Who’s dying next on ‘This Is Us’? Probably not Beth, says Susan Kelechi Watson


Is Beth OK? might be the new mystery at the center of NBC’s “This Is Us.”

The Season 2 finale of the time-jumping family drama ended with a glimpse into the future, as an older Randall (Sterling K. Brown) tells his adult daughter, Tess (Eris Baker), that it’s time to go see her, and Tess replying that she wasn’t ready.

It was a moment that left fans hanging on the status of future Beth, Randall’s wife and mother of Tess and Annie — not to mention the most grounded member of the Pearson family at the center of the series. The guessing games were sparked with the Super Bowl episode earlier this year, which, though it answered how Jack met his demise, made fans wonder if Beth would also meet an untimely death after a flash-forward showed a salt-and-pepper haired Randall without a wedding ring in a scene with older Tess.


“I don’t think I’m dying,” said Susan Kelechi Watson, who plays Beth Pearson, during a visit to the L.A. Times video studio this week. “That’s a rumor.”

When pressed about whether she knew who the “her” is referring to in that scene, Watson offered: “I think I might. I think I might. They might be changing it, but I think I might…. I’m actually trying to think back to whether they made the hard decision. Stuff changes sometimes. But I feel like I know … there is some real stuff that happens in the future. And it involves the whole family. Does it necessarily mean Beth is dying — no. That’s the spoiler I can give — she’s not dead.”

The concern about the well being of her character is no surprise. Beth, who married into the Pearson family, has emerged as a fan favorite with her astute voice-of-reason sensibilities and her resistance to the television trope of being just a wife. And viewers are going to get to learn more about Beth’s background when the new season returns, Watson said.

“That’s something we’re going to learn about in Season 3 — that she has a Jamaican background. Her mom is still alive, her dad isn’t, obviously. She has sisters and comes from a big family. Seeing how that plays into her life, who does she go to for advice and help outside of the Pearson clan...she’s like a slow-peeling onion. There’s all these layers that weren’t laid out immediately. We keep getting to meet her.”

Elsewhere in the conversation, Watson talked about taking part in another time-jumping project — Jay-Z’s “Family Feud” video, in which she played the adult version of Blue Ivy, the progeny of Jay-Z and Beyonce — what she admires most about the marriage between Beth and Randall in “This Is Us” and her guess on whether the fictional couple have a slow cooker in their home. You can watch the full conversation below:


Twitter: @villarrealy