Next Week's 'This Is Us' Episode Will Be Deja-Focused, So Get Ready

by Ani Bundel

Praise the lord and pass the shots, This Is Us has returned from hiatus after two weeks of figure skating and curling. This week saw the family head to Vegas for Toby and Kate's respective bachelor/bachelorette parties; but not everything that happened tonight will stay in Vegas, as we speed forward to the wedding at the end of the season. But before we get there, we've got the penultimate episode to get through, and the This Is Us Season 2 episode 17 promo promises it will be worth it.

While our run-up to the hiatus saw NBC keeping titles and synopsis under wraps, lest the show give anything away about the highly anticipated episodes around Jack's passing, now, post-Olympics, the details are back. This coming week's episode will be entitled "This Big, Amazing, Beautiful Life." Though the trailer tells us a bit about what we'll be seeing in the penultimate episode, the synopsis plays it pretty close to the chest. Kevin and Kate are not mentioned at all. The flashbacks are also left out (as are the flash-forwards, for that matter).

Check out what the press release gave us:

Randall and Beth welcome visitors to their home.

Helpful! Now let's watch the trailer.

As we saw at the very end of the episode, Deja and Shauna are now homeless, and Beth and Randall have a decision to make. The synopsis might be trying to be cutesy about it, but the truth is, they're bring Deja back into their home... and mom is coming with.

It's rare that the trailer and the synopsis be so tightly focused on one member of the family. The last time we saw that, it was the "Numbers" episodes last November, where we had three episodes in a row over the same time period from three different perspectives. There are a couple of flashback glimpses at the top of the trailer, but the rest of it is all Randall and Beth Pearson bringing Deja back into their family, all the time. Could we be seeing another solo outing for them?

We will at least have another "same time period, different perspective" period in the episode as we see how they found themselves asleep in the front seat of a car when Beth and Randall found them. We'll get to see how Deja handles her mother's "getting it all figured out" when we're sure whatever the idea is, it's a bad one. (And we already know it falls through.)

Also, I'm curious to see if we find out about the $90 that Deja got cash from Randall and if that really went to the heating bill, or if Shauna spent it on something else instead. Any way you slice it, this is going to be a tough episode to get through.


Ever since the reveal of the flash-forwards and that Tess grows up to be a social worker in the foster care system, I've been waiting for something like this to happen. Not that Shauna would wind back up in jail (though that's still a possibility down the line), but Randall and Beth coming around to the idea that there's not just one person in Deja's family who desperately needs taking care of. There's two. It's not unlike Kevin and Randall having to accept Toby as part of the family because Kate loves him, and he loves her, as we saw tonight in this episode.

They love Deja and they want to take care of her, but like anyone over the age of 10, she comes with baggage. Her baggage just happens to come in the shape of her mother, and her mother's host of continual bad life choices. Accepting Deja back into their lives means accepting Shauna in too, at least for now. We'll have to see how it goes next week.