This Is Us fans still debate their favorite and no-so-favorite parts of the series’ six seasons on social media. One of their favorite episodes was the second to last of the series titled “The Train.” This installment focused on the character of Rebecca (Mandy Moore) as she passed over into the afterlife surrounded by family and friends. However, one aspect of the episode still makes fans irate, and it concerns the character of Miguel, played by Jon Huertas.
What was ‘The Train’ about, and why was it significant to the Pearson family’s story?
The train symbolized Rebecca’s end-of-life journey.
The symbolism of the train that carried Rebecca to her death was twofold.
Rebecca rode the train with her father into New York City on the weekends when she was a child. It was one of her fondest memories.
However, in death, each train car symbolized key moments in Rebecca’s life and the people in her journey.
This episode was in direct reference to the season 6 premiere installment.
“The Challenger” showed how Rebecca’s memory had begun to fail her. She struggled throughout the episode to remember the name of the train’s last car, the caboose.
Upon her death, this last car would eventually be where the character reunited with her greatest love, first husband Jack (Milo Ventimiglia).
‘This Is Us’ fans irate over how the series ‘did Miguel dirty’
However, even though Rebecca spent a brief moment with Miguel as she journeyed to the afterlife, fans believe it wasn’t enough.
The couple was married for years and weathered some of their most difficult storms together.
Therefore, fans felt Miguel should have been featured more in “The Train” and took to Reddit to vent their frustrations.
“Anyone else DEEPLY bothered by the idea of Miguel sitting alone on a train through eternity without the love of his life? I know it’s Rebecca’s subconscious, but from his flashback episode, she was the only true love that felt purely like ‘home’ to him. He spent the last energy of his life making sure she took her meds and played memory games for her to give him a solid 5 seconds on the train. Miguel was done dirty,” complained one viewer.
“Her memory was so bad, of course, that she could only remember people and incidents from a long time ago before she became ill. So when she saw Miguel, she vaguely remembered him but could not exactly recall who he was. She remembered him saying she was his favorite person,” wrote a second fan.
“I thought Miguel got the short end of the stick throughout the series but was hoping he would get recognition. Boy, was I wrong. When Rebecca spends more time with the doctor who delivered the triplets than with her husband and primary caretaker of many years in the celebrated train episode, it cast a shadow over the entire series for me,” penned a third Reddit user.
Showrunner Dan Fogelman said ‘The Train’ captured a ‘full-circle’ moment
In an interview with People Magazine, the This Is Us EP said that the penultimate episode “exceeded his expectations.”
Rebecca told her children to “take risks and make the big moves” and not allow her cognitive decline to stop their lives.
Therefore, when Kate (Chrissy Metz) raced to her mother’s bedside to be with her before her passing was a “full circle” moment.
“Their mother-daughter dynamic was equally fraught and complicated. In the later years of their lives, incredibly beautiful and simple,” Fogelman explained.
“She’s off doing something big and fantastic and fabulous. That was spurred on by her mother’s ‘Go live your life to the fullest’ speech,’” he explained.
“Now, that may prevent her from being at her mother’s bedside as she passes. And then the fact that in our story, her mother can hold on until she gets there, it felt like a full-circle realization of their entire relationship.”
This Is Us is available on Peacock TV.
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NBC.com continues to stream all six seasons of This Is Us as well.
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