When This Is Us returns to NBC later this fall, viewers will have the chance to catch up on Kate and Toby’s wedded bliss. Or not. Based on the finale flash forward, Katoby’s honeymoon phase could be short-lived. At the end of “The Wedding” episode, a flash forward to the future showed a depressed Toby (Chris Sullivan) laying in bed, with Kate by his side saying, “I just spoke to the doctor, he wants you to come in tomorrow about adjusting your meds.”
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, This Is Us star Chrissy Metz is dropped a clue about what may have triggered her TV husband’s setback.
“Having a baby is something that is life-changing, and two people just want to hope that they can have a baby. Whose fault is that? Maybe there’s something going on physically with Toby too? Who knows? Those things might not have been talked about or addressed because we keep our secrets and we’re ashamed of them.”
During the second season of This Is Us, Kate Pearson (Metz) suffered a miscarriage and Toby stood by her as her support system during her loss, and also as she continued to grapple with two decades worth of guilt over her father’s death. Indeed, Toby was Kate’s rock, so it was jarring to see him as a shell of his former self in the flash forward scene. But Metz pointed out that in real life relationships, the tables often turn for couples.
“It’s important to note that in relationships, there’s always somebody that might be a little stronger at one time, and then that dynamic switches,” Chrissy told EW, “He’s helped Kate get through so much of her stuff that she’s really ready to show up for him, and while it might be difficult, it’s going to be necessary because they’re going to contend with some hardships. Yet again.”
While some This Is Us fans may fear for Katoby’s marriage, Metz said she thinks things are still “good” for the couple on that end, but “it doesn’t mean there aren’t challenges and they don’t need each other to help each other out.”
Chrissy Metz’s comments about Toby’s depression and the state of the Katoby marriage echo those of This Is Us executive producer Elizabeth Berger. Berger recently told EW that Toby’s history with clinical depression has been a running theme on the show.
“Depression is something that Toby struggled with before, and it’s something that he’s gotten a hold of,” the This Is Us producer said. “And especially when there are stressful situations going on, things can sort of come to a head. And Kate and Toby will be thrust into some stressful situations as we move forward, and that will definitely have an impact on Toby’s state of mind.”
Berger also teased that the miscarriage served as a trigger for Toby’s setback.
“Obviously with the miscarriage, it was steps backward for Toby and Kate in terms of expanding their family, and I think that the desire to expand their family isn’t going to go away,” the This Is Us EP said. “So that, along with other stresses that come with the first year of marriage will definitely be at play as we move forward.”
Because Toby usually comes off as jovial, This Is Us viewers were surprised to find that he has a history of depression. Toby first alluded to his dark side when he told Kate that he fell into a deep depression after his first wife, Josie, left him. Toby even confessed that he contemplated suicide after the end of his first marriage. Now, something is triggering Toby’s depression once again, and it could have something to do with his desire to have a family. Chrissy Metz recently told TV Insider, “Kate and Toby are looking forward to trying to have a family together and it might not be in the most conventional way.”
That statement practically screams “fertility issues,” especially when Chrissy Metz adds, “I’m really looking forward to that because… every time you think [the writers] are taking you one way, I’m always thrown for a loop. So it’s definitely going to be unconventional in the approach but also really figuring out what Toby’s depression is all about.”
This Is Us returns for Season 3 this fall on NBC.