This is Us has been a rollercoaster of emotions that has certainly impressed its dedicated fan base. The dramatic series weaves together the tales of a family over decades, giving fans the chance to piece together a full picture of the past even as it plunges headlong into the drama of the future.
In the process, the series has made fictional couple Jack and Rebecca into something of a legendary duo. Mandy Moore (who plays Rebecca) and Milo Ventimiglia (who plays Jack) have gotten the chance to speak about how these roles shape their own professional and personal perspectives.
In particular, Ventimiglia has opened up about the actors he wishes he got to share the screen with more often.
‘This is Us’ is a time-jumping family drama
This is Us delivers hard-hitting dramatic moments on multiple fronts. At its core, the story revolves around a husband and wife who have triplets. Tragically, one of the babies doesn’t make it through the traumatic birth, but another baby was born that night and abandoned.
What follows is an exploration of the tale of how those babies grew up, became adults, and started families — of various types — of their own. It’s a tale of generational trauma and healing, and it weaves in themes of grief, substance abuse, domestic strife, loss, and — above all — love.
As the show’s final season sets to air, fans are looking back at the ups and downs along the way and anticipating the conclusion for the Pearson family they’ve grown to love.
What really sets the show apart from other family-focused dramas is its inventive storytelling. By jumping back and forth between past and present, the tale is coming together from both directions. We’re seeing the Big Three as adults making decisions that propel them forward even as we get to watch the past that made them who they are.
Milo Ventimiglia plays Jack Pearson
Ventimiglia is no stranger to taking on dramatic roles. The star rose to fame with a major role in the drama Gilmore Girls before moving on to Heroes, Chosen, and The Whispers. Drama is firmly in Ventimiglia’s wheelhouse. Still, there’s no character quite like that of Jack Pearson, and the part has demanded a new kind of depth from the star.
Jack is a dedicated father and husband, but he’s struggling against his own past demons — particularly his history of serving as a protector to his brother against their abusive father. As the series unwinds, we learn more and more about what Jack went through as a child, and it makes his big-hearted attempts to be a better person as an adult even more endearing.
When the character meets a famously tragic and untimely end saving his own children from a house fire, it was a heart-wrenching scene.
Milo Ventimiglia wants more screen time with these stars
Because of the non-linear narrative of the story, Ventimiglia continues to play an important role on the show despite the fact that his present-day character is long dead. While fans are certainly happy to get to see more of one of their favorite leading men, it does present some barriers as far as who Ventimiglia gets to act alongside.
Speaking with StyleCaster, Ventimiglia opened up about who he’d love to share more scenes with — and it’s basically everyone!
Perhaps most predictably, he’d like more time with the actors who portray his adult children: “I’m always hoping for time with Sterling [K. Brown] on set. I’m always hoping for time with Chrissy [Metz] on set. I’m always hoping for time with Justin [Hartley]. To play that parent-child relationship.”
That’s not where his wishlist stops, though. Ventimiglia went on to add several other stars: “I wish I could do more scenes with Ron Cephas Jones as William. I wish I could play some scenes with Susan [Kalachi Watson], with Jack and his daughter-in-law. I wish I could play a scene with Chris Sullivan, a scene with Jack and his son-in-law. We have such wonderful actors on this show. It would be fun to play a scene with Eris [Baker] and Faithe [Herman] and Lyric [Ross].”
Ventimiglia’s long list demonstrates an appreciation for the fine acting happening across the set of this ambitious series.
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