the Tessana ceiling fan Garutta recommended?! Yeeeesssss. Yes yes yes. I do not roll my eyes at these sort of things. I couldn’t even if I wanted to. They’re too busy releasing the floodgates.
P.P.S. – Here is an article about how this scene shows how ‘This Is Us’ is taking action for more inclusive storytelling by weaving characters from underrepresented communities into the writing. Cheers, NBC! More please.
Okay, and don’t…just don’t get me started (I can obviously rev up my own self) on that last flash back & forward scene of Rebecca’s monologue to newborn baby Tess. It has catapulted up there as one of my most favorite ‘This Is Us’ moments, and solidified Rebecca as my favorite character. Of course I love them all so much, and identify with parts of each of them, and gimme Jack all day, but I identify with Rebecca the most…and her struggle here with this burst of new love & adventure but also not wanting to letting go of her old love, almost. How she is so happy in this moment but also heart-breakingly sad, knowing Jack was there at the beginning a long time ago and therefore, in a way, present even now, even in his physical absence. I’m tearing up even typing about it.
This article talks about this scene and the writer agrees that Rebecca is the real star of this episode “who has long been one of This Is Us’ most fascinating and underrated characters. It would’ve been easy to make the story of Randall becoming a father an examination of the Jack/Randall relationship, but [it was a great] choice to frame it largely as a Rebecca story instead.” The writer of that article also commends Mandy Moore, and rightly so, saying: “I don’t think Mandy Moore gets nearly enough praise for her work on this series, especially considering she has the added challenge of appearing in more timelines than anyone else on the show. Is her old age makeup perfect? Perhaps not. But she’s excellent at altering her physicality, demeanor, and voice to embody Rebecca in all sorts of different eras of her life…and Moore knocks it out of the park in a beautiful final sequence that juxtaposes Rebecca’s first conversation with newborn Tess with her first conversation with newborn Randall.” // I couldn’t agree more! Bravo, Mandy. I’m rooting for an Emmy nom for sure!
So yeah, this scene, Rebecca’s words, Mandy’s performance, and that song! // OH MY, that song! (!!!) It almost acts as Jack’s response to all that she says in that moment, his part to his wife in the wake of their first grandchild’s arrival. It’s supposed to have been this moment they are celebrating together, but with him gone, the event acts as his silent way of letting her know it’s okay with this new season of life to move ahead, to have a new beginning for herself – even in love, to “turn your orbit around” as the songs says, full circle it seems – back around to…to…wait for it…MIGUEL!!! …via that Facebook message, final piano chord, end scene, roll credits. OMFG. Brilliant.
The article sums up this end scene reveal as such: “Rebecca didn’t fall into Miguel’s arms immediately after Jack’s death, as many have assumed. Instead she spent years living on her own until she reconnected with him via Facebook in 2008. It’s a fascinating wrinkle that recontextualizes the Rebecca/Miguel dynamic. Her relationship with Jack is one that started with the vibrancy and passion of two 20-somethings (maybe it’s the Sonny & Cher costumes, but Mandy Moore and Milo Ventimiglia have truly insane levels of chemistry in this episode). Her relationship with Miguel, however, is one that started from the quieter, more mature place of two 50-somethings. Because whether you’re 10, 28, 36, or 57, it’s never too late for a new beginning.”
Above is how the documenting of this magical episode materialized in my album – as a full spread of pages 1 and 2 of this week’s printables. I made a third printable page with four quote cards from smaller, yet still poignant, moments of the episode that I wanted to remember, and I just put them two and two, back to back, in a trimmed down pocket page. // This episode was something else, and I did my best to do it printable paper justice. Haa haa! However, I’m just one woman!
You guys, rest assured that aside from sharing my printables, I do realize I get all ‘TV critic’ on you every week with these posts, but it’s a good release on the art I’m consuming. I’m a child of the 80s, and I’ve always had ‘my shows’ and right now this one is it: my current obsession, but something tells me I’m not alone…
I imagine these posts as a weekly ‘book club’ meeting of sorts, and every Tuesday I come to this space to discuss my take on the last ‘chapter’. 😉 Anytime you wanna input your perspective, I’d love to hear it. For real, though. // Thanks for ‘attending’ and allowing me to share. Happy watching tonight! xoxo!
See all my This Is US Printables HERE.