The Thanksgiving episode of This Is Us is a good example why the new US television series has been successful. This Is Us is us, down to the stinking sibling rivalry, parenting screw-ups, and the long-term effects of home-bred insecurities (unsavory stuff that most of us deny or cover up until home-for-the-holidays becomes a full-scale excavation site).
The episode reminded me of arriving at the in-laws one year and turning to ask the kids to be on their best behavior.
Hoping they would remember that their grandfather had been recently ill, I asked, “Why do you think being on your best behavior would be important?” My son responded quickly, “Because Mamma and Grandad won’t like us if they know who we really are.”
An honest response that revealed the deeper, and darker, state of things.