Goodbye, Jack Pearson
Start writing a post

Goodbye, Jack Pearson

As close as they come

Goodbye, Jack Pearson
Tampa Bay Times

If you are anything like me, Tuesday mornings usually require a trip to CVS to stock up on your tissue supply, because you know that the evening's showing of This is Us means nothing other than a 40-minute sobbing session. And if you are up to date (spoiler alert), then you know that these past Tuesday's episodes have been a special kind of emotionally traumatizing--even for this tearjerker of a show.

Yes, these past Tuesdays our long-awaited questions were answered: we watched Jack Pearson's death play out in all of its mundane glory. And I don't mean mundane in a bad way, but rather as another example of how this show continues to prove that it is not above its audience in any way, shape, or form.

Jack Pearson is undeniably the most adored character on the show - every other character loves him to the point of worship. In fact, Miguel, his longtime friend, summarized it perfectly in a recent episode when he explains that Jack is the best man that any one of his family will ever know.

So as a viewer, one would expect his TV death to come in a dramatic or heroic fashion, as TV death often does - maybe he dies to jump in front of a bullet for his wife or trying to save his children from drowning.

However, This is Us, staying true to form, gives Jack a death as old as time - he dies as a result of a house fire.

Not only is his death simple, but it was preventable. If only he had remembered to get batteries for the fire alarm, or if only he didn't go back into the house, or if only he unplugged that damn slow-cooker, he may have gotten the chance to live to be a grandfather.

But none of those things happened, and he did not get to be a grandfather. His death was gut-wrenching (despite the fact that we have known he was dead since about the second episode of the entire series) and a painful reminder that life is not fair, and the worst things can happen to the best people.

No one is deserving of a fate so cruel, but the saint that is Jack Pearson is just about as far down on that list as one can get. The Pearson family is one that we have invited into our homes weekly. We laugh with them, we get angry with them, and boy do we cry with them. And through it all, one thing is abundantly evident: Jack Pearson was, is, and always will be the entire heart and soul of their family.

In many ways, the fact that the show exists in many separate time periods acts as a metaphor for the fact that even though Jack is dead, he is still such a prevalent force in all their lives. The patriarch has been dead from the moment the show hit the air, yet every Tuesday his love and goodness fill our homes. It is in this way that he, no doubt, lives on in the minds of his family.

The fact that he does not vanish from our screens symbolizes the fact that he does not vanish from their minds.

Those we love who leave us are never truly gone. We remember them in moments, in memories, in heart-wrenching aches when we hear their favorite song, or smell their cologne, or see a picture of them. Before this episode, we knew Jack was dead, but didn't FEEL it. And revealing this piece of the puzzle allows us to identify just a bit more with Pearsons. Now, those flashbacks of Jack will ache, in the same way that they no doubt would for his family, because just as we watched him live, we felt him die.

It allows us to put ourselves more in Rebecca's shoes, in Kate's, Kevin's, Randall's. It allows us to more fully embrace the title of the show: This is US. It's not called, "This is the Pearson's". Jack's death is a shared burden that, as of two weeks ago, both the Pearson's and the viewers share.

Jack Pearson was not perfect. He had issues with alcohol, and was overly-ambitious at times, he could be a pushover with his children. But he embodied what it is to love. He was a gift to his family, and a gift to the viewer's, and his loss is one that we feel profoundly. No, Jack Pearson was not perfect. But, in the words of the love of his life, Rebecca, to their son, Randall "Your father wasn't perfect, but he was pretty damn close. As close as they come."

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

23 Pandemic-Approved Date Ideas That'll Send Sparks Flying From Six Feet Apart

There's a safe way to date right now and yes, it includes masks.


While some people would rather opt out of dating altogether during the pandemic so they don't have to wear a mask on a first date, others are choosing to listen to both guidelines and their heart in order to find love during the time of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Should you be one of the individuals welcoming romance right now, there are pandemic-approved dates you can go on that still adhere to guidelines (and yes, you'll have to wear a mask).

Keep Reading... Show less

I didn't believe the notification when it came through to my phone: Ruth Bader Ginsburg had died from complications due to cancer.

Keep Reading... Show less

In our patriarchal society, men hide from their feelings, but toxic masculinity is literally killing men. They swallow the pain and move on so that they can look, feel, and act "tough."

But, strength is derived from asking for help and voicing your struggle and, trust me, working on your mental health is one hell of a struggle. The real way to "man up" is to acknowledge the downfalls in unjust societal norms. Mental health problems do not mean that a man is weak, they are neurologically-based disorders that require professional treatment.

