Another This Is Us episode, another glimpse into the potentially bleak future for the Pearsons. The Season 2 finale of everyone's favorite tear-inducing drama introduced a new mystery for fans to analyze until their brains turn to mush, and now that there are further developments courtesy of Season 3's dramatic premiere, fans are wondering: Is Kate "her" on This Is Us? Another flash-forward opened up the burning question flood gates (it's amazing how many theories a half minute scene can generate with this show) when Kate was cryptically absent from Toby's side in a scene.
Season 2's conclusion caused This Is Us audiences to go into an analytical frenzy when adult Tess and older Randall commiserated about not being ready to see an unknown "her." That situation earned another puzzle piece sooner than viewers thought on Sept. 25's Season 3 premiere, "Nine Bucks." The last moments of the hour (why do they always do that to us?) showed Tess and Randall continuing their "visit" as Randall called a grey-bearded Toby to see if he "was coming down."
"I don't know if I should," Toby lamented.
"She wants you to be there, Toby," Randall told him. But it wasn't just their words that offered uncharted plotline territory to ponder. It was the state of Toby's 10-years-down-the-line life. He's in a stark room with minimalist decoration sitting up in a bed that's barely unmade. The most puzzling reality: Kate isn't next to him, and it doesn't look she's been around for a while.
This frame sets a number of possiblities into motion when it comes to "her," as well as Kate and Toby's destiny. Toby does not seem to be wearing a wedding ring, which means the couple could be headed for divorce. The austere looking room he's in also doesn't necessarily resemble a warm home — could he be in some sort of institution or facility?
The main suspects for "her" at this stage are anyone's guess — Beth, Rebecca, and Deja have all been linked to the talked-about pronoun. Toby's somber reaction and her lack of presence builds a strong case that it's Kate who meets some sort of unnerving fate. Season 3 saw KaToby taking the next steps in the baby-making process despite warnings from their reluctant doctor. Toby even secretly tossed his anti-depressants in an effort to give them a better shot at conceiving.
“I think we can guess really. The plan is in the course of the season you will get a lot of answers," This Is Us showrunner Dan Fogelman revealed at a panel discussion, according Deadline.
And lucky for audiences, the whole "her" riddle will be solved without dragging the story out.
"You’re going to get it in little doses and you’re going to get your answers.. We’re not going to string it out over seven seasons. People will get their answer," he added.
Phew. I swear on Oprah — if This Is Us fans have to wait much longer for that reveal I don't think I can take it.
This Is Us airs Tuesdays on NBC.