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"This Is Us" Wants You to Cry Harder Than You've Ever Cried

Are you ready to see what would've happened if Jack Pearson had lived?

As America's favorite family, the Pearsons don't have many flaws.

Sure, the patriarch Jack Pearson (Milo Ventimiglia) struggled with alcoholism, and he and his wife, Rebecca Pearson (Mandy Moore) weren't equipped to address the subject of racial inequality in America despite adopting a black son, but the mythology that This Is Us has crafted around Jack and Rebecca Pearson is untouchable: They were the perfect love story.

Except Jack Pearson died tragically in a house fire when his three kids were just teenagers, his widow ended up marrying his best friend who has the personality of plain toast, and now, in her old age, Rebecca is showing signs of Alzheimer's disease, meaning that she'll one day forget all about her epic love story with Jack.

Only two more episodes remain until the season 4 finale (titled "Strangers: Part 2," which suggests the return of Cassidy Sharp, played by Jennifer Morrison), and the time-jumping series has been teasing more dramatic reveals than ever: Who is Kevin's fiancee and mother of his child? Will Randall experience another nervous breakdown? Will Kate Pearson (Chrissy Metz) and her husband, Toby (Chris Sullivan), break up over the conflict of raising a child with special needs?

Of course, there have been signs of hope for the Pearsons, like dangling ropes to hang ourselves with while we wait for the Pearsons to figure their sh*t out and become the well-adjusted people we ourselves will never be. By the end of "Clouds," we saw that Toby seems to be adjusting to fatherhood with a blind son, Randall has continued his much-needed therapy despite his pride, and Kevin–well, who knows what Kevin will do next, as that boy has a twisted sense of love and relationships.

But tonight's episode, "After the Fire," will attempt to wrench the the still-beating heart out of America's chests by showing us what life would have been like if Jack had lived. At the end of last week's episode, "New York, New York," Randall (Sterling K. Brown) told his brother, Kevin (Justin Hartley), that he often thinks about what would have happened if their father had survived. Promo materials show the return of elderly Jack (Milo Ventimiglia), who has made brief appearances in his children's dreams.

Following his first appearance as 73-year-old Jack in the season two finale, Ventimiglia shared with CNN that the show's makeup artists based his aged look on photos of his own late father. The process took three hours and involved a wig, but the impressive realism matches that of Mandy Moore's time-jumping transformations. Ventimiglia added, "Looking at the history of Jack and how he had lived his life in a very simple way, I feel like a broken record saying he loves his wife and he loves his kids, but I feel like that is expanded when you get to your 70s." He added, "He felt like a man that was probably interested in slowing things down as best as he could, just to hang on to the moments."

With Randall beginning regular therapy for his anxiety disorder, is his preoccupation with his father's death a driving source of his anxiety? Would Jack have taken Randall to meet his biological father, William, when he was a teenager (giving him decades of time to spend with William before he succumbed to cancer)? Would Randall have been happier if he hadn't felt the responsibility of looking out for his mother throughout his life? Would Rebecca have been happier? Would she still have become sick?

This Is Us will come for your soul Tuesday, March 17, and the finale will air on March 24, on NBC.

This Is Us 4x17 Promo "After the Fire" (HD)

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Karens. Even if you don't know them by name, you know who they are.

Karens have been asking to speak to managers all over American suburbia ever since Kate Gosselin debuted her infamous reverse-mullet on Jon and Kate Plus 8 in 2007. "Karens"—the collective nickname for middle-aged entitled white women who love nothing more than being pains in your ass—have been walking among us for quite some time, but as shelter-in-place orders and mask mandates have taken over the world, the presence of Karens has become even more apparent.

Last weekend, a Karen went viral in a since-deleted Tweet for a reason only Karens would empathize with. Jason Vicknair, a 40-year-old man from Allen, Texas, was just trying to enjoy his first date night out in three months with his wife at a Tex-Mex restaurant called Mi Cocina. Things took a turn for the worse.

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Either you're already sucked into this multi-timeline emotional roller coaster or someone you know is tearfully telling you how much you're missing–there's really no in between.

NBC's This Is Us takes viewers on a journey through the decades with love and drama stringing it all together.

While watching, it's easy to attempt to pinpoint which characters you most resemble. Over on Spiritual Twitter, the best way to do this is to guess and assign Zodiac signs to the characters, which makes watching the heart-wrenching drama a bit more fun.

Everyone can access their full birth chart, which lays out the positioning of the planets at the time of your birth. Think of it as a blueprint to your personality, past, present, and future. Your sun sign is your base nature, the personality you show to the world, no matter internal or external variances. Your moon sign indicates how you emote and how you process your emotions. If you're interested in knowing your own moon sign (and other planetary signs), you can download your birth chart and jump down that rabbit hole of information. (For the more advanced astro people, houses and degrees will not be considered here because seriously, who has that kind of time?).

