This is Us – Clooney
By: Suzanne Fox
A stray cat runs trough the city streets of Philadelphia. Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) is working in his garage, cutting pieces of wood. He enters the kitchen and Rebecca (Mandy Moore) asks how the entertainment center is coming along. Jack tells her he is putting in shelves for her records. They kiss as Teenage High School Kate (Hannah Zeile) walks in and declares their kissing gross. Kate tells them she needs a dress for the Winter formal. She asks Rebecca to take her to the mall. Rebecca is shocked that her teenage daughter asked her to go shopping. Jack asks if he can go because he needs more suits. They were told at work to step it up. Teenage High School Kevin (Logan Shroyer) calls out from the living room that he needs more soda. He is still recuperating from knee surgery. Jack asks Kevin if he is taking Sophie to the dance. Kevin informs his Dad that he can’t walk then he can’t dance. He says that Sophie doesn’t care. Jack turns off the TV and tells Kevin he is going to the mall with them. Teenage High School Randall (Niles Fitch) walks in and asks if he can go with them.
In present day, Randall (Sterling K. Brown) is helping his daughters with a science project on penguins. Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson) walks in on the phone and hangs up agitated. She has lost a lot of real estate to a Costco instead of turning it into a park. Their younger daughter Annie (Faithe Herman) chimes in that she would rather have a Costco and Randall shushes her. Beth reminds him he needs to get their daughters to school, get into Philadelphia to pick up a box of stuff that was found of William’s and back in time for a job interview. Randall tells her that this interview does not have his juices flowing. Beth asks him if he is going to the interview and Randall tells her he will go, but again notes his juices are not flowing.
Kate (Chrissy Metz) is at Over Eaters Anonymous sharing that she fell off the wagon. She shares that she had a miscarriage and that she turns to food to cope. Kate also blames Taco Bell for having Dorito bowls again. Kate says that she is doubling down now because she is marrying Toby in the Spring. She shares that he is so “frigging romantic” and convinced her to have a traditional wedding. Kate says having a traditional wedding dress is a “hurdle” for her. Then, she asks others to speak and deflects to Madison (Caitlin Thompson) who says she thinks her wrists are getting fat.
Kevin (Justin Hartley) is meeting with therapist Barbara (Kate Burton) in rehab. Barbara tells him that he is ready to leave. She is worried about him on the outside though. Barbara tells him that she is worried about him slipping up in Hollywood. Kevin tells Barbara he is going to his Mom’s house. He thinks this will be good for them. Kevin arrives at his Mom’s and gets an enthusiastic hug. Then, Miguel (Jon Huertas) walks up and comments how great Kevin looks. Kevin takes a deep breath at the threshold of the house.
Rebecca is dictating what is in the fridge and what she purchased that is organic for Kevin. He says that he is now on a diet of Skittles and Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Rebecca suggests going to the grocery store together. Kevin tells her he needs a schedule and that Mondays he will go to the grocery store with his Mom. Miguel chimes in that he will tag along with them.
Madison comes up to Kate and apologizes for her miscarriage. Then, she tells her that she is not taking no for an answer and that she is taking Kate wedding dress shopping. Kate tells her that is a “Hard No.” Madison tells her she knows the perfect place where dresses are custom made, you drink champagne and are treated like a princess. Kate asks if she has to try anything on and Madison insists she does not. Madison tells Kate that the first second Kate is uncomfortable they can leave – no hesitations, no questions. Madison asks if she can help her clear this hurdle.
Teenage Kate and Rebecca are shopping and they spot the perfect dress. Kate has the number 7 on her arm. She covers it up with her jacket. Kate takes a few dresses back with her because she says she does not know her size and brands run differently. Rebecca tells her she does the same thing. Rebecca proudly tells the salesperson that she is shopping with her daughter.
Teenage Kevin and his Dad are at the mall directory. They spot Miguel who guesses accurately that Jack is there to get some suits to get Walter from work off his back. Jack tells Miguel they are there to get a suit for Kevin, too. Miguel informs them that his ex-wife Shelly’s boyfriend proposed to her the previous night. She was proposed to on a ski trip in front of their kids. Jack tells Miguel he will always be their Dad. Kevin chuckles and tells Jack that he always gives a big pep talk. Miguel agrees with Kevin that sometimes you just want to feel bummed “about crappy things.” They all agree to go to the food court.
Teenage Randall is walking around the mall. He is holding a Magic 8 Ball. He spots a girl in a store at the mall and walks away.
