This Is Us - S3|EP07 "Sometimes" (TV Review)

 

Oscar Rendon | St. Louis, MO | November 18th, 2018

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Episode 7 “Sometimes” from This Is Us brought us more of what audiences have wanted.. Jack’s past. What we’ve learned so far from this season as it pertains to Jack’s past is that he volunteered to go serve in Vietnam after his brother was drafted. In that episode we do get hints of a heart problem Jack has that will eventually play out in his adulthood. Milo Ventimiglia as Jack has become almost a folk-tale of heroism and courage. After watching this episode you also get a sense of his morality. He wants to see the best in people. After he fails to bring his brother with him to his camp Jack gets a ride from a Vietnamese man and stumbles on where the buried bombs are being manufactured (remember Squirrel). A line that he utters throughout the episode is “don’t be a bad guy” or “are you a bad guy?”. He ask’s the man, “are you Viet Cong?’ and the man replied “Sometimes”. The name of the title, what’s the meaning? Or is it a foreshadowing statement of who Jack really is? He is strong, willful, loving, caring, wise, generous, an overall good guy.. sometimes. Other times he is doubtful, angry, resentful, sad, lonely..

In the present, we have Kevin searching for more of his fathers past. Zoe joins him in Vietnam and we get a few developments from the couple. Zoe reveals a secret to Kevin because as they both beautifully put it, “I think I’m falling in love with you”. Zoe as a character is getting a lot of time to shine in just the few episodes she’s been in this season, actress Melanie Liburd is really turning in a strong and quiet performance for this new and engaging character. Also in this episode, Jack and Rebecca take their first road trip together to Los Angeles as Rebecca goes to meet record producers with a demo in hand in hopes of getting any shot as a singer. We see Jack’s more vulnerable side as he goes and meets ‘Squirrel’s' parents. He also has a moment with Rebecca where he breaks down in tears as she sings “Invisible Ink” a song Jack sees himself in as he sheds tears in the car with Rebecca. Overall the episode was great, a bit slow but it allowed us to stay with the characters a bit more and get to learn more about them. Milo as always delivers a stellar performance, a sad performance of a broken character.

The Grade

A