‘Yellowstone’ Fans Have A Compelling Theory For Who Will Die Next
Death has been hovering over Yellowstone all season like flies over trail scat. First, there were the wolves—the apparent spirit animal for Kayce Dutton, whose Season 4 vision signaled “the end of us”—shot dead on the Yellowstone ranch. Then there were Rip’s words, his sudden prophecy that John Dutton’s ascent to the governor throne would turn him into Nero, the Roman emperor who watched (and maybe even caused) Rome’s burning. Then there were all the flashbacks with Rip and Beth, which have continued into Episode 8 and seem to signal more looming tragedy. And finally, in that mid-season finale, the characters have cut the foreplay and just gone ahead and said it—assassins, we need assassins.
Episode 8 ends with two opposing camps: Beth and John vs. Jamie and Sarah—which is really just Beth vs. Jamie. The siblings have been quarreling for five seasons now in perhaps the longest and driest rivalry in the history of television. That rivalry is finally reaching the shit-or-get-off-the-plot point where the only end is for one to kill the other—and put us all out of this narrative misery.
Beth confers with John about taking Jamie, the single greatest threat to the family despite being the only one actually able to save the ranch, to the “train station,” i.e., killing him. At the same time, Jamie confers with Sarah about merking Beth by means of some “companies who do that sort of thing.” (Sigh. Groan.)
After a long wait, Yellowstone seems to finally be setting up an endgame, with either Jamie or Beth (or both) exiting the show.
Fans online have their own theories about the exact sequence of this endgame, which also includes some peripheral pieces, namely Rip.
And also, Summer Higgins (Piper Perabo).
On Reddit, one commentator made this prediction: “With Piper Perabo being stuck there on house arrest, I feel this hit[man] that’s coming is going to kill her thinking she’s Beth.”
Or as another commenter joked, riffing on playwright Anton Chekhov’s theatrical principle that all elements of a story ought to be used—the common example being the gun shown on the mantel in the first act being fired later—Summer represents “Chekhov’s Hippie.” Why put her in the story if she’s not going to be of any use? Well, this is her use.
The order of killing would then go: hitman kills Summer; Jamie calls victory; and then Beth or Rip kills Jamie. There are some other pieces unaccounted for, like John, who likes Summer and perhaps stops Beth from killing Jamie. But who knows. However this rivalry ends, it will likely be stupid—so every guess is a good guess.
There’s also room for theatrics, with Summer coming around to actually save Beth; the two are already beginning to reconcile their differences.
Summer’s placement in the house during this upcoming war, however, does seem to be an important feature. So look out for that.
Let’s hope we can at least finish the show without sitting through another dinner scene. At this point, we don’t care who dies.
Joshua St Clair is an Assistant Editor at Men’s Health Magazine.
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