Adult Randall walks into an apartment in Philadelphia. He imagines seeing William (Ron Cephas Jones) walk by him. Randall knocks on the door of a man named Lloyd (Garrett Morris). Lloyd says he knows Randall’s son when he sees him. Randall asks about Clooney the cat. Lloyd said he took care of him, but the cat took off a few weeks ago. He tells Randall that strays always find somebody to take care of them. Out in the car, Randall goes through the box of Randall’s items. He finds a sweater, a notebook and some poems. One is entitled “Lady.” It is a love story and includes drawings of a woman he loved.
Kevin is food shopping with his Mom. He is excited because he finds Cookie Crisp. He shares his memory of Jack dumping out the whole box of cereal so he could get the toy before Kevin or Randall. Rebecca and Kevin laugh about that. Kevin tells Rebecca he lost his Dad’s necklace. She tells him it’s ok and she understands. She said she can’t remove his necklace from her neck.
At the food court at the mall Miguel and Kevin are commiserating over football. Jack spots Randall and calls him over to them. Jack advises Kevin to find his new football identify – something else he loves to do. Kevin tells Jack that he probably never had something he loved and lost and Jack agrees. Miguel disputes this and asks Jack if he ever told them about “Big Three.” He tells them Jack was going to start his own construction company called “Big Three.” When Kevin and Randall asked why he didn’t, Miguel explains it was so that the three kids could have everything they ever wanted by staying at his current job. Jack explains it wasn’t the right time and they need to own their choices and not look back.
Kevin asks Miguel why he tagged along to the grocery store. Kevin tells him he is there to bond with him Maim. Miguel explains that Rebecca has been a wreck ever since Kevin was arrested and he tore into her at therapy. He tells Kevin he is there to protect her. Kevin says that he is her son and Miguel reminds him that he is her husband. Kevin informs Miguel that his father was her husband. Miguel walks away and Kevin bows his head.
Randall knocks on the door of a neighbor (Lidia Porto) who lived above William in Apartment 22. She tells him she was so sorry to hear that he passed away. Randall asks if she “loved him or liked him.” She then asks if William was a “fancy man.” Randall replies with “fancy” and then realizes she means gay. He tells her that William was “Bi” and the woman says “Bye” and closes the door in his face.
Randall talks to another neighbor in Apartment 3 (Dawnn Lewis) who shared how nice William was and that he would bring her hot water when they had plumbing issues. Randall asks her if they had a romantic relationship and she laughs in Randall’s face. Randall knocks on other doors, including that of a man (Orlando Flanagan). He shows him the drawing of a woman and asks for help identifying her. Randall posts a notice in the apartment building asking for information about William and to be contacted.
Madison and Kate arrive at the wedding dress boutique. Kate finds out that Madison made an appointment and they have the store to themselves. She wanted Kate to feel comfortable. Madison’s friend Alexis (Christina Marie Karis) who works there comes out and hugs them. She gives them champagne and leads them back to meet Hanga the designer.
Teenage Kate is in the dressing room at the mall with dresses for the Winter formal. Kate starts to try them on… then leaves the dressing room abruptly. She puts the dresses on the counter and leaves without acknowledging Rebecca.
Randall, in a suit, visits Beth at work. Randall starts to tell her about the love poem he found in the box and that he thinks Randall was lovers with a woman from his old building, before he met Jessie. Beth admonishes Randall and lets him know she did not suffer through graduate school to suck up to public officials to do her job even though her work leads to a Costco. She feels like he is down on jobs right now. Randall informs her he is only down on one particular job. Beth asks him to come down from outer space and join them in the real world.
Lex shows Madison and Kate wedding dresses. Kate says she doesn’t want anything blindingly white. Madison is distracted. She excuses herself to go to the bathroom. They leave the boutique and Kate informs Madison that she knows what she did in the bathroom. She tells Madison that she never discusses anything real at group. Madison runs off and tells Kate to find her own ride home.
Randall is on his job interview and the interviewer, Sue (Ericka Kreutz) asks if the job sounds interesting. He smiles and tells her it does. His phone vibrates and he checks it. He asks Sue, the woman interviewing him, if he can take the call in case it is the school for his kids. Lloyd is on the phone. Lloyd tells Randall that he saw his note and asked if he talked to the Super. He tells Randall that William used to visit Donna and her kids at all hours. Lloyd tells Randall he loves to gossip. Randall thanks him and hangs up.
