This Is Us Sneak Peek: Phylicia Rashad's Carol Returns to Call the Shots in Beth and Randall's House

There's a new sheriff in town in the Pearson house — and the formidable Mama C appears to be running things at home.

PEOPLE has an exclusive first look at Tuesday's episode, titled "I've Got This," which sees the return appearance of actress Phylicia Rashad, who plays Carol Clarke.

When her daughter Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson) was with husband Randall (Sterling K. Brown) on a road trip to learn more about his biological mother in New Orleans, Carol was in Philadelphia looking after the couple's three daughters Tess (Eris Baker), Deja (Lyric Ross) and Annie (Faithe C Herman).

And now, with everyone living under the same roof, Carol is finding things to fix amid the chaos of remote learning and spending a lot of time together amid the COVID pandemic.

"Tess, phone can wait until after school okay?" Beth asks her daughter, who is spending some free time between classes eating potato chips and focusing on her cell. "I'm texting with Alex whose in my math class, technically it's school-related so I'm good," Tess says in a dismissive manner.

Meanwhile, Deja and Tess are fighting over the remote on the couch nearby, and Carol comes down the stairs to find disfunction in the living room. "Ladies, ladies. Turn off the television, let's clean up this mess. Tess, let's see if we can find something healthy in the kitchen," she says as the girls tidy up and promptly follow their grandmother's directions.

Witnessing the power shift slightly changing, Randall asks: "Mama C, what time does your train leave tomorrow?"

"You trying to get rid of me Randall?" his mother-in-law asks as he responds, "No ma'am, I was just…," but not before Carol tells him and Beth: "Oh that's good because Amtrak has a no-change fee policy, so I delayed a week. Seems you can use an extra set of hands around here."

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Fans last saw Carol in October 2019 during the fourth episode of season 4 when she came to visit for the opening of Beth's dance studio. Audiences first met the matriarch in season 3 during the Beth-focused episode "My Little Island Girl," which explored the origins of Beth's love of dance and her relationship with her late father as well as the tension between her and Carol over the years.

Rashad, 72, has earned two consecutive Emmy Award nominations for her This Is Us role in 2019 and 2020 in the outstanding guest actress in a drama series category.

This Is Us airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.


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