Spoilers below for the first nine episodes of Yellowstone Season 4, so be warned if you haven't yet caught up!
Yellowstone co-creator Taylor Sheridan is a smart dude by all accounts, so he knows what kind of viewer anticipation has been built up for the Season 4 finale, especially following the cliffhanger-heavy way Season 3 closed out. Whether he chooses to go wildly big or more subtly introspective to wrap up the latest season, fans can be sure there will be memorable dialogue and revealing moments aplenty. And what better time than the holiday season to craft a wish list of situations and resolutions that I am hopeful Yellowstone will deliver as 2022 begins.
Lest anyone think this is a no-holds-barred rundown that stretches beyond reality’s limits — the reveal that John Dutton is actually the long-lost twin brother of Man of Steel’s Jonathan Kent — I’m keeping my hopes grounded by what we’ve seen throughout Yellowstone’s fourth season. (Which, at least at this point, is not part of the DCEU.)
Jamie’s Attack Connections Being Formally Outed To The Family
Even though Beth has been somewhat unfairly blaming Jamie all season long for the burn marks on her back (along with everything else), Wes Bentley's black sheep sibling has done himself zero favors by hiding sensitive and highly relevant information about his biological father's ties to the Season 3 attacks (not to mention his developing relationship with his own son). It's fine and dandy that Season 4 hasn't yet given the rest of the Dutton family the means by which to connected those dots, but those chickens are in dire need of returning home for roosting in the finale. I don’t fully expect that situation’s endgame to fully play out or anything, but what better way to end this season than with the promise of Season 5 starting off with heightened retribution?
John And Beth Putting Issues Aside To Go After Jamie (And/Or Anyone Else)
Even if Jamie somehow isn’t the character wearing the biggest target on his back, head and chest at the end of Season 4, I’m still going to need John and Beth to reverse course on their heart-churning arguments in Episode 409 in order to team up on a shared attack. Sure, Beth is never going to forget hearing the word “disappointed” fall out of her father’s mouth like an ego guillotine, but she can either lean into further pissing him off out of spite, or she can do her best to return to his good graces, which is what we all want after seeing them scheme so well together earlier this season. Seems to me a Dutton-approved form of revenge would be a mighty fine way to go about rekindling all that. (Not that I think Beth would have to prove anything to John if this were a real-life scenario, but this family works in specifically toxic ways.)
Jamie Ending His Relationship With Garrett One Way Or Another
Tied to the above points is the lingering presence of background threat Garrett, who has been stoking Jamie’s flames of self-confidence all season, but to what real ends? Jamie and Christina are now exceedingly aware that his history being rife with closet-splintering skeletons does not bode well for a more public office, with his real pop’s murderous past being one of the biggest thorns. Yet Garrett keeps pouring it on, and his minor diner confrontation with John in Ep. 409 made it even more clear that his return to Jamie’s life has been as much about revenge as John’s own Season 4 arc. If not more so, since that’s just about all he has going for him. I hate to lose a solid actor like Will Patton from this frothy mix, but if he’s just going to use Jamie as his weapon instead of coming out to fight for himself, he probably needs to take a ride to the train station posthaste. And it should most certainly be Jamie who is driven to bring him there.
Rip And Beth Enjoying Their Private Wedding Ceremony
Considering we last saw a concerned Rip closing the door on Beth sobbing along to one of Walker’s doom-laden ditties, I’m guessing their next conversation won’t be about the invitation list to their not entirely legal wedding. And there are probably too many fires to put out for them to devote immediate focus on making such nuptials happen. But just as I want Beth and John to speedily recork all their bad vibes, I want her and Rip to cast aside any ill feelings to make way for everlasting love and devotion and sexiness, in a place where bad memories haven’t eroded everything yet.
Kayce Unlocking Truly Revealing Memories
When compared to how other storylines have progressed throughout Season 4, Kayce has been part of a fairly fluid narrative, with highlights including his post-attack connection with John, his family life reigniting after moving away from the ranch, and Avery’s unexpected attempt to get him to step outside of that family life. So I guess it makes all the sense in the world for him to go through a tribal ritual in order to discover the “true” inspiration for his wolf sightings. But I hope the outcome is some kind of super-revealing vision or deeply shrouded memory from his past. I definitely do not hope the show pays off on Kayce’s fear that going four days without food or water will kill him.
John Cutting Jimmy Loose To Return To Emily In Texas
Another one of Yellowstone’s most offbeat storylines has been Jimmy’s Season 4 journey to the 6666 ranch in Texas, and his efforts to become more refined in the world of cowboying. His newly formed relationship with Kathryn Kelly’s Emily has been surprisingly emotional, and it was a heart-stomping bummer to learn that Jimmy is due back at the Yellowstone ranch in Montana. But considering Emily agreed to wait for him to return, I have to believe that Jimmy will find a way to get back to Fort Worth with or without John’s good graces left intact. The most ideal way would obviously involve everyone in agreement, but considering breaking his word to John is what eventually led him to Emily and the Four Sixes, who’s to say breaking it again won’t also lead to good fortunes?
An Official First Look At The 6666 Spinoff
Speaking of the iconic Texas ranch, Yellowstone’s Season 4 finale would be the perfect time to unveil the first trailer for this universe’s second spinoff, currently titled 6666. After all, the season premiere introduced the prequelized world of 1883 through its flashback sequence with Tim McGraw’s James Dutton, with the Paramount+ series’ trailers airing frequently during the flagship drama’s episodes. And Jimmy’s whole plotline this season has presumably been building toward the spinoff’s present-day storyline. So, assuming there’s even something to show fans by way of new footage, I’m optimistic that we’ll get our first peek on Sunday night.
Summer Getting Minor Revenge On Beth
While Piper Perabo’s Summer Higgins hasn’t fit squarely into either a heroic or villainous mode since she was introduced, it’s fair to say she’s gone through some undesirable and undeserved circumstances specifically because of Beth’s words and actions. So even though her future will almost certainly involve bouncing the hell out of Montana, I’d be lying if I claimed to be perfectly okay with Summer exiting without giving Beth some of her own medicine. Nothing that would truly make the protester come across as a more powerful character or anything. Never that. But at this point, I’d legitimately take something as immature as Summer smashing a (vegan) cream pie in Beth’s face.
I could technically keep this list going for a while, with other entries including "Rip Destroying Walker's New Guitar," "Teeter Becoming A Radio Host," "Caroline Warner Roasting Everyone In The Bunkhouse" and "The Reveal That Roarke Didn't Actually Die From The Snakebite In The Season Premiere." But then by the time it was all said and done, Season 5 would be debuting.
Yellowstone's Season 4 finale airs on Paramount Plus on Sunday, January 2, at 8:00 p.m. ET. To see what new and returning shows viewers can devote their attention spans to in the near future, head to our 2022 TV premiere schedule!
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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