Spoilers ahead for Episode 7 of This Is Us Season 6, called “Taboo.”
This Is Us had one more Thanksgiving episode in store for fans before coming to an end, and it involved an incredibly emotional scene with Rebecca sharing some news with her three kids. After about as much drama as could be expected from a Pearson family holiday in the last stretch of episodes ever, Rebecca told Randall, Kevin, and Kate the truth about her plans for the future as her illness gets worse in the show’s timeline. Mandy Moore and creator Dan Fogelman opened up about the scene, and the actress shared why she was “super nervous” about it.
Although Rebecca sharing her plans for her future wasn’t easy on her children in the present day, it was a conversation that needed to happen, and she had Miguel by her side the whole time. Kevin and Randall clearly had some thoughts about their mom’s reveal that she wants Kate to make decisions for her in the event that Miguel can’t, and the whole scene involved a lot of heavy lifting from Mandy Moore in her performance. The actress and the rest of the This Is Us cast spoke with CinemaBlend and other outlets at NBC’s Scripted Press Day about the scene, with Moore saying:
Four pages of script is a lot for any show, particularly one with so many moving pieces and such a large cast like This Is Us. Those four pages also meant several minutes of Mandy Moore speaking with the other actors mostly reacting to her words, so it’s understandable that even such a veteran actress who has spent so many years playing this character could be nervous about it.
It was also an important scene for the show, as well as emotional for Mandy Moore to perform. This Is Us creator Dan Fogelman spoke about the scene, and how the writers went about crafting it as a "setup" for the rest of the final season. Fogelman said:
This scene serving as “setup” for the rest of Season 6 could be a sign that fans are going to see Rebecca start to go downhill rapidly, but that may have been inevitable when the series finale is scheduled for May. Rebecca and Miguel having a detailed plan at least bodes well for the Pearsons handling it as well as possible, and the flash-forwards have dropped some clues about what will happen down the line. And Mandy Moore’s co-stars were full of praise for her as well, with Sterling K. Brown saying about his on-screen mom:
Jon Huertas concurred, saying he “will agree with that” and shared that there was “this just really long breath before that that all of us took” during the rehearsal that already had them “all in awe,” and Justin Hartley elaborated to say that he could “go on for hours probably about this entire cast.”
There are still several episodes of This Is Us left before the end, and the plot is still thickening, so Mandy Moore may have many more powerhouse performances as Rebecca Pearson. Find out with new episodes of This Is Us on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on NBC in the 2022 TV schedule, ahead of new episodes of Renée Zellweger’s The Thing About Pam (for which the actress wore a prosthetic body suit) until New Amsterdam returns with some “explosive scenes” on the way in April.
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Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).