Keep Reading... Show less

11 Things Your Boyfriend Should Do Before He Drops $499 On A PS5

Let's start with spending less time gaming and more time with you.


Scrolling through Twitter this week had me rolling on the floor laughing as I read some of the hilarious tweets from ladies who, whether in a relationship or not, shared reactions to the news that PlayStation 5 is on its way

As this "buy your boyfriend a PS5" joke takes off across the internet, let's just say, there are a few things your BF should be doing before dropping $499 on the new gaming system — or, if the tweets are real for some, before you buy it for him as a gift.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

Sorry, But 'I Don’t Care About Politics' Is Not A Valid Excuse For NOT Voting

The younger generation of voters is so crucial to the upcoming election because our vote is going to shape the world that we are about to enter as adults.


When I ask my friends if they are voting this term most of them respond with "no" followed by an explanation of "I don't care enough," "It doesn't affect me," or "I don't keep up with politics," etc. I get it, as a college student I know that there are many other things to be concerned about like school, relationships, work, and friends. I also understand that keeping up with politics can seem like trying to keep up with an over-exaggerated reality show that has way too many seasons. Not to mention most news stations and websites are biased so it's hard to decipher if what you hear is true or fake.

However, despite all of this annoyance, as the next generation of Americans, we have to remember that we owe it to ourselves, our families, and to our futures to care.

Keep Reading... Show less
Tasia Sli

Tasia Sli and Anna Yang met in quintessential New York fashion at a chic rooftop event, inquisitive Yale grad Anna gravitating towards model/entrepreneur Tasia.

Keep Reading... Show less
Photo by Anna Hernández-Buces

"Do you have big parties on Cinco de Mayo?"

Keep Reading... Show less

Two of my favorite things in life are reading and books. Obviously, they go hand-in-hand. In my life, I've realized that there is nothing better than learning about the current world or getting fully immersed in another world. Reading can inspire, teach, and entertain you.

For me, the feeling of opening a book and smelling that fresh book smell can't compete with anything else.

Keep Reading... Show less

Expecting mother and wife to singer/songwriter John Legend may have accidentally slipped up and revealed the gender of her and Legend's third baby today on her Instagram story.

Keep Reading... Show less

20 Books About Latin And Hispanic Heritage Absolutely Everyone Should Have On Their Bookshelf

Any ally of the community needs to be reading these incredible reads.


I go through phases when it comes to what I like to read. I am typically reading two books at any given time: one serious nonfiction and one escapist fiction novel to have on hand and open up depending on my mood.

What remains consistent, however, amongst most of my fellow bibliophiles is a desire to try new and different authors and genres. I, as an Indian woman, have been partial to reading books written by fellow Indian and Desi writers since I first got a library card.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Asked 46 Women What They Thought About The Term 'Plus-Size', And Here's What They Had To Say

It's 2020, where change is inevitable and norms are not only questioned, but challenged.


We live in a world where it's become customary to push boundaries, break rules, and question standards upheld by society. Though try as we might, some of these standards are harder to conquer than others — body image is one of the top contenders.

For years, the body positivity movement has pushed for the acceptance of all marginalized body types not represented or celebrated in the media. Recently, we've gotten better at appreciating and accepting all body types, but one thing that's still lingering is the stigma of body image in the fashion industry — more specifically, the term "plus-size."

Keep Reading... Show less

Many popular TV shows are holding off premiers until spring, so most people are relying on their television subscriptions to get them through a socially distant fall semester.

Thankfully, Netflix was busy filming this past year because there is a ton of new original content coming in the near future. From mysteries to romances, here are some of the best new shows you have to check out this year:

Keep Reading... Show less

Taylor Swift Sang 'betty' At The ACMs And It Was The Perfect First Live 'folklore' Performance

I guarantee that Inez is spreading rumors about how fire this performance was.


The Academy of Country Music Awards were last night and the performances were wonderful, but Taylor Swift's live version of "betty" from her newest album "folklore" really took the cake for me.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

9 Reasons I Unfollowed All The Fitness Influencers On My Instagram Feed

I don't need to feel bad about myself because of who I follow on social media.


Throughout quarantine, something that a lot of us picked up on was working out. With all the free time, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to work on that "dream bod" you've been wanting for years, or to just feel good about yourself.

A common way to stay motivated and keep yourself on-task is to follow fitness influencers on various platforms. For some people, yes, this can be a healthy and helpful way to keep your drive. In other cases, however, this can do more harm than good.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments