A surprising show that has captivated the hearts of viewers for the last five years is none other than Yellowstone, the 2018 show about a ranching family that is trying to protect the land that has been in their family for generations. Now that the series is ending in its fifth season, theories abound about how it will end, with a few great ideas that make a ton of sense, possibly revealing the ending of Yellowstone.
Yellowstone follows the Dutton family, rangers who have owned Yellowstone Ranch, the largest ranch in Montana, for generations. The family is led by John Dutton, the current patriarch of the fifth generation of Duttons that have lived on, owned, and operated the land, played by Kevin Costner. There have been twists and turns in the drama of this family’s story, dealing with everything from haunting secrets to organised assassination attempts, all leading to the question of how the fifth season will end.
So far, the first eight episodes of season 5 are out. After a short break, fans can watch the show’s last six episodes, leaving enough time for fans to speculate about how the series will end, with some theories making so much sense that it might be how the series ends!
There are two main theories about how the series is going to end. The first theory is by u/Phattwoohie on the r/YellowstonePN subreddit, titled “Jamie Will End Up With Everything in The End,” a theory with a pretty good standing. Despite Jamie being adopted, the poster makes it clear that “[The Duttons] never treated him right, and it will be their biggest downfall in the end.”
The poster also pointed out that whenever the family is dealing with something they can’t get themselves out of, they turn to Jamie to “bail them out.” “Jamie has the knowledge to eventually take it ALL!” the poster said, stating that he could find a way to take everything out from under the “real” Dutton’s noses. The poster even has a picturesque idea of how the series will end, detailing their idea of the final moments of the finale quite beautifully.
The second theory makes quite a lot of sense, and the patriarch of the Dutton family, John Dutton, will pass on and leave the ranch to be inherited by one of his heirs. The question is, how will this happen, and who will end up inheriting the ranch? Here are some of the ideas:
Although John Dutton has had more than a few attempts on his life, including threats and even organised assassination attempts, the stress of running the ranch and building an empire has started to take its toll. His clock is simply soon to run out. He will pass away naturally from old age and failing health. He has told Travis Wheatley that he doesn’t have the time to create a legacy, which might have been more foreshadowing than we realised.
So once John has passed, who inherits the ranch? There are several theories on this as well. Still, one of the most prominent and promising options is that young Tate Dutton will inherit everything. Tate Dutton is the son of Kayce and Monica Dutton and the grandson of John. To understand why he is the most likely to inherit, we need to travel back in time to when the Duttons first came into possession of the land.
The spin-off 1883 tells the story of the first generation of Duttons to come into possession of Yellowstone Ranch, starting with James Dutton. James Dutton asks the natives of the land if his family can own and use their land to make a living for themselves, to which the elders of the natives agree. One important aspect which the Duttons seem to have forgotten is that it was agreed that in the seventh generation, the land of Yellowstone Rance would be returned to the natives.
As John is the fifth generation of Duttons to steward the land, his grandson, Kayce, marks the seventh generation. Now, this wasn’t interesting on its own. In that case, it has come to light that Monica is Native American, making Tate also indigenous. Even though the land couldn’t be returned by conventional means, Tate inheriting the ranch marks the metaphorical return of the land to the hands of a Native American, despite that Native American being a part of the Dutton family.
But why would it go to Tate instead of the sixth generation? Fans suggest that it will move into the process of inheritance because Jamie and John will end up dying in their constant feud, Beth and Rip will leave Yellowstone and Montana to make a totally new life for themselves, away from the drama of their family, leaving the drama of the empire their family has built behind them.
That leaves Kayce and Monica to inherit the ranch and then eventually leave it to Tate, who will inherit it and continue the family business while returning the land to its native roots. This second theory is a fan favourite thanks to it being more wholesome than the previous one about betrayal and cunning. However, this is Yellowstone that we are talking about, so wholesomeness might be different from the main focus they are looking for.
With two different theories that feel almost equally as likely, it will be interesting to see which is closer to the story that we get later this year when the last six episodes of season 5 air and we effectively see the end of the five-year-long journey that is Yellowstone.