This Is Us Season 1 just concluded, and fans of the popular NBC drama are still sorting out their emotions from the satisfying-yet-not-satisfying series finale. And just as a preemptive warning, the remainder of this article will contain huge This Is Us spoilers. So please, if you’re not caught up, this article may not be right for you.
As you know from the very first episode of This Is Us, nothing is ever quite as it seems on the show. Up until the final few scenes of Episode 1, fans had no idea that they were watching two timelines at once: the present-day timeline that shows “triplets” Randall (Sterling K. Brown), Kate (Chrissy Metz), and Kevin (Justin Hartley) living their lives, and a timeline in 1980 that shows the birth and adoption of the three siblings by their parents Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) and Rebecca (Mandy Moore).
— Us Weekly (@usweekly) March 16, 2017
Since that episode, This Is Us has relied on non-linear storytelling, with timelines focusing on the triplets as infants, children, teenagers, adults, or even going back to Jack and Rebecca’s relationship before the triplets were born. In other words, nothing is ever etched in stone on This Is Us, so even if a character “dies” in one of the storylines, he or she will remain on the show for other storylines.
With this in mind, some fans, according to Us Magazine, have come up with a new theory about dad Jack’s role in the show.
As you know, Jack’s character doesn’t exist in the timeline of the triplets as adults. Kate reveals that she keeps his remains in an urn and watches football games with “him.” And when Kate shows up in the present-day timeline, she’s not accompanied by Jack, but rather Miguel, Jack’s friend from work in the earlier timelines.
— lynn standridge (@lynn5432) March 8, 2017
This has led to speculation that Jack dies sometime between the triplets-as-teens timeline and the triplets-as-adults timeline, and fans have been bracing for the inevitable scene depicting Jack’s death. The show even hinted that it was coming, with the March 7 episode showing Jack driving his car with several empty beer cans in the passenger seat, leading fans to suspect that Jack was going to die in a drunk-driving crash.
Producers even hinted at Jack’s death on the show’s Twitter account.
— This Is Us (@NBCThisisUs) March 10, 2017
That death scene never came in Season 1.
Some This Is Us fans are now speculating that Jack isn’t going to die, but rather, he somehow faked his death, for reasons that may be revealed in Season 2. With this fan theory, an aged Jack is still out there somewhere.
“It’s hard to believe Jack would ever voluntarily leave his children behind, but maybe there is more to the story than the show has so far revealed. Many show devotees still have trouble understanding why This Is Us would get rid of him, so fans would presumably rejoice if somehow their favorite TV dad appeared in the present day.”
On Twitter, fans are speculating on just how, exactly, This Is Us will reveal that Jack is alive.
Hot take on #ThisIsUs finale. Jack going to fake his own death. Cold open for S3, Jack on a beach reacting to ‘Trump Elected’ headline
— Juggalo_Scientist (@malformed_babby) March 15, 2017
Or, it could be that the show’s producers have just been stringing the audience along, trying to drag out the drama and give This Is Us fans something to talk about going into Season 2.
[Featured Image by Chad Hurst/Getty Images]