This Is Us is set to return in just a few days, and based on the latest footage and cast interviews, it’s clear we have a LOT to be excited about. But we’ve been a little apprehensive knowing that the untimely and heartbreaking demise of our beloved Pearson patriarch, Jack (played by Milo Ventimiglia), is still ahead of us.

We can all rest a little easier, though, as his on-screen wife, Mandy Moore, has assured us that Jack will still be around for a little while longer.

“Milo is No. 1 on the call sheet — he isn’t going anywhere,” the 33-year-old actress told People, giving the show’s viewers a reason to let out a collective sigh of relief.

The singer went on to explain just how integral Ventimiglia is to the cast, saying, “He is our leader. We call him our actor department head. If you want to know what’s going on in the show or have a question about something, Milo, without fail, has the answer.”

He’s also her support system off-screen: When the recently engaged star had an unfortunate run-in with a shower door, her on-screen hubs was right there to show his support, sporting a matching shiner of his own in solidarity.

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We’re certainly relieved to hear that the cast will remain a family for the time being, but we’re anxious to find out what will unfold in season two. According to Moore, the series is “better than ever.”

“We just watched the first three episodes with the cast the other night together and I think I was really struck by how it’s equal parts touching and laugh-out-loud funny,” she said. “I’m really proud of it. Everybody just did such remarkable work across the board again, and I hope people are going to be happy with it.”

Don’t let the laugh-out-loud comment fool you, though — Moore also warned that there are some good sob-fests ahead. “We’re all having so much fun and it’s very emotional. It’s sort of our signature. If [fans are] looking for a good weep, they won’t be disappointed.”

Better get that tear-resistant waterproof mascara and a box of tissues ready — the season two premiere of This Is Us airs on NBC next Tuesday, September 26.

Are you excited for season two of This Is Us? Let us know @BritandCo!

(Photo via Ron Batzdorff/NBC)