Rip Wheeler is no stranger to murder, and this traitor of a character may be the one to bring his unpredictable nature back to the forefront.
It may feel years away (as has everything in 2020), but “Yellowstone” Season 4 is just around the corner. While we wait for an official premiere date announcement from Paramount, fans are left with plenty of guesswork and theories to keep them busy. Not only is the release date being kept under wraps, but so are all details of television’s most hotly-anticipated return.
How Season 4 will open is anyone’s guess. Season 3 ended with assassination attempts made on several of the Dutton clan. Whoever ordered a hit on Beth Dutton, though, is the one that needs to worry – for one reason: Rip Wheeler.
While their fates were left in the balance by the end of the finale, we know from his social media posts that Cole Hauser has been busy filming S4 as Rip Wheeler in Montana for the year. Beth’s fate may be a little less certain, but whether she’s alive or dead, Rip’s coming for whoever ordered the hit on the love of his life.
Who Tried to Kill Beth Dutton? Spoilers Ahead
Watching Beth’s office explode with her inside was perhaps the hardest pill to swallow in the S3 finale. Beth has always been loyal to her family, and has put herself at odds with anyone attempting to take Yellowstone Ranch from them. We know John Dutton survives the attempt on his life. But did Beth?
Actress Kelly Reilly is listed in the credits for S4, so we know she will return in one form or another. The real question, however, is who ordered the hit on her? For many fans, the main suspect has become Angela Blue Thunder.
Angela’s past, and deeds within the show, tie her deeply to both Thomas Rainwater (Gil Birmingham) and the Duttons. Beth and John specifically. But if S3 taught us anything about Angela, though – it is that she absolutely cannot be trusted. And she’s willing to do whatever it takes to better the lives of her kin.
Playing both sides benefits Angela’s goals directly. Supporting the Dutton’s mission to protect their ranch from development keeps it clear of said development. As such, it can then be delivered back to her indigenous peoples. This is, after all, her end game, as we find out through her own words behind closed (car) doors.
All of this, combined with how fervently she tried to convince Thomas Rainwater to destroy the Duttons for the people of the Broken Rock Indian Reservation – places her as the prime suspect for ordering the hits on the family. Especially Beth.
Theory: Rip Wheeler Will Kill the Mastermind in S4
As a result, fans are near-convinced that Rip Wheeler will be the one to take down Angela Blue Thunder. If she orchestrated the assassination attempts, of course. Which, at this point, looks beyond likely.
Posting to Reddit, Unphamiliarterritory asks – “Can Rip kill a woman? Because I think he’s going to have to kill Angela Blue Thunder (my theory).”
SquareOChocolate (gotta love these usernames) comes in support with – “If she’s the one who put out the hit on Beth, absolutely.”
Unphamiliarterritory then responds with – “I pretty much agree. I mean Rip and Beth even spoke directly about their philosophy of killing in the episode (e.g., Beth’s referencing Nietzsche), not much room for alternate interpretations of their views.”
Adapikachu also agrees, stating – “Angela Blue Thunder is pretty possible; her extremist attitude, came out quite suddenly if I have to say it, giving evil advice to Thomas (the dialogue in the car after the meeting is scary if you think how it went…
“‘You have an opportunity to free that land of him. And it will look like everyone but you who did it’… maybe she planned everything, behind Thomas’ back, join the game and destroy all the white influence in the valley!)”.
These are all key factors, as well. The show’s writers have been strongly foreshadowing the fates of Beth, Angela, and Rip Wheeler – and chances are each of their threads will tie into the same knot. Besides – whoever came for Beth, whether they succeeded or not – will die at the hands of Rip if they can’t get to him first. With this in mind, his ‘no prisoners’ attitude is sure to make a return for Yellowstone S4.
Foreshadowing is the Name of the Game on ‘Yellowstone’
Redditor Fenbaldwin, however, is telling it like it is. To him, he sees the Duttons as the crazies everyone else needs to catch up to. And he’s not wrong. “The Duttons themselves are extremists,” he states. “They routinely commit mass murders, put bombs on airplanes, and dump bodies at their ‘train station’. Rip is basically a serial killer who does hits for John Dutton. Beth herself explained that she’s OK with the Duttons murdering everyone.
“If anything, Angela Blue Thunder is telling Rainwater to be more like the Duttons and play by their rules which are violent and cut-throat instead of always being the noble ‘slave’. [sic]”
As such, John Dutton has been the “perfect” person to understand Rip and his past, and give him a new lease on life. They both understand that having the family’s back is the only way they’re going to survive the mess they’re in. Which is, after all, a mess they’ve made.