This Is Us creator, Dan Fogelman, reveals he has planned everything that will happen in the show’s final season all the way back from when it started.
Warning: This post contains spoilers for This Is Us season 5
The series finale for This Is Us has been planned from the start, creator Dan Fogelman says. NBC’s hit drama series just wrapped up its fifth season, setting up its sixth and final year, which will debut during the midseason. Despite the nearing end of the show, Fogelman is well-aware of how he wants to cap things off with the Pearsons.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, This Is Us season 5 had to be changed in several different ways. For starters, the season premiered later than usual and it also had only 16 episodes instead of the typical 18. Its story also incorporated real-life events, such as the global health crisis and the Black Live Matter protests on the heels of rampant police brutality against Black Americans. That said, it still found a way to move forward the Pearsons’ overall story as the show works its way to the hinted death of Rebecca, which has been the primary element of the intriguing flash-forward scenes.
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This Is Us‘ season 5 finale featured a couple of setups for what to expect in its final year, including the shocking split of Kate and Toby in the future. Despite the divisive response coming from fans who have invested and cheered the couple from the beginning, Fogelman, in a press conference (via The Wrap), says that everything is part of a grand plan since he pretty much knew how the show would end as early as the first season. Read what Fogelman said below:
Since the very beginning, I have had a strong feeling about where I want this to end. And it won’t just involve the series finale, but it involves the final season, its moments, its images, its scenes, its ideas. I have a list of them that I wanted to tell in a pretty specific order, and I’m grateful to be able to end it that way. There are less popular shows that have not ended on their own terms. It’s a real gift to be able to have been thinking about those images, those scenes, those literal lines of dialogue and be able to execute them the way you want to. You can’t really ask for anything more in the modern state of television. So, yes, to have all of that. Obviously, there’s shaping that, but there’s images and our cast knows many of them, and some of them have been shot. So yes, I’m excited to be able to end it the way we’ve talked about ending it since the first season of the show.
In hindsight, this level of planning is necessary to come up with a cohesive storyline, especially when it involves multiple timelines and a lot of moving pieces. This Is Us is known for its non-linear storytelling as it started with jumping back and forth from the past to the present time. But in season 3, it made things more complicated when the show tackled an entirely different era for the Pearsons with it jumping forward in time. Since then, there had been flash-forwards in varying degrees, and the farthest it’s revealed is how life is for grown-up Baby Jack and Hailey.
Amidst all these converging timelines, however, one thing is for sure coming into This Is Us season 6 — much of its focus will be on Rebecca as she deals with her Alzheimer’s Disease. In the season 5 finale, she admits that she’s having trouble imagining Jack alive, and it’s safe to say that it’s going to be worse moving forward. All of this leads to her deathbed, which the series has been teasing for years.
More: This Is Season Season 5 Ending & Flashforwards Twist Explained
Source: The Wrap
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