In the “Yellowstone” recap, Beth discovers the true threat to her father’s ranch and Jamie’s first day as livestock commissioner ends with blood on his hands…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
“Yellowstone” season 3 got off to a bit of a slow start last week but that’s mostly due to the insanity that brought the second season to an end last year.
When you’re locked in a gun fight with a white supremacist militia, who kidnapped a child, while also facing off with a powerful pair of brothers hell bent on burning your family’s legacy go the ground, it’s easy to understand that you might need a moment or two to breathe in the following episode.
But there was no rest for the weary in the second episode as the major threat to the Yellowstone-Dutton ranch was revealed along with plans for progress that would virtually doom every rancher living near that valley in Montana.
Meanwhile, Jamie Dutton got to work at his new job as Livestock Commissioner but if there’s one thing we’ve learned about him through two seasons, it’s that he could manage to fuck up a cup of coffee. In his first official call as livestock commissioner, Jamie makes a decision that will end with blood on his hands.
As for John Dutton, he does his best to stay off the radar this episode as he enjoys some peace and quiet on the land he’s fighting so hard to hold onto while trying to remember why he’s fighting so hard in the first place.
With that said, let’s get to our recap of the latest episode of “Yellowstone” titled “Freight Trains and Monsters”…
A Simple Life
For the first time in weeks since he returned from his abduction, Tate not only manages to sleep through the night but he actually oversleeps while spending time at the makeshift camp where the cattle are now roaming on the ranch. Monica knew this would be the best possible medicine for Tate and his grandfather certainly agreed.
Of course, John is struggling to enjoy the serene surroundings because his phone keeps ringing every 10 seconds and with lacking reception, he’s not exactly having a great conversation with whoever is on the other end of the line. So John orders the entire camp to move on top of a nearby hill — but he’s not trying to get better reception. Instead, John wants to see “no service” on his phone so he can finally enjoy his ranch.
As for Beth, she wakes up the morning after her night with Rip and when she goes downstairs, he’s already dressed and ready while making her breakfast. He tells her that he ate hours ago but Rip is just happy to sit there and watch Beth enjoy her breakfast.
She’s embarrassed at first but Rip just holds her hand as she nearly melts in her chair while truly becoming comfortable around the man that she loves.
Meanwhile, Monica decides she wants to take a ride out to the campsite to visit Tate and her husband. Without many horses available, Rip orders once of the cowboys to hand over his to Monica while he takes out one of the spare animals from the barn.
The cowboy can’t help but notice the only horses left in the barn are “freight trains and monsters” — thus the title of the episode — but Rip tells him that’s his only choice. So the cowboy mounts one of the rowdy horses as Rip and Monica enjoy a good laugh while he tries to ride it to the campsite.
Once they finally arrive, Monica is elated to see Tate so happy and she decides to go after his father, who left that morning to go hunt for wolves.
When she finally tracks him down, the happy couple figure out this is just about as alone as they’ll ever get so the clothes start coming off. Just as they’re about to have sex in the woods, Monica spots the wolf that Kayce has been hunting.
Rather than jump up and run, Kayce tells her that if the wolf wants to watch, let him watch. And sure enough, they keep going and the wolf just sits down as if he doesn’t have a care in the world (or he’s really enjoying the show).
Back at camp, Rip thanks John for the cabin along with the letter that more or less made it official that he’s part of the family. Something tells me that letter is going to come up again before the season is finished because John almost looked confused as if he didn’t know what Rip was talking about.
Regardless, the two share a moment — or as much as these two are able to show emotion for family — and then it’s back to the business at hand.
With the camp moved across the ranch, the number of hands to work the land are starting to run scarce so Rip needs to hire somebody else. After previously hiring a woman to work with the bunkhouse boys, Rip thinks that might be a good idea again — and John agrees under one condition.
She has to be mean or ugly — one of the two.
Of course, Rip is concerned about running the bunkhouse considering that was supposed to be Kayce’s job but John assures him there’s no problem. After all, Kayce is the one who decided Rip should be the one running the bunkhouse.
And finally, Jamie arrives at the state house for his first day as the new Livestock Commissioner, taking over for her father’s old position. He barely gets through the door when a call comes in from local law enforcement asking for his help.
It seems two girls at the rodeo were roughed up and their horses stolen. Because horses were involved, that drifts into territory handled by the Livestock Commission and because law enforcement is short-handed, Jamie is asked to send an agent along as backup.
Jamie is also reminded that this situation will require for a message to be sent to the perpetrators that this kind of behavior won’t be tolerated.
So he calls for Agent Steve Hendon, who we’ve met in previous seasons, to come to his office for a special assignment. Needless to say, Jamie is going to regret that decision by episode’s end.
Following a morning breakfast at the ranch, Beth heads into work at Schwartz & Meyer where she speaks to her boss Bob about the company that has suddenly become very interested in the ranches in Montana. It seems Market Equities — the larger company that helped buy up Dan Jenkins’ old property — has sky high ambitions for Montana and his land was just the first step of many to come.
It doesn’t take long for Beth to deduce that Market Equities isn’t just interested in hotels and golf courses. They want to build an airport with a runway that leads directly to a posh ski lodge where the top one-percent can spend weeks at a time.
