“Is Milo Ventimiglia still going to be on This Is Us?” Mandy Moore reads. It’s at the top of the list of things the internet wants to know about the actor, according to Wired. As a fan of the show, this comes as no surprise. Jack Pearson is the ultimate TV dad and captured the hearts of viewers everywhere since the show’s debut episode. We knew from the beginning that he had passed away, though it took until just a few episodes ago to figure out how. After we cried all our tears for Jack and the Pearson family, the first thing we wanted to know was whether Ventimiglia would remain a cornerstone of the show. Thanks to Ventimiglia’s TV son, we can breathe a huge sigh of relief.
“I think coming up in season 3 is the biggest Jack story of the series,” Hartley answers. Ventimiglia delves into the answer further, adding, “There’s a lot happening with Jack that we haven’t seen of Jack.” We don’t know too much about Jack’s backstory, only that he had a strained relationship with his father, he has a younger brother, and they both served in Vietnam.
In a scene from earlier this season, we unexpectedly meet Jack’s brother in a flashback. We know Jack’s father struggled with alcoholism, but in this particular flashback, Jack sits seemingly alone in the car on the way to go fishing while his father stops off at a bar. What we didn’t know then is that Jack’s brother Nicky was asleep in the back seat. When Nicky wakes up, Jack tells him that he thinks their dad won’t be back for a while, but reassures him that he won’t go anywhere. From this short interaction, we can see that Jack was put in the position of both brother and pseudo-parent growing up. It sounds like we will see how this misplaced responsibility plays out in season 3.
We know that, according to Jack, he and Nicky were inseparable in their teenage years. We also know that Nicky died in Vietnam which means that Rebecca, who Jack met after the war, would have never met him. In this same episode, a young Randall (Niles Fitch) aptly points out that his father never talks about his childhood. Jack offers a minimal answer, alluding to having a difficult relationship with both of his parents. It sounds like there is a lot to uncover about Jack’s past.
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