This Is Us Star Hints That a 'Moment of Great Significance' Will Change Everything for Nearly All the Pearsons

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To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail. And to This Is Us viewers like us, who worry greatly about Rebecca’s well-being both in the present and the flash-forward future, every cryptic tease about the back half of Season 5 makes us think that the Pearson matriarch is not long for this world.

In our defense, cast member Justin Hartley dropped this tantalizing hint when TVLine spoke with him in December, and we can’t stop thinking about it:

“There’s going to be a moment of great significance that happens that will change the course of everyone’s relationship with everyone else. I mean, I’m trying to think of someone who’s not affected by it. Randall, Kate, Kevin for sure, Mom, Miguel, even. He does have some cool stuff coming up. Jack is about the only one it doesn’t affect — because he’s dead.”

Maybe our paranoia stems from being very affected by those flash-forwards showing an ailing Rebecca with the family crowded around what seems to be her deathbed. Maybe we just know that This Is Us loves to gut us (hello, “Memphis”) with a major character death every once in a while — and we’ve been getting ominous vibes ever since NBC unveiled the Season 5 poster.

Or possibly, it’s just that after the last nine months of uncertainty and fear, we just don’t want yet one more thing to change… Anywhooo, here’s what else Hartley had to say!

The event in question is “a stressful, pressure-filled moment, and it’s a moment of reflection and heroes and family,” he continued. “If Kevin were going to paint one of his awful paintings, the inspiration would be hero and family and just following through, honor, that kind of stuff. You’ll see a lot of that coming up. It’s really cool.”

OK, now it’s your turn to weigh in. To what “moment of great significance” do you think Hartley might refer? Are we making a huge error by assuming this is about Rebecca at all? Hit the comments with your thoughts about the upcoming development!