‘Yellowstone’ TV: Analyzing Memorable John Dutton Parenting Moments

by Thad Mitchell
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The fourth season of the hit Paramount Network “Yellowstone” has come and gone, but creator Taylor Sheridan has given fans more to talk about than ever. And one subject fans can’t stop talking about: John Dutton’s parenting.

Played by Hollywood megastar Kevin Costner, John Dutton is the central “Yellowstone” protagonist. To be fair, we may be playing a little fast and loose with the word “protagonist.” But while John spends much of his time defending the Yellowstone ranch from its enemies, he often finds himself trying to maintain control in his dysfunctional family. Some of those familial interactions have received the internet’s stamp of approval. And some of those moments, well, folks say they aren’t exactly a masterclass on parenting. In a recent Reddit thread, fans discussed those memorable John Dutton moments.

“Since so much of the show is about the relationships he has with his kids, grandson, and his quasi-kids,” a Reddit user says. “What are your favorites? Mine is when Beth comes home drunk and starts screaming when she sees John reading to Tate. Jamie then asks his father why he doesn’t send her back to Salt Lake and John says, ‘Beth, and God how I love her, she can be what you will never be. She can be evil.’ Then he gets up and says goodnight and leaves Jamie looking perplexed with his drink.”

‘Yellowstone’: John Dutton Scenes That Stick Out

Fans of the show had several scenes in mind when discussing John Dutton and his handling of his family. One fan recalls a particularly quick, but insulting line.

The fan says one of the most memorable moments is “when John and Rip are sitting on the porch and a car pulls up and John says ‘I wonder which one of my disappointments this is.'” A short line, but packed with a big ole gut-punch to all 3 kids: Kayce, Beth, and Jamie. As we’ve seen over the course of four seasons though, JD’s kids have gained and lost favor with him over the years. But Jamie has clearly had the hardest falling out with his dad.

As fans are well aware, John Dutton’s relationship with his adopted son, Jamie (Wes Bentley), is about as fractured as it could possibly be. And arguably no other quote shines a light on how John Dutton truly feels about Jamie than this one in the Season 4 finale. “He is a disappointment and my greatest failure, but I raised him and I love him, as much as I’ve tried not to.”

We got a feeling there’s a whole lot more meat on that bone that we’ll learn about in seasons to come. But still…OUCH.

On the Bright Side

It isn’t all bad for JD though. While he may have his shortcomings, he does care deeply about his family. In particular, John’s formerly strained relationship with Kayce gave him multiple redemptive moments.

One fan recalls, “My favorite is in the beginning of S3, when Kayce apologizes to him for not wanting the Live Stock Commissioner job because ‘it just wasn’t him’ and John said ‘I know exactly who you are, and don’t ever apologize for it’ (I might have gotten that slightly wrong). I thought that was a sweet thing to say to Kayce.”

John also holds a deep affection for his grandson, Tate. And if you ask fans, they love to see it. One poster writes, “Everything he says to that boy is sweet. It’s infuriating and heartwarming at the same time. He treats him better than he treated his own kids.”

To catch up on everything Season 4, go here. And if you’re like us and already looking ahead to Season 5, be sure to check out everything we know so far here.

Outsider.com