‘This Is Us’ Recap: Season 6, Episode 11 – ‘Saturday in the Park’

The good news: In this week’s This is us, little Jack does not tumble into the burning backyard smoker that I (and maybe you) feared.

The bad news: He do incur an injury that involves a lot of shouting, crying and a trip to the emergency room after stitches. And it’s hard to see how his parents’ marriage is going to turn from the incident and everything that surrounds it.

Read on for the highlights of “Saturday in the Park.”

A TRICKLE WORKS INTO A CREAM | The episode begins with little Jack in bed listening to his parents fight over Kate, who puts her name into the new job at her school. They immediately drop the argument when they realize Jack is awake and they put on cheerful faces as the three of them are on their way to the park. Along the way, Kate sings very useful alternative lyrics to Chicago’s “Saturday in the Park,” which helps Jack navigate their neighborhood. And while he’s on swings, and Kate and Toby push to him and laugh, everything is (temporarily) good with the Damon family. (Side note: Uh, where’s Hailey?)

But happiness is just a patch that we learn as we all watch prepare for Miguel and Rebecca’s 10-year anniversary barbecue at Toby and Kate’s. Things are very tense between Kate and Toby, and everyone knows what’s going on. When Randall and Beth arrive, Kate hugs her brother and starts crying. After she calms down, she asks him to take Kevin – who will soon be moving into his own home, but who drives Toby crazy in the meantime – and get him out of the house for a while so everyone can cool off.

And then the kitchen ceiling, as you will remember, Toby dealt with a while ago, starts leaking again. Miguel goes to shut off the water to the house. Kate and Toby start yelling at each other. And Rebecca, frustrated that no one is letting her do anything important, takes Jack into her bedroom to put on her shoes.

In the boy’s room, Jack says he’s wearing his rain boots in the park on Saturdays. (This will be important information later.) He also says he’s sorry because “mom and dad are very angry.” Sir, this boy is such a good little actor! Meanwhile, Beth Toby brings a coconut drink in the backyard and offers that the long distance was tough for her and Randall as well, but they got through. “I think the difference is that you moved for him, Beth,” Toby says, standing by the smoker. She says she did it for herself, her job … and her marriage, he ends, and she can not deny it.

MADISON GOES ON | Kevin and Randall go to pick up the twins, but because they’re two hours early, Madison is about to take the kids to music class. So the guys keep talking to Elijah. As Kevin goes looking for him in the house, he finds him messing around in Madison’s jewelry box and holding a ring gauge: Yes, he wants free.

The news makes Kevin feel “not good”, so Randall informs him that they’re just going to run around until all ideas of big romantic gestures are gone from his brain.

Eventually, when he finds out that Madison is excited about the prospect of marrying Elijah (she’s pretty sure he’ll ask soon), Kevin finds out that she’s happy with herself. And she assures him that their relationship, as the twins’ parents, is going to exist for a very long time, and she will be there for him as long as he needs her.

this-is-us-recap-season-6-episode-11NO ANNIVERSARY JACK PLANNED | Let’s pause here for a moment and go to flashback, which is to the time when The Big Three was 6 years old. It’s Jack and Rebecca’s anniversary, and they’re going out for a delicious dinner while a babysitter stays with the kids. Rebecca is completely engrossed in the idea of ​​dressing up and enjoying artful cocktails; Jack is more interested in the anniversary sex they want when they get home and the kids sleep.

Alas, Rebecca only drinks three ridiculously named drinks before the babysitter calls the restaurant: When the kids did not like that she called Kate “Chatty Kathy”, they locked the babysitter inside the bathroom. Mom and Dad Pearson rush home; she is drunk and silly, he is not happy with the children’s behavior. But when Kevin and Randall explain that they were just defending Kate, everything is pretty much forgiven.

Later, when Rebecca is sober and the kids are sleeping between her and Jack on their bed, she is satisfied. “This is a crucial moment, Jack,” she whispers, quoting how their children banded together against someone who had hurt one of them. “I could not ask for a better gift.”

this-is-us-recap-season-6-episode-11A VERY CLOSE CALL | OK, back to the Damon home, which is literally falling apart. The leak breaks through the bedroom ceiling and sends everyone rushing in there to minimize the damage. In the chaos, Toby puts Jack in his room, but is not careful to make sure the lock on his door is completely closed – something that Kate had accused him of earlier in the episode. And when the plumber arrives, Kate does not lock the front door behind her, which will also prove to be a big mistake in a moment.

Little Jack pulls on his galoshes, grabs his cane and heads out into the park while all the adults are otherwise busy. He sings “Saturday in the Park” to himself as he walks and he does a good job, but it’s still just luck that he’s able to cross a two-lane road without it happening something terrible.

Back in the house, everyone realizes that Jack is gone and terror lays over the place. Kate, Toby, Miguel, Rebecca and Beth frantically scan the place and check in with the neighbors. Eventually, Rebecca realizes that Jack has swapped his sneakers for his rain boots, and she shouts that he’s probably on his way to the park. While Kate calls the police, Rebecca runs after her granddaughter.

She gets there, right after Jack has taken a fall that leaves him with a tear in his hairline – the one his future wife Lucy mentioned in a flash-forward earlier in the season. Rebecca scoops the boy up and comforts him, sucking her own grateful sighs of relief that he’s okay.

KATE AND TOBY HAVE NO WORDS | After a visit to the emergency room, Kate and Toby bring their son home and put him to bed. Then they go outside and fight. She yells at him not to hear the click of the gate. He refutes that she left the door open. Then the argument turns into bigger problems with how each of them thinks about Jack’s blindness. “All you’ve ever seen were his limitations,” Kate says, adding that Toby began to withdraw from the family all the way back when it became clear that Jack’s condition was not reversible. Toby, furious, claims that Kate cannot see anyone restrictions in their son and it is irresponsible.

“I’m the only parent in this family, period,” Kate spits. “It simply came to our notice then. That’s how you SHOULD USE it! ” Toby throws herself back.

By this time, Kevin and Randall have returned from the hospital and have become involved in the cases in the front yard. Kevin asks his brother-in-law to back up “and see how you talk to her.” Randall also tells Toby that he needs to stop doing what he does. Toby takes a look at The Big Three and laughs bitterly. “There it is. This is perfect, as it always has been,” he says.

THE COMMITTEE | Toby walks inside, sits down by Jack’s bed and cries while HAIM’s “Hallelujah” plays on the soundtrack. Outside, Kate tells Kevin and Randall that Jack said the reason he went to the park was “because this is where Mom and Dad are happy.” OOF. “I do not know if Toby and I are going to make it,” Kate admits, crying while her brothers hold her hands.

Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments!

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