This Is Us Season 3 Episode 4 Recap: Jack Goes To Vietnam

Good morning, Vietnam!

After teasing Jack’s past for the last two seasons, This Is Us finally dedicated an entire episode to Jack and his time in Vietnam. The question that every fan wants to know involves Jack’s stint in Vietnam. What happened in Vietnam and how did it alter his life? Well, we have an idea about what happened (Jack’s brother died), but now it’s time to fill in the details.

Here’s the recap.

This Is Us Season 3, Episode 4 Recap: “Vietnam”

THIS IS US — “Vietnam” Episode 305 — Pictured: Milo Ventimiglia as Jack Pearson — (Photo by: Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

– This was the best episode of the season and that’s because of Milo Ventimiglia’s strong performance. If I’m a producer on the show, this is the episode I send to the Golden Globes, SAGs, and Emmys.

– Jack’s time in Vietnam is the most interesting storyline this season. Something happened to him that altered his life forever. It’s how he became the man he was with Rebecca and the Big Three. My best guess involves his brother, Nicky (Michael Angarano, shoutout Sky High), and his death, but I don’t believe it’s that simple. Perhaps Jack was responsible for his death by sending him out on a mission and Nicky steps on a landmine. Maybe Jack holds Nicky as he bleeds to death from bullet wounds. I don’t believe the death will be a black and white issue. It’s going to complicated.

– Breathe. Robinson is the man that Kevin emails. We will be seeing more of him. Also, it turns out that Robinson taught Jack the “breathe” trick that he used on Randall to calm him down.

– Throughout his entire life, Jack is a protector. He always inherits the burden of protecting those he loves. That does not just involve his brother. Jack protects his mother from his abusive father. Jack protects Rebecca and the Big Three in times of need CC: The fire. In Vietnam, Jack was not a mechanic, which is what he told his family. Jack was on the front lines of battle as a sergeant, commanding his troops into battle. Jack the protector never takes a day off.

– The episode flashes back through different points in Jack life with Nicky. There was the draft at the bar. Looking back, imagine going to a war you didn’t want to fight in because your birthday was called. Thank you to the troops for their service because I might flee to Canada if there was a draft in 2018. Back to the timeline. There was the time a young Jack and Nicky protected their mother from their drunk and abusive father. Then, they even went to the night of Nicky’s birth. Surprisingly, Jack’s father was loving and compassionate, which is due to the fact of his sobriety. This reiterates why Jack was so nervous about his alcoholic tendencies during his Season 2 breakdown because he witnessed firsthand what it can do to destroy a relationship.

– This tweet should have went viral.

– It’s sometimes the subtle clues and tidbits that impresses me the most on This Is Us. Last night, we learned that Jack had a heart condition that caused him to have an irregular heartbeat. It’s why Jack had to be medically cleared in order to enlist. It also may be a factor in Jack’s eventual heart attack that caused his death. This Is Us continues to leave no stone unturned.

– Nicky is a broken man when Jack finally reunites with his brother in Vietnam. Simply put, Nicky has seen some shit. In the letter to his family, Nicky even stated that he would probably never come back to America and would die in Vietnam on “his terms.” Little did he know that would come true.

– As I’m writing this, I just had an idea. Nicky refers to Jack as “Superman.” In his letter before he enlisted, Nicky said something along the lines of “You [Jack] always save the day, but now it’s my turn to save the day.” What if Nicky dies trying to save Jack? What if Nicky switched roles as the protector with Jack in Vietnam and sacrificed himself to keep Jack alive? I can picture it now. Jack is holding a dying Nicky. Nicky’s last words are “Looks like I saved the day for once, Superman.” End scene. I’m running with this theory.

– I hope this was not the only Vietnam centric episode of the season. I need more of Jack in Vietnam. Perhaps a spinoff is in the future? I’m down.

Next week, it’s all about Toby.

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