- This Is Us -10 Theories About Madison’s Fate On ‘This Is Us’ — Including The Very Bleak
Kevin is getting a new love story on This Is Us Season 5 with the mother of his children, Madison. But, like many This Is Us characters before her, Madison may have already received the kiss of death. Because she doesn't seem to appear in any of the show's flash forwards with Kevin and his two kids, people have already started to wonder if Madison will die on This Is Us. And for a show so entrenched in the real-life losses and love of everyday life, this loss would be totally in step with the show — even if it would be an incredibly rough ride for Kevin.
In the future, Kevin does get that family he wanted with his two children in his "huge" house where a dying Rebecca is also living. But where's Madison? If you assume the two children are his children with Madison and Kevin and Madison go through with their marriage, she should turn up in the future, right? Well, the most obvious and also most jumped-to conclusion is that Madison isn't there because she has died.
The actor who portrays Madison, Caitlin Thompson, is married to none other than Dan Fogelman, the creator of the show, so perhaps this real-life connection behind the scenes is enough to save Madison. But considering Fogelman either lied or changed his mind about Madison's fate since he tweeted in 2018 he would never have Madison sleep with Justin Hartley's character, nothing is guaranteed. I mean, have you watched the show? So here are 10 theories about Madison's death on This Is Us.
1. Madison Will Die In Childbirth
Death during a complicated pregnancy is a real concern — research conducted by the Obstetrics & Gynecology journal found maternal morbidity is more common in twin pregnancies than single child pregnancies. But, unfortunately, death during pregnancy is also a major trope in TV and films, so the most common theory out there is that Madison will die in childbirth.
As one fan on Twitter pointed out, things have been a bit "too good to be true" for Kevin and Madison so far, and Madison's death during childbirth would be truly tragic if the show continues to show them falling in love. (Although Fogelman told Deadline their love story is "not just going to be this easy love story like some of our other love stories have been.")
We've been introduced to Madison's doctor and we know her history with an eating disorder, so even before This Is Us returned for Season 5, a poll on Reddit asked people how they'd feel if Madison dies in childbirth. While it may be too obvious and perhaps a bit lazy, the fandom is already preparing themselves accordingly.
2. The Pregnancy Complications
With the Season 5 finale jumping between Rebecca's labor with the triplets and Madison's urgent care visit, Twitter user @lgbtromanova brought up that this could be a clue about Madison's impending death. Rebecca lost Kyle during childbirth and since we can reason that both of Madison's children will live since Kevin has both a son and daughter in the future, it might mean she will die.
Kate also had her fair share of pregnancy complications. And now, we've learned that Randall's birth mother hadn't died by overdose following childbirth, so it seems the odds might not be in Madison's favor. While this tweet technically falls under the "Madison will die in childbirth" theory, it's potentially some solid evidence to consider.
3. After Madison Dies, Kevin Will Get Back Together With Sophie
If Madison does die, the next most popular theory is that Kevin will get back together with his childhood girlfriend turned wife turned ex-wife turned girlfriend turned ex again (did I miss anything?) Sophie. She'd have to ditch her fiancé and this time, it would have to be for good — not only for fans' sanity but especially with the added stakes of Kevin having two young children.
Sophie and Kevin have had their shot(s), so the show could decide not to revisit them as a couple, but since Sophie appeared in the Season 4 finale to laugh at Kevin's billboard after he found out he was going to be dad, their story might not be finished. Reddit user Emmie-B also mentioned that Sophie and Kevin said the next time they'd see each other would be when someone dies, so that could be an ominous clue that Madison's death brings them together.
4. Kevin: The Single Dad
This Twitter user still has Kevin ending up with Sophie... eventually. But first, @megzoshea theorizes that This Is Us will have Kevin living life as a single dad. Honestly, the storylines write themselves when it comes to a stressed-out and grieving Kevin trying to manage new parenthood alone, so how could the show not milk that drama? (Maybe Kevin's role as The Manny was some very early foreshadowing that he'd be responsible for children on his own one day.)
A single Kevin in real life wouldn't be like a sitcom and it's possible Kevin's substance abuse issues could come back up. But, as Gossipqueenie123 on Reddit wrote, single fatherhood would also force Kevin to grow up and step up.
5. After Madison Dies, Kevin Will Get Back Together With Zoe
Although Kevin's love story with Zoe was not as long and winding as his with Sophie, that doesn't diminish the connection he had to Beth's cousin. Twitter user @ejbm0 wondered if instead of Sophie, Kevin reunites with Zoe and she's endgame for him.
Zoe and Kevin broke up because she didn't want children, but This Is Us could give us a How I Met Your Mother-like twist. Zoe may not want her own biological kids, but perhaps, 10 years or so later, her love for Kevin could mean she's willing to help raise his children after they've lost their mother. A tiny clue this could happen that @ejbm0 pointed out is that Kevin in the future has a fancy coffee machine — a contraption Zoe would certainly approve of — which was shown at his house in the Season 3 finale "Her."
Another possible hint? Zoe actor Melanie Liburd told TVLine that she was supposed to return in Season 4 but couldn't due to scheduling conflicts with her show Power Book II: Ghost. And she added, "Every time I bump into Dan Fogelman, he's like, 'Yeah, we'll get Zoe back at some point.'"
6. Madison Dies & Kevin Is Married To Someone Else
Despite the incredibly interconnected web the Pearsons weave, there's a chance that Kevin could end with a character we haven't even met on the show... an unknown "someone else," as the above Twitter user mentions.
Though, in true This Is Us fashion, even a new love interest for Kevin would probably somehow be related to the Pearson family — maybe Kate's adopted daughter's birth mother? Just spitballing here, but the precedent has been established.
7. Madison & Kate Die Together
Madison isn't the only member of the Pearson crew missing in the flash forwards so far. Along with Miguel, Kate's nowhere to be found. Clearly, something happened based on Toby's behavior, so Twitter user @wofsy_stacy wonders if Kate and Madison die together, like in a car accident where Toby was driving. Woof. This is absurdly bleak and would probably be just too cruel to do to Kevin since he'd lose his sister and wife. (Also, to be clear, we did see Kevin's daughter in the Season 4 finale, "Strangers: Part Two," so at least she'd be spared in this grim possibility.)
8. Kevin Will Give His Daughter To Kate
Initially, we didn't know about Kevin's daughter since we first saw his son in "Her" and it took another entire season to reveal that he has another child. Although his daughter appears to be living with him in the future, Twitter user @Echo_L wondered if Kevin would give his daughter to Kate if Madison died. While this wouldn't be a permanent situation, it could be possible... though, Kate and Toby might have their hands full with Jack and their adopted daughter.
9. Madison Will Die Of COVID-19
This theory is one of the more out-there ones, but hey, let's consider everything. This Is Us is showing what it's like to live during COVID-19 with the Pearson fan quarantining and donning masks (even if some of their pandemic activities are suspect). So @ScarlettEHarris threw out there that if not from childbirth, Madison could die of COVID. Again, woof. But with death tolls in the U.S. continuing to increase, maybe This Is Us would want to make a statement.
10. Madison Dies, But She's Still The Love Of Kevin's Life
For a slightly sweeter theory (but still sad, we are talking about death after all), we turn to Reddit. Redditor CatDoctor wondered if Madison will die — not necessarily from childbirth, but later on. And Kadison's marriage will be more like Jack and Rebecca's in that she's the love of his life (sorry, Miguel). In this theory, there isn't another woman that takes Madison's place after she passes. Of course, if Kevin wants to find love again, he can. But it's kind of nice to think of him getting his big epic love story in an unexpected way.