“Keep the Wolves Close” kicks things off with a pristine Texas sunrise, but it’s all hard-hitting moments from there.
As Outsider’s own Jim Casey argued in a recent interview with Jefferson White, his Jimmy Hurdstrom arguably has more character development in Yellowstone than the Duttons proper. Season 4, Episode 7 continues this trend as we catch up with Jimmy first.
The pre-credits montage is dedicated to Jimmy’s new life on the 6666 entirely. And after Yellowstone‘s iconic opener rolls, we’re right back in the mess with Hurdstrom. He’s finally got himself a 6666 shirt to do his cowboying in, and seems far more comfortable on the ranch.
‘Yellowstone’ S4, Ep7: Flowers for Beth and Trouble for John
Back on the Yellowstone, John Dutton gives the ranch’s newest orphan, Carter, some sage advice. He’s to patch things up with Beth, as she’s “the only reason you’re here, big fella.”
So Carter does the only thing he can think of: pick Beth flowers.
“I don’t want those f*cking things,” Beth tells Carter as he presents his peace offering. After it all goes south, however, the troubled youth reveals he needs a ride into town. Carter wants to leave the ranch, as the Yellowstone isn’t bearing him any friends, . “Not even you,” he says to Beth as he begins to cry.
We learn Carter is heartbroken that he upset Beth. But through this interaction, we see their relationship grow tenfold. Beth asks the troubled youth to never lie to her, and only ask questions when he doesn’t know something. They shake on it, smile, and Carter throws her the flowers. And Beth teaches him the most important reason to ever gives flowers.
“You give them for no reason at all, buddy. No reason at all.”
Monica, Tate, Kayce
Meanwhile, Monica becomes immediately alarmed that she can’t find Tate on their new property. Much to her surprise (and happiness), she looks out into their snowy acreage to find him walking with his father, Kayce. The duo track deer, then come in for a bite to eat.
Monica gives Kayce another grilling over Avery, and it goes about as well as you’d expect during their meal.
Later into the episode, Kayce finally names Tate’s dog as he runs alongside him and Mo on horseback. The goal here, however, is finding Broken Rock’s stolen horses – and they do. Federal officers have rounded them up, and Mo & Kayce have “until Friday” to get them back to the reservation or they go to auction.
Back on the Four-Sixes… New Love for Jimmy?
Meanwhile, back at the 6666, Jimmy is called up to the vet barn. He’s beyond confused as to why he’s there, but it immediately becomes apparent when a fully-aroused stallion is led into the barn. Our new vet tech character, played by Kathryn Kelley, instructs Jimmy to hold it in place and, well… You can imagine the rest.
“I just j***ed off a horse…” Jimmy repeats several times, dumbfounded. Clearly this is new cowboying territory for him.
Kelley’s character is vet tech Emily. And right off the bat, she asks Jimmy out. He’s about as gobsmacked by this as he was that horse lesson, too. Emily comes on strong, as there’s a serious lack of bachelors out in these parts. Jimmy hesitates through his loyalty to Mia, but eventually offers to buy Emily Dinner.
Jamie’s ‘New’ Family
Back at Jamie’s new ranch, Christina and Garrett Randall have a heart-to-heart about Jamie.
“Jamie has endured 40 long years of how not to father. Of how not to lead. Hard lessons need learning,” he tells Christina.
We learn through their dialogue that Randall was responsible for calling her into the property. Now, he’s pushing her into considering helping Jamie run for governor.
“Well he looks like a governor,” she says.
“Yes he does,” a sly Garrett replies.
Jamie wants to run, too, as we know. But Yellowstone has other plans.
Beth’s Latest ‘Yellowstone’ Responsibilities
When we next catch up with Beth Dutton, she’s seeing her newest office. She’s not a fan of the decor, and lets everyone know it as she lights up a cigarette.
She meets her new assistant, Cal, and gives the young man a full run-down. Within seconds, however, she fires the young man in brutal fashion. As she admits, Beth is 0-3 on assistants, and isn’t looking to put anyone else in danger.
“I’ll get my own coffee,” she spits.
Before long, however, Beth is overlooking her worst nightmare. She enters her new boardroom, and sprawled out on the table is the layout for the “Park City and airport” she will be orchestral in bringing to life. After asking for an ownership grid to be displayed, Beth realizes that half the project will be on her father’s land.
We then see Beth flash a face we rarely see: one of shock and defeat. But she won’t be down for more than these mere seconds. It’s Beth Dutton we’re talking about.
‘Yellowstone’ Gains Back a Cowgirl
Up in Montana, Taylor Sheridan’s horsemaster, Travis Wheatley, is back up on the Yellowstone with John Dutton. Alongside Rip and Jake, Travis’ latest batch of horses are getting a once-over.
Then, from out of left field, Teeter appears. “Can I have a word, sir?”
We all knew she wouldn’t just up and leave. But Teeter is horribly emotional. She speaks directly to John Dutton, a rarity. She pleads for her job. “Ask him if anyone works harder than me?” she says of Rip.
John questions her role in the bunkhouse, however, and asks if she’s messed around with anyone in the bunkhouse. “No one ever said I couldn’t,” a tearful Teeter replies.
