Rod and Bassey discuss NBC’s family drama, “This Is Us.”
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03/20/2020 at 12:24 PM
Hey Rod and Bassey,
FUCK Randall Dashawn Pearson as a staff, record label, and as a muthafuckin crew! This nigga has me mad like Mrs. White in Clue. Fire! Flames on the side of my face!
Randall thinking that HE is the critical point in everyone’s lives is true arrogance. Not gonna lie, I’m jealous. Here I am feeling like just another spec in the universe, when this nigga figures that he is THE most magical of negroes. Randall Latrell Dumbledore Pearson, everybody!
When the first alternate universe was playing out, I was shaking my head at the pure fantasy. The basics of Time Travel Science are that changing ONE thing means that a whole bunch of other shit will be different. I was only giving side-eyes until he magically sensed William’s cancer from him saying his stomach was a little funny after Randall offered him a fruitcake of all things. EVERYBODY’S stomach gets funny at the thought of eating a fruitcake, Randall. I yelled “REALLY, nigga?!” at the screen. When I saw him get all serious about Rebecca losing her phone, I nearbout threw something. Nigga I’ve lost my phone three times in the past 30 minutes while sitting up in my bed! Misplacing a cell phone all the time for someone who didn’t grow up with one would not be an immediate cause for concern. The therapist hit her “Nigga, PLEASE” limit at the same time I did.
I can see the white influence in Randall’s Nightmare-verse (whether it’s the writing or just supposed to be his proximity to whiteness) in him coming home as a Que Dawg after his FIRST semester at school. Pretty sure that even if he COULD cross in freshman year, they would have just been asking him about the bruises then and we would’ve found out he was a Que later…Also, I got a hearty chuckle that in Randall’s current worst nightmare, he’s a Que. Glad they’re being represented, but damn, nigga.
Randall Javonte` Pearson really thinks that his parents’ whole relationship and Jack’s sobriety depended on HIS happiness. As empathetic as Jack was, and as much shit as he put Rebecca through with his alcoholism and Randall thinks that Jack would have been hostile towards her for YEARS because of him? And this is Randall with the knowledge of how much shit had to go bad for Jack to disown and mentally kill off his own brother, isn’t it?
When the therapist called out how unlikely it is that Randall would have been able to save Jack and he came back with how he could’ve spent the last 20 years knowing that he tried, I shook my head. He would have tried and FAILED and then obsessed over THAT failure. Randall needs group therapy with his family so they can give him a good Dreamgirls “Effie, we ALL got pain!” He needs to talk to Kate and Rebecca about THEIR guilt related to Jack’s death. Hell, Kate was so guilt-ridden she spent years with the man’s ashes as her roommate.
Randall Tyrell Pearson really said he was okay with “LETTING” William, a gown ass man, choose stop trying to beat his cancer. If he don’t get the fuck. Not so much THEIR choice if it’s up to YOU, asshole. Randall is taking other people’s agency away like it’s his God-given right.
When Randall called Rebecca, I knew it was about to be some bullshit. He turned into Miss Celie wit his ol’ “Did I ever ask you for anything?” ass. The savagery in the way he weaponized Rebecca’s guilt against her made me furious. Instead of processing the points that the therapist made about him not being over what Rebecca did, he took the wrong shit from it. I would never forgive my brothers if they did something like that to our parents. Randall knows WHY Rebecca didn’t want to do the trial and he doesn’t care because HE did a few hours of googling and solved the secret to stopping memory loss. And telling the therapist “Losing my mother would break me” as an excuse for his actions, as if Rebecca couldn’t have a heart attack or stroke in St. Louis in the middle of the the week when no family is visiting and be surrounded by people she doesn’t know as she goes on to Glory. She would be alone and confused and would have wasted her last lucid moments on Randall’s most recent straw that he grasped.
I do appreciate the therapist pointing out that Randall’s never looked into his biological mother. He’s let her be a footnote i his story and never looked further than William’s few words about her. That’s out of place for him, considering the crazy lengths he’ll go through for family connections. Another branch of family he could connect to and he hasn’t even looked into it, with HIS obsessive ass? There’s something there. I get that he has trauma that he has avoided addressing for years and has to process or whatever, but fuck him.
Randall Quantavious Pearson is a high-handed mothafucka who refuses to act right and he’s toxic as fuck for his family. I’d stop talking to his ass after what he’s done, too. Fuck. Him.
