Yellowstone kicked off 2022 with an epic season 4 finale. And before the year is over, fans will get to see the first half of a super-sized season 5. Taylor Sheridan’s neo-western is now the most-watched show on television, but the creator has revealed that he already knows how the Duttons’ story will end. And, he says he’s writing to that ending.
Does that mean season 5 will be the last? According to star Kelly Reilly, the upcoming season will be a big one, but this is “not the end.”
‘Yellowstone’ is not the kind of show that can go on indefinitely
Before Yellowstone climbed to the top of the TV ratings in season 4, Sheridan told Deadline that the Duttons story could go on for another two seasons and end with season 6. He didn’t confirm that would be the end of the series, but he did say that Yellowstone wasn’t the kind of show that could go on forever.
“You can’t walk in circles, waiting to get there, because the show will stagnate. So, you have to keep moving forward, and there have to be consequences in the world, and there has to be an evolution toward a conclusion,” Sheridan explained. “You have to move in a straight line toward that end.”
Despite the show’s success in season 4 and a finale that pulled in more than 15 million viewers, Sheridan didn’t change his tune about adding more seasons. Instead, he doubled down and said Yellowstone would end sooner rather than later.
Taylor Sheridan knows when the show will end, but Kelly Reilly says season 5 isn’t it
Sheridan told The New York Times that he knows how the story will end, and he is already “writing to that ending.”
“There’s only so much hovering one can do before the story starts to lose its locomotion; you can’t put it in neutral just because it’s successful. It will go as many years as it takes for me to tell the story, but you’re not going to see nine seasons of it. No way,” Sheridan said.
Season 5 will feature more episodes than ever before — 14 in total — and it will be split into two halves. Reilly (Beth Dutton) recently told Vulture that people are always asking her if season 5 will be it for Yellowstone, but she insists that’s not the case.
“People keep saying, ‘Is it the end? It must be the end,’” Reilly says. “It’s not the end.”
Beth Dutton is ‘holding the cards’ in ‘Yellowstone’ Season 5
Reilly explained that Beth’s audacity at the end of season 4 — and the moves she made on her adopted brother Jamie (Wes Bentley) — has put her in a powerful position.
“In a way, she’s holding the cards now because she owns Jamie, and Jamie is very useful when he’s on her side and not a danger to her,” Reilly said. “There’s a bit of recklessness to Beth, but also a part of her that doesn’t know how to keep the wolves at bay.”
Reilly added that when John Dutton (Kevin Costner) decided to run for governor in season 4, that was a “light-switch” moment for Beth because she never thought her father would consider politics.
“I will say as the kingdom gets bigger, it becomes more difficult to manage. In a strange way, at the beginning of season five, Beth is probably at her most powerful. But how she toes the line of that is going to be interesting,” Reilly promised.
Season 5 of Yellowstone premieres Sunday, November 13 on the Paramount Network.