This week's episode of This Is Us was one long run up to *the* moment that we've all been waiting for, Jack's last day on Earth. It was Jan. 25, 1998, the day of the Super Bowl, but it wasn't a Happy Pearson Super Bowl Sunday. Instead Kevin lashed out because of his failed football career, Kate lashed out because Jack taped her singing, and Randall... well, he didn't get laid, but seriously if you're seeing Titanic for the seventh time, you're probably not watching the movie. Next episode will finally answer how did Jack die in the fire on This Is Us? But before that we have a long week and a half of speculation as we wait for our own "After the Super Bowl is over."
So let us review: Rebecca and Jack fell asleep after having sex and leaving the kitchen a mess. Randall came home from his date of "watching Titanic." (Look, I was 19 in 1997. There's no way you "watched" Titanic the seventh time you went to see it, especially if you were with a really cute guy.) Kate came home from her party, and is in her room with her dog.
And Kevin has just made the mistake he will regret for the rest of his life by assuming there would be a tomorrow to apologize to his dad, and tonight he could go party in the woods with Sophie.
So how is this the end of Jack? Obviously, the house is on fire, and obviously everyone is upstairs while the fire eats their entire lives on the first floor. But here's the thing: Kate, Randall and Rebecca get out from the second floor just fine. How does Jack not make it out with them?
And how is that something that Kate has spent her entire life blaming herself for?
I think fans can guess where this is going: the dog. This week Kate and the dog and her emotional issues were at the forefront, driving fans crazy as Kate once again ran away from happiness, this time delivered in adorable puppy format, because it made her also feel sad. I don't think that's a coincidence.
Our next episode, "Across the Border," is going to feature a whole lot of memories according to that promo. What memories could having that dog bring up that would scar Kate so much, except that when they got outside, the dog wasn't there... and Jack ran back in to find and save him.
The dog made it's way out. Jack didn't.
Let's be real here, that dog is a survivor. It was a lost mutt, who found itself and home and got itself adopted by someone who loved him *so much* she cleaned his pee off his fur. That's a smart mutt right there. That's a mutt who can get his furry little butt out of a house on fire just fine, thank you very much.
If only Jack were that smart? But then again, Jack loves Kate the way Kate loves that dog. He would run right back into a burning building for his little girl, and never thing about the fact that he just signed his own death warrant and scarred her for life while he was at it.
Seriously, dads, don't be a hero. Never run back into a burning building for anything. Live. Think of Kate watching Super Bowl after Super Bowl with a urn, and live.
Of course, it could not be the dog. Maybe Jack ran back in for the camera, or the tape, or something else, something that wasn't even anything for Kate, but she got it twisted in her mind and thought it was.
We'll all find out together, after the Super Bowl is over.