This Is Us' Old Jack Moment Got A Wonderfully Sweet Explanation

Old Jack Pearson Milo Ventimiglia This Is Us NBC

Warning! The following contains spoilers for This Is Us' Season 2 finale. Read at your own risk!

This Is Us fans had mentally prepared for a lot of things leading up to the show's Season 2 finale, but when it was revealed the episode would feature an old version of Jack, everyone was thrown off guard. How was Jack, who the world all now knows died from a heart attack after a fire burned down the family home, going to appear at Kate's wedding? As it turns out, Jack wasn't present, but actually part of a dream of Kate's in which Jack was still alive and he and Rebecca were celebrating their 40th anniversary.

Kate's dream, while crazy disrespectful to the union Rebecca and Miguel share, was a sweet moment for the fans who may have wondered what This Is Us would be like if Jack were alive in the present. Dream Jack painted a pretty good picture of that hypothetical scenario in his renewal vows to Rebecca and revealed he successfully started his business, wonderfully called Big Three Homes, with Rebecca. She got her time to shine later when she serenaded her husband with the same song fans saw her singing when the two first met in Season 1, Cat Stevens' "Moonshadow." Side note: the decision to make that song Jack and Rebecca's song may have been Mandy Moore's, as there's a video of her singing it online well before her days as Rebecca Pearson on This Is Us:

Kate's dream of Jack and Rebecca's 40th anniversary continued with Jack dancing with Randall's children, and of course, sharing a dance with his daughter Kate. Not long after that is shown, real-life Kate revealed to Rebecca on the phone (and a likely befuddled This Is Us audience) that the 40th anniversary of Jack and Rebecca is a dream she's been having leading up to the wedding. Rebecca tried to be helpful and asked Kate what Toby is doing in the dream to help bring her back to the wedding, which she had been AWOL from ever since she discovered her something old item of Jack's never made the trip.

Initially, it looked like Toby's lack of being in the dream might lead to a dark Season 2 finale, but luckily This Is Us decided to spare fans' feelings for once this season. Kate took a long time to think, and ultimately decided that it was time to let a bit of her father go so that she can make room in her life for Toby. After a heartwarming montage of Kate and Jack moments, Kate released the remaining portion of Jack's ashes into the woods. As disrespectful as the long dream sequence that paid homage to the love of Rebecca and Jack was to Miguel, the moment built to a wonderful tear-jerking moment where Kate married Toby, while simultaneously realizing she had her father's blessing. It was a satisfying sequence, although the moment did leave us speculating, did the dream happen because Kate got married on Rebecca and Jack's anniversary?

Unfortunately, This Is Us is done for the time being but will return to NBC for Season 3 presumably later this year. For more on shows premiering in 2018 that can be binged until then, head on over to our midseason premiere guide.

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick likes good television, but also reality television. He grew up on Star Wars, DC, Marvel, and pro wrestling and loves to discuss and dissect most of it. He’s been writing online for over a decade and never dreamed he’d be in the position he is today.