Photo: Dia Dipasupil (Getty Images)

NBC’s This Is Us might have one of the strongest ensembles on TV, but that hasn’t caused the tear-jerking series to slack in the guest star department. Previous episodes have seen the likes of Katey Sagal, Sylvester Stallone, Denis O’Hare, and Katie Couric swing by, and the show’s next installment will score another huge get in Cosby Show alum Phylicia Rashad.

Entertainment Weekly reports that Rashad, who currently stars in Empire, will play a key figure in the back story of Beth (Susan Kelechi Watson) in what Deadline says will be the third season’s 13th episode. She’ll play Beth’s mother and, if Rashad’s lineage of onscreen matriarchs—including her turns in Creed and its sequel—is any indication, her character will again shine as a beacon of wisdom and hard-earned grit.

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This Is Us returns to NBC for the second half of its third season on January 15.