Ever since I have seen this show, I have been a big ball of mush. I am usually not into family dramas. I prefer thrillers or comedies, but I am not very keen on watching a family drama with people trying to handle their baggage. So, starting This Is Us on Amazon Prime was more out of laziness to browse and find a new show after the joy-ride called Young Sheldon, than a recommendation by someone. Also I thought to myself, why does this normal story about four people who share their birthday have an Imdb rating of 8.8? Curiosity and laziness got the better of me and I decided to give one episode the chance to wow me.
And now I realise not having watched “This is us” all this while, was a crime. It is hands down one of the best shows I have seen in a really long time (except The Handmaid’s Tale maybe). What gives this family drama the status that it has achieved? The storyline? The cast/characters? The acting? The writing? The direction? Jack Pearson?
All of it. Really, all of it.
Let me try to break this down for you. The storyline is complex but in very fine ways. A woman coming to terms with her weight issues and finding any possible way to rise above the depression. A black man having lived all his life in a white adopted household, who finally meets his biological father for the first time in 36 years, fighting the dilemma of happiness and anger. A famous actor who has innumerable fans drooling yet his life is a hollow empty meaningless pit. A mother who is beautiful, loving, nurturing and perfect in every which way, but fighting her own demons and past. And my favorite character, Jack Pearson. The man who is almost too good to be true. I am a hundred percent sure that no man can be like him. He is the perfect husband, father, son to his mother, friend, and a stellar human being. There is nothing he does wrong (or maybe something small), he is the pillar of his family, the man who knows just what to say and the warmth that you need on a chilly winter evening. This is the very outer layer of the series. You will unravel so many small details and plots that will leave you shocked at some times and break you down at others.
The cast is extraordinary. I can try and try but not find a flaw in anyone’s responses or dialogue delivery. They do justice to their characters completely and leave no stone unturned in making you love them. And the shifting timeline of the series adds authenticity and complexity to the storyline. The makeup is spot on with both young and old versions looking the part well. The writers make sure they keep you hooked and what you expect never happens.
Honestly, I have given just the tip of the iceberg. I don’t like to spoil plotlines and hence will leave the show with you to unfurl for itself. You will love them all and at times hate them too. Watch This Is Us, because sometimes you need to stop running in this busy life and just think about yourself, your family, and be hopeful.