The end is nigh for television’s beloved Pearson family, as The Hollywood Reporter confirms that the Crockpot of doom is counting down to an end date for NBC’s This Is Us. The flashback-friendly family drama, currently in the midst of its fifth season, now has an official stopping point: Season 6, which will begin airing this fall, barring another global pandemic or whatever.
Dan Fogelman’s frequent Emmy-winner has been a mainstay of NBC’s lineup since it debuted in 2016, introducing the TV-viewing world to the far-flung Pearson clan in their various timeframes, and bringing to the public attention such luminaries as Sterling K. Brown, Chrissy Metz, Justin Hartley, and whoever it is that does Mandy Moore’s old-age makeup. Although ratings have dipped a bit since the show’s second-season heyday, the series still puts up strong numbers on NBC’s Tuesday night schedule; not surprising, then, that the six-season endpoint is being reported as Fogelman’s call. (He’s been quoted before as noting that the show’s third season was its “midpoint,” and has made it clear in interviews that he’s working off of a well-developed plan.)
NBC might have hoped for more, but such is the casual causal cruelty of the Crockpot of doom: Once it starts bubbling up the Super Bowl chili of tragedy, there’s no stopping that steady, beefy rise.