Well, that’s certainly one way to keep everyone holding their breaths until the new year. This Is Us aired its finale episode of 2016 on Tuesday night, “Last Christmas,” and we’re still in shock over those awful final few minutes. Especially since the entire episode leading up to that point was of the feel-good variety. Let’s break some of those moments down, shall we?
Feel-Good Moment #1 – The Return of Dr. K
Every time Dr. K is on the screen we get giddy…he’s basically the quintessential family doctor we all wish we had, especially when scary medical situations (you know, like delivering triples or having an appendectomy) hit. So it was touching to see the Pearsons serve as his stand-in family when he had to undergo a very risky, potentially life-ending surgery. And it was extra touching when Randall gave him a light-up snow globe. Thank goodness the good doc made it through in the end. We need him to stick around for a while yet.
Feel-Good Moment #2 – Kevin Stands Up For Sloane
Okay so we love that the show called itself out for using the tired, fake boyfriend storyline when Sloane told Kevin he had to come to her family’s Hanukkah dinner. Partially because Kevin was so happy to go along with it, but mostly because once he was there he said he’d put his own money on the line to make the play happen after all. Maybe it was a Hanukkah miracle, but it actually looked like Kev was looking out for someone else for a change, and we’re all in. Now if only he and Sloane could be a real thing…
Feel-Good Moment #3 – Randall Saves His Co-Worker
One of the messages this show always drives home is that we should all be happy with what we’ve got. Because even when our lives seem terrible, most of us have plenty to be thankful for if we’re surrounded by people that we love. Randall learned that lesson this week when his coworker almost killed himself at the office Christmas party, and Randall quite literally had to talk him off the edge. It was exactly what he needed in order to forgive his mother, and for Randall to get to keep his boat, actually. Hey – you try giving a boat back after a scene like that.
Feel-Good Moment #4 – William and Jessie Reconnect
We had no idea that there was a Jessie to reconnect with, but as soon as we saw him and William chatting it up at their meeting, we knew we needed to know more immediately. So William is bisexual…chalk that up as just one more thing we desperately want to know about the character before he (*chokes back tears*) passes away. Extra lovely was the fact that William’s granddaughters accepted Jessie at Christmas no questions asked, while Randall and Beth were left scratching their heads. We feel the need for some more pot brownies coming on…
Feel-Good Moment #5 – The Return of Toby
He may not be Santa Claus like the girls originally thought, but Toby certainly brought some Christmas magic with him from L.A. Obviously he swept Kate off her feet with the grand gesture (this guy is full of them, is he not?) but we were also so happy to hear he’s back on the diet train, too. As much as we want Kate and Toby together, they have to want the same things, right? Which brings us to…
The Moment All the Feel-Good Moments Crashed Down
We knew Toby was off given his constant sweating and the fact that he was out of breath. But we weren’t exactly expecting him to collapse by the episode’s end and wind up flat-lining on the operating table. As far as we know the actor who plays Toby, Chris Sullivan, will be returning to the show in January, so that gives us lots of hope that Toby doesn’t actually die. But with this show it’s always hard to tell what emotional punch is coming next. So until This Is Us returns on Jan. 10, we’ll just have to hope that Toby is all right. Hope, and remind ourselves that even though it seems really bad right now, nothing bad happens on Christmas.