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This Is Us Review One Small Step Season 5 Episode 11 This Is Us Review One Small Step Season 5 Episode 11


This Is Us Review – One Small Step… (5×11)

THIS IS US -- "One Small Step" Episode 511 -- Pictured in this screen grab: (l-r) Griffin Dunne as Nicky, Justin Hartley as Kevin -- (Photo by: NBC)



Nicky Pearson, Jack’s brother, was the star of the hour on This Is Us Season 5 Episode 11. 

It was a much more mellow installment and yet, it still managed to pull at your heartstrings in the only way This Is Us can. 

As audiences were taken on Nicky’s journey from the past — both pre-Vietnam and post-Vietnam — and into the present, it became very clear that for him, getting on a plane was the equivalent of landing on the moon.

Nicky spent a life never taking chances; he played it safe and stuck to a routine. 

And there wasn’t much that was able to pull him out of that rut until Kevin came along and eventually, the twins, including his namesake. 

Breaking the vicious cycle of being stuck in your thoughts and thinking you don’t deserve more is difficult. 

Nicky was a much more optimistic person before he went to Vietnam, but even then, he didn’t break out of his shell or make any big leaps; he stuck to what he knew and what was in his comfort zone. 

And they always say that when you’re comfortable, you’re not growing. 

In the pre-Vietnam flashbacks of 1969, we meet Sally, a free-spirited hippie who lives in a Volkswagon van.

She’s the love of Nicky’s life and the one who made him feel alive. 

They bond over their connection to the moon and their love for dogs at the vet clinic, and it’s adorable to see Nicky in this giddy state. 

Eventually, Sally proposes that they attend Woodstock together before traveling to California to work on her cousin’s farm. 

Jack is so supportive of the idea of Nicky moving out of his parent’s house and getting his own life that he even buys him a suitcase — the same luggage we see Nicky using in the present-day as he travels to, you guessed it, California, to visit the twins. Things always come full-circle on this show in such a beautifully poetic way. 

While we don’t actually get a concrete answer, it seems as though Nicky leaves Sally hanging when he realizes that he may be the only thing protecting his mother from their abusive father. It’s heartbreaking to see Nicky give up his own happiness, but I’m also not sure this is the last we’ve seen of Sally. 

What happened to her? Did he stand her up? Did they ever see each other again?

I’m always looking for any connection to the present-day, so I’m wondering if maybe Sally is the mother of Madison or even Cassidy. I still feel like Cassidy is a highly underused character, though, she’s a great person for Nicky to have in his corner when his insecurities and doubts creep in. 

In the post-Vietnam flashbacks, we see Nicky let another chance of reconnecting with Jack pass by. He’s so burdened by the trauma of the war and his behavior that he can’t even bring himself to face his brother. 

He tries his best, but when he sees Jack in the parking lot with an engagement ring, he decides against it. 

And we know that he goes on to live alone for 50 years. 

This Is Us Review One Small Step Season 5 Episode 11

THIS IS US — “One Small Step” Episode 511 — Pictured in this screen grab: Michael Angarano as Nicky — (Photo by: NBC)

So when he tells Kevin that it was “nothing” after showing up unannounced, it’s the understatement of the century. 

The moon landing may have been one small step for mankind, but traveling to Kevin and Madison’s was one giant leap for Nicky. 

Making the trek all the way to California and leaving behind all that he was familiar with was a big deal, especially during COVID. 

This was the first time Nicky braved a flight since being medivaced out of Vietnam, and he not only had to deal with increased TSA rules, he also had to undergo COVID tests and vaccinations, and wear a face mask throughout the whole trip. 

And my heart broke when the snowglobes he made with the hand-painted trinkets of the dogs and the astronaut broke after TSA confiscated it. I wish he would’ve kept the figurines, but his frustration was understandable for someone who was already working with plenty of nerves to make the trip in the first place. 

But boy, was it all worth it the moment he looked into the sweet faces of Nick and Franny. 

