Given the writers’ and actors’ strikes, it’s anyone’s guess when Yellowstone will even start production on the back half of its fifth and final season. Yet already, the vultures have begun to circle overhead.
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It’s understandable when you think about it. The midseason finale ended with Dutton patriarch John and wild-child daughter Beth plotting to do away with black sheep of the family Jamie. He, in turn, was conspiring with girlfriend Sarah Atwood to have his father and sister meet an unfortunate “accident.” (Read the recap here.) So as soon as the cameras roll, so will heads. The question is, whose?
The Paramount Network hit proved to us long ago that no one is safe. (Right, Lee?) And with the show not going on, literally anybody could be bumped off. Below, we’ve rustled up a list of the characters that seem likeliest to kick the bucket, whether because they’re in that… much… danger or because their passing would have the greatest dramatic impact.
Take a peek at our picks — and their odds of winding up at the train station — then hit the comments with your take on the Grim Reaper’s potential victims.
John Dutton: 90% Chance of Dying
Yellowstone co-creator Taylor Sheridan has said that “I don’t do f–k-you car crashes.” Nonetheless, taking into consideration the alleged “issues” that preceded the series’ surprise cancellation at the height of its popularity — as well as the fact that John has already survived colon cancer, a perforated ulcer and a shooting — he’s almost guaranteed to fall victim to Jamie and Sarah’s murder plot.
Beth Dutton: 49% Chance of Dying
Given that Sheridan has all but confirmed that the new Yellowstone spinoff won’t include any of the show’s current cast, we can’t write off the possibility that Kelly Reilly’s breakout character will be killed in the same hit that takes out her old man. However, should the series co-creator choose to leave his options open where she’s concerned, he could instead take out…
Rip Wheeler: 71% Chance of Dying
Throughout the run of the series, all roads have been leading Beth’s true love to the train station. All we’re left to wonder now is, will the toughest of tough guys reach his final destination after saving his better half from Jamie’s attempt on her life… or will he get there after learning why she can’t have children of her own and sending to his grave…
Jamie Dutton: 82% Chance of Dying
No way can Sheridan let Yellowstone ride off into the sunset without playing the fallout from Rip finding out that Jamie OK’d Beth’s sterilization when she was a pregnant teen. And (almost) no way can that fallout not result in Rip making his brother-in-law glad that he can only croak once. At least Wes Bentley is braced for it. “We’re always ready to die,” he previously told TVLine.
Kayce Dutton: 19% Chance of Dying
Never mind that John’s youngest son told wife Monica after his Season 4 vision quest that he had seen “the end of us.” The couple has already been through so much, from son Tate’s abduction to the loss of his baby brother, that we suspect Sheridan is going to give Kayce and his embattled loved ones, if not a happy ending, at least a happy-ish one.
Thomas Rainwater: 35% Chance of Dying
As smart as he is, the chief of the Broken Rock Reservation is probably already sleeping with one eye open, what with conniving Angela Blue Thunder hell-bent on seeing him removed from his seat of power. Should she fail to get him voted out, she could easily decide to have him, ahem, taken out. Ruthless as she is, we wouldn’t put it past her. Would you?
Lloyd Pierce: 63% Chance of Dying
If Sheridan wants to tug at our heartstrings, the surest way might just be to send the ranch’s oldest hand out for his last roundup. Nobody’s gunning for young Carter’s mentor — that we know of, anyway — but that doesn’t mean that he couldn’t take a fatal spill off his horse or get caught in the crossfire of the murder plots that John and Jamie are hatching.
Jamie Dutton II: 8% Chance of Dying
When Beth discovered that Jamie had a son, she warned that the next time he saw the baby, he should kiss him goodbye… then seemed to forget all about it. If she remembers her threat and seeks to make good on it by having the boy kidnapped before rubbing out Jamie, a single misstep on the part of the abductor could result in an unspeakable tragedy.
Jimmy Hurdstrom: 0% Chance of Dying
Since Emily’s fiancé survived not one but two devastating falls while pursuing an ill-advised career as a bronc rider, we’re going to go out on a limb and guess that at this point he’s indestructible. Plus, he’s hanging his hat at the Four Sixes in Texas now; if somebody’s getting buried, it’s likelier to be somebody who is a lot closer to home.
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