Next Tuesday, TV viewers will get one more tear-inducing episode of This Is Us, as the show airs its season finale. Variety met up with creator Dan Fogelman and two of its stars, Mandy Moore (Rebecca) and Milo Ventimiglia (Jack), to find out what viewers can expect from the finale.
The finale jumps around in the timeline, focusing on when Jack and Rebecca met while also focusing on the current state of their marriage.
Moore previewed a devastating finale for viewers. “We’re going to destroy America by the end of the season. As if they don’t have enough to be upset about at this point in time anyway. But they’re going to be upset for a completely different set of reasons.”
Ventimiglia said the finale put him in a different place than other episodes have. “I felt very removed (emotionally). We were coming together to make something great, but it didn’t feel good at all.”
As for Fogelman’s perspective, he said he always knew about how the season one finale would be for the show.
“From inception I knew how the season was going to end. I knew what the final moment was going to be. Not because I’m a genius who thinks that way. I just always had a shape in my mind for what the final story was going to be. I just saw it for the first time. It’s very much what I had in my brain. Normally when you have high expectations or a plan it tends to disappoint a little bit, but it’s exactly what I hoped for,” he said.
He also said that the finale is “definitely the darkest place we’ve been,” which could mean viewers finally learn how Jack died, though the end of Tuesday’s episode seemed to hint at a drunk-driving death.
As for the ratings, This Is Us continues to be a monster. Tuesday’s episode, the second-to-last episode of the season, garnered a 2.9 rating in the 18 to 49 demographic and was watched by 11.04 million viewers, according to TV by the Numbers.
The episode marked the most watched live episode of the show so far and the second highest rated episode in the show’s short time on the air.
The season one finale of This Is Us airs next Tuesday (March 14) at 9 p.m. on NBC. The show has already been renewed for two more seasons.