Yellowstone Season 5, Episode 7 continues many of the themes of Episode 6 while introducing a curveball from Beth Dutton that just may save the ranch from her father. Watch our full recap below, then read on for the finer details afterwards:
John deals with a problem with his herd. Senator Perry delivers news to Rainwater. Jamie and Sarah plan their next move. The entire Yellowstone enjoys a rare evening of fun together. Beth discusses a new business plan with the ranch in mind.S5E07 Synopsis
“The Dream Is Not Me” opens with a flashback to young Rip (Kyle Red Silverstein) and Rowdy (Kai Caster) in the 1990s. They’re out patrolling for wolves, but these two are no longer friends. At all. Instead, a fight breaks out immediately over Beth, with Rowdy getting cocky as the elder cowboy. Rip, however, enters a berserker rage and gains the upper hand with boulder-like fists.
Rowdy pulls a knife as a result, so Rip picks up a boulder and knocks him to the ground before brutally finishing the fight. Afterwards, Rowdy is in horrific shape, so Rip rides back to the ranch to get help. Rowdy tells him to lie and say he fell off his horse. But as soon as Rip is met face-to-face with John Dutton (Josh Lucas), he can’t lie – and tells him the entire truth.
Yet when they return to retrieve Rowdy, a young Lloyd checks his pulse, and he’s dead. And through a deep exchange, we learn we’re seeing the incident – the moment – that Rip “earned” his Y Brand and became a part of the Yellowstone forever.
The Yellowstone Dutton Ranch is the ‘Only Thing’ Jamie’s Ever Loved
As Episode 7 catches up with Jamie (Wes Bentley), things are going as they did in Ep. 6. “This is not what I was raised to be. I was raised to be a cowboy,” he tells Sarah Atwood (Dawn Olivieri). “I never wanted to be a fucking lawyer.”
Jamie recounts his history with John (Kevin Costner) as his father to Sarah, and she tells Jamie exactly what he wants to hear, while laying out how “dead” the future of the U.S. cattle/beef industry is.
We learn that the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch is the only thing Jamie has ever loved, and he wants to “save it” from John.
Back on that ranch, the bunkhouse boys are waking up to get to work at the crack of dawn, including Ryan who’s sharing a tent with Abby (Lainey Wilson). “You better be worth this walk of shame. Half my church is camped out there,” she tells him.
Indeed, much of the county is camping out still as part of the MEPP, and they’ll watch the gathering of the Yellowstone cattle continue. John and Rip Wheeler (Cole Hauser) meet for this new day. “This is my favorite part. Of everything we do, this is my favorite,” John smiles before they ride off to work.
The Women of the ‘Yellowstone’
After the sun has risen, some of our favorite women begin to trickle from cowboy tents. Abby and Summer head for the breakfast fire where Beth (Kelly Reilly) is sitting, followed by a returning Laramie (Hassie Harrison) and then Monica (Kelsey Asbille). The entire exchange is as rowdy as you’d expect. Summer (Piper Perabo) tries to pick apart the meaning and “oppression” of marriage, but Beth quips her hard before telling her it’s “pretty f*cking awesome” to be married to the love of your life.
After all the non-Duttons leave, Monica asks Beth why she’s so mean (while wearing a smile herself). These two share a heartfelt exchange where Beth tells her sister-in-law what no one but her and Jamie know: Beth has lost a child, too, and she wants Monica to know she is not alone in her pain.
Afterwards. Thomas Rainwater (Gil Birmingham) and Mo (Moses Brings Plenty) meet with Senator Perry (Wendy Moniz), who reveals not one, but two pieplines – natural gas and captured carbon – are planned to be run through the Broken Rock Reservation. The president, who was just at Broken Rock, supports this idea, which will run right under Broken Rock’s reservoir of drinking water. Lynelle will oppose it, and plans to make a public statement opposing it alongside Rainwater.
Pipelines & Stillborn Bison
It’s bad news for the Yellowstone, too, as Lloyd, Walker, Jake, and Kayce (Luke Grimes) all find stillborn bison calves in Dutton pastures. As each comes back to report to John, he knows what it is immediately : brucellosis.
This bacterial disease is about as bad as it gets. This highly transmissible disease affects all bovines (bison, cattle, etc). Once a herd in Montana gets it, the state kills the entire herd to prevent further spread.
John has his Yellowstone herd insured, but there’s no way to “rebuild one-hundred years of genetics” if they all get killed. The only idea he has to help prevent possible spread at the moment is to separate the herd and take some south to warmer pastures. He’s going to lease land to do so, and it may be far, far out. And if anyone has to take those cattle and watch over them, it’ll be Rip.