But Teeter isn’t having it. She flashes her Y brand to John and Rip. “So all this ‘this is your home forever’ was just bullshit?” she shouts.
John can’t believe he didn’t know Teeter was branded. “Does Kayce know about this?” he asks Rip. Rip confirms, but takes the blame himself.
Rip then tells Teeter to grab her stuff and move back into the bunkhouse – and a collective sigh of relief was heard ’round the globe from Yellowstone fans everywhere.
Once a familiar face returns, however, things escalate quickly.
Governor Perry Returns for the Episode’s Biggest Shocks
“When governors drop by unannounced, it’s either real good or real bad,” John Dutton growls as Governor Perry makes her return to Yellowstone. The two take a walk at Perry’s request. The big reveal? She’s running for senate. Perry’s goal is to go where she can make the biggest difference.
The even bigger reveal? She also wants Jamie Dutton to run for governor. “He’s the devil we know, John. I’ll take my chances,” she tells John.
But John isn’t having it. At all. So much so, in fact, that he holds the biggest bigger reveal.
John Dutton is going to run for Governor himself. With Perry’s endorsement. All to make sure his adopted son doesn’t. Because if he does, John believes Jamie will “destroy everything we love.”
Beth Dutton Becomes the Puppet Master
Meanwhile, Summer Higgins is at it again protesting in front of a clothing shop selling firs.
“What the hell do you know about protecting the environment?” she asks after Beth crashes her latest protest. Through their sharp conversation, Beth shows Summer the “bigger picture,” dropping the bombshell of the airport on her. Summer reacts as we’d expect to these corporations wanting to pave over the “most sensitive ecosystem in the U.S.,” as Beth calls it.
Masterfully, Beth plants the seeds to use Summer to orchestrate one way of stopping the airport.
Finally, we see Rip teaching Carter something useful. He walks the boy through critical reining equipment as Beth watches the “touching” moment with a smile. Right after, John calls her up to the house to tell her the big news. Before that, however, he asks Beth and Rip to move into the big house on the ranch.
“Ask him what he’d like, and then respect the answer,” she tells her dad.
But John can’t let Beth leave without telling her his future. Much to his shock, Beth sighs and flings her arms around her father. She’s so relieved to hear this.
“This is the way to save the ranch,” Beth tells her father. “You know this, right?”
“Yeah, honey. I just wish it wasn’t.”
Beth lays out “Power to withhold funds, building exemptions,” and a dozen other perks to her father’s governorship. But becoming a politician is the last thing John wants. Yet as Beth and fans know, this is truly the only way to keep his ranch now. And she uses this fully to push her father into running for governor.
Through this revelation, Yellowstone is setting up a brilliant showdown between John and Jamie. It’s all been leading to this, folks. And we can’t wait to see how it all unfolds.
Back at the Bunkhouse… A New Guitar
About midway through the episode, Lloyd trades in a prized rodeo buckle at the pawn shop. The camera pans over several revolvers, and we assume the worst. Surely he’s going to kill Walker and get kicked off the ranch…
But in one of the episode’s best reveals, Lloyd blows us all away by buying Walker a guitar with his “one of a kind” buckle.
“Hell of a lot better than the one you tore up!” Walker smiles. The two patch things up in the bunkhouse, and it’s another massive sigh of relief for fans.
With this gift, Walker plays Lloyd a brilliant ballad, bringing the bunkhouse (and certain audience members) to tears.
John asks Rip to Move In with Him, and the Horses Come Home
Eventually, John works up the courage to ask Rip to move his family into the main lodge. It goes as well as Beth expected.
“That didn’t sound like a question, did it?” John frowns. With half an answer from Rip, John seals it with a “that’s settled, then.”
Then, to round out Yellowstone S4, EP7, Kayce and Mo do their best to get the stolen horses back to Broken Rock. As they do, Avery watches. The horses come barreling through a celebratory tribe, and success with them.
Avery is there to greet Kayce, and the two exchange an intense glance. He advises she install trail cameras to keep this from happening again, but all Avery can think about is the man behind the command.
Thomas Rainwater is on hand to congratulate and thank Kayce. But before long, he warns the Dutton to stear clear of Avery. “When they look at you like that, they’re all trouble.”
Avery approaches Kayce herself. “I’m married,” he tells her immediately. It’s a rough lot for her, as it was “love at first sight” for her. Kayce, however, makes sure he knows this is how he felt about Monica and still does.
“God wouldn’t let you love something that can’t love you back,” he tells her.
Finally: Jamie Gets the Bombshell
We then catch back up with Jamie in his Attorney General’s office. Governor Perry calls for him, and Jamie thinks this is the moment he’s been waiting for.
But in a soul-crushing moment, she announces “Montana’s next governor, John Dutton.” Jamie is absolutely defeated, and understandably so as his adoptive father and sister twist the knife as hard as they can before the announcement. It’s the first time they’ve seen each other since the Duttons were nearly wiped off the face of the planet. “Thanks for the flowers. They meant a lot,” John tells Jamie coldly.
Then, the patriarch’s speech begins.
“There is a war being waged against our way of life. That is progress in today’s world. If it’s progress you want, then don’t vote for me,” he tells Montanans.
“I am the opposite of progress. I am the wall it bashes against. And I will not be the one who breaks.”