Just How Can We Watch Yellowstone Streaming? Paramount Head Honcho Knows Fans Are Confused

John Dutton on Yellowstone.
(Image credit: Peacock)

Yellowstone tells the saga of the Dutton family with such compelling plots, wild characters, hilariously quotable lines, and delicious drama that fans just can’t get enough. The ratings have only gotten better as the seasons play out, and streaming is part of the popularity for people who didn't get the chance during the original Paramount Network broadcasts. Streaming Yellowstone, however, has proven to be somewhat confusing, as viewers can’t figure out which service carries the show, and Paramount is aware of the problem.

Before the merger of Viacom and CBS — now rebranded as Paramount Global — in late 2019, Paramount President and CEO Bob Bakish struck a deal with Peacock, sending them the streaming rights for Yellowstone. Bakish recently called the deal to give such a streaming darling to a competitor “unfortunate,” according to Deadline. The deal with Peacock came in the midst of the Viacom/CBS merger and a full year before the launch of Paramount+.

The CEO is probably thinking about those dollars Paramount could be collecting from Yellowstone fans, but for the viewers themselves, it’s just plain confusing. While Yellowstone airs on Paramount Network, Seasons 1-3 can only be streamed with a Peacock Premium subscription. Season 4, which ended recently and left viewers with questions about the fate of the Dutton family members, is available to stream for now on Paramount Network’s site but will move to Peacock in the coming months.

Paramount+ is also home to the Yellowstone prequel 1883, which just received an order for even more episodes, and will house the newly announced spinoff 1932. (As if the streaming wasn’t confusing enough, the spinoff titles require you to remember as many dates as history class!)

The new spinoff will follow a different generation of the Duttons during the time of western expansion, Prohibition, and the Great Depression. As the Dutton saga expands, so too does Sons of Anarchy vet Taylor Sheridan’s place at Paramount, as he's had a number of other series ordered by the service.

However unfortunate Bob Bakish now thinks the Peacock deal was, back in November 2020, he defended the sale, saying that decisions were scrutinized based on the expectations of selling vs. keeping the rights. Bakish said at the time, per Deadline

Content licensing is an important business but … our strategy is clearly evolving, particularly with Paramount+. We can’t keep all that for ourselves. It doesn’t make sense. It’s too much.

A similar deal was made with South Park’s streaming rights, but Paramount+ is set to reunite with that content, with Season 27 episodes to make their streaming premieres on Paramount+ in 2024, and the entire back-catalog coming in 2025. However it hasn’t been announced if or when a similar deal would be made with Yellowstone

In the meantime you can stream the first three seasons of Yellowstone on Peacock, or check out some great shows on Paramount+.

Heidi Venable
Content Producer

Mom of two and hard-core '90s kid. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.