The Big Game is almost here, but for This Is Us fans everywhere Super Bowl Sunday will always be known as the anniversary of The Big Cry.
Ever since the NBC drama revealed the tragic death of America’s TV dad, Jack Pearson, in the Season 2 episode, “Super Bowl Sunday,” which rudely aired immediately after the game in 2018, the day has had somewhat of a dark cloud over it. Sure, it’s still a day for food, fun, and football. But now, each year marks an anniversary of sad memories.
It’s the anniversary of the day we saw the Pearson family home engulfed in flames from a slow cooker fire, Jack die of cardiac arrest brought on by smoke inhalation, Rebecca grief-eat a Mars bar in the hospital before breaking down in tears, and a whole bunch of other NOPE moments.
This Super Bowl Sunday, since there’s no heartbreaking This Is Us episode to remind us, we came up with seven ways you can honor the memory of Jack Pearson.
1. Put the “us” in This Is Us
To start, the head of the Pearson family would have wanted us all to gather round and watch the game with loved ones. So reach out to friends, family members, and favorite co-workers and obsess over the Super Bowl together.
2. Dress like Jack
No matter which teams are playing, consider wearing a Steelers jersey on Sunday as a nod to Jack Pearson’s favorite team. If that’s too dramatic for you, just opt for a plaid shirt, because he loved rocking those, too.
3. Cautious cooking
We know that Jack Pearson met his early demise as a result of forgetting to unplug his old, faulty slow cooker when he cleaned up the Super Bowl snacks in the kitchen before going to bed. So it’s important be mindful when engaging in sensitive slow cooker-related convos on the big day. For those who are still grieving, we’ve compiled a few delicious recipes that don’t require slow cookers.
4. A cathartic pre-game cry
Before the big game, you might even consider re-watching the episode in Jack’s honor. That’s very nice, but also very sad, so perhaps just listen to “To Build A Home” by The Cinematic Orchestra and pregame the Big Game with another Big Cry.
5. Cautious clean up
In wake of that devastating Super Bowl episode, Milo Ventimiglia (who plays Jack) and other This Is Us cast members rallied to support Crock Pots and slow cookers everywhere, reminding the world that not all of them have faulty switches and will spontaneously combust. And much like the cast members, if Jack Pearson were alive right now I’ll bet he’d say something encouragingly profound like, “Never let the fear of slow cooker fires keep you from enjoying the game.”
So carry on with your slow cooking, and enjoy your chili and delicious dips, but please, do not forget to unplug the slow cooker when the game’s over. Unplug it for your own safety, of course, but also do it for Jack.
6. Some light smoke detector upkeep
If you recall, the Pearson family unfortunately forgot to replace the batteries in their smoke detector, which is why it took so long for them to realize the house was on fire that night. So if you haven’t changed your smoke detector batteries in a while, Super Bowl Sunday is the perfect time to do so.
7. Enjoy life :’)
Ventimiglia shared a slew of other fire safety tips with us back in 2018, which you can also review before the football game. But after that, kick back, relax, and enjoy the game for Jack.
This post was originally published in February 2019, and was updated in February 2021.
Related Video: 7 ways to honor Jack Pearson this Super Bowl Sunday