The Fire On ‘This Is Us’ Was Real and We Can’t Get Over It

We are even closer to finding out exactly how Jack Pearson (Milo Ventimiglia) died on NBC’s This Is Us. Though we are certain that it was a terrible fire in the Pearson home that ended his life, we are still a bit hazy on the details. However, all shall be revealed on the next episode This Is Us, which airs after the Super Bowl.

From what we know so far, Jack, after having a lackluster Superbowl without his kids and some nice bonding time with his wife Rebecca (Mandy Moore), got up in the middle of the night to clean the kitchen. Unfortunately, a broken knob on the family’s crockpot and dish towel placed nearby sparked some flames that would cause the Pearson home to be set ablaze. Apparently, the fire was actually real and created on the This Is Us set, and we’re not sure if we’ll ever get over it.

The Pearson Five

A curtain being caught on fire.
We get to see the moment it happened. | This Is Us via YouTube

In the episode titled “That’ll Be The Day,” we see where all of the Pearsons are when the fire begins. Jack and Rebecca are in bed in their room. Kevin (Logan Shroyer) is sleeping on the couch at his girlfriend Sophie’s house.  Randall (Niles Fitch) is upstairs in his room, gleefully reliving his first kiss, Kate (Hannah Zeile) is listening to music while laying on her bed, and the family dog is sleeping in his bed in the living room.

Next: The tears won’t stop.

Grab some tissues

Jack being held and comforted.
We’re in for a tear-jerking episode. | This Is Us via YouTube

We’re already used to getting emotional and teary-eyed where This Is Us is concerned. However, creator Dan Fogelman warns us the “Episode 14” is going to be a doozy. He told Entertainment Weekly,

Next week is a very, very heavy episode, and I think the end of this week’s episode and next week’s episode have a different kind of emotional reaction to them. The episode is alternately thrilling and brutally heartbreaking and sad. And then surprising. If you stick with it and can make it through it [laughs], it’s very rewarding.

Next: Bringing the blaze to life 

Creating the fire

A woman screams from inside the house.
The flames and smoke were real. | This Is Us via YouTube

Though we live in a world where a ton of action and drama can be created through technology, the fire on This Is Us was super real.

Mandy Moore told Cosmopolitan, “The episode that is airing after the Super Bowl is insane. We had to shoot for three nights in the middle of nowhere. They rebuilt the house in order to be able to burn it, and it was intense to say the least. I’d never done anything like that before.”

Next: A story of miscommunication 

For the dog or for Kevin

Kevin lays in a hospital bed.
We’ll be finding out exactly what happened. | This Is Us via YouTube

Though the rest of the Pearson household makes it out of the fire unscathed, Jack does not. This means he might have gone back in the house to try and save someone or something. We know that in the present day, Kate (Chrissy Metz) blames herself for her dad’s death, which led fans to believe that the Pearson patriarch went back in for her dog. But what if he gave his life for someone else?

If you recall, Rebecca knew that Kevin was staying with Sophie, but Jack did not. Moore explained to Cosmopolitan, “[Jack] had no idea because [Rebecca] got that phone call where [Kevin] was like, ‘I’m going to stay with Sophie,’ and I don’t think I relayed that to him.”

Could Jack have gone in the house to save his son?

Next: A superhero dad

A hero until the end

Jack speaks to Kevin in the hospital.
Jack will die as a hero. | This Is Us via YouTube

We can hardly bear to think about Jack’s final moments, but Fogelman has promised us that he will go out like a hero. He told Entertainment Weekly,

I will say that the opening five to 10 minutes of the episode — we spent a fortune, we went into the middle of nowhere so nobody would see us, and we built our house. We brought in the people who had done Backdraft, and for you, as an audience member, it’s very hard to breathe. It’s extraordinary…. It’s fair to say that he goes out like he lived.

Next: Preparing for the worst 

A feeling of dread

Jack covering his face as he makes his way through the fire.
The scene might be hard to watch, but will be important to the show. | This Is Us via YouTube

We don’t think there is any way we can prepare for Episode 14. After all, the actors of This Is Us have barely been able to cope with the fire storyline.

Moore revealed,

I think as we’ve edged closer to this particular period in this family’s life and knowing what is right around the corner, it is so horrible. When I watched the episode [“That’ll Be the Day”] the other day, I watched it with Milo and Sterling [K. Brown], and it’s just so bittersweet knowing this couple’s right on the precipice of this next chapter, and they’re about to be empty-nesters, and it’s heartbreaking.

We suppose we should just prepare to be totally devastated.

Next: Moving forward


Kevin leans against a tree.
We’ll see the family mourning and moving on. | This Is Us via YouTube

If somehow we do survive the fire episode on This Is Us without falling apart, perhaps it will be for the best.

Moore told Entertainment Tonight, “I can’t wait for fans to see the Super Bowl episode. People will get a lot of answers and be able to move forward. I think for everybody’s sake it will be a good thing.”

Follow Aramide on Twitter @midnightrami.

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