NBC’s “This Is Us” follows the Pearson family: a white, middle-class family that adopts a black boy that same day their twins are born. This show documents the children growing up and into adulthood as they start their own families by jumping through time. The show deals with issues relating to marriage, addiction, weight, and race, among other. “This Is Us” provides a very real look into a unique American family and has emotionally affected many of its viewers.
As Sterling K. Brown points out in his interview, the character he plays is a rare one. Not often are successful black men cast intentionally or as a leading character. His role in Randall tells a story of a black boy raised in a caucasian home the same his white siblings are, yet he still has his own journey to figure out. His upbringing and the lessons he learns are always slightly different than the ones his siblings learn.
Seeing this play out and seeing some of the race dynamics explored throughout the show have an immense affect on the audience. Affect shows us how emotions and feelings bring people together. People are always able to bond over a shared feeling. Viewers of “This Is Us” don’t just make a connection with Randall when they see him tackle adversity, they also bond with other audience members.