‘Yellowstone’: A Deeper Look at Why John Dutton Favors Kayce Over Jamie

by Thad Mitchell
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(Photo Credit: Yellowstone Gallery, Paramount Network Press Center, Viacom)

Of the many storylines on Paramount Network’s “Yellowstone,” arguably none is more central to the show than John Dutton’s (Kevin Costner) relationship with his kids. Over the four seasons, John has had ups and downs with all of them. However, it’s his relationship with his two sons (Kayce and Jamie) that deserves some serious analysis.

In a recent Reddit thread, fans discuss the Dutton family, owners and proprietors of “Yellowstone” Ranch. John Dutton, the family patriarch, has one remaining biological son, the fearless but naive Kayce Dutton. He also has an adopted son, Jamie Dutton, that he considers more of a rival than a son. In the Reddit post, “Yellowstone” fans discuss why John Dutton favors Kayce over Jamie. It may seem obvious to some. One is his blood and the other is not. But let’s dig in a little deeper to answer this question.

One fan writes, “[John] treats [Jamie] like a servant and then kicks him to the curb when he dared to live his own life just a little. Yet, Kayce who says f*** you and left to live his own life – John is constantly trying to get him back and basically give him the ranch. I’m watching season two but I know the spoiler about Jaime being adopted – but what should that matter, he’s still his son? He seems to despise him.”

‘Yellowstone’ Fans Offer Answers About John Dutton’s Kids

Many “Yellowstone” fans feel that Kayce is the chosen one out of necessity due to him being John’s only remaining son. And also, Kayce’s character traits also seem to be more of what John is looking for in his successor. “You’re surprised that he picks the strong son over the weak one? That’s totally John Duttons [sic] character,” one fan remarks.

However, other “Yellowstone” fans feel that John’s disdain for Jamie has nothing to do with him being adopted. “Not wanting to leave it to Jaime had nothing to do with him being adopted, for all we know he wasn’t intended to be adopted way back then. It had to do with John not trusting him because of Jaime’s actions,” one fan says.

Lastly, one fan suggests that Kayce is John’s only choice left to run the ranch. “No, it’s not how John would’ve liked it,” another Redditor surmises. “Beth is clear about not wanting to run the ranch, Lee is dead, and Jamie is a weasel, so what choice does John have except Kayce?”

This may be the most important point of all. John’s sole motivation is to keep the Dutton ranch in his family. To pass it down like his father and his father before him. Rewinding all the way back to 1883. And Kayce is the only logical successor given everyone’s circumstances.

Outsider.com