‘This Is Us’: Toby Twist Will Be Resolved In ‘First Five Minutes’ Of Episode 11, Plus Did Mandy Moore Just Give Us A Peek At Jack And Rebecca’s Wedding?
This Is Us fans have been counting down the minutes until the show resumes after that gut-wrenching mid-season finale last month. The NBC drama returns Jan. 10 after a five-week hiatus with a new episode titled, “The Right Thing To Do,” and viewers won’t have to wait long to find out the fate of Toby (Chris Sullivan), who collapsed on top of a coffee table at the end of the cliffhanger Christmas episode.
“We’re not going to drag out Toby’s fate,” This Is Us creator Dan Fogelman told Entertainment Weekly.
“You find out if he made it in the first five minutes of the episode.”
While the This is Us creator doesn’t elaborate on the results of Toby’s medical emergency, actor Chris Sullivan has already teased that fans should “Pray for Toby” after his apparent heart attack.
“Any actor becomes concerned when the writing staff starts having them collapse over coffee tables, but I have faith in our creative team that they will tell the best version of the story that there is to tell,” Sullivan told EW.
Of course, on This Is Us a character can be dead and still be part of the show, so perhaps viewers shouldn’t read too much into the fact that Chris Sullivan is still shooting This Is Us episodes. A quick look at the actor’s IMDB page reveals that he appears as Toby in the next four episodes: “The Right Thing To Do,” ‘The Big Day,” “Three Sentences,” and “A Handful of Moments.”
This Is Us cast members have been careful about leaking any spoilers. In an interview with Us Weekly, This Is Us star Chrissy Metz, who plays Toby’s girlfriend, Kate Pearson, on the series, said she was extremely emotional during the table reads for the fall finale and she hinted that Toby may not be okay.
“Nobody wants him to be dead! Especially Kate. So we’re praying for Toby, that’s for sure,” Metz told Us.
“She’s not ready to handle that. I think she’s going to pray, pray, pray…You’re going to see the family come together and really have some sympathy for Kate…Life is uncertain and you never know, and sometimes it’s a really amazing thing and sometimes it’s not what you hope for.”
Metz added that she loves working with Sullivan and she doesn’t want their screen time together to come to an end.
“Chris Sullivan is one of the most special human beings and working with him is like heaven, it’s so awesome,” the This Is Us star said.
“I don’t want it to be the end of us working together.”
But in an interview with Deadline, Dan Fogelman reminded viewers that the This Is Us writers are not afraid to make big moves.
“Hopefully by now we’ve shown that we’re not scared to make a big choice,” Fogelman teased.
“That said: the show has an optimistic underbelly. So I guess you could say there’s an argument that could be made both for Toby ‘making it’ and ‘not making it.'”
As for other upcoming storylines, the showrunner teased that the cast will visit “quite a few more time periods in the rest of the season” and that Jack Pearson’s (Milo Ventimiglia) facial hair (or lack thereof) will help viewers track the timeframe in each episode.
“We go back to their pre-Big Three period — actually, we start early in the pregnancy before they even knew they were having triplets,” Fogelman told EW.
Fans may even get to see Jack and Rebecca Pearson’s wedding. This Is Us star Mandy Moore recently shared an Instagram snap from her hairstylist’s chair on the This Is Us set, teasing that she was getting ready to shoot Episode 15 of the series. In the snap, the actress is wearing a white macramé outfit and a wreath of flowers in her hair, which definitely looks like something Rebecca would wear for a 1970s-style wedding.
Indeed, with eight new episodes left to go, This is Us fans are ready to see a wedding—just not a funeral.
This Is Us returns Tuesday, Jan. 10 at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.
Take a look at the video below to see a promo for the second half of the This Is Us season.
[Featured Image by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for The Critics’ Choice Award]