Is “This is Us” just another sitcom with hundreds of one liners, or is it a soap opera too dramatic to deal with? This is the show that is enlightening the stigmas of American culture without being cheap or provocative. The recent problem in American T.V. is the void of reality. From sci-fi to crime dramas and even our reality t.v. genre, American television is the farthest thing from our real life. To deal with our first world problems, NBC has created “This Is Us,” which debuted last September (2016). If you think Netflix originals are a little farfetched, then you may find “This Is Us” to be a relatable ‘can’t get enough’ drama.
The first season walks you through four family members sharing the same birthday who seem to have nothing else in common. Several episodes have flashback scenes of the young married couple Jack (Milo Ventimiglio from HEROES) & Rebecca (singer/actress Mandy Moore) as they nervously expect triplets.
Fast-forward to the present, we see three adults siblings leading different lives with a common upbringing that binds them together. Within the differences of the characters, the audience is sure to relate to their various struggles. Each character has different views, lifestyles, and woes, so it may resonate with you.
The first season touches on many topics such as lost loved ones, sexuality, absent fathers, race, obesity and drug abuse. The director of the show colors characters in a particularly intimate way, so you don’t just see a brother, a rich man, a mother, but rather, people as individuals who all have their own lives to live. That is what “This Is Us” really is about.
The disclaimer for this show is that it does evoke emotion. Some people have found its sentiment to be overpowering, like eating too many of grandma’s “ooie gooie” cookies. From scene to scene, it is one emotional tension after another. Real life can be hard enough and I don’t need to watch a show to know that. However, an emotional depiction of reality may be, for some, a refreshing change of pace.
Even with my emotionally-challenged condition, I have found that it tickles the heartstrings with varying degrees of emotion. The plus side of watching a show that is emotionally potent is the potential it has to bring genuine laughter from deep down, which I haven’t had in awhile.
If this show might be something you can learn to love, binge watch season one, because season two comes back on Tuesday, February 7, NBC, in a dorm lobby near you!
Jacob Ponder, Guest Writer