03/20/2020 at 10:34 AM
Just a quick comment. I LOVED his therapist! As a therapist who is gentle, yet direct, I liiivveed for that moment. Randall was out here bullshitting and she had to let him know! We ain’t out her playing scrabble nigga! You’re paying for this session.
I am so glad and a bit annoyed they showed Randall tapping into his Blackness. He was QUE???? What?? I appreciated them showing this on national TV but I did not like that it was coupled with him having inappropriate relationships and ignoring his family. Those things did not have to go together, but I get it’s just a show.
I also loved that Randall was finally able to express his feelings and be selfish in a way that we expect teens to be (be he never could be) when he talked to Bec at the end. However, it was not fair of him to basically guilt his mom to going to treatment. le sigh….
I am SO excited and scared for what happens in the next episode. Love the show!
Thanks Rod and Bassey! Also, thank you Rod and Karen for doing extra shows this week. The Rona got us stuck inside and I enjoy hearing ya’ll more!
03/20/2020 at 8:06 AM
This episode is a cut above anything I’ve watched this year (since Yayha Regina and the Watchmen…loved that shoutout). College Randall setting owt a Que hop sent me. Although they should have showed him at a coming out show or something not hopping for kids.
Related yet unrelated commercial break revelation. The actress that played Nuri in ‘Love Is’ landed on her feet and I’m happy to see it. She’ll be in that Council of Dads show. Love is was such an interesting rollercoaster of a show and I was sad for the actors when the show was terminated.
It’s sad how in both versions he hates his mother for protecting him. The rest of Randall’s story where he goes through his fears was really something. Sterling made me a believer. We haven’t been feeling Randall in a long time and in an instant he back something far more grimy than we could imagine. Sleeping with his TAs was the part that really surprised me. He became elements of Kevin while Kevin got close to jack and took over the family construction company. Swerves all around. And they still managed to fit Sophie into every version lol.
These therapy sessions have blown my mind completely. The show runners meticulously peeled back the layers of Randall and how it leads back to losing three parents and desperately not wanting to lose Rebecca. So much so that he used what she did to him to force her to do the clinical trial. It’s the one thing he has over Kevin and Kate. She could brush aside that he was good to her as a son but not that she destroyed him with her choice from the very start and he never got penance for that.
And if I were Kate and Kevin I’d refuse to speak to him too. Seems like in the future she may still be alive because of this. Such a complicated thing.
Peace and thanks during this time. This podcast is here for those of us that are in social isolation by ourselves and I personally want to thank y’all (+Karen of course) for keeping us stimulated, informed, and laughing along the way.
Sent from my iPhone
03/19/2020 at 9:20 AM
You can’t fix stupid, how in the hell does Randall come to that conclusion after that intense and informative therapy session. Yes Rebecca was wrong for keeping that info about knowing William from him but for Randall to use that moment to say mom I want something from you is kind of a trash ass thing to do . She can’t help that she is developing early on set dementia or ahlzeimers or whatever. Fool, this woman raised and loved you -that matters , yes you have every right to be mad but she was still the only mother you had.
Randall nigga you made the decision to not go to Howard – YOU did that ,not Rebecca,Jack,William or your birth mother. Your mom doesn’t owe you anything but to raise your “trying be perfect all the time “ ass. And that one Randall alternative reality had me shook , he went to go meet William and he was like “nigga I don’t know you , I ain’t got no son “,he was a que , a loner ,womanizer professor and Jack was drinking again and it seemed like he might have been abusive to Rebecca -it was like an evil Superman reality or something lol .
I have to say that was nice of the que’s to let the show use the paraphernalia- they had me googling (Is Niles Finch(Young Randall) a que dawg ?lol) And lmao at people saying “Naw Randall would be an Alpha “ which is true -for real Randall , but that was evil Superman Randall lol. This was a weird but interesting episode but the ending still had me scratching my head. But then I remember how the real version of Randall would act and it doesn’t surprise me in the end…lol.