Kevin walks down the steps and observes Miguel and Rebecca snuggled on the sofa watching a show about tiny houses. He tells them he is restless. Rebecca offers to make tea for all of them. Kevin apologizes to Miguel for their conversation at the grocery store and Miguel apologizes as well. Kevin asks Miguel if he was in love with his Mom while his parents were married. Miguel explains that he couldn’t love her then because Jack and Rebecca were one. But he does love her now and tells Kevin that he is not going anywhere.
Kate is home looking at wedding dresses online. She gets a call and freaks out. Shortly after that she arrives at Madison’s house. Madison is on the floor crying with a bloody cut on her head. She tells Kate that she fainted again. Kate helps lift her up.
Teenage Kate is in a handbag store when Rebecca finds her and chastises her for leaving without telling her. Kate tells Rebecca the dress didn’t fit. Rebecca suggests trying on other dresses. Kate flips out on her and tells her to stop.
Randall knocks on a basement door at William’s apartment building. An older blonde woman opens it. Randall asks if she is the super (Cathy Moriarty) and she tells him she is. Randall explains he is William’s son. She tells Randall that William came by at all hours letting her know every time a tenant had an issue. Randall inquires whether they were lovers and she laughs and tells him no. She said that when William died the building lost their heart. Randall tells her about the poem and drawing. She takes him to William’s old apartment and encourages him to look around it.
Williams flashes back in and out of Randall’s scene. Little kids are chasing Clooney the cat and it runs up into William’s apartment. He pours it some Lactaid milk and comments that it had a rough day. He offers to give it a home for a few days. Randall wanders over to the kitchen window and sees a mural that features “Lady Day.” The images in the mural match the drawings in William’s notebook. Randall reminisces and hears William saying to him that Billie Holiday was one of his favorites.
Kate is taking care of Madison, cleaning the blood off her forehead. Madison shares that she only recently started with the bulimia again, but that she used to do it in middle school. She said she felt badly after she left Kate and came home and binged. Then, she got dizzy and fainted and called Kate. Kate tells Madison at one point in high school, right before her Dad died, she became really skinny. She stopped eating everything except baby carrots. Kate says she could have shared clothes with Madison. Kate flashes back to when she was trying on dresses in the mall. She fit perfectly into a size 7. But then she kicked it aside and tried on a 5. That didn’t fit and she became mad at herself. Kate tells Madison that she was more comfortable being fat than thin. Madison tells Kate she understands. Madison then snuggles up to Kate and rests her head on her. She thanks Kate for being so nice. Kate tells Madison that she likes the empire waist wedding dress. Madison says to Kate that she can’t believe she said “yes to the dress.” Then, Madison sighs and says she can’t believe she has a best friend.
Beth and Randall pull up to an apartment building. Randall thanks her for indulging him. Randall shows Beth the building where William lived and the “lady” who led him back there from the poem in William’s box. He tells Beth that since they met when they were 19 he wants to support her dreams too. He wants to buy the building and give all the tenants better lives. A little boy can be seen in the window feeding Clooney the cat.
Teenage Randall walks into a jewelry store in the mall. A redheaded teenage girl (Isabel Oliver Marcus) smiles at him as he approaches. She knows him and greets him by name. She tells Randall that he looks like he is going to pass out. Randall takes a deep breath and asks her if she would go out with him. He then adds that before she answers, she should consult his Magic 8 Ball. The girl shakes it and the answer appears “don’t over think it Allison.” She laughs and Randall smiles.
Jack and Kevin are trying on suits. Kevin tells his Dad he looks good. Kevin asks his Dad if now is a good time to start the Big Three. Jack tells him he has three kids to send to college so this is not the time. Then Jack educates Kevin on the details in trying on and wearing a suit. He tells Kevin he looks “sharp.” Kevin thanks his Dad and Jack winks at him.
Kevin walks into the kitchen to get his Cookie Crisp. He tells Rebecca that he noticed the night before that she lifted her head from Miguel’s shoulder when he walked into the room. Kevin informs his Mom that it is ok and asks her if she is happy. She explains that after Jack died, happiness was the first thing to go. But with Miguel they are older, things are quieter, he makes her laugh, but she is happy. Kevin asked if she is laughing with him or at him and Rebecca swats him away.
Jack is lying on the sofa in his living room, watching TV. Rebecca joins him and asks him to talk to Kate. Jack tells Rebecca he hates suits and hates Walter and he wants to start Big Three Homes now. Rebecca asks if this is a good time with three kids heading off to college soon. Jack wants to do it so Rebecca agrees that it will be an exciting time. They kiss on the sofa and snuggle in together. Rebecca asks if they forgot something at the mall. Batteries are viewed protruding from the smoke detector.