1883 Finally Ends It’s Terrible First Season
It should go without saying, but you know, spoilers ahead...
Having wrapped up the 1883 "origin story" of Yellowstone, I can't help but feel like we settled for half the action for a story set in a period of time ten times as violent. Half the action, double the drama, and a worldly and wise narration of a 17 year old seeing the world for the first time? It's like Paramount secretly hired out Hallmark to write this.
I know we've talked before about how unwatchable this show is due to the historical inaccuracies... but because there's nothing else on except reality talent shows, even I committed to finishing this season even if I couldn't stand it... I made it all the way through Sons of Anarchy after all, and that was a new high-scoring series for how bad a series could be... They stretched two seasons of action into seven.
I'm sure I wasn't the only person beguiled by the scene where whatever her name is was shot by the arrow... episode after episode, we were all expecting it, not knowing what it had to do with the story overall.
When we finally found out that the place she would die would be the place the family would homestead, the question became "So how do they find their way into a Montana valley if they're on the Oregon trail?"
She gets shot, everything points to her dying, and then the last glimpse of hope for Lightning Yellowhair as the Crow tribal elder offers what medical treatment they could... I know I was rolling my eyes thinking "She's going to mysteriously survive this?"
When they finally pointed down the plot to her death, the Dutton family was gifted their valley land with the condition the tribe would take it back in "seven generations."
A quick travel scene, a few more tidbits of curiously wise words from a child, and we finally learn the Yellowstone-Dutton Ranch was founded around the grave of 17 year old Elsa Dutton... but that's not all of the story.
We also learned that out of the original 40-ish pioneers making the trip under Sam Elliot's tutelage, one and three-quarters makes it... Sam Elliot's haunted trailboss character takes his final breaths on the beach before pulling the trigger he's been squeezing for years... and we learned just about zero-information about the main character going forward... Little (Lil') John Dutton - AKA - John Dutton Sr. - AKA - the grandfather that Kevin Costner's character tries to live up to in Yellowstone.
Still, it's nice to know how the fictitious family founded the family ranch, even if the entire story could have been told in one or two episodes or flashbacks... One truth in Hollywood remains, if you can tell a short story about it, you can surely sell a longer version of it by calling it "art."
Now all that's left is the argument and debate of whether there will be a second season, and Paramount+ is keeping a tight wrap on it thus far. Internet rumors swirl today about a season two, some say it'll skip forward to 1893, but Paramount+ says the next chapter in the story will jump to 1932.
There's no release date yet, but you can be sure it'll follow Yellowstone's fifth season later this year or (more than likely) in 2023.
Let's hope it's less glaringly full of plot holes and obvious historical inaccuracies.