Yellowstone Season 5 Review

The Dutton family continues its fierce defense of their ranch, the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch, as their enemies get bolder and find new ways to take it from them.

Yellowstone Season 5 Review
Yellowstone Season 5 is the best yet and packs a lot. Source: HH.
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The Duttons are back for Season 5 of the popular drama series Yellowstone. The family continues its fierce defense of their ranch, the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch, as their enemies get bolder and find new ways to take it from them. Season 5 of Yellowstone is the best one yet and here is what you can expect.

This post may contain spoilers.

Tapping into the Real Beauty of the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch

Yellowstone Season 5 shows us the essence of the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch. It gives us a perspective into why the ranch matters so much to its custodians the Dutton family. The patriarch, John Dutton, played by Kevin Costner, gets himself elected as governor and commutes protestor Summer Higgins' sentence.

Governor Dutton and Summer Higgins in Yellowstone Season 5
Governor Dutton commutes Higgin's sentence and puts her under house arrest. Source: Esq.

She is now under house arrest but in the governor's house on the ranch. John takes her in as he needs an environmentalist to help him see the environmentalists' perspective, to help him fight environmental groups fighting for the protection of species such as Wolves in the region.

Why Ranching and the Yellowstone Ranch are So Important to the Dutton Family

At the same time, John Dutton tries to teach Summer why ranching and the ranch are so important to his family. Summer Higgins, played by Piper Perabo, is a vegan and thinks rearing livestock just to kill them for their meat is barbaric. She, however, slowly gains perspective and understands why everything is done the way it is done at the ranch. Throughout this lesson, we get a beautiful view and insight into the cowboy culture in Montana.

Summer Higgins and John Dutton in the Yellowstone ranch
Environmental protestor Summer Higgins gets to learn why the Yellowstone ranch is important to the Dutton family as she spends time during her house arrest there. Source: Paramount TV.

Sarah Atwood, Market Equities' Trojan Horse

In Yellowstone Season 5 we are introduced to Sarah Atwood, played by Dawn Olivieri, a sort of fixer/hired escort and sly weapon for Market Equities, the company trying to build an airport and a tourist destination in Montana and partly on the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch. Sarah Atwood comes in just after John Dutton wins the gubernatorial race and becomes the governor of Montana. Her job is to get Market Equities their land back, after John cancels the lease, and ensure that their airport project goes through. She is Market Equities' trojan horse.

Sarah quickly notices that Jamie, played by Wes Bentley, is the weak link in John Dutton's camp and immediately sets her sights on him. She finds a way to infiltrate Jamie's life and the two become lovers. Despite Jamie's concerns about her motives, she tells him that she wants to make him governor and to ensure that the airport project goes through.

Sarah Atwood and Jamie cozying up on the couch
Sarah Atwood and Jamie cozying up as they plot to take the Yellowstone ranch from Jamie's father John Dutton. Source: Paramount Pictures.

It is easy for her to convince him as Jamie was originally in support of the airport project and had leased part of the Yellowstone Ranch to Market Equities to build their airport and tourist destination.

Keeping the Tourists at Bay

All through Yellowstone Season 5 Part One, there is the theme of resistance against the tourists from other parts of the US who come to Montana as a tourist destination. John cites this as part of his gubernatorial campaign saying that his goal is to go against progress and ensure Montana remains the same for 100 years. His approach to this, he says, is to stop the airport build and introduce non-resident taxes to discourage tourists from coming to the area and destroying the sanctuary of the region and its culture.

Kayce's Dilemma

John Dutton's youngest son Kayce, played by Luke Grimes, and his wife, Monica, played by Kelsey Asbille, lose their second baby just an hour after he's born. This tears Monica apart and she goes through a deeply distressful time after losing the child. Kayce, in his vision, reveals that he saw that he had to choose between her and the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch and opts to choose her.

Kayce with his wife Monica in Yellowstone Season 5
Kayce with his wife Monica as she heals from the tragedy of losing their baby. Source: Paramount TV.

