We sadly knew we’d eventually have to bid the Pearson family from This Is Us goodbye — but now, we know exactly when they’ll be leaving the small screen. The beloved NBC drama’s showrunners Isaac Aptaker and Dan Fogelman just revealed in a new interview with Deadline that This Is Us — which is currently in its third season — will end “about three seasons in the future” aka after Season 6.
Even more shocking is that Fogelman admitted he’s known how the series will end from its 2016 start. “From day one, Dan came in with his master plan for the big picture stuff of the show and said, ‘I think this is where we end up. I think this is what I know. Let’s figure out the rest together.’ So all of the writers and the actors really know everything,” Aptaker said of his TV partner. “We’re all pretty good at keeping secrets by now, it’s been three years, but it’s a total open book for everyone who works on the show, so there are no secrets from each other.”
Thankfully, the showrunners assured fans that the show’s finale will be both “elegant” and “satisfying.” Aptaker explained, “I would hope that when we reach our ending, people think it’s a really satisfying end place, that makes sense, and it feels like they’ve watched something that is a complete piece of work because that’s really how we’re trying to plan it.”
The show’s Season 6 wrap up may come as a surprise to some viewers, but Aptaker insisted they would rather leave fans wanting more than feeling as though the Pearson family’s story dragged on for too long. “We’ve had this end in mind for a long time, so we’re able to plan for it, and try to make it feel like it’s a whole, as opposed to a series that’s going to go endlessly,” he said.
Centered around lead character Jack Pearson (played by Milo Ventimiglia) fans of This Is Us have fallen in love with Jack’s wife, Rebecca (portrayed by Mandy Moore), and the couple’s three kids, Kate (played by Chrissy Metz), Randall (portrayed by Sterling K. Brown) and Kevin (played by Justin Hartley) throughout the show’s three seasons thus far.
So far in Season 3, fans have seen Kate, go through IVF, her onscreen husband Toby (played by Chris Sullivan) battle depression and Randall overcome his anxiety to win a political election.
Since the beginning, the show’s theme has centered around truth and honesty and the latest episode was no different as it tackled one of This Is Us‘ darkest topics so far: Kevin’s alcohol addiction. Before the heartwrenching episode ended, the series gave a glimpse at a flashback where we see Kevin alone in his Uncle Nicky’s acting trailer with a half-empty bottle of whiskey. In one of the frames, we watch Kevin take a few swigs before returning back to present time as he and his mother, Rebecca are driving in the car together as they detour through the remains of their old and destroyed home.
With Kevin holding onto his new secret, we watch as Rebecca gushes about how proud she is of Kevin for what he tried to do for his late father’s brother.
Be sure to catch new episodes of This Is Us on NBC every Tuesday at 9 p.m. EST.