'This Is Us - The Complete Second Season'
(Milo Ventimiglia, Mandy Moore, Sterling K. Brown, Chrissy Metz, Justin Hartley, et al / 5-Disc DVD / NR / 2018 / 20th Century Fox)
Overview: When one of their triplets is stillborn, Caucasian couple Jack and Rebecca Pearson adopt an African-American baby born on the same day.
Debuting in 2016, this acclaimed and offbeat NBC drama series jumps between past and present as it tells the moving story of the Pearson's and their children Randall, Kate, and Kevin over the course of many years.
DVD Verdict: By now, you are all familiar with how this groundbreaking, and wholly incredible new TV show chronicles the Pearson family across the decades. From Jack and Rebecca as young parents in the 1980's to their 37 year-old kids, Kevin, Kate and Randall searching for love and fulfillment in the present day.
There are some universally acknowledged problems that many people can identify with and understand even if they have not experienced them first-hand: Sibling rivalry, eating problems, grieving loved ones, etc.
These are the stories that can be told over and over and not lose their originality. Therefore, I think almost everyone can relate to this show. Of course, it doesn't hurt none that the acting is simply superb and the past and present story lines have clear connections.
In this second season, I almost want to be insanely critical that every single episode made me cry! And yet Randall's character and family would make me burst out laughing! It's unfathomable that every single character (including the past, present and future versions) seem just so damn real.
Sure there are comparisons to be made to the series 'Parenthood,' which was also an incredibly moving, and relevant TV show, but this series is not comparable to anything of this kind of level that it takes the human soul to; of that you have my word.
Not to give too much away as spoilers for those not having caught up yet, or even finished binge watching, but here in the truly heartbreaking (for the most part) second season, the heart of the show (from the very first moment it was announced) comes to finally be re: Jack’s death-by-Crock-Pot!
Always a When will we see it (although I don't want to see it) moment in the show's timeline, it came to fruition here in the second season. Donating four episodes to it, it won't stop the water cooler conversation's now, but will sadly fuel them with en masse of What if? "real life" suggestions and such.
With all the episodes revolving equally around birth, death, parental love, domestic violence, alcoholism, money woes, and even every day things such as making breakfast or going to bed at night (which features a wonderful conversation of thought between two people about how we all go to sleep at the same time, rich or poor), the brilliant Pam Grier as Deja’s grandmother is a massive coup for the show.
As she reads 3-year-old Deja 'Goodnight Moon' we recall that it's the very same book Jack read to his little brother Nicky, and which Rebecca read to her children, and which Randall read to his daughters too. Come on now, how can I be welling up all over again just talking about this stuff?!
Within the latter half of this season - OK, some shrill spoiler alert noise should sound now, I guess (as I couldn't keep it all in much longer!) - 'This Is Us' gives us a heartbreaking miscarriage; an almost-devastating car accident; a fire that nearly killed Jack Pearson ... then didn’t ... but actually did (in a way), because he died of a heart attack afterwards anyway!
Then we get an eviction along with a wedding day that should have been focused on celebrating Toby and Kate, but instead was dominated by the heavy grief and guilt Kate has been carrying for two decades with regard to her father’s death.
Phew! Anyway, I'm not sure how the writers will continue on this level in future seasons, for they've knocked it out of the park here in the opening two, but I hope they find a way to give us more and more. And hopefully, when they decide to end the series, make it a worthy conclusion also, of course. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Feature of "The Aftershow" On All Episodes.
'This Is Us - The Second Season' Teaser Trailer