Yellowstone: Season 1 – Review

Yellowstone premieres June 20th on Paramount Network.

By Ariba Bhuvad

Paramount Network’s next big release is the drama Yellowstone. This new modern western series is written and directed by Sons of Anarchy alum, Taylor Sheridan. While he played the chief of police on SOA, he has now brought his talents in a different artistic form for Yellowstone.

Yellowstone feels a bit too familiar and gives off a SOA vibe mainly because of the concept of a clan/family. In this particular series, the story follows a family of wealthy ranchers, the Duttons, whose patriarchal head is John Dutton, played by Kevin Costner. His family is interesting and unique and not exactly the Brady Bunch but nonetheless money, greed, and corruption ties them together, and creates narratives that aren’t exciting, unique, or in the least bit intriguing.

With Yellowstone, we simply have the same story of a corrupt, wealthy family that gets away with everything, and I mean everything, including murder, and faces very little repercussions for it. Doesn’t this premise sound familiar and the plot for many shows that have preceded it? Set in the hills and mountains of Montana, we follow the lives of the Duttons in the first three episodes given to critics to review, and are treated to a myriad of plots, including finding dinosaur bones in the backyard (yes, this really happened). The Dutton family consists of John, along with his four children played by Wes Bentley, Dave Annable, Kelly Reilly, and Luke Grimes. Each child has a demon of their own, and either is fully invested in the family’s future, or tries to disconnect from it in every way possible. Again, a premise we have seen time and time again. Same story, different setting.

Yellowstone tries too hard to be dramatic, and fails to be original. There is simply nothing about it that left me wanting to finish the rest of the series when it airs. There are also parts of the story (like the discovery of the dinosaur bones) that are left unanswered, and makes us wonder the point of bringing up something that random was. And maybe I’m being too critical, and jumping the gun, but the story and plot just feel a bit too messy in the first three episodes, and I couldn’t make heads or tails of it.

Between the random houses blowing up, murders being covered up, the fight for land, and everything in between, Yellowstone just doesn’t live up to the potential it could, considering they have Kevin Costner as a part of the cast. I’m a bit disappointed because I was intrigued by the idea of a modern Western show and I was hoping for it to blow me away–but alas, this did not happen. Here’s to hoping the rest of the season fixes the errors of the first three episodes and takes us by surprise!

I give Yellowstone a C-.


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6 thoughts on “Yellowstone: Season 1 – Review

  1. LOve Kevin but didn’t care for the show. Too much going on and not all that interesting. Kind of like Dallas without the excitement. Will continue to watch but have a feeling I will get bored very soon. Sorry Kevin, wish you would have gotten a better show for your first TV series.

  2. I loved the show and can hardly wait for the next episodes. I liked the intrigue of the individual family memberships and looking forward to learning more of their back stories. I grew up in the West with three brothers and found familiar drama.

  3. We thought this was going to be a great western type in today’s time. But when every other word is a cuss word and the main females part is not worthy of herself and cusses not stop… Well to say the least we are terribly disappointed!!! No thank you Kevin Costner.

  4. A good show but as it is progressing there are too many “sidewinders” that are going where? Hard to see how all these second clips—the lesbians, the Asian tourists, Monica’s head injury (so ill choreographed, please), is all going to tie in to ? Also, way, way , way too many commericials! Each episode, in reality, is probably 30 minutes or so. Commercials stuffed down your throat .

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