While there was no enormous twist at the center of Tuesday night’s “This Is Us” episode, there was quite a bit of poignancy within the title “Kyle.” After all, this was originally Randall’s name, and Rebecca ended up changing this over. This was tied in part to a series of discussions that she had with the boy’s biological father William, who actually wanted to be much more in his life than he ever knew.
Is he going to find out about that soon? If you are looking for a source of great drama moving forward, this could be it. Based on what executive producer Dan Fogelman said to Entertainment Weekly, there will be much more of this story to come in terms of Rebecca’s secret and why she kept it:
“That’s maybe our biggest story pulling us through our first season — at least the first half of our first season. It’s exactly that: Randall has a false narrative of his existence. For a kid like Randall, it’s a huge formative part of his existence. In the fourth episode you see that. You see little Randall marking little slashes in a notebook, and what he reveals as a grown man is that as a little boy he was growing up in a very white neighborhood, and whenever he saw a black person he marked it down, and wondered if that could be his father. So he has this false narrative that’s defined him. And in later episodes, actually at eight years old, he starts questioning, as one would, and it causes Rebecca to go further than we’ve seen her in the third episode and track down — years later — and find William in much different shape, which scares her even more.. It’s very complicated, and when the truth comes out to Randall, it’s going to be a big part of our first season of the show.”
Ultimately, this is a show about motivations and reasons, and while Rebecca may have felt that her actions were justified at the time, this certainly does not mean he will feel the same way. Through flashbacks in episode 4 (see the preview here), we specifically know that Randall being a black child in a white family will be a topic of discussion among some other characters.
Given that we are only given a small fraction of this story right now, and we are moving through time to better suit that narrative, we have to believe some further information is coming. (Photo: NBC.)