'A Million Little Things' Season 2 Episode 17: A year after writing suicide note, Rome is thankful for his life
Contains major spoilers for season 2 episode 17 of 'A Million Little Things' titled 'One Year Later'
Just as Rome Howard (Romany Malco) was about to swallow the pills that would end his life, he received one call. It was from his friend Gary Mendez (James Roday). Rome missed that call because he had already made up his mind - he could take the depression no longer and was breaking under the pressure. He had made all the arrangements complete with a suicide note for his wife Regina (Christina Moses).
But when Rome missed that first call, he didn't expect Gary to call again. He missed another call, Gary called again. And like this, Gary called him seven times before Rome finally answered.
Gary had news for Rome - Jon (Ron Livingston) had killed himself.
This was completely unexpected for them because their best friend Jon was always the happiest of the lot. Why would he then jump to his death? As the question lingered in the air for a long while after Jon's death, episode 17 shows us how both Jon and Rome were suffering at the same time - only through Rome's past.
Rome's father Walter (Lou Beatty Jr.) finds out that Rome had almost committed suicide a year ago. Offended that Rome never told him about his suicidal thoughts, Walter gets upset and refuses to go for his therapy session - if his own son doesn't want to share his thoughts with him, why should he go to a therapist, he points out.
A stubborn Walter somewhere fostered feelings of anger for not being present when his son perhaps needed him the most. Rome tells him that this was exactly why he never felt like he could talk to his father - because he made it about himself. Left on his own, Walter is still upset, but for the wrong reasons. Until Regina visits him and reveals that she didn't know Rome was going to kill himself either - she happened to find his suicide note after Jon's death.
Episode 17 reassessed each character's life from the moment Jon left them. For Rome, especially, Jon's demise was the wake-up call to live better. Like he notes at the end of the episode, "All of us are in a better place not because he died but because he convinced us to live."
'A Million Little Things' airs on Thursdays at 10/ 9c on ABC.