Spoilers below for the latest episode of Yellowstone, so be warned!
For a couple of years now, Yellowstone fans have had various narrative bones to pick with the hit drama regarding characters and plotlines that basically disappeared without further updates. Well, one of those quasi-mysteries was partially solved with the episode “Under a Blanket of Red,” and in a way that makes things extremely complicated for all members of the Dutton family. Just when it seemed like Jamie might find a way back into the rest of the clan’s graces, too. Shucks.
Now let’s take a quick trip down memory lane before pondering how it will all affect some of these characters’ futures as Yellowstone Season 4 continues. (While also still somehow wondering if Garrett is actually guilty concerning the attacks on the fam-fam.)
Who Was That Returning Character?
If you’re not a viewer that likes to spend time waxing on about Yellowstone’s biggest unanswered questions, you might have been scratching your head once Katherine Cunningham popped back into the mix near the end of the episode, small child in hand. (Or the whole arm, technically.) First introduced midway through Season 1, Cunningham recurred as the politically motivated Christina, who served as Jamie’s campaign manager on his ascent to becoming the Attorney General.
Naturally, things got hectic once their relationship went from the office to the bedroom to Splitsville, and it was after they broke up when Christina revealed that she was pregnant with his kiddo, and that she had some mighty strong suspicions about what really happened to the reporter he killed. She left Jamie with an ultimatum of sorts, saying he could stay with the rest of the dysfunctional-to-put-it-lightly Duttons, or he could choose to uproot and start anew with a family that wasn't responsible for a hefty percentage of deaths just outside the Montana state line.
After that: complete and utter silence, which caused some fans to wonder if Taylor Sheridan somehow forgot that Jamie had a child out there somewhere. Which is of course a ridiculous idea, with Sheridan bringing Christina & Li’l Co. back at the most opportune moment to create loads of strife and misery for everyone.
How Christina’s Return Complicates John’s Revenge Plans
Weirdly, “Under a Blanket of Red” was intentionally edited so that viewers were not shown explicit proof that Will Patton’s Garrett was indeed responsible for talking to the imprisoned Terrell Riggins about the attacks made on the Duttons. We didn’t see Riggins answer the question, and Jamie didn’t get to accuse Garrett of anything before Christina came out, so I’m not 100% sure what the deal is there. But his anger had certainly shifted by the end of the episode, making it likely that he’ll opt to defend his flesh and blood against his adopted family, at least in the nearest future.
Which means Jamie is going to have to do some quick-footed thinking in lying to Kayce and John about who actually called for the attacks. It’s not clear if Jamie would be willing to set up Riggins’ death after working the immunity deal, but manufacturing a dead end is probably going to be his best bet at this point, so that no one is able to go back behind him with their own line of questions.
Unless, of course, Jamie actually does want Garrett to be the held-responsible party for everything. But he would need to make that happen in a way that doesn’t immediately make Christina flee with their son, especially since she seemed to have made quick friends with Garrett upon her arrival. It’s not going to be an easy road forward for Jamie, no matter which way it goes, and it’ll be worse if John and others catch him in the act of lying. Speaking of…
How Christina’s Return Could Factor Into Jamie Vs. Beth
Something big is likely going to happen between Jamie and Beth this season, with Kelly Reilly potentially teasing Beth dropping the info bomb to Rip that she was pregnant for him during that life-changing abortion when she was a teen. That is a giant and presumably deadly can of worms for this show to open all on its own, but Christina’s return sets up additional ammunition for Beth to use in ruining Jamie’s life.
Considering the lion’s share of Beth’s antagonism towards Jamie goes back to her abortion and sterilization, I can’t imagine anything good coming from her ever learning that Jamie has a child of his own. So it’s definitely going to happen, and I can only hope that Beth keeps her crosshairs on other adults and doesn’t hurt any babies in the process. Maybe her high from taking down Bob Schwartz will make her slightly more empathetic in the coming weeks. Or not. Yeah, probably not.
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.
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