Rod and Bassey
03/19/2020 at 2:12 AM
Hi Rod and Bassey. This episode had me with all the feels. I don’t know if it was just an emotional release from everything that is going on in the world or if it was just that damn good but I was in tears probably 80% of the show. Mandy Moore needs to get ALL the awards this next season. In both of the scenes when the family was at the dinner table she gave us so much with her facial expressions and mannerisms. I could see she was sad, guilty, working up the nerve to try to reach out to her son, putting on a brave face, biting her tongue when Randall or Jack were rude to her , hopeful when Randall showed her a little bit of kindness, and absolutely crushed when Randall walked away and Jack gave her that disgusted look. She did all that while barely saying anything. Same with the last scene on the phone with Randall. I could literally see her go from being happy to hear from him to being resolved that she wasn’t doing the trial and it was her decision to breaking down and feeling so guilty about William, to then wanting so badly to console her son and finally defeated when she finally agreed to go to St. Louis. She was AMAZING!! Randall was great too. The way he was pleading and saying “I’ve been a good son. I’ve never asked you for anything.” AHHHH! As a mom if my son came at me like that my heart would break. I was so afraid at first when he called her that he was going to confront her and that was going to be why there was a rift among the Big 3. But I should have known This is Us wouldn’t have done something so straight forward. I ‘m betting Kevin and Kate find out he basically pulled the “you never told me about William” trump card to get her to go to that trial against her wishes and they are gonna go off. Either way this show is SO GOOD. I was doubting it in the beginning but these last few have been fire!
03/18/2020 at 5:23 PM
Hello Bassey and Rod,
I’ll try to keep this brief, but I have to start with how much I LOVE your recap. Every time I see a new one uploaded I drop everything and start listening to your hilarious and unique take on the show. So thank you for doing what you do!
I’ve loved the last few episodes, but this week’s was tough to take. I’ll be interested to hear your opinions on Randall because I am not here for him! I get that he doesn’t want to lose his mom, but his methods seemed a bit manipulative to me. Then again, I’m not as close to my family as the Big Three are, so my response to parent’s dying isn’t the norm.
Also did you catch Alternate Universe Kate’s hubby name? Who’s Ethan? Some rando or someone we’ve met? It’s not important, but it’s bugging me. Better than Mark, hopefully.
Not looking forward to seeing Kevin and Randall break up next week. Might need a mimosa to get through it (I always watch it the next morning).
That wasn’t brief, but I tried. Thanks for reading and stay well!
03/17/2020 at 8:15 PM
Nothing to do with This Is Us…but Rod how could you betray us by being a Sox fan? WGN is home to the Cubs! You’re killing me!
As the song says, “you can catch them all on WGN”
03/14/2020 at 9:44 PM
Hey yall, first time long time. I really enjoy all your recaps whether it’s This is Us, Atlanta, or Insecure (woohoo April12!) and your movie recaps too. I kind of stopped watching This is Us after the winter break and now I just listen to your recaps. When yall were talking about Randall going to therapy it’s sad to say but I recognized myself in his behavior. Hearing yall break it down it reminded me of when my therapist told me I was codependent. Most people think of codependency as someone who is clingy, and yes that’s one type of person, but it also manifests itself in controlling behavior. You try so hard to control the people around you, and believe if they just do exactly what you say everything will be alright. You see that with nearly every relationship Randall has. Codependent people also dwell on their mistakes and what they perceive are their mistakes like with Randall believing he could stop his father, or “allowing” a thief in his house. He sees those as failings of himself, instead of something he couldn’t control. Codependent people are often correct and feel validated by that correctness, but don’t recognize that multiple ways of thinking can also be correct, and they have a hard time making mistakes. This explains why even though Randall has been a dick he’s been right a lot of times on the show. This used to frustrate me because I wondered why the writers were validating his terrible behavior, but that does happen a lot with codependent people and it reinforces their need to control situations and people. They are very cautious and calculating in order to not make “mistakes”. This type of codependency is more often seen in people who have close relationships with addicts, believing that if the addict will just listen to them, then they could kick their habit. Trying to fix someone by controlling them. This is why it was difficult for me to recognize this in Randall as well as myself.
Randall’s behavior is so similar to my experience. I had lingering regrets of a perceived “dream deferred” or a life deferred. A deferred dream that was grounded in my choices to take on more responsibility that no one asked me to do. I’m so looking forward to seeing how this unfolds on the show and, taking the advice of my therapist, not trying to control the outcome of things. Randall could not be codependent and it’s okay if I’m wrong. It took a while for me to be open to being wrong and if Randall is also codependent then it could take time for him as well.
As an FYI, if anyone else recognizes this behavior in themselves, the book/workbook my therapist recommended I read in order to understand codependency while giving me tools to work on it is The New Codependency by Melody Beattie.
Yall have a good one.
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