‘Yellowstone’ Season 5 Is Now Underway—And It Will Be Different in One Big Way

·4 min read
‘Yellowstone’ Season 5 Is Now Underway—And It Will Be Different in One Big Way

Yellowstone season 4 is a wrap. The season closed with a gunshot and justice for the Dutton attack—the events that occurred at the end of season 3, when John, Kayce, and Beth were the victims of a mass murder attempt.

Now the wait for season 5 begins, though it won’t have quite the same buildup as the last go around. No lives were endangered in the ending of season 4. For now, the ranch seems secure, the Duttons safe. Still, threats loom. Market Equities has declared Beth public enemy number one, threatening to turn her family home into a public toilet. Political tides are shifting in Montana. And whatever Kayce saw during his wilderness vision portends “the end of us.” So there’s that.

Luckily, another season is imminent.

On the no-brainer decision to renew the series, Chris McCarthy, President and CEO of ViacomCBS Media Networks, explained, “Yellowstone’s record-breaking performance proves we’ve tapped a cultural nerve and unleashed a passionate audience from the center of the country to each of the coasts.” That nerve included over 15 million viewers for the season 4 finale. From the redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters, this show was made for cowboy-loving fans everywhere—and people who just watch to see a drunken Beth Dutton curse out a stranger.

Paramount also announced the return of all the main stars, including Kevin Costner (John Dutton), Luke Grimes (Kayce Dutton), Kelly Reilly (Beth Dutton), Wes Bentley (Jamie Dutton), Cole Hauser (Rip), and Kelsey Asbille (Monica). Guest stars Jen Landon (Teeter) and Kathryn Kelly (Emily) are said to now be season regulars, implying possibly more focus on the bunkhouse. Jefferson White (Jimmy) will also be returning, making both his and Emily’s storyline—which last season seemed to take both back to the 6666 Ranch in Texas—once again part of the Yellowstone plot (and so not yet its own series).

Season 5 has been in the works for some time, apparently. Early last year, Cole Hauser (Rip) said season four was directly setting up a fifth season.

Whether that will come before the 6666 spin-off series, about the Texas ranch (where Jimmy spent much of Season 4), it’s too early to tell.

Just know this: it’s happening.

When Will Yellowstone Season 5 Come Out?

Photo credit: Paramount
Photo credit: Paramount

This Monday, Paramount announced that Yellowstone's fifth season has begun production in Montana. The network has not yet announced an air date for the season, though production history can give us some clues.

Filming for season 4 had wrapped in November 2020, delayed due to the pandemic. It would be almost a full calendar year before the first episode aired; that delay may have also been pandemic related. Filming itself took nearly four months. If season 5 follows a similar schedule, we may not see episodes until 2023.

For optimism's sake, let's say late 2022.

How Many Episodes will Yellowstone Season 5 Be?

Season 5 will depart from previous seasons, each of which comprised 10 episodes. Paramount announced that Yellowstone season 5 will be 14 episodes long. It will also be split into two parts—which seems to be something of a trend in recent streaming television, with Ozark splitting its final season into two parts.

That decision, however, may allow part 1 to air earlier, given its shorter runtime than an entire season. But the 14-episode structure also means that production may take longer than the standard four months. It's a win/lose for fans.

Hopefully part 1 comes our way by year's end.

How Can I Watch Yellowstone Season 5

Also unique about this season: its platform. While previous seasons aired only on Paramount network and its online cable login, season 5 will air on Paramount+. It will be available to stream online the same time episodes hit cable.

What Will Yellowstone Season 5 Be About?

Photo credit: Paramount Network
Photo credit: Paramount Network

Fans are already speculating that season 5 will introduce the final conflicts of the series. During the season 4 finale, Kayce saw a vision of two paths leading to “the end of us.” He could be talking about himself and Monica, or the Duttons. Some have theorized that Kayce will have to make a choice between the Dutton family legacy (keeping the land) and his own family (keeping Tate and Monica). It’s the kind of character moment Kayce’s trajectory has been teasing since season 1. Season 5 may just be Kayce’s season.

Other developments include the Montanan governor’s race, which John still intends to win. Market Equities has further blacklisted Beth, threatening legal action and a takeover of the entire Yellowstone. And then there are the myriad of enemies the Duttons have made over the years. Maybe Riggins vows revenge after Beth was mean to him during her prison visit.

Whatever the threat, we expect some cowboy mayhem. And hopefully less bunkhouse nonsense.

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