When he said that they were “his moon,” my heart melted. Nicky finally found something worth living for, and in a way, it’s something Jack gave him. 

There’s was a bit of guilt that he was getting so much love from Jack’s kid and Jack’s grandkids, but as Cassidy pointed out, his brother would have been proud of him. 

Despite everything, Jack always wanted the best for Nicky and pushed him towards a better lifestyle. This is exactly what Jack would’ve wanted. 

While it was a very mellow episode, it was delivered the right amount of feels and gut-punches. 

I hope Nicky stays for a while because he could use a little love in his life, and in the same vein, Kevin could use the company from the man that’s the closest thing he has to Jack. 

And thankfully, Madison was understanding about Nicky’s unannounced visit. With two newborns amid COVID, she could’ve been a little hesitant, but she welcomed him with open arms. 

What did you think about the episode? Did you like taking a little break from the rest of the Pearson clan?

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Lizzy Buczak is the founder of CraveYouTV. What started off as a silly blog in her sophomore year at Columbia College Chicago turned her passion for watching TV into an opportunity! She has been in charge of CraveYou since 2011, writing reviews and news content for a wide variety of shows. Lizzy is a Music Business and Journalism major who has written for RADIO.COM, TV Fanatic, Time Out Chicago, Innerview, Pop’stache and Family Time.

What to Watch

9 TV Shows to Watch After Thanksgiving Dinner



9 TV Shows to Watch After Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving is a time for reconnecting with friends and family and indulging in some delicious meals. 

But after all the turkey, sides, and pie is cleared off the plate, the only acceptable activity is binge-watching some feel-good TV shows. 

Here are some post-Thanksgiving dinner show suggestions:


Virgin River

You’ll be just as surprised as Mel to fall in love with the picturesque town of Virgin River. Come for the views, stay for Jack. 


Hart of Dixie

Dr. Zoe Hart arrives in Alabama looking for a fresh start and learns that the Southern way of living might actually be what’s best for her. 


Gilmore Girls

An unbreakable mother and daughter bond, a charming town that would make any Lifetime movie jealous… plus, an unspoken love for coffee? Say no more.


Selena + Chef

You might know her as a Disney Channel actress and pop star, but now, she’s adding chef to her resume. And since Thanksgiving is all about food, this is one show you don’t want to pass up. 


The Cleaning Lady

You might think it’s odd that a mafia crime drama made the list, but at its core, the series is about family and how far two dedicated and loving moms would go for their family. It’s a thrill from beginning to end! 



The modern-day update to the Chuck Norris classic hones in on family above everything, with a side of roundhouse kicks. 


A Million Little Things

A group from Boston bond under the unlikeliest of circumstances and get a much-needed wake-up call following the death of a close friend. 


La Brea

Though it falls into the “sci-fi mystery” category, La Brea hinges on a family determined to find their way back to each other despite all the obstacles standing in their way and all the sacrifices needed to be made.


Dream Home Makeover

If there’s ever a time to get inspired for a home makeover, it’s after the holidays (and during Black Friday when everything is on sale!) And the McGee family is the cherry on top! 


This Is Us

This is… a no-brainer. No show captures the essence of what it means to be a complicated, loving, flawed, and fulfilled family more than this NBC drama.


Angel the Series: Why The Series is The King of Found Family Shows

27 TV Characters Who Would Cook a Mean Thanksgiving Dinner

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Dead to Me

When Is ‘Dead to Me’ Season 3 Coming Out?



When Is 'Dead to Me' Season 3 Coming Out?

There’s been a lot of buzz about the upcoming third season of Dead to Me, which will, unfortunately, also be the final season of the Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini-led comedy drama.

When Will Dead to Me Season 3 Premiere?

Well, the wait is thankfully almost over because the series is set to hit Netflix on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. 

And that means, you’ll have the whole entire weekend to binge watch all 10 episodes to see how Jen Harding and Judy Hale’s adventures come to an end. 

