Has there ever been a TV dad as perfect as Jack Pearson?
Week in and week out, the This Is Us patriarch (played to similar perfection by Milo Ventimiglia) has warmed our hearts and opened our tear ducts with his unflappable devotion to wife Rebecca (Mandy Moore) and the Big Three (aka twins Kate and Kevin and adopted son Randall). As tonight's new episode of NBC's breakout hit will finally begin to shed some light on the mystery of Jack's untimely death, we thought it only appropriate to look back on all the moments he's made our hearts swell so far in this first season. So get your Kleenex handy and join us in our celebration of all things Jack.
The Terrible Towel Intro
Before we had any idea about what a great man he was, all we knew was that Jack Pearson had one hell of a butt. Has there ever been a better introduction to a character on TV? We don't think so.
Making Lemons Into Lemonade
Very quickly, though, we learned how exceptional Jack could be when he faced down the loss of one of his triplets during their troubled birth with grace, choosing to adopt the abandoned child who would become his son Randall.
Putting Down the Bottle
Recognizing that his drinking was slowly destroying his marriage, Jack went cold turkey for his true love, Rebecca, promising that, from that moment forward, he would be a 12 for her on a scale of one to 10. Also, he slept outside the bedroom door so he wouldn't be far even though they'd fought. Go ahead and pause until your swoon passes. We'll wait.
As the young couple dealt with their grief and the unbelievable challenge of raising three infants, Rebecca began spiraling. Until Jack finally admitted that he couldn't stop thinking about the one they lost, either. Watching this one will require a tissue in hand. Just a warning.
There's nothing like the relationship between a father and daughter, and that goes double for the special bond Jack and Kate share. In this moment during a family trip to the pool, an already weight-conscious Kate gets the comfort that only a dad as great as Jack can offer when he saves the day with his magic shirt.
Celebrating Randall's Smarts
After realizing just how truly gifted Randall was, Jack went to great lengths to foster his son's exceptional mind, including this heartwarming pep talk, followed by the selfless decision to set aside dreams of going out on his own to stay put at a job he didn't love to ensure Randall could get the expensive private schooling he deserved.
Watching Jack create a Thanksgiving tradition for his family in the bleakest of motel rooms was just another reminder that this super dad can make lemonade out of pretty much anything. Watching Miguel assume the Pilgrim Rick role in present day, on the other hand, was a punch to the gut.
We defy anyone to watch Jack perform this set of push-ups with Randall on his back, proving he'll always carry his son through life, without shedding a tear or two. It's not physically possible.
Doing Whatever It Takes
In order to spare Rebecca the misery of turning to her domineering mother for financial support after getting the shock of a lifetime, Jack turned to his deadbeat dad with a fake story about gambling debt to get the money he needed to secure a home for his family. As if that wasn't enough selfless love, he also sold his prized car.
Making Memories (and Telling Off Miguel)
Of course Jack made sure to run out and get a newfangled video recorder just in time to record Rebecca's breakthrough chat with the babies who'd taken over her ready-to-pop body. Of course he did. Those jerks on the golf course with Miguel were right: Jack is making them all look bad.
Which Jack moment stands out as your ultimate favorite? Let us know in the comments below.
This Is Us airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on NBC.
(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)