Why Yellowstone's Cole Hauser Thinks Fans Are So Drawn To Rip Wheeler

Yellowstone Rip Wheeler Cole Hauser Paramount Network
(Image credit: Paramount Network)

When it comes to the fan-favorite characters of Yellowstone, Cole Hauser’s Rip Wheeler is way up there. Rip is the contemplative, brooding, and compelling ally of Kevin Costner’s John Dutton. Together, they have worked indefatigably to keep the Yellowstone ranch alive, a journey you can relive on Yellowstone’s extra-packed Season 2 DVD/Blu-ray set, which is out now.

What makes Rip such a fan-favorite? Yellowstone fans probably have a lot of reasons for liking Rip. But, is there is a particular quality in him that appeals to Cole Hauser and that he also thinks has drawn fans to him, as well? While promoting the release of Yellowstone Season 2 on DVD and Blu-ray, Hauser weighed in, telling me:

Yeah, I mean, there’s several. One is his loyalty. Another is his love for Beth. Also, his love for John and his family. The quality of someone who puts himself in a dangerous place, you know, for others. He's kind of a throwback man that doesn't really truly exist, at least not very often in modern times. So, I think he's one of those kind of classic guys who you love, and you want him to fight for you, and maybe even wanna have a little bit of sex with him. [laughs]

Rip has undoubtedly proven himself to be loyal to the Duttons throughout Yellowstone’s first two seasons. However, it has not come without John Dutton testing him. In Season 2, John made a game-changing move for the ranch that saw Rip step down from his post, so that John’s son Kayce could take it. This drew ample criticism from Beth, who shared her displeasure over it. John had his reasons, though.

As you can tell from watching Yellowstone Season 2 on DVD and Blu-ray, Rip’s loyalty and quiet perseverance finally got recognized by John. In a tear-jerking scene in the Season 2 finale, John gave Rip his due by recognizing him as a son, which was a very emotionally satisfying scene, if I do say so myself.

Cole Hauser also mentions Rip’s love for Beth being another part of his character’s appeal. Who could forget how Rip heroically saved Beth from that brutal attack? He was shot multiple times doing it, too! Rip proved to fans, and the Dutton family, just how much he loved Beth in that Yellowstone episode.

For those hoping their love can survive whatever Yellowstone has coming Beth and Rip’s way, there is good news. Fans did not just get that epic Season 3 tease about the couple’s future. Cole Hauser has also teased that a “beautiful” romance lies ahead!

You can relive it up to this point via Yellowstone Season 2’s three-disc DVD/Blu-ray set. If you want to hear from Cole Hauser and his co-stars reflecting on the second season, you can do that too. Kelly Reilly talks about fans’ reactions to Yellowstone’s characters, and Kevin Costner dishes on how the drama has resonated with them.

As for Rip’s relationship with Beth’s brother Jamie, Cole Hauser has revealed where Rip’s relationship with the Dutton siblings stands, heading into Yellowstone’s next season. Can you be friends with the love of your life’s brother, who she detests? Rip will undoubtedly find out.

Thank goodness Cole Hauser agreed to star in Yellowstone! The Rip character would not be the same without him in the role.

You can see why Rip is such a fan-favorite via the Yellowstone Season 2 DVD/Blu-ray three-disc set, which is now available! A premiere date for Yellowstone Season 3 has not been set yet by Paramount Network. While waiting for Rip’s story to kick off again, you can check out this winter’s other premieres.

Britt Lawrence

Like a contented Hallmark movie character, Britt happily lives in the same city she grew up in. Along with movies and television, she is passionate about competitive figure skating. She has been writing about entertainment for 5 years, and as you may suspect, still finds it as entertaining to do as when she began.