Though families countrywide are sitting together for Thanksgiving this weekend, you sure as hell won't find the Duttons gathering around any dinner table and carving up a turkey, Yellowstone-style. Hell, Beth wouldn't even be able to make through a minute at the table, let alone come back for seconds! If there's anything for the Duttons to be thankful for, it's that John got to spend last episode "in reflection" without chaos and drama breathing down his neck. This week, however, the chickens have come home to roost. Let's break down what all that time spent thinking has wrought in Season Five, Episode Four.
First, we check in on Beth. She was having a pretty solid day until she smashed a bottle over another woman's head! (And was promptly arrested for aggravated assault.) To be fair, walking up to someone and saying, "I'm taking your husband home tonight" may have been a bad idea, but Beth overreacted for sure. Luckily, the California tourist seems fine. Jamie tells Beth that she just has a "grapefruit" on the top of her head, just like Daffy Duck when he's whacked by a big mallet. He gets his sister out of jail by convincing the victim not to press charges—and John later chides her for not having any impulse control. "It's always some bitch from California," Beth's cellmate remarks.
At the capitol, John is once again governing Montana. At a policy advisement meeting, he fires the entire 12-person staff because he thinks that they're all wonks, hiding behind closed-door meetings and wasting tax-payers' money. They wanted to talk to him about installing more solar panel fields, but John calls them "stupid" for not considering what happens to the sage grass that grows in the area. John's assistant says that eliminating their jobs would return around $1.6 million to the government. What will he do with that influx of cash? Who knows! But John Dutton isn't about to let some email-writers tell him how to run Montana—even if he has no idea what he's doing here.
Back in John's office, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife park officers alert him to the endangered wolves that went missing. We know that his own cowboys accidentally killed them, but Rip has kept John out of the loop. When John calls Rip, he denies it. "They will come after you with both barrels, Governor," one of the park officers tells him. So, how big a deal is this, really? "Avoid them, at all costs," Senator Lynelle Perry ominously warns John at lunch. Yellowstone is putting a lot of heavy drama into this wolf-centric B-plot, but I still haven't felt a sense of the actual stakes. Big fine? A year in prison? Let me know, Yellowstone! It certainly can't be anything on a Market Equities-scale that could take down the ranch.
Driving Beth back from the police station, Jamie forgets to hide the baby seat. His sister freaks out. "You cut my womb out of me, and God gave you a boy?!" she screams. Beth beats him as he's driving, but he stops the car and she gets out. Jamie attempts to fix things, but this is a big reveal. Even I forgot that Jamie had a secret son! He tells Beth that taking her to that clinic was the worst regret of his life, but it's too little, too late. "I'm gonna take him from you. I'm gonna rob you of fatherhood," she threatens him. "You don't deserve it, and he deserves better than you. Next time you see him, you can kiss him goodbye because he's as good as gone." Jamie returns to his car and screams, almost running over Beth on his way out.
Back on the Dutton ranch, the cowboys and the reservation come together to dig holes for the grave of Kayce and Monica's baby. At the funeral, they bury a dead horse as well, which is meant to symbolize a being that helps guide departed souls to the afterlife. John offers Monica comfort, revealing that once had a brother named Peter who was born early and lived for only 18 hours. "Peter lived a perfect life," John's father told his mother. "All he saw of this planet was you and all he knew was you loved him."
Surprisingly, at the end of the episode, we get an update on Summer Higgins. It comes from the prison the Duttons sent her to last season, as collateral damage in their fight against Market Equities. She's free—and way earlier than expected. Why? Because John Dutton now has the power to pardon her. "What took you so long?" she asks him. "I've only been Governor for a week," he jokes. They agree to make their relationship purely professional. Yeah, sure. Romance is in the air in Montana, and despite the fact that Market Equities is sent packing, Jamie still has dinner with Sarah Atwood. She flirts with Jamie, but we all know that she's just playing him to destroy his family. Beth snaps a photo of her ID and uncovers that Sarah Atwood isn't even her real name. Just as the senator told his father in the premiere, Sarah reminds viewers that all his enemies have to do now is just wait out his term. You know, until they can appoint a new governor to start the whole airport project over again. All John has bought himself is four years.
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