This Is Us fans know that Milo Ventimiglia’s character, Jack Pearson, suffered an early death sometime in the late 1990s. Now, they’ll get all of the answers about Jack’s death in Season 2, as well as a lot more questions.
The mystery of what happened to Jack has been haunting This Is Us fans since the second episode of Season 1, when they first found out that the character’s wife, Rebecca (Mandy Moore), was married to his best friend, Miguel (Jon Huertas) in the show’s present day scenes. A few episodes later, Jack’s daughter Kate (Chrissy Metz) introduced her new boyfriend, Toby (Chris Sullivan) to her father’s urn. Ever since that gut punch, This Is Us fans have been searching for clues as to how Jack Pearson died, even if they don’t really want to know.
In an interview with TV Guide, This Is Us executive producer Ken Olin revealed that Jack’s death would be a big story for Season 2, but it won’t be the only story.
“[Jack’s death] is going to be very moving and very powerful, but it’s not going to define the experience of that character,” Olin told TV Guide. “The more that you go into [the Pearsons’] lives and answer certain questions, there are other questions that are raised.”
Olin revealed that while fans know the ultimate outcome for Jack, they will want to know what events led up to his premature demise.
While some This Is Us fans think they will see less of Ventimiglia’s Jack this season due to the character’s death, show creator Dan Fogelman told Us Weekly nothing could be further from the truth as the character’s backstory is heavily addressed.
“A lot of Jack stuff is coming,” Fogelman told Us. “I keep saying, towards the end of the first episode, there’s a big piece of the puzzle that gets put out there. And in the course of the second season, I think all the questions that everybody’s asking right now are going to be answered.”
Fogelman has revealed that Jack’s death is a divider for the before and after in the Pearson family dynamic. Early photos of the This Is Us Season 2 premiere show Rebecca and her teen kids (played by Logan Shroyer, Hannah Zeile, and Niles Fitch) at a movie theater with Jack noticeably absent. It’s unclear if the movie outing takes place before or after Jack’s death, but Fogelman says the second season of This Is Us will dig deeper into Jack’s absence from the family when his kids are teenagers.
“I always talk about Jack’s death as this hinge upon which the family swings, and there’s a kind of before that and the after [of] that,” Fogelman told Variety. “And that’s very much what this season is about. It’s about that hinge, and that’s what we’re watching. There’s a lot of healing to be done.”
The second season premiere of This Is Us, titled “A Father’s Advice,” airs Tuesday, September 26 at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.
[Featured Image by Ron Batzdorff/NBC)