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10 Biggest Takeaways From Yellowstone's Season 4 Finale

Major spoilers below for Yellowstone’s Season 4 finale, so be warned if you haven’t yet watched!

Even though Yellowstone’s super-sized Season 4 finale did feature a few explosions that led directly into the episode’s main cliffhanger, “Grass on the Streets and Weeds on the Rooftops” thankfully didn’t end with the majority of the Dutton family seemingly dropkicking down Death’s door. Though there were, of course, plenty of death (and threats of death) on display, both in the present and in flashbacks, and some of those will definitely factor into where Season 5 takes these characters.

So without further ado — as in, “ado-ing Colby’s mom” — let’s dive into the biggest takeaways from Yellowstone’s Season 4 finale, starting with the thankfully non-destructive follow-up to John and Beth’s verbal fisticuffs in the penultimate installment.  

beth packing in bedroom on yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

John And Beth’s Bond Is Cracked, But Not Shattered

Even though the episode started off with Beth looking like she was about to hit the road in a fairly measured response to being told to leave, good ol’ Rip talked her back down to reality, and one apology later, she and John were back on a mostly level playing field, though there are a few ruts here and there that probably won’t ever be filled back up. In any case, Beth again proved her loyalty to the family, even with those she has disowned, and John even got to walk her down the figurative aisle, but more on that shortly. Though their fights always set precedence for even more candidly brutal discourse down the road, John and Beth’s bond is thankfully still just as alive as they are, which can’t be said for everyone…

jamie shooting garrett on yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

Jamie Chose Murdering Garrett As A Best-Case Scenario 

Yellowstone has featured some soul-crushing dilemmas and ultimatums in the past, but Beth’s three-option offer to Jamie was the equivalent of a college thesis. The first two options were obviously both rotten themselves, with one presuming he would be blamed in court for setting up the attacks, and the other involving Rip killing both Jamie and Garrett. Naturally, he took the option that came after he dropped down to his knees and begged Beth for his life: to take Garrett out of the picture altogether. It’s admittedly how I hoped Garrett’s story would close out, though I wanted Jamie to do it willfully, because of whatever justice it would bring, not because he was conned into it. 

Jamie begging Beth on Yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

Beth Set Jamie Up (Of Course) To Be The Family’s Pawn Again 

It would have been more than enough of an emotional ass-whupping just to have Jamie deliberately opt into murdering his biological father, and Beth didn’t even know that it would be immediately preceded by Garrett literally saying all the things that Jamie wanted to hear, regardless of how sincere the sentiment was or wasn’t. But that obviously wasn’t the only payout that Jamie was responsible for by taking Option 3, and Beth now has photographic evidence of Jamie dumping Garrett’s body in Wyoming. So now Jamie is back on the saddle, as it were, to do John and Beth’s bidding on the political side of things. Hell, Beth might even get Jamie to start wiping her ass after she shits in his breakfast each morning. The sky is the limit in Montana. 

beth and rip getting married on Yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

Rip And Beth Are Married! 

One of TV’s most beloved and lust-inspiring couples of recent years, Rip and Beth were destined to go the extra mile in their relationship at some point. Still, it was beyond shocking for it to go down in such an impromptu manner in the Season 4 finale. Though was it truly impromptu for everyone, considering Beth kidnapped a priest at gunpoint in order to make it happen? Regardless, the ranch-set vows may not have been part of a traditional fairy tale experience, but it made for a whirlwind of a celebration that perfectly matched the couple’s chaotic nature. It’s unclear whether Yellowstone will ever show viewers a more elaborately planned ceremony honoring Beth and Rip’s love, but it’s no longer as necessary as it once seemed.

jimmy and emily on yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

Jimmy Is Officially Moving To Texas And Is Engaged To Emily! 

Considering Jefferson White’s Jimmy was already reported to be heading up Paramount+’s in-development 6666 spinoff, this storyline’s eventual payoff was already laid out accordingly, and the finale did indeed feature Jimmy saying goodbye to the Yellowstone (and an a highly emotional Lloyd) to take a permanent leave for Texas. But what wasn’t telegraphed by the spinoff news was how much growing up Jimmy would do down in Texas, or that he would so quickly bounce into another lover’s arms while learning the ropes. Even after Episode 409’s emotional exchange in which Emily promised to wait for Jimmy, I never expected to see her to show up in Montana with him as his fiancé! Not that any kind of a wedding date has been set, though we can safely assume it won’t involve taking any religious figures hostage. And Jimmy doesn’t even have to feel guilty about any of that since John forgave him all things owed.

