Why 'This Is Us' Took The Television World By Storm
And it isn't (solely) because everyone re-fell in love with Milo Ventimiglia.
If you've spent more than ten minutes on social media since late September when the hit NBC show premiered, you've seen article after article about it. Whether it's a warning about all the feelings the latest episode will cause or fan theories about the questions that have yet to be answered, there's no doubt that this seemingly simple series has dominated the 2016-2017 tv season.
The easiest answer is that it fills a void in the television universe, and does it well.
Everywhere you look, there's a new procedural, fantasy or superhero show. The market of emotion-filled, relationship-based television was lacking, especially after the recent series finale of Parenthood. Families are everywhere in sitcoms, but the hour-long dramas were nowhere to be found.....
Enter This Is Us.
It turns out, when you combine generally likable (and very attractive) television characters and throw them into relatively normal, everyday situations with just enough of a twist, people will tune in week after week and still ask for more.
The show doesn't attempt to shy away from some of the more serious issues that people face, such as racism, body image and addiction, and incorporates them in a way that makes this fictional world seem even more real. It creates the easiest form of escapism: no fantasy elements required, just a version of real life that is (odds are) different enough from the majority of the audience's experiences.
And when your cast includes Mandy Moore, Milo Ventimiglia and Sterling K. Brown, all of whom quickly became audience favorites, it steps the show up another notch entirely.
But.....the original plot twist was totally obvious!
Eh, that's not the point past the first episode anyways....
It's not original. It's just a twisted family.
Sometimes, that's all you really need, isn't it? Seeing how other people deal with real-life issues!
I mean, I guess. Do you honestly enjoy crying once a week at a television show?
Beats being sad about real life!
Sure, the show has achieved an impressive level of success considering this was its pilot season, but it also has its fair share of critics.
Twitter users especially have commented on many episodes, noting that the twists have been a bit too obvious (especially the first episode's explanation of how the stories all linked together) and that some of the acting may not be top notch.
Even despite some of those complaints, 'This Is Us' has garnered some of the best viewing numbers of the 2016-2017 television season and has already been picked up for two more.
When the real world seems to be going a bit too crazy, it's a nice change to get invested in someone else's fictional daily drama, especially when it doesn't affect you and you get to just relax on the couch.