Spoilers below for Yellowstone‘s latest episode, so be warned if you haven’t yet watched!
With each week that passes, not many guarantees can be assured as far as general life goes, but it is set in (a certain colored) stone that Yellowstone will deliver some of the best dialogue on TV, and that streak doesn’t seem like it’ll be broken at any point during Season 4. Not as long as Kelly Reilly’s Beth Dutton is still walking this planet alongside Cole Hauser’s Rip Wheeler, anyway.
The latest episode, “Winning or Learning,” unveiled a potential whopper of a reveal in seemingly proving that Jamie Dutton’s biological father Garrett is responsible for the attacks on the Duttons. And while Wes Bentley’s “Oh my God,” could have technically been one of the entries in this list, it didn’t quite make the cut. But keep reading to see what did! (And be sure to check out our prior features for the first two installments, as well as for Episode 3.)
1. “Jimmy, luck ain’t got a fuckin’ thing to do with it.”
While Travis’ “my shit don’t smell” attitude would be a grind to deal with on a daily basis, at least for anyone in Jimmy’s position, it’s a hoot to watch Yellowstone co-creator Taylor Sheridan deliver the character’s lines as if liquid confidence was running through his veins as opposed to blood. And this is a solid lesson for Jimmy to learn, too. After all, it wasn’t bad luck that caused him to fall off of that horse and injure himself; it was a combination of a limited skillset and dwindling conviction. And if Jimmy thinks that anything Travis does is guided by luck, then he’s got a world of learning to do.
2. “We got so much to talk about, why aren’t we talking?”
Though Luke Grimes’ Kayce specifically delivered this line to Kevin Costner’s John ahead of the patriarch’s big reveal, it could easily be a subtextual logline for every one of the Duttons, along with several other main characters in this show. Everybody has a ton of secrets to share, but nobody is overly willing to share them, unless it’s for the right cause. (And the right cause is always “keeping the Duttons’ land for the Duttons,” clearly.)
3. “None succeeded, though I did dry hump some lawyer’s girlfriend in the coat closet. That was interesting.”
I have a pitch for a reality-based game show: have Beth Dutton go into various kinds of waiting rooms, from medical to vehicular maintenance and beyond, and just have her start telling sordid stories about her past, to see who would be the last person to stick around while still listening. John Emmet Tracy’s Ellis Steele did not last very long at all, so nobody should place their bets on his shoulders.
4. “I came up at a time when the corporate ladder was greased to keep women off it. I climbed it anyway, stepping over some little bitch like you on every rung.”
Perhaps the best part about Caroline Warner’s first meeting with Beth is the way she speaks without all the emotional hellfire and brimstone that Beth affixes to her barbed declarations, while still managing to drive home her points with steely candor and resolve. Very few characters could walk away intact after calling Beth a bitch while comparing her to other stepped-over women, but Jacki Weaver’s corporate exec is nowhere near as fragile as many of the people that Beth has crossed paths with. Which may or may not bode well for Beth as a future employee.
5. “Behind every milestone of human history stands a monster, and that’s our monster.”
You can tell this line came from Caroline and not Jamie because it’s said with a mild sense of fascination and reverence as opposed to absolute disgust. But regardless of where it came from, it embodies multitudinous truths across a wide spectrum. From the atrocities done to native populations in this country’s youth to the smaller-scale atrocities that Beth wants to rain down on Schwartz & Meyer, monsters definitely aren’t a rarity in this world. I just wouldn’t go calling Beth a monster to her face.
Jamie certainly had a good reason to avoid communication with the rest of the Dutton clan in the aftermath of the attacks, and it wasn’t because he was guilty of setting them up. Rather he had to keep his hands clean while sweeping a lot of their retaliatory actions under the rug. And if that wasn’t enough to explain why he didn’t go visit John in the hospital, his Beth-related reasoning certainly was. I do wonder how much partying he would have done if Beth had died in that explosion, assuming he ever would have stopped.
7. “Then he’s in trouble.”
While Yellowstone does put out videos every so often spotlighting certain characters’ wisdom, I’m hoping for an eventual coffee table book of insights from Kevin Costner’s John Dutton. The line above made me chuckle quite a bit in referencing Carter pissing Beth off the day before. That’s a state of being that no one wants to be in, and that includes John himself.
8. “Sum Bits.”
She may not have very many lines on a week-to-week basis, but dammit, Teeter is gonna make her few seconds in the spotlight count. Who else was trying to keep her beh-beh Colby and the rest of the bunkhouse posse fed in Gator’s absence? Nobody. Which tautologically means that nobody else was cooking cow eyeballs and nostrils and intestinal lining and whatever else goes into this particular meal. So I guess she can be seen as either a hero or a villain for her actions, but I’ll be damned if that isn’t the best name for a slapdash stew.
9. “What a fuckin’ mess you made of your last second chance.”
Even though Rip’s attempt to verbally ream Carter was interrupted, he at least got out the above line, which is such a well-put turn of phrase. For all intents and purposes, Rip and Beth probably are the last possible saving graces that Carter can rely on, and there’s likely no future for him outside of the ranch. Although I have to say, it was a bit much when Rip later brought up Carter’s father addiction-related death, even if the kid isn’t one to mourn about such things.
10. “You wanna fight somebody, you come fight me. I’ll fight you all fuckin’ day.”
All the time that Lloyd had to get physical with Walker outside the bunkhouse, and he had to go and throw hands (and feet) inside in the pathway of Rip’s wrath. But while he was the recipient of a total ass-whooping, it was Ryan Bingham’s Walker on the receiving end of the rage-dripping words above. And you just know Rip has been waiting for the chance to go off on Walker again after their prior encounters that didn’t end with the elder rancher’s fists slathered in the former inmate’s blood and bone-bits.
11. “Why do all my children have to leave to find happiness?”
While many of the best lines in Episode 404 were fueled by anger, John’s inquiry about the lack of togetherness on the ranch was one born of sincere contemplation, mixed with remorse. (Not, like, enough remorse to have done anything differently in the past, mind you, but some.) He has to understand deep down that living on the ranch, especially in recent years, is akin to living in the middle of a battlefield, which is not the ideal kind of life for those who weren’t raised by other Duttons, such as the reservation-seeking Monica, whose marriage to Kayce might well be knocking on death’s door if location changes weren’t possible.
12. “Best movie ever made: Road House.”
For all the times that Yellowstone has delivered shocking moments throughout its three seasons and change so far, Travis Wheatley’s belief that Road House is the best movie ever made is the exact opposite. (Foreshadowing to the next entry!) Few things have made more sense on this show than that assertion, and I would pay good money to see Taylor Sheridan rocking a full-blown mullet later in Season 4. Or Season 5. Or in real life outside of Yellowstone.
13. “Well, Jimmy, if this is the front, then the back is the exact opposite of this.”
It’s not entirely clear if we’ll see Jimmy again in Season 4, or if we’ll have to wait for the 6666 spinoff, but either way, we know he didn’t walk into his new job with a whole lot of confidence, considering he was completely unfamiliar with his surroundings, and had only Travis’ hilariously spot-on sarcasm to guide him. For as much sympathy as I sometimes have for Jimmy in situations like that, he should know by now which questions are worth asking aloud, and which ones are just worth silently asking in the old mind-hole.
While waiting for next week’s batch of lines worthy of sewing onto pillows, check out how Taylor Sheridan’s Road House dialogue broke the fourth wall of the Yellowstone-verse, and be sure to tune into new episodes every Sunday night on Paramount Network at 8:00 p.m. ET.
Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn’t sound like that’s the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.