Spoilers for Yellowstone Season 3, Episode 5, and that massive Jamie/Beth reveal are discussed below.
After theories and hints, Yellowstone finally told the brutal truth about the origins of Beth’s vitriolic hatred of her older brother, Jamie. A flashback sequence transported viewers back to reveal that Beth had gotten pregnant by Rip when she was 15 years old. After discovering this, she went to Jamie for help in seeking an abortion.
As the Yellowstone flashback continued, Jamie took her to Indian Health Services, where he learned the substantial personal cost of having an abortion performed there was getting sterilized. Upon returning to Beth, who was waiting in the truck outside, she asked if it was “okay” to which Jamie indicated it was, as she prepared to go inside.
It is unclear if Beth learned she would be sterilized beforehand as part of getting the abortion. I would assume she would. However, there is room for Jamie to have kept it from her. There are still a lot of questions after Yellowstone’s massive reveal, and the stars of the show only fueled more of them. Wes Bentley told Yellowstone’s Behind the Story segment:
I had sort of been aware of that Jamie had a hand in turning her into someone who's angry and cold. It's so deep, it's so intertwined, it's so complex, yet delivered in such a simple way, such a strong, storytelling way. . . The problems between Beth and Jamie, they're definitely talked about finally.
So, the incident at the heart of the issues between Beth and Jamie have been something we've discussed since before we started shooting the show. . . I had sort of been aware of what it was about the general idea.
What I didn't know was that Jamie directly chose, or said "yes" to the question of her being sterilized. . .That was shocking and hard to read. To me, it explains everything. . .There's a lot packed into that little scene for Jamie and Beth. There's a lot packed into that scene for a lot of people, I think.
There is undoubtedly a lot to sift through despite the brevity of the Yellowstone sequence. Jamie knew the consequences and let Beth go through with it. Again, it is unclear if that is where Jamie’s guilt ends, or if he deceived Beth and she had no idea she got sterilized until years later. That she hates him so much makes me think he lied to her.
The cast does not say anything that makes me lean one way in particular, but Kelly Reilly did say that she does not think that Jamie and Beth could get along in this life. Speaking of, Reilly also dished on Yellowstone’s colossal reveal and what she had to say sort of adds fuel to the “Jamie lied” side of the equation. On the reveal, Reilly said:
Literally, I have people screaming across the street, saying, "What, why do you hate Jamie so much?" Yeah, it wasn't a surprise, there has been a betrayal. . . It's this sort of heartbreak, and regret, and this secret, this devastating secret that she carries. That vitriol and that pain, and that grief, I think just comes flooding out of her. . . I was ready to play this side of Beth. She's an embodiment of someone who's a survivor, which is inspiring to me.
Kelly Reilly refers to what happened between Beth and Jamie as a “betrayal,” which leads me to think Jamie did not tell Beth that she would be sterilized. Otherwise, if he told her the truth upfront but let her go through with it, it makes Beth’s rage and “vitriol” less understandable. Yellowstone’s co-creator has said that Season 3 would explore their relationship further.
So, the latest reveal could just be the tip of the iceberg in terms of what Jamie told Beth about her future fertility. This could mean that Beth did not learn the truth until later, and Jamie now suspects that Beth may know but does not want to say it out loud, hence the mysterious things that Kelly Reilly and Wes Bentley have indicated in the past.
Do you think that Jamie told Beth that she would get sterilized as part of the abortion? Or does Beth resent Jamie for allowing her to make a choice she knew all about and now regrets? Vote in the poll below to voice which way you think the pivotal moment in Yellowstone history went down.