Yellowstone Recap: The Mastermind Behind the Attacks Is Revealed

In Sunday’s Yellowstone, Kayce threw a Hail Mary to keep his family intact, Beth received an offer she couldn’t refuse, Jimmy got his first glimpse of his new life, Lloyd forgot that he was twice (three times?) Walker’s age, and not only we but Jamie learned the identity of the mastermind behind the attacks on the Duttons. Yeah, it was an eventful episode. And if you read on, we’ll go over every twist of plot.

‘THIS IS THE FIRST THING I EVER OWNED’ | Early on in “Winning or Learning,” John took Kayce to the rock at which his father had died — the same spot at which he’d proposed to Evelyn and later buried her wedding band. (Shortsighted, that last bit, he now realized.) There, the Duttons’ patriarch presented his golden boy with the file on Riggins that he’d obtained from Rainwater and tasked him with asking Jamie to question the inmate in hopes of learning who’d ordered the hits on their family. Why not just ask Jamie himself? “I can’t sit in a room with him,” John insisted, “till we have an answer to this, no matter what the answer is.” That taken care of, John encouraged Kayce to mend fences with Monica and Tate, lest he end up losing them. “I think I already lost ‘em,” Kayce replied. Meanwhile, at Jamie’s ranch, he and Garrett were happily playing house. When the attorney general thanked his father for giving him the strength to finally strike out on his own, Garrett insisted, “You always had the strength, son. I just helped you to find it.”

At work, Jamie was in his element, fully supporting Market Equities to the point that a lawyer whose client was concerned about the environmental impact of their development summed up the interaction thusly: “So the state’s position is essentially f—k off?” In a word, yes. When Kayce arrived with the Riggins file, he tried to make Jamie feel guilty about not calling or coming by after the attacks. But Jamie had been busy getting John police protection and keeping the murders at the ranch from being investigated. Those were self-defense, Kayce noted. Oh, Kayce. “There is what’s just, and there is the law — they are not the same thing,” Jamie explained. “And I am the reason no one is sitting in prison learning that hard lesson right now.” If he’d so much as called, it would have been seen as collusion. So there. When Kayce presented Jamie with the Riggins file and said that John wanted him to interview the inmate himself, he couldn’t believe his ears. “Of course I’ll do it,” he said. The brothers even exchanged “I love yous” before Kayce took his leave.

‘STUBBORNNESS IS NOT A BUSINESS STRATEGY’ | Off his meeting with Jamie, Kayce went home to find Monica giving Tate a bath. (Wait, what? Anyway… ) Kayce had come to the conclusion that neither his wife nor his son were going to get any better staying at the Yellowstone, so he suggested they all go to her grandfather Felix’s place until they could find somewhere nearby. The words had scarcely passed his lips before Monica had begun packing. “It ain’t permanent,” Kayce assured John as he left with his family. “I’ll just be back and forth for a while.” But it was clear from John’s expression that he didn’t think his favorite son would ever return. Elsewhere, Beth met with Caroline and Ellis. Well, Ellis only briefly, since he couldn’t handle Beth’s potty mouth. The upshot? Caroline offered Beth a job, sweetening the deal by suggesting that she could protect her father’s dream by finding Market Equities something more tantalizing to develop. Beth’s price? Market Equities’ controlling interest in Schwartz & Meyer. She intended to bankrupt Bob, then fire him. As she put it, “I want his f—king grandchildren on welfare.”

Back at the ranch, Lloyd had pretty much the s—tiest of all possible s—ty days. First, he clashed with Walker over how to best deal with the problem of cattle with pinkeye. Then, John gave the old guy side eye for taking “shortcuts” in his work. Then — oh yeah, there’s gonna be a few “thens” — Lloyd threw a kick and a punch at Walker in the bunkhouse that led to Laramie’s loverboy beating the crap out of him. Then — told ya — when Rip was forced to press “pause” on threatening Carter to break up the fight, he reminded Lloyd what the rule about fisticuffs was and threw him clear across the room. All that, and the only thing around to eat was something that looked like chili that Teeter had made from the parts of the cattle that nobody else wanted. (Cue someone saying, “I got an eyeball.”) Upon returning to menacing Carter, Rip told the kid, “You have no future, none, beyond this place” — unless he won back Beth’s trust. “There’s two roads in life,” Rip added. “One is you’re winning or learning, and the other is that you’re losing all the way to the f—king grave. Boy, you better choose quickly, or life’s gonna choose it for you.” Ah, Rip, putting the “tough” in “tough love” since the day he was born… whenever that was. (More on that shortly.)

‘YOU NEED SOME P—SY’ | When Beth returned home, she found on the doorstep the first of the stack of checks Travis promised he’d win John. “I stand corrected,” she was forced to admit. From there, she pitched the idea of her working for Market Equities as potentially being as useful as pushing Kayce and Jamie into public office. And unlike with Jamie, “my loyalty,” she pointed out, “is the one thing on this planet that you don’t have to think about.” Do what you reckon’s best, John told her before revealing that Kayce had left. Beth understood why. “There’s no peace in this place, Dad. There never has been.” Kayce and John were never bothered by it because they aren’t peaceful men. “Guess I’m not peaceful, either,” she added. She knew what her dad needed, though: to get laid. And to his horror, she was gonna get right to work on that. Before 4 am that night (morning?), Beth woke up Rip for her top-of-the-day lovin’ and, upon discovering that he didn’t know his birthday — “Being brought into this world wasn’t something that my family celebrated” — decided that he’d blow out the candles annually on September 28. 

En route to the Four Sixes, Travis — when not extolling the virtues of Roadhouse (“When I grow up, I wanna be Sam Elliot with Patrick Swayze’s hair”) — gave Jimmy a valuable piece of advice: Whether ranching or rodeoing, you’ve gotta do it for the horse. He or she is your partner. In any case, when the Sixes were done with Jimmy, Travis continued, he’d either spend the rest of his life on a horse or never get on another one. Finally, when Jamie got a look at Riggins’ prison records, he gasped. Among his former cellmates was — but of course! — Garrett. Question now is, will he try to cover for his biodad? Your thoughts on the matter? Also, do you really think Kayce will ever move back to the Yellowstone? Hit the comments.

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