That means Market Equities will be buying up a lot of property so Beth is ordered to purchase even more land for Schwartz & Meyer as she prepares to deal with the person responsible for gobbling up property for her competitors.
Well it turns out Market Equities is using Goldman-Sach and the man in charge of real estate is none other than Roarke Morris — aka the man who was caught fly fishing in the Dutton’s river a week ago.
Beth already hates his name and she doesn’t expect to like him much more after going to see him to discuss his company’s plans for the Montana valley.
While flirting through an argument over Billy Joel or Jackson Browne lyrics, Roarke divulges to Beth that Market Equities is making a strong move into Montana. They will buy up as much property as they can to build that airport along with the ski resort. And they aren’t just building some random airport where the billionaires can park their private jets.
Instead, Roarke reveals they want to build a fully functional airport with 52 terminals with the ski lodge right nearby so the vacationers don’t have to drive too far after a long flight. And when it comes to the ranchers who own all the land around where Market Equities wants to build — Roarke promises they’ll make so much money selling to his clients that they will be ranchers no more.
Beth knows that’s not what interests her father so she’s immediately at odds with Roarke — and after being asked to mind his flower beds, she drives her car right through them. You know why? Cause she’s Beth fucking Dutton.
As for Rip, he holds a job fair of sorts to find a new ranch hand and that’s where he meets Teeter for the first time.
She’s a lasso swinging, tobacco chewing cowboy who just happens to be a woman. Her accent is so deeply Texan that hardly anyone can understand her. That’s why she’s the perfect candidate to live next to the rabble rousers occupying the bunkhouse currently. Rip hires her on the spot.
Later that night just as Rip is starting to relax, he hears a howling in the distance and he picks up his rifle to see what the hell is happening. When he makes it to the horse corral, Rip finds Beth howling at the moon while simultaneously deciding to roll around in the dirt.
For the first time in forever, Beth realized that nobody is around and she can finally do whatever she wants without anyone to see her — except Rip.
She asks him to take advantage of the same situation so Rip goes to flip on the lights and turns on some music. Beth wonders if they’re going to fuck in the dirt and Rip tells her they might get there eventually but first he wants to do something with her that no one else should get to see.
Rip then picks Beth up from the dirt and they share a slow dance under the moonlight.
Dances with Wolves
Back at the campsite, Tate is hungry for biscuits at dinner, which reminds John of a story from when Kayce was a boy of a similar age.
He tells his family along with the ranch hands about his wife making those same Dutch oven biscuits by the campfire that Kayce used to love so much as well. In fact, Kayce would constantly bother his mother to make them and after a long time of waiting, she would finally hand over the biscuits for her son to enjoy.
John remembers asking his wife Evelyn saying how much she hated making those biscuits and he wondered why she just didn’t make something else for Kayce instead. She then told him that if she didn’t make them, then in turn she couldn’t watch him enjoy it.
Sadly that was the last thing his wife ever said to him because the next morning he was out branding cattle on her birthday while she was taking the children for the horse ride that would lead to her death.
Just as the emotions wash over John, he gets up from the campfire as Kayce comes to join him. John wonders if you’re going to lose the person you love so much, what exactly are they fighting for? Kayce then reminds his father that they’re standing on the very reason they’re fighting so hard.
That night as almost everyone sleeps, Kayce hears a rustling outside so he grabs his rifle and walks out of the tent to see that same wolf staring back at him from the edge of the woods. Instead of shooting the animal, Kayce talks to the wolf while saying that he’ll leave it alone as long as it leaves the cattle alone.
A second later, the wolf runs back into the woods, away from the cattle.
John arrives and tells his son that his own father had the same ability to speak to the animals but it was a skill he never attained. It took a long time to find their way back to each other but John finally figured out a season ago that Kayce would be the man to lead the Yellowstone-Dutton ranch into the future because the land means just as much to him as it did to his father and the generations of Dutton’s before them.
And finally Agent Steve Hendon arrives at the rodeo where he meets one of the girls who was jumped and beaten up by two men.
The sheriff isn’t sure what he can do to send a message to make sure this type of thing doesn’t happen again but Agent Hendon has an idea of his own.
He loads up the perpetrators in the back of a horse trailer with their hands still bound by zip ties. He then drives out away from the rodeo while offering them a chance to learn from their mistakes.
Agent Hendon drives erratically, stopping and then racing down the road, swerving along the way. In the back, the two criminals are bouncing around like pinballs to learn never to assault women or steal their horses.
He arrives back at the rodeo with a smile on his face as he greets the sheriff after teaching these two scumbags a lesson they’ll never forget. Sadly when he opens the horse trailer, the two horse thieves aren’t just beaten up and bloodied — they’re dead.
Later that night after Jamie returns home from his first day on the job, he gets a collect call from the local jail. It’s Agent Steve Hendon — he’s wearing an orange jumpsuit after being arrested. He calmly tells Jamie “we have a problem.”
A pair of dead criminals in the back of a horse trailer killed by a livestock agent certainly fits the bill as a problem.
“Yellowstone” will return with a brand new episode next Sunday night at 9 p.m. ET on the Paramount Network.