Tensions remain high at the Dutton ranch, but long-term plans are slowly beginning to pay off on “Yellowstone” season 4 episode 8. We also finally got to see a family dinner that wasn’t mired in conflict, and it looks like Carter might slowly be taking over Tate’s role in John Dutton’s life.
This is a review and recap of “Yellowstone” season 4 episode 8, “No Kindness for the Coward,” so there will be spoilers.
The episode begins with a flashback showing the characters from the prequel “1883.” It leaves fans with a lot of questions about what will ultimately happen to Tim McGraw’s character. But it’s just a blip in the “Yellowstone” episode, and it isn’t addressed again except in the form of a thematic moment at the end.
Garrett & Jamie Are Still Teaming Up
For some reason, Jamie has decided that Garrett is the lesser of the two evils and is siding with him even after learning that Garrett was behind the attempt on his family’s life. Jamie did have a tough life with the Duttons and he and John never truly connected. But he’d be much better off standing on his own and becoming independent, rather than relying on someone like Garrett.
For better or worse, there’s a new feud between Jamie and John in the form of the governor’s race. Jamie understandably thinks he’s outgunned trying to go up against John. But Christina thinks he’s underselling himself, and he’ll have the environmentalists on his side when he runs against his dad.
Rip Is a Full-Fledged Member of the Dutton Family
Rip’s story was perhaps the most compelling of the storylines in this episode. He’s always been another son to John, even if John never referred to him in that way. The Dutton family is finally acknowledging all of that openly, now that Rip and Beth are together. Seeing this transition in Rip’s life makes for a very pleasant storyline in the midst of the chaos the family is always facing.
Beth, Rip, and Carter have moved into the main cabin at John’s request. Rip is even invited to family dinners now! (I personally think he always should have been at that table.) There are a few funny scenes at the dinner table, even though the whole thing stresses Beth out. Rip turning down the salad, John’s warning about “pouring gas on the fire” that is Beth, and Carter’s chocolate cake all make for a heartwarming scene. In the end, it’s Rip who can figure out how to heal some of the family drama, by simply suggesting they move to a different table.
It’s also pretty sweet how John has taken in Carter and is treating him as a friend or almost like a grandson. Carter seems to be stepping in and taking over a bit of Tate’s previous role, as Tate moves on to a different storyline.
Beth’s Plan Against Market Equities Is Working So Far
Beth’s engaging in a long war against Market Equities and pretending to be Caroline Warner’s ally to get there. During a meeting, she advises them to remove the press instead of the protesters because it’s a better story for them and the people won’t get as riled up about that. She certainly sells it well, but as viewers we all know that there is method to her “madness.”
Beth volunteers to move the media herself. Of course, this is where her plan comes into play. She promises a reporter that if she moves off the property, she’ll give her a call when something happens that’s worth filming.
Late at night, law enforcement shows up to disperse the protesters, and Summer calls Beth to let her know. Beth, in turn, gives a warning to her press contact. Summer takes one for the team (per Beth’s suggestion) and the media gets the police brutality on film. Locally, it plays well for Market Equities. But Beth knows that it won’t play well nationally, so she tips off The New York Times.
My main question here is what’s going to happen to Summer. She’s taken on a felony for the family, but can Beth be trusted to help her?
Jimmy’s Story Continues
When I heard that Jimmy was likely moving to the “6666” spinoff, I expected his days on “Yellowstone” to be over. But for now, we’re getting a few “6666” scenes in every episode still, as a way to get viewers hooked on the storyline. Jimmy seems to be thriving in his new location, and he’s even made a romantic connection with Emily. I’m not sure if his typical bad luck/bad decisions will catch up to him, but I’d like to see him in a role where he’s no longer the hapless screw-up.
Kayce & Monica Are OK Now
We finally see Kayce for the first time this episode, more than halfway through. Kayce spots a wolf while he’s sitting on the porch with his dog. Whoever he calls warns him not to shoot the wolf, even if it comes near his horses, because it’s a test and wolves aren’t normally seen around there. I’m not sure exactly who is testing him, but it’s a mystery that will likely bear fruit later on.
There are a couple funny, but slightly awkward, scenes with Tate, and then Monica announces that she’s pregnant. Kayce is thrilled, and it looks like those weird moments with Avery aren’t going anywhere.
Rip and John Face Trouble
At the end of the episode, John’s heading for a meeting with the Sheriff and brings Rip with him. But when they arrive at the cafe, Rip senses something is off when he sees no one eating and everyone looking tense. They realize it’s a hostage situation, so John sneaks in through the back while Rip shows up at the front. There’s a shootout and one of the innocent bystanders is mortally wounded — the Sheriff himself.
He tries to call his daughter, but he dies before he can say more than simply letting her know something’s wrong. It’s a really sad scene, with John left to tell her exactly what happened.
And with that ending, the episode has come full circle. It began with John Dutton Sr. and his mom attending to his dying father, after he was shot in a law enforcement role, trying to stop a horse thief. And it ends with another law enforcement officer shot and killed as John Dutton attends to him. The circle of life and death continues on “Yellowstone.”