TV & Movies

Kevin & Randall's Fight May Almost Be Over On This Is Us

Randall took a big step forward this week.

Randall and Kevin on This is Us via the NBC press site
Ron Batzdorff/NBC

Spoilers ahead for This Is Us Season 5, Episode 6. Recently, Kevin had expressed interest in fixing his relationship with Randall after the two had an explosive fight at the end of Season 4. Before this week's episode, though, Randall wasn't really receptive to it. In Episode 5, which aired on Jan 5., Kevin tried reaching out to Randall with a phone call. Kevin explained that often in life, he thinks, "What would Randall do?" in intense situations. Randall thanked him for saying that, but said he couldn't talk just then. Kevin didn't know this, but Randall had to call the man who knew his birth mother and get more information. Kevin, who was struggling with whether or not to film a movie in Canada during a pandemic while his fiancée was soon to be having twins, seemed a bit saddened by the brief call and how Randall jumped off the phone so quickly.

But as Michael Scott would say, oh how the turntables. At the end of the Jan. 12 episode, it was Randall who called Kevin wanting to talk. After learning his birth mother's story, Randall told Beth he was ready to move forward. "I'm gonna call Kevin. I don't want to hold onto the bad stuff any more. I want to let it all go," Randall said. This time it was Kevin who didn't have time for Randall. He explained that he was trying to get out of Canada and home to meet Madison, who was in labor. As Kevin hurried to get off the phone, it was clear that these brothers still were not totally on the same page, but they're getting closer every week. And Madison giving birth to Kevin's children is just the kind of event that will bring the brothers together again, as Justin Hartley, who plays Kevin, had previously hinted to TV Guide.

"I think sometimes when you have fights like that, sometimes it takes like an event to bring people back together because I don't know how motivated — and then we'll find out throughout the season — but I don't know how motivated both men are to reconcile so quickly," Hartley said at the start of Season 5.

However, even if their relationship is temporarily healed by new life, there's still a lot that both brothers need to work through to get past that fight. As a reminder, the two have exchanged extremely hurtful words: Kevin told Randall that his being adopted into the Pearson family was the worst thing to happen to Kevin. And Randall told Kevin that their father Jack died ashamed of Kevin.

"It wasn't screaming. It wasn't out of control. It wasn't manic. It was a calculated statement that Randall made to Kevin and then Kevin made to Randall," Hartley said. "They were talking to each other and saying things [in a way] that is so hurtful. And the way that they are said is just like, 'This is coming out of my mouth, and I intend for this to hurt you and I need to say this.'"

That kind of a fight doesn't necessarily dissipate overnight. Sterling K. Brown, who plays Randall, teased to Deadline that the brothers' relationship will stay complicated not just this season, but next. "They will continue like a yo-yo — will come apart and together, apart and together," Brown said. "I think by the time we reach that point in the future [with the flash forward], there are other things on their minds that they are able to focus on to put aside whatever differences they have. But for the next two or however many seasons we’re around, I think you'll continue to see these brothers fray and then resolve, fray and resolve."

The two may be headed towards resolution in the short term, but there's still a lot to be worked out. And not even the surprise arrival of Kevin's twins can magically heal everything in an instant.