This Is Us Reveals So Many Secret Origins in "Flip a Coin"

From Nicky's RV to Kevin's The Manny tenure, the NBC drama pulled back the curtain on several plot points

By Chris Harnick Oct 16, 2019 2:01 AMTags
This Is UsNBC

How many more family secrets and origin stories can This Is Us reveal? It seems like they're just getting started.

In "Flip a Coin," the fourth episode of the fourth season, viewers learned about a number of firsts and how some key connections were made through several jumps around time. There was Kevin and The Manny, Randall and Beth in college during a parental visit, baby Jack and music and much more.

In the past, viewers saw teen Kate still struggling with a purpose after her brothers went off and she remained home. When she finally turned off Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Kate ventured to the record store and got some new CDs—and a job! In the present, tensions between Kate and Toby continued to fester. They took young Jack to a music class, which didn't turn out well. He kept getting scared by the instruments and singing.

Chrissy Metz Freaks Over "This Is Us" Multiple Emmy Nominations

After fighting (with some jabs at Toby's gym obsession), and apologizing, they took baby Jack to the beach.

While Jack was scared by the class, viewers do know he goes on to have quite a bit of success in music. As Kate said, music is something he can do even without his sight.

Randall and Beth
Do these two owe everything to Rebecca? In the past, Rebecca visited Randall at college and sensed the longing he had for Beth (it was obvious), and took matters into her own hands when she got up and asked if they could join Beth and her mom for lunch. Rebecca forced Randall's hand. A key moment at the table: When Randall gave Beth a slice of lemon without her asking. On their one and only date (at the time), Beth ordered a Coke with lemon. At lunch at school, she didn't have a lemon for her drink.

Rebecca ended up bonding with Beth's mom over their shared widow status and Carol inspired Rebecca to start getting her life back in order following Jack's death.

In the present, Carol visited for Beth's dance studio opening. Despite a hitch—a dead opossum—the dance studio opened at Randall's insistence to make things work. There, Carol said she didn't like Randall for Beth at first, but it's because she didn't see the strength, he had inside of him to be the proper partner for her daughter. Randall and Beth also met Malik and found out he has a daughter.


Alternating between the present, where Kevin found out The Manny was canceled, and the pilot shoot for The Manny, the show revealed quite a bit about the character.

In the present, Kevin worked to distract Cassidy and Nicky when their planned AA meeting was incorrectly scheduled. His distraction tactics? Talking about shopping for a new RV. While out and about, Kevin and Cassidy discussed her possible divorce, his experience with The Manny and Nicky revealed the origins of his trailer.

Before the war, there was Sally, a girl Jack asked out on a shy Nicky's behalf. They planned to go across the country after he returned from war, but eventually he stopped writing to her. After the events in Vietnam, Nicky said he was "pretty broken." So one day he decided to just go for it. He used his savings on the trailer and went to Sally's house unannounced. She wasn't home. So, he just drove off. That was it. He said he realized it wasn't meant to be.

In a parallel moment, past Kevin revealed his doubts about The Manny pilot to Kate and said he wished it didn't make it to series so he could go off, stop acting and just have a family somewhere. But then he had a moment at the end of the pilot shoot where he connected with his baby costar and the "stupid character" on a show with a "stupid premise" wasn't a joke anymore. He made a baby laugh and it changed his life. After relaying that story to Cassidy, Kevin did indeed buy an RV…for himself. And he moved in next to Nicky.

This Is Us airs Tuesdays, 9 p.m. on NBC.

(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)

Latest News