‘Yellowstone’: Season 2 Recap Ahead of the Season 4 Premiere

Yellowstone season 2 gave fans a closer look at life on the Dutton Ranch. Taylor Sheridan’s western spent more time in the bunkhouse with the ranch hands, and they even went to the rodeo. Of course, there was also plenty of Dutton family drama.

As the premiere of Yellowstone season 4 approaches, it’s time to look back on the episodes that came before to get a quick reminder. Here is everything you need to know about Yellowstone season 2.

'Yellowstone' stars Kevin Costner (John Dutton) and Luke Grimes (Kayce Dutton) on horses in an image from season 3
Kevin Costner and Luke Grimes in a scene from season 3 of ‘Yellowstone’ | Paramount Network

Enemies become allies in ‘Yellowstone’ season 2

After fans met John Dutton (Kevin Costner) and his family in season 1 — as well as his numerous enemies — Sheridan and his writers add another threat in season 2: the Beck Brothers.  John spells out the theme of the season by telling his son Kayce (Luke Grimes): “It’s the one constant in life. You build something worth having, someone’s gonna try and take it.”

In addition to Thomas Rainwater (Gil Birmingham) and Dan Jenkins (Danny Huston), the Beck brothers have become a pain in the ass for the Dutton family. But John also realizes that the Beck brothers are a thorn in the side of Rainwater and Jenkins, which leads to two of John’s greatest enemies becoming his allies. At least for now.

John Dutton doesn’t have cancer

Rainwater and Jenkins have been working together to build a casino next to the Dutton Ranch, and John realizes he’s running out of time to protect his property. He also doesn’t think his kids — Kayce, Jamie (Wes Bentley), and Beth (Kelly Reilly) — are ready to protect the land that’s been in their family for generations.

John has been secretly fighting cancer, or at least that’s what he thought. After he starts coughing up blood, it’s discovered that he doesn’t have colon cancer. Instead, John has an ulcer and it ruptured. When he realizes he’s not going to die, John tells Kayce that means he has to face all the decisions he’s made.

Kayce and Monica’s relationship falls apart in ‘Yellowstone’ season 2

Kayce’s marriage to Monica (Kelsey Asbille) really struggles in season 2, as the former Navy SEAL is convinced the only thing in life he’s good at is killing people. Kayce is back on the ranch without his wife and son, and “taking a crash course” in how to become his father.

“You’re about to find out how big of a role you play in this family, son,” John tells Kayce.

Beth takes offense to this, though, because she’s working to protect her family’s ranch. She’s been expanding the Dutton land by buying up every available property she can find. Meanwhile, Cole Hauser’s Rip Wheeler really comes into his own in season 2 as a loyal Dutton ranch hand. He’s also the love of Beth’s life.

Rip proves to be extremely loyal to John, and is his top henchman. As John says, he knows he can trust Rip because he’s the only one who doesn’t benefit when he’s gone.

Jamie’s political career fizzles before it begins

Jamie’s interest in politics and his desire to be Attorney General — plus John’s support of another candidate — led him to talk to a journalist who was looking for dirt on the Dutton family. He eventually realizes he’s made a huge mistake and withdraws from the race. Jamie then returns home to work on the ranch. He also ends up killing the journalist who was prepared to expose the Dutton family.

Meanwhile, Kayce discovers the Beck brothers have killed a bunch of the cattle at the Dutton Ranch. The brothers have also inserted themselves into Rainwater and Jenkins’ casino deal, which results in them teaming up with John to take the brothers down.

The feud with the Beck brothers comes to a head in ‘Yellowstone’ season 2

The Dutton’s feud with the Becks eventually turns violent when the brothers send in their men to assault Beth, but Rip is able to save her. However, they are able to take out Jenkins and they kidnap Kayce’s son. At this point, John knows the only thing they can do is kill the Beck brothers. A move that Rainwater supports.

Kayce and Rip — plus the sheriff and Rainwater’s team from the reservation — end up taking out both Beck brothers and rescuing Kayce’s son. Before the season closes, John gives Rip the cabin that belonged to his oldest son, Lee. And John calls Rip his “son.”

Seasons 1 through 3 of Yellowstone are available on Peacock. Season 4 premieres on the Paramount Network on Sunday, Nov. 7.

RELATED: ‘Yellowstone’ Season 4: Luke Grimes Hints There Could Be More Trouble Ahead For Kayce and Monica