Warning: If you didn’t watch Tuesday’s episode of This Is Us, titled “Number One,” you might want to look away -- major spoilers from the episode’s final scene. If you have, read Justin Hartley's take on the episode, then come on back...
Kate Pearson is about to go through the unimaginable.
The latest episode of This Is Usended on a devastating note, when Randall broke the gut-wrenching news to Kevin that their sister -- pregnant and happily engaged to Toby -- unexpectedly lost her baby. The heartbreaking development kicks off next week’s episode, titled “Number Two,” which will focus squarely on Kate, as she grieves her life-changing loss.
“One in five women will experience miscarriage, sometimes even multiple miscarriages, and these are things we don’t talk about,” Chrissy Metz told ET’s Kevin Frazier at the Golden Globe Ambassador event at Catch L.A. on Wednesday. “There is so much shame around them and you feel like you are inadequate or [it was] something you did, it was your fault. But it’s actually very natural.”
Chris Sullivan, who plays Toby, also weighed in on the aftermath at the event, telling ET it’s a “difficult conversation to have” and echoed Metz’s sentiments.
“It’s a conversation that not many people want to have. But that conversation needs to happen more,” Sullivan said. “I think a lot of people go through that and it’s a difficult thing. It’s a shameful thing. There are a lot of really complicated emotions involved with something like that. I think we do a very delicate job and a very respectful job of having that conversation.”
Metz also hinted that the loss of Kate’s unborn child may upend her relationship with Toby.
“How does it affect the relationship? Does it crumble or do you build on that foundation?” Metz said, posing some crucial questions. “I just trust those writers and [creator] Dan [Fogelman] so much to talk about stuff that is so important, like a miscarriage or addiction.”
When asked if she wished the writers gave her lighter fare on the show, Metz said she looks forward to tapping into her emotions week in and week out.
“Here is the thing: I feel like they write so much levity between Toby and Kate in between all the highs and the lows. But I do understand it can be very emotionally daunting and draining, but it’s important,” Metz said. “These are bringing up topics and issues that we don’t talk about and we get to actually stand around the watercooler with my sister and discuss things that maybe [haven’t been touched on].”
Addressing viewers’ varied reactions to the controversial ending, Fogelman took to Twitter to explain the creative decision behind putting Kate and Toby through this latest challenge in their lives. “We didn’t want it to happen to them. But we’re trying to capture real life, and it happens. A lot,” he wrote. “Next week is a difficult, ultimately life-affirming episode about love and family. We hope you’ll watch it and talk about it. Not enough people do.”
Metz and Sullivan’s co-star, Justin Hartley, spoke to ET following Tuesday’s episode about the Kate cliffhanger and how Kevin is processing the situation.
“When [Kevin] gets that information, the first thing that goes through his mind is shame and disappointment and hating himself for not being there for his sister,” Hartley says. “He didn’t even know. The one time she really did need him, he was MIA and drowning in his own problems. It’s complete shame [on his part].”
This Is Us airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.
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