Susan Kelechi Watson 'Proud' of 'This Is Us' : 'The Way That [The Show] Portrays Black Men Has Been So Touching'

The actress says the show's incredible popularity has been a surprise to her and her costars, but it's all thanks to the unique way it has related to viewers

Susan Kelechi Watson isn’t just appreciative to be part of a hit show — she’s deeply moved how This Is Us depicts black men in such a positive light.

In a sit-down interview with PEOPLE Now, the actress who plays Beth Pearson on the NBC drama reflected on the emotional scene where Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) showed his commitment to his adopted son, Randall, by physically holding him on his back while doing push-ups.

“The way that it portrays black men, for me, has been so touching,” says Kelechi Watson. “I mean, I’ve watched over the years black men being killed constantly — people filming it and nothing happens. So to watch a man say, ‘You are beautiful and you are worthy and you are my son and I love you,’ and speak that into this young man and you see a really beautiful young black boy, that has meant a lot.”

She continues to say, “It’s meant a lot because I don’t know that we understand how much images affect us and change our perspectives.”

NBCUniversal Portrait Studio, March 2017
Maarten de Boer/NBC/Getty

The actress says the show’s incredible popularity has been a surprise to her and her costars, but it’s all thanks to the unique way it has related to viewers.

“None of us expected this,” reveals Kelechi Watson. “We thought it was good, and we were hoping other people thought it was good and loved it as much as we did, but we are really just ecstatic. Like I am — I haven’t been part of a project that’s touched people like this, you know? It really touches people on a very deep level. You don’t cry for nothing.”

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

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