‘This Is Us’ Season 3, Episode 12 Recap: One Swig Is All It Takes
*Warning: Spoilers ahead*
It’s been three weeks since This Is Us left off with a cliffhanger. You know, when the Big Three—Kate (Chrissy Metz), Kevin (Justin Hartley) and Randall (Sterling K. Brown)—walked in on Jack’s brother, Nick (Griffin Dunne), with a gun in front of him.
And now, the popular NBC series is back with a brand-new episode that is making us question whose childhood memories are accurate. Here’s what went down in season three, episode 12 of This Is Us, titled “Songbird Road: Part Two.”
The episode picks up right where we left off in episode 11, with Kevin’s hand on Nick’s shoulder. When the Big Three take him to a hotel, they offer him water, Pringles and pretty much anything you’d find in your average minibar. But Nick isn’t having it. All he wants to do is rest, so he sees them out and locks the door.
In the hallway, Kevin is unsure of what to do, but he knows he needs to do something because Nick is family. Kate and Randall are no help whatsoever, staring at Kevin as if they’ve seen a ghost. Frustrated, Kevin offers to call Rebecca and fill her in before storming off.
The next day, Kate meets up with Kevin, who didn’t sleep at all. When Randall and Nick join the group, Kevin offers to take Nick to a veteran center, but he politely declines. Just then, a familiar voice interrupts the conversation.
“Hello,” Rebecca says.
After introducing herself to Nick, Rebecca points out the resemblance between Jack and his brother.
“You have his eyes. I mean, it’s different, but there’s something in the eyes,” she says.
Nick brushes off the compliment, saying it’s nice to meet her. When Rebecca asks if he knew about them, he admits that he saw a picture but didn’t want to overstep Jack’s wishes.
Flashback to the same day that Jack visited Nick in episode 11. Jack is lying in bed with Rebecca, who knows her husband can’t sleep. Jack says he promised to take young Kevin (Parker Bates) to the mall tomorrow to get his baseball card signed by Mr. Smiley, but he’s not up for it.
Rebecca offers to take Kevin, leaving Jack at home with Randall (Lonnie Chavis) and Kate (Mackenzie Hancsicsak). While the pair make Valentine’s Day cards in the living room, Jack is sitting on the porch, pumping iron and doing just about anything to keep his mind off Nick.
When Randall interrupts his workout for food, Jack demands he order a pizza. Although Randall is flabbergasted at first, saying, “You want us to order a pizza?” That all changes back in the house when he uses a fake voice to place the order. (Kids…gotta love ’em.)
At the mall, Kevin nearly throws a fit when Rebecca suggests they leave without an autograph. After the meet-and-greet, Rebecca pulls Mr. Smiley aside and asks what he talked about with Kevin. He says that Kevin gave him a list of recommendations for Minneapolis, since he may get traded. Thoughtful, indeed.
Back in present day, Rebecca tells Nick she remembers that day like it were yesterday. Although she knew Jack was acting strangely, she didn’t want to press him on something that he didn’t want to talk about.
Meanwhile, Kevin is adamant on finding Nick a vet center he’s comfortable with. While Kate and Randall need to head home, Rebecca offers to stay with Kevin. Cue the awkward silences.
After trying (and failing) to drop Nick off at a vet center, Rebecca addresses the elephant in the room. “I think it’s time you and I talked,” she tells Nick.
Rebecca begins by admitting that she didn’t want to meet him because she’s scared of the answers she may get. After apologizing for what Jack did to him, she reassures him that Jack would have found his way back to him if he hadn’t died.
“Well, he missed his chance.” Nick says.
Rebecca suggests he make up for it by creating relationships with Jack’s children, especially since Kevin is newly sober. Nick thanks her but doesn’t think he can get back to that place.
Before departing, he leaves Rebecca with a tearful message: “You guys were all I ever wanted.”
Back at the hotel, Nick grabs Kevin in his room and brings him to his trailer, where he tasks him with fixing his leaky roof. Although Nick promises to attend meetings at the vet center, he tells Kevin to carry on with his life because he’ll never be “fixed.”
“It was a pleasure to meet you, and maybe I’ll see you again,” Kevin says before leaving.
Kate & Randall
Meanwhile, Kate and Randall knock on the door of their childhood home only to get rejected. Well, it’s not the actual house they grew up in, considering it burned down in season two, episode 14. But it’s on the same lot, so we’ll take what we can get.
When they return to the car, a little girl knocks on their window and offers to show them the house. Score.
Inside, it looks completely different. But that doesn’t stop Kate from locating the spot where they made Valentine’s Day cards way back when. When she calls it the “awesomest day,” Randall challenges her memory, saying his recollection is way different.
Flash back to Jack storming into the living room and scolding Randall and Kate for making a mess. When he walks into the kitchen, he throws a plate across the room, causing it to shatter.
In present day, Kate swears her memories are accurate…but so does Randall.
In another flashback, Jack cheerfully joins Kate and Randall in the living room. “Something is wrong with my hand,” Jack says before dunking it into the bowl of sequins and then throwing them across the room.
When Rebecca and Kevin walk through the door, she immediately says, “I am not cleaning this up,” before encouraging Kevin to join in on the fun.
Back in present day, Kevin returns to Nick’s trailer, which is empty. On the table, he spots an open bottle of alcohol and takes a swig. Not good.
Cut to Rebecca in the car, saying, “I’m really proud of you, Kevin.”
Is Kevin headed on another downward spiral? Guess we’ll have to wait until This Is Us returns to NBC next Tuesday, February 19, at 9 p.m.