After Beth's mother, Carol, bruises her hip, Beth and Zoe return to their childhood home in Washington, DC. Try as they may, they cannot convince her to retire from her longtime job as a high school principal. Knowing Beth has never been able to stand up to her strong-willed mother, Zoe is prepared for the fact that she will have to be the stronger one in the situation. Unfortunately, all of this ends up taking a back seat to something that Zoe learned on the drive to DC and Beth finally admits to her mother: she's been laid off and unemployed for several months now.
This causes Beth to reflect on her past: getting accepted into a prestigious ballet academy with hopes to become a pioneering African-American principal dancer, only to grow up and have her dreams of being a prima ballerina dashed, partly out of the family's circumstance (her father Abe's death due to lung cancer) and partly out of being good but not quite good enough—or so Carol thought—despite Beth putting every ounce of effort she could muster into pursuing this dream.
Beth confronts Carol over taking away her dream, and accuses her of being emotionally disconnected. The next day, Carol tells Beth that after Abe died, she did lose that part of herself. Beth thanks Carol for helping her have a good life, and Carol apologizes for taking away Beth's dream too quickly. When Beth didn't get a critical showcase solo, Carol stopped paying for her dancing and convinced Beth to attend college.
Beth momentarily encounters a teenage Randall at a Carnegie Mellon University freshman mixer. Carol returns to work. Randall takes Beth to a dance studio, where she performs passionately and asks about becoming a teacher.
- Milo Ventimiglia as Jack Pearson (credit only)
- Mandy Moore as Rebecca Pearson (credit only)
- Sterling K. Brown as Randall Pearson
- Chrissy Metz as Kate Pearson (credit only)
- Justin Hartley as Kevin Pearson (credit only)
- Susan Kelechi Watson as Beth Pearson
- Chris Sullivan as Toby Damon (credit only)
- Jon Huertas as Miguel Rivas (credit only)
- Melanie Liburd as Zoe Baker
- Eris Baker as Tess Pearson (credit only)
- Faithe Herman as Annie Pearson (credit only)
- Lyric Ross as Deja Pearson (credit only)
- Phylicia Rashad as Carol Clark
- Carl Lumbly as Abraham Clark
- Rachel Hilson as Teen Beth Clark
- Akira Akbar as Young Beth Clark
- Brianna Reed as Teen Zoe
- Dakota Baccelli as Young Zoe
- Goran Visnjic as Vincent Kelly
- Elijah Reed as Marcus
- Jakobe' Dempsey as Damon
- Destiny Wimpye as Sonya
- Jordyn Margolis as Holly
- Monique A. Green as Renee
- Lily Keene as Wendy
- Maury Morgan as Liz
- Maya Morales as Lisa
- Michael Felix as Isaiah
- Shaun Elam as Student
Notes and Trivia
- This episode scored 7.55 million viewers.
- This episode is Beth-centric.
- First appearance of Phylicia Rashad as Carol Clark.
A complete overview of this episode's crew can be found here.
|This Is Us Season 3|
|#01||"Nine Bucks"||#07||"Sometimes"||#13||"Our Little Island Girl"|
|#02||"A Philadelphia Story"||#08||"Six Thanksgivings"||#14||"The Graduates"|
|#03||"Katie Girls"||#09||"The Beginning Is the End Is the Beginning"||#15||"The Waiting Room"|
|#04||"Vietnam"||#10||"The Last Seven Weeks"||#16||"Don't Take My Sunshine Away"|
|#05||"Toby"||#11||"Songbird Road (Part 1)"||#17||"R & B"|
|#06||"Kamsahamnida"||#12||"Songbird Road (Part 2)"||#18||"Her"|