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At Rebecca’s funeral in the future, Uncle Nicky tells Kevin that he had it pretty good before his nephew came knocking on his trailer door. And then, “You really effed up my life, kid.” Then he calls Kevin a dick—but somehow in a heartwarming way. I didn’t realize you could say that on network television, but I’m here for it. Griffin Dunne, you were perfect.

(Griffin Dunne as Uncle Nicky and Justin Hartley as Kevin share one final, heartwarming scene.

NBC/Ron Batzdorff

We then flash back to the ’90s, and Jack wants to know what is going on with Randall, who finally admits mathletes didn’t get canceled—there was a kid who was making fun of him for having fuzz on his upper lip. So, to deflect attention, Randall pulled out another kid’s chair as the kid was about to sit. The teacher saw what unfolded and suspended Randall from mathletes for a week. Randall tells Jack he feels awful and is never going to forgive himself. Plus, Randall says, the kid whose chair he pulled out will obviously have a terrible life because of what he did. Jack is amused and says it’s kind of confusing how to discipline him because Randall is harder on himself than he ever could be. Instead, he suggests helping Randall shave for the first time.

Then we cut to future Randall, who’s consoling his family at Rebecca’s funeral. We see Kevin speaking at the funeral but don’t hear his words, followed by Kate, who’s singing something. After everyone has had their moment, Randall takes a beat to let it all sink in before getting up to walk out of the chapel, where he greets Beth and they walk out hand in hand.  

Back in the early ’90s, Jack is teaching Randall—and then Randall and Kevin—how to shave. Meanwhile, Kate wants to play pin the tail on the donkey. The boys make fun of her for being a kid because they are doing manly stuff, but Jack says they shouldn’t underestimate their sister. From a very young age, she gets it, he says. “When you’re young, you’re always trying to be old. And when you’re old, you’re always trying to go back,” he says. “That’s what we’re doing, collecting these little moments. We don’t recognize them when we’re in them because we’re too busy looking forward.” It’s a beautiful scene that reminds me of Rocky’s speech in 2006’s Rocky Balboa (in which Milo Ventimiglia starred as Stallone’s son). Anyway, Jack says because we’re so busy looking ahead, we spend the rest of our lives looking back. It’s very telling and true, especially since we know what happens to Jack five or so years later. Kevin and Randall just comment that he’s being really weird. It doesn’t phase Jack. “One day you’ll get it,” he says.

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