Rip makes the preemptive decision to gather his team to take with him, and it’s Teeter, Jake, Ryan, and Walker. Walker comes as a shock to Lloyd, but the singing cowboy may know people further south and be useful. Ryan, meanwhile, looks over to Abby, who he’s sorely going to miss. As for Teeter, Walker and Jake, they’re absolutely stoked to get to ride out into “some real cowboy shit.”
Rip gives Ryan (Ian Bohen) a couple hundred dollar bills to take the bunkhouse to the fair, since they won’t be seeing a town for a long while.
It’s Beth vs John vs Jamie for the Future of the Yellowstone
Inside the house, John breaks the bad news to Beth. It gets far worse when he reveals the cost for leasing enough land for their cattle: $1.4 million a month.
Beth cannot believe this. They haven’t turned a profit in years and her father wants to spend millions a month to babysit their cattle on someone else’s land. So she starts asking the right questions, and learns their cattle will only be worth $1.50 a pound max if they sell them. But a “good steak is $30,” she tells her father. “Hell, shitty ground beef is $5.”
Moral of the story? “We’re in the wrong business.” Beth has to leave she is so angry with her father’s stubbornness and inability to change. After she leaves, John makes a call.
In town, Ellis Steele (John Emmet Tracy) is waiting for Jamie in his office, and he’s with Sarah, which is a surprise to Jamie. These two Market Equities fiends are furious, because John has put his ranch in a conservation easement. They present this news to Jamie, who did not know and absolutely loses it.
Sarah reveals this means Market Equities will sue the state of Montana for negotiating in bad faith, which will cost the state roughly $4 billion dollars and send it into bankruptcy, all because of John’s conservation easment. “Sounds like an impeachable offense to me,” she tells Jamie.
“Yes it does,” he replies. As Sarah plays him like a fiddle once more, she gets Market Equities one step closer to their goal of owning Yellowstone Dutton Ranch land.
Return of the Four Sixes
Back on the ranch, Beth is doing another round of research. She’s looking up ranch-to-beef models, and sure enough, Texas’ 6666, the Four Sixes, is what she finds. In reality, this is the largest ranch in Texas, and one that Taylor Sheridan now owns (and sells beef from, how’s that for marketing?). But in Yellowstone, it’s the ranch where John Dutton sent Jimmy Hurdstrom (Jefferson White) to learn how to be a cowboy in Season 4.
So Beth gives 6666 a call, talks through their business model briefly, then presents it to her father. Coincidentally, the 6666 is who John just called. He’s still not into this idea, because he doesn’t understand it. But Beth does. “I am a businessman,” she tells him.
Afterwards, it starts to look a whole lot like this whole ‘selling beef’ idea is how Yellowstone will tie Jimmy’s Texas story – and the Four Sixes – back into the show. If Beth can convince her father to go through with it all, that is.
In short, their exchange opens up a new plan to save the Yellowstone: start selling beef, not cattle.
In the meantime, it’s time for everyone to go to the county fair. Rip tells Carter to go get cleaned up for the fair, but he’s more sad about Rip being gone for months with the cattle than anything. And in this exchange, Rip refers to Carter as “Son” for the first time.
Carter and Tate Dutton Finally Interact as the Yellowstone Heads to the County Fair
As the entire Dutton ranch heads for the fair, we finally get to see Carter (Finn Little) and Tate (Brecken Merrill) hang out. Both teens, about the same age, are both sporting casts on mirroring arms. Tate’s a crack-shot, and proves it at their fair game. But he also asks his father for more money quite flippantly as Carter looks on, baffled. These two are foils to their core, much as their father figures, Kayce and Rip, are.
Behind them, Teeter spots a huge pink bear and tells Colby he has to win it for her. Which he does in a charming montage.
Kayce and Monica make their way to listen to the band play, where Beth and Rip are listening. Rip finally tells his wife he may be gone for a year as part of John’s cattle plan. Beth won’t have this, and reveals she’s coming with him.
Jamie’s ‘Master Plan’ is Going to Get Him Killed
Meanwhile, John and Summer are sitting together, too. Summer reveals she finally understands him and his way of life, and that he needs to make sure others understand, too, so the stereotypes can be broken in the public eye. But all they can really think about is making out, and so they do that, instead, as John has “zero intention” of running for a second term as Governor. And it’s a good thing, too, as he makes out with his Environmental Advisor in public; the one he commuted the sentence of to his own house.
This is made worse as we return to Jamie’s apartment. There, he is rehearsing a speech that outlines all the ways in which John Dutton is impeachable as Governor. He runs it for Sarah, who sits in front of him in a nightgown like the puppet master she is.
“What do you think?” Jamie asks like a child seeking approval.
“I think it’s perfect.”
Perfect for Sarah and Market Equities, yes. But for Jamie? This will surely be the final nail in his Dutton coffin. Lest he (or anyone) forget, Beth Dutton still possesses photos of him dumping the body of his biological father, Garrett Randall (Will Patton) at the train station in Season 4.