It’s been a bit since new episodes aired, however, with Dead to Me Season 2 dropping on the streaming giant in May 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic along with Applegate’s MS (multiple sclerosis diagnosis) delayed the upcoming season significantly, so it’s understandable if you don’t actually remember where things left off. 

How Did Dead to Me Season 2 End? Let’s Recap! 

For starters, a dog digs up Steve Wood’s body with his brother, Ben, getting the dreaded call. Judy and Jen find the money that Steve was laundering for the Greek mafia behind the frames of Judy’s art paintings, which allows them to buy out the house and get a new car for Charlie with a shiny new bow on top. Unfortunately, on their way home, they get into an accident with another vehicle… and it’s revealed that the driver that hit them is Ben, who has an empty bottle of liquor by his side. He’s a little banged up, but he drives away.  This is honestly messy, so I’m glad we’re on the cusp of the new season. And on top of all of that, Charlie finds the letter that Jen wrote (and Judy didn’t destroy), which probably includes way too much information about what’s going on. 

Dead to Me Season 3 Trailer

Applegate on Filming the Final Season

Applegate, who recently received her much-deserved star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, told Variety that while filming the new season of the Emmy-award winning drama amid her MS diagnosis was challenging (she had to use a wheelchair to get to set because walking was difficult and painful), she remained dedicated to finishing out the story for fans, which we truly admire and are grateful for.

When the creative forces behind the show asked if she wanted to pull the plug since they felt like they were “torturing her,” she replied, “But I was like, ‘No, no, no, no, no, no: We have to finish this story. It’s too important to our hearts; too important to our souls. And we have to give this gift, not only to ourselves — there are people that love these characters, and we’ve got to let them have their closure too.’ So, if that meant me having to take a break in the middle of the day so I could go sleep — or me just leaving because I couldn’t do anymore — then that’s what we had to do.”

And knowing how much dedication went into it will make watching this season so more rewarding and gratifying.


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7 Adan Canto Movies and TV Shows to Watch



Adan Canto Movies and TV Shows to Watch

You’re probably here, looking for Adan Canto movies and TV shows, because of The Cleaning Lady. And if that’s the case, welcome! 

And if that isn’t the case, well, what are you waiting for? Go watch The Cleaning Lady! Canto is exceptional in the crime series as Arman Morales opposite Elodie Yung’s Thony De La Rosa. 

However, if you’re all caught up with the FOX drama and looking for more Canto to grace your TV screen, check out some of his other projects below!


Designated Survivor – Netflix

Canto starred in the ABC-turned-Netflix drama as the National Security Advisor to the President of the United States and Vice President-elect of the United States, played by Kiefer Sutherland.



Agent Game – Netflix

In this indie spy thriller, Canto is a member of a team of operatives tasked to bring in a CIA officer on a mission to detain and relocate foreign nationals for interrogation. The film also starred Mel Gibson, Katie Cassidy, and Jason Isaacs.


2 Hearts – Netflix

Based on a true inspirational movie, Canto plays Jorge, a Cuban exile who overcomes a hardship in life while falling in love with a flight attendant, Leslie, played by Radha Mitchell.  


Bruised – Netflix

Halle Berry stars as Justice, a disgraced MMA fighter looking to find redemption and courage to face her demons.  Canto stars as Justice’s boyfriend and manager, Desi.


X-Men: Days of Future Past – Disney+

Canto thrilled as the Brazilian mutant Robert Da Costa aka Sunspot.


The Following – The CW

Canto starred as Paul Torres,  also known as Billy Thomas, was one of Joe’s Followers, who found himself in a complex love triangle.


Blood & Oil – Apple TV

In the short-lived series, Canto starred as AJ Mendendez, a role he took over from Yan Gellman, who appeared in the pilot. AJ was a geologist working with oil tycoon Happ Briggs and developed a romantic relationship with his daughter, Carla. The star-studded series, that was prematurely canceled, also starred Don Johnson, Chace Crawford, and Rebecca Rittenhouse.

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