He hands his father the badge of the Livestock commissioner and says that he chooses his family. Monica disagrees, however, and tells him to keep his job for the time being. John offers them the East Camp cabin and leaves him in charge.

Taking the Cattle Out to Pasture

After their annual branding of the cattle, the Duttons are faced with the tough decision of having to truck out their cattle to leased pastures, after they discover that parts of their land may be affected by Brucellosis. According to state law, the animals that come into contact with such pastures must be tested and even if just one tests positive, the whole herd must be killed.

Cowboys on horses in the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch during the annual cattle branding exercise
Whilst bringing in the cattle for the annual branding exercise, the cowboys realize that the pasture where the cattle had been grazing could be affected by Brucellosis. Source: Outsider.

Luckily, John's herd doesn't test positive but as it can't herd on his land anymore, he now has to lease land at the price of 1.4 million dollars a month to graze the animals in a place where it doesn't snow in winter. This, as you can imagine, is unaffordable and his daughter Beth, played by Kelly Reilly, tries to find a solution.

Gone for a Year

John decides that half the herd will be trucked out to leased pastures in Texas and assigns Rip, his ranch manager, to enlist a group of cowboys and go with the cattle. The cattle need to be trucked all the way to the Texas panhandle and some of the cowboys need to accompany them to take care of them and herd them.

Some of the cowboys of the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch leaving with cattle to take them to leased pastures
Some of the cowboys in the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch have to leave with the cattle to take them to leased pastures. Source: Paramount Pictures.

What this means is that Rip, played by Cole Hauser, and the cowboys will be away for a year, with Ryan, played by Ian Bohen, the most hurt by this as he now has to leave his singer girlfriend. On hearing the news, she breaks up with him. These events are similar to when Cowboy Jimmy, played by Jefferson White, had to leave for Texas and his girlfriend Mia broke up with him. Jimmy later met someone in Texas, a vet by the name of Emily, played by Kathryn Kelly, to who he later gets engaged.

Jimmy and his Fiancée Emily in Texas
Jimmy and his Fiancée, Emily in Texas where he now lives with her. Source: Paramount Pictures.


As Part One of Yellowstone Season 5 comes to an end, Jamie manages to pass an impeachment motion against his father in the State Assembly. John Dutton faces impeachment as governor of Montana and Beth goes to Jamie's house to react. She is enraged and Jamie reveals the existence of the "train station".

Beth in Jamie's house confronting him after learning of his motion to impeach their father
On learning about the impeachment proceedings, Beth goes to Jamie's house to confront him. Source: HR.

She also meets Sarah Atwood there and gives her some not-so-flowery words. Beth declares "the war is just beginning". She then goes to meet her father and asks him what is the train station. She's told what it is and suggests that it may be the best place for Jamie.

Our Rating

Yellowstone Season 5 is everything we expected it to be and more. We loved seeing the softer side of the Duttons, especially in regard to their intent to preserve the ecosystem of their ranch, and how they take care of their family. We rate Yellowstone Season 5 an 8/10 and can't wait for Part Two of Season 5. Enjoy!


What is Yellowstone About?

Yellowstone is a drama TV series about a ranching family called the Duttons. The Duttons own a humongous ranch in Montana and they do everything they can to protect it from people and companies that want to take it from them.

Is the Yellowstone Ranch Real?

The ranch portrayed in the TV series as the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch is actually a real ranch in Darby, Montana, USA by the name of  The Chief Joseph Ranch. The ranch features the 'Y' decals as portrayed in the series. Intriguingly, you can book an overnight stay at the ranch, in two cabins that are rented out to guests, for a price.

Is Yellowstone on Netflix?

No. Yellowstone is currently only available to watch on Paramount Plus which is a subscription streaming service of its own separate from Netflix.

Is Yellowstone Worth Watching?

Hell yeah. Yellowstone is an intriguing drama TV series about the Dutton family who'll do anything to protect their ranch, The Yellowstone Dutton Ranch.

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