Mia angry with Jimmy on Yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

Mia Is Bigtime Jealous, Bruh 

Hot damn, the bunkhouse has had its share of ill-advised fights in Season 4, with Lloyd and Walker’s scuffles previously taking the spotlight. Now, however, the prize for Best Bunkhouse Brawl definitely goes to the jealousy-sparked slobberknocker between Mia and Emily. It was already weird seeing Mia back after her pissy reactions to Jimmy’s exit, with the comfort level depleted further by Jimmy and Emily’s arrival temporarily interrupting the boozy card game fun. But once Mia made the dumbass mistake of throwing a fist in Jimmy’s face, Emily’s protective side came out with hurricane-like force, and they threw down like nobody’s business. Since Emily came away joining the card game and drinking whiskey, and a bloodied Mia had Laramie take her home, I think we all know who won that fight. Get ‘em, Em! 

kayce on Yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

Post-Vision Kayce And Monica Are In A Weird Place Now

Not all of Yellowstone’s couplings came away from the finale with stronger bonds, however. Kayce’s rather trippy vision quest eventually took him to the edge of the cliff and showed him the dissolution of his relationship with Monica, a reveal that was set up by his earlier dream in which he was smooching a nude Avery. Of course, he also dreamed about his brother coughing up blood, and going into Rambo mode after being ambushed in a war zone. And he was shown two things during his vision, one of which seemed to gross him out. So was “the end of us” really the only thing that Kayce saw, or is he hiding a few details?

caroline warner railing on beth on Yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

The Duttons Are Now Caroline Warner’s Enemy And Prime Target 

When Beth thought she was going to either die or go to prison after meeting with Riggins, and then again with Jamie, there was a resignation to Kelly Reilly’s performance that made it truly seem as if one of those scenarios would play out, though neither one did. On the flip side, she didn’t really appear all that bothered by a livid Caroline Warner’s animated threats, despite the fact that the Market Equities CEO being the family’s most directly formidable and deep-pocketed enemy yet. I can't wait to see Jacki Weaver on the warpath in Season 5, especially considering Beth deserves most of this mess.

Summer in court on Yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

Summer Is Definitely Going To Prison For A Limited Stretch

I truly don’t understand what Summer was thinking here. Granted, John wasn’t astonishingly up front about how unsuccessful his conversation with the judge went, but he offered clear and concise advice in the moment when she asked for it — essentially to opt for a trial by jury over a plea bargain — and she foolishly went the other way. Her actual sentencing will end up being far lighter than what was handed down via a condemnation-filled speech, thanks to John’s additional influence, but Summer needs to learn how to READ THE ROOM. Which includes taking some of the judge’s diatribe to heart. 

carter smiling on Yellowstone

(Image credit: Paramount Network)

Carter Is Apparently Key To Keeping John Centered

When Finn Little’s soon-to-be-orphaned Carter showed up early on in Season 4, it was presumed he’d be a pillar solely within the Tower of Beth and Rip. And yet it’s Carter’s relationship with John that has seemingly had the biggest impact, in part because the young stall cleaner is so clearly in idolizing awe of the ranch owner. And it’d be one thing if John was just begrudgingly accepting of the situation, but it’s more than that, and Taylor Sheridan made that even more abundantly clear by ending Season 4 on them riding off into the morning sun together, the non-finalizing flip side to the traditional sunset ride. 

With all the heavy emotional baggage weighing John down and keeping him from wanting to get on a horse, Carter’s relative innocence and distance from the Dutton family’s horrors was enough to coax the ambush survivor out of his chair, though not without him shedding a few tears in secrecy. I won’t be surprised if Season 5 features a flash-forward or two of Carter having risen up in the ranch’s ranks, assuming the ranch hasn’t been turned into a public restroom like Caroline threatened. 

 Which of the moments listed above shocked you guys the most? How terrible is it that we may have to wait another year and then some to have new Yellowstone episodes in our lives? Thankfully, we still have the fascinating prequel 1883 to keep our eyeballs fixated and our brains locked into the Dutton family legacy. Check that western drama out when new episodes drop on Paramount+ every Sunday, and stay current with our 2022 TV premiere schedule to see all the other new and returning shows debuting soon!

Nick Venable

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.