This Is Us Round Table: Did Kevin Resolve His Angst?

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We shared Kevin's journey for the last time.

Our This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8 Round Table team discusses the final Kevin-centered episode.

Join our TV Fanatics Laura, Christine, and Jack as we debate whether Kevin resolved his lifelong struggle to be Jack 2.0, what the focus on Cassidy meant and more.

This Is Us Round Table Art

Did you feel like Kevin's lifelong struggle to be Jack 2.0 instead of himself was at all resolved by the end of this final Kevin-centered episode?

Laura: Kevin has been compared to Jack his whole life. That has to be rough.

I think he did his best to honor Jack by starting Big Three homes and actually be himself and admit he needs help this time.

Christine: I think Kevin is building confidence in himself as a parent and as a man.

Reflecting On The Past - This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8

His father was on such a high pedestal that I doubt anyone could ever live up to that expectation. But Kevin continues to try to be the best version of himself he can be, and that's impressive even if he doesn't always see it that way.

Jack: I don't know if it'll ever be entirely resolved, but I thought Kevin took some huge strides forward. Being there for Cassidy seemed to help him get out of his head so he could be who he wanted to be without pressuring himself so much.

Why do you think This Is Us focused so much on Cassidy during this hour?

Laura: I wasn't sure at first, but I think maybe the person who gets Kevin to change and not be as shallow.

Dealing With Self-Doubt - This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8

He's already changed quite a bit since the pilot, but maybe she'll be the one who takes it to the next level when he understands what others go through.

Christine: Yeah, I wondered if things between Cassidy and Kevin would turn romantic, but I don't think that's it.

With Cassidy, Kevin realizes that just showing up and being present for someone else is all you can do.

He's also slowly learning that as much as you think you know someone, there's a lot you don't always see. I'm hoping that Kevin uses that lesson to improve all of his relationships.

Jack: I also wondered whether Kevin was going to end up with Cassidy. It seemed strange that a tertiary character took up so much of the hour!

But I do think that the point was that Kevin learned he didn't have to fix things for everyone, and he could just be there for Cassidy.

Do you think Cassidy and Kevin could try again for a relationship? Would you want them to?

Laura: I don't. I think Cassidy is like the only true friend Kevin has that's not family, and I really enjoy the little family that he, Uncle Nicky, and Cassidy have between the three of them.

Christine: I love Cassidy, but I don't think she and Kevin make a good long-term romantic match. What they are is great friends, and they both need that more than anything right now, without the complications of love and sex.

Jack: I think that Kevin and Cassidy are better off as friends, although friendship is often a solid foundation for a relationship that becomes something more. In this case, I hope they don't go there. It doesn't feel right.

Kevin's experience at the pool affected him throughout his life. How do you think it related to his struggles at the cabin?

Laura: I think Kevin always felt invisible and shallow.

A Scary Incident - This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8

I'm not sure the invisible part works at the cabin, but Nicky suggested Kevin was shallow.

Christine: Kevin feels like he never measures up to expectations, whether they are his own or his father's.

Years later, it still bothered him that he couldn't reach the pool drain as a young boy. Kevin needs to realize that just because things don't go exactly the way you hope doesn't mean it's a failure.

Jack: As a child, Kevin was in a rush to be able to dive and wasn't willing to put in the work to get there.

Nicky's Namesake - This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8

Jack allowing him to try swimming on his own so he could see he wasn't ready yet backfired, making Kevin more upset. He felt like a failure and like his dad didn't have his back.

I think that tendency to want to take shortcuts rather than putting in the work has persisted far into adulthood and that the planning he's doing for Big Three Homes is the first time he's ever thought about more than what he wants to do right this minute.

Discuss anything not covered above.

Laura: I loved Kevin showing Cassidy's son Matt how to paint and just let loose.

Taking the Twins to the Cabin / Tall - This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8

Kevin has always been good with kids.

It reminded me of Kevin describing the artwork to Randall's girls in Season 1, but he got down on the floor and participated with the paint this time. It was so full circle.

Christine: I loved it when Nicky pointed out that Jack hid his drinking for years!

Jack wasn't perfect, but it's easy to make someone who has died a saint, and the Pearson clan has done that with Jack for years.

Jack was an amazing man, husband, and father, but he had his flaws too.

I also loved watching Kevin with his kids. Everyone doubts his abilities, but Kevin has infinite patience with his twins.

Jack: Oh my gosh, I loved Kevin painting with Matt! I thought his advice just to let loose and paint reflected everything he had learned during this episode.

That man that sat there listening to Kevin's monologue until he could break in to say he was just waiting for his wife had a lot more patience than I would have had! I'd have changed seats a long time ago to get away from the overly talkative stranger interfering with my quiet time during a stressful situation.

Nicky Helps Out - This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8

What was the most poignant moment on this week's This Is Us?

Laura: I loved when Uncle Nicky came in, touched Kevin's shoulder, sat on the bed, and comforted Cassidy. He really understood what she was going through, and it felt like such a beautiful family scene.

Christine: Cassidy breaking down once Nicky arrived. As much as she needed to share with Kevin what happened, she needed someone who truly understood what she was dealing with, and that's Nicky.

Jack: I loved all the Cassidy scenes, but I thought the most poignant moment had nothing to do with that.

When little Kevin told Rebecca that he was nothing like Jack and Rebecca told him he was exactly like his father, it brought tears to my eyes. That was the pivotal moment that has defined Kevin's entire life, and Rebecca did her best to mitigate it, but we know how it turned out.

Your turn, This Is Us fanatics! Hit that big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know your answers to these questions!

If you need a refresher first, watch This Is Us online right here on TV Fanatic.

And for more This Is Us chat, be sure to check out our This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8 review.

This Is Us airs on NBC on Tuesdays at 9 PM EST / PST.

Jack Ori is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. His debut young adult novel, Reinventing Hannah, is available on Amazon. Follow him on Twitter.

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This Is Us Season 6 Episode 8 Quotes

Kate: Are you insane? At least do some trial runs first.
Kevin: I'm taking the kids to the cabin. And it's not like I'll be alone. Uncle Nicky will be there. He's family.
Randall: Nicky? That's your ace in the hole?

Kevin: I want to jump off the diving board and touch the drain.
Jack: Once more for those in the cheap seats, you need to learn to swim first.