Based on the show's canon, not only do we know characters' sun signs (the main astrological sign that most people know), but we can guess moon signs as well.


RIP to the man that made everyone, men and women alike, jealous of Rebecca Pearson. Like a Virgo, Jack is calculated, precise and makes things happen. His downfall, in true Virgo fashion, was his aim for perfection and his feeling of defeat when he fell short. We know "The Big Three" and their father's birthday is August 31, making all of them Virgos, but this doesn't necessarily mean they all have the same moon sign. For Jack, a Scorpio moon is fitting because of the passion that people with this sign are able to display. The other aspect of a Scorpio moon is that their hearts are very deep, open seas; while beautiful and majestic, there are depths they will never share and no one can ever begin to find.


Rebecca's birthday is never revealed, but we can assume she is an emotional Cancer. Rebecca Pearson lives in her feelings in almost every scene. She involves herself in her children's and grandchildren's (hey, Tess) lives even when she's not invited, but it's all done with the best of intentions. She is passionate and loyal, which makes her perfect for Jack, who desires someone who's going to be by his side no matter what. Because of her many emotional outbursts and occasional inability to hold back, Rebecca aligns with an Aries moon. With the typical "I have to be out front always" energy of Aries moon people, Rebecca shows off her fiery nature by being bold and courageous, whether standing up to her helicopter of a mother or going out for a new job. While intense and explosive in their feelings, Aries moons can also be insecure or overly aggressive and emotional without realizing it, which could definitely be said of Rebecca.


Along with his father and siblings, Kevin is a Virgo, but there's a strong argument for a Leo sun sign, and his moon sign could easily be Sagittarius. Sagittarius energy is never settled and always on the move. Kevin's Hollywood lifestyle takes him across the country in the blink of an eye, and that's exactly how these moons want it. The only tricky thing is getting them to sit in one place for a relationship. Unless you're looking to jet set alongside Kev, it's going to be a bit difficult to build a solid connection. As we already know, Kevin struggles to keep a healthy relationship repeatedly on the show.


Kate has Pisces energy, but alas, she is a Virgo. For her moon, she seems like more of a fiery Leo woman. Leo moons tend to do anything to keep the attention on them and will react negatively when it isn't. Often creative, which speaks to Kate's singing talents, they dream of being center stage and enjoying that limelight. Leo moons are fun to be around and are always ready to be out having a good time (because who wants to stay indoors when you look that good?). Kate also displays some of the negative traits surrounding this fire sign: She can be extremely dramatic, overly sensitive, petty, and emotionally demanding.


Now, Randall Pearson is easily the most Virgo of his siblings with his perfectionism and organized ways. However, with a Capricorn moon, his Virgo sun is practically in hyper-drive. The double Earth sign man can do absolutely anything he puts his mind to. Very much a career-driven leader, he has a solid foundation of family, friends, and loved ones. While Capricorn moons are the sort of people that you want to go into business with, these moons are also prone to anxiety and depression from the amount of pressure they put on themselves. We see this for the first time in episode 15 of season 1 when Randall has a panic attack in his office at work. While they're loyal and dedicated partners, Capricorn moons can easily drive themselves insane trying to be perfect in everyone's eyes as well as their own (which is inherently impossible).


The human balance beam that is Beth Pearson never ends, and she just screams Libra woman. She's diplomatic and fair in her decision-making and makes an effort to ensure everyone in her household is happy and at peace. Whether that's by making sure all the girls get to their extracurriculars, helping Randall launch his many projects, starting a new career path, or making sure additional house guests feel at home, she does it all while keeping her own life and dreams alive. Whew! With this level of balance, only a Virgo moon would provide the superpowers to make it all happen. With planner in hand, Beth keeps it all together. However, similar to Cap moons, Virgos aim for perfection, which leads them to suppress negative emotions and deny personal dilemmas. Virgo moons will swallow their woes to make sure everyone else is okay before themselves, and they will only explode when they've had absolutely enough


Similar to Beth, Toby displays diplomatic and zen Libra vibes. He does what he can, but his Pisces moon makes him a little more emotional than Beth. With that strong Pisces intuition, Toby is great at noticing when his wife, Kate, is hiding her true feelings and can pick up on those emotions easily. He's also creative and dreamy-eyed about life at times, but we love this about the huge teddy bear (or buff bear) that is Toby. With this in mind, his emotions ebb and wane more than he'd like, so he keeps them balanced with prescription medication for his depression.

Don't miss new episodes of This Is Us every Tuesday at 9/8c on NBC.