Why ‘This Is Us’ Didn’t Show Randall’s Therapist Until the End
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 4, Episode 15 of This Is Us, “Clouds.”]
Randall (Sterling K. Brown) spent most of his first therapy session on This Is Us getting more and more irritated. First, he wasn’t pleased when his therapist, Dr. Leigh (Better Things‘ Pamela Adlon), admitted she knew who he was. Then, the dripping of the coffee machine drove him mad. But throughout all of that, we only saw the back of Dr. Leigh’s head — until Randall returned for another session, at Beth’s (Susan Kelechi Watson) request.
“A lot of that had to do with what Sterling can do as a performer,” executive producer Elizabeth Berger told Entertainment Weekly. “As we were talking about this, we started realizing that it would just be absolutely incredible to stay in these long takes with Sterling where you’re getting into his psychology and you’re watching him turn her words over and over again in his mind.”
The focus of Randall in therapy was very much on him until he seemed to become more accepting of the sessions. “Sorry about the other day,” he told Dr. Leigh at the end of the episode. “This is new for me.”
“Don’t mention it,” she replied, and then offered him coffee. Speaking of the dripping coffee machine, Berger said that while Dr. Leigh hadn’t been planning to “entrap” Randall with it, she did note it as “a trigger.” It’s something that she’s going to keep in mind.
Adlon will be back this season (and viewers will see, not just hear, her). “She starts probing into Randall’s psychology and what makes him tick in a really, really interesting way,” EP Isaac Aptaker teased. “It launches one of our more out-there-conceptually episodes that we’ve ever done on the show.”
Let’s just hope that Dr. Leigh is around to help if Randall needs her when we find out what causes the rift between him and Kevin (Justin Hartley).
This Is Us, Tuesdays, 9/8c, NBC