Yellowstone’s Rip made not one but two massive mistakes in Sunday’s “Tall Drink of Water.” First, when Beth suggested that they and the bunkhouse boys hit a cowboy bar in Bozeman to celebrate Lloyd’s 70th birthday, her better half said no, as if he couldn’t have guessed that she would translate the word to mean “I dare ya.” Second, when the gang arrived, he advised his wife to keep her crazy in check while they were there, again as if there was even the remotest possibility that that was going to happen. How insane did things get? Read on…
‘IF MY DAY ENDS LIKE YOUR BEGAN, IT’LL BE GOOD ENOUGH FOR ME’ | As “Tall Drink of Water” got underway, flashbacks revealed that Yellowstone National Park’s imported Canadian wolves had been an issue for John and other ranchers for decades. (Did that town-hall meeting not totally give you Jaws vibes? All it was missing was Quint coming in and scratching his nails against a chalkboard.) In the present, agents from the Fish & Wildlife Service showed up at the ranch and ordered Rip to ride with them as they followed the digital trail of the wolves that, unbeknownst to them, Colby and Ryan had killed. The agents seemed hella suspicious, but in the end, it appeared that the secret was going to remain as buried as the endangered species that had been shot.
While Beth set off for Salt Lake City to tie up “loose ends” and John did the sort of navel-gazing for which he no longer had the brain space in the evenings — same, John, same — over at Kayce and Monica’s, the couple made plans for their ill-fated son’s service with Rainwater and Mo. When Monica went inside to chop veggies and, during a breakdown, her hair, Kayce informed the chairman and his right-hand man that, lest it be “the end of us,” he was quitting as Livestock Commissioner. “It’s not my path,” he said. His family is his path. That being the case, um, did Rainwater have any job openings? No. However, Kayce could have Jamie appoint him as an investigator for the Montana Department of Justice.
‘CAREERS WILL END OVER THIS IF WE DON’T PRESENT A MEASURE OF OUTRAGE’ | Speaking of Jamie, he was paid a visit by Sarah and Ellis, aka the Market Equities attorneys overseeing the firm’s suit against the state. Unfazed, Jamie was at his sharp best — he actually is a pretty savvy lawyer, you have to admit. After Ellis stormed out in a huff, spilling coffee on Jamie’s secretary on the way, Sarah remained where she was and began working Jamie. A little flattery here, a little BS there, and before she slinked away, she had a dinner date with the attorney general. “You play outraged very well,” she cracked to Ellis when she rejoined him. Phase 1 of their plan couldn’t have gone any more smoothly. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Kayce got John’s OK to bury his grandson there and broke it to Dad that he was quitting as Livestock Commissioner.
At that very moment, Rainwater and Mo were lamenting how much they were going to miss having a Livestock Commissioner who was on their side. And that was just the start of the chairman’s no-good, very-bad day. A young politician was running him down to disgruntled tribe members outside the Gray Wolf Peak Casino, and inside, Angela was hanging around just to hiss at him that instead of the slave rules that he enforced, “I’m going to teach you the master rules, and that lesson will not be pleasant.” Meaning? “I’m removing you.”
‘IT’S BEEN A F—KING BLAST DOING BUSINESS WITH YOU’ | At Schwartz & Meyer, Beth offered Market Equities competitor Burson International a too-good-to-be-true deal: She was unloading controlling interest in S&M and retaining only the real estate, which, per Daddy’s wishes, she was putting in a conservation easement. Though Burson’s rep rightly sensed that there was a rattlesnake hidden in the agreement, Beth reassured him, “I am the rattlesnake… but you’re not who I’m gonna bite.” As soon as the deal made the news, Market Equities’ lawsuit was called off, and Caroline was called back to New York. As far as Ellis could see, it was checkmate — Beth had beaten them. No, Caroline said. There’s no such thing as checkmate. “Find a way to ruin this family,” she told him, “starting with her.” As for Sarah? She was given free reign to play as dirty as she liked.
Having well and truly [bleeped] Caroline, Beth was flying so high that she took the bunkhouse boys to the Crystal Bar in Bozeman to celebrate Lloyd’s big seven-oh. (Or 58, as he kept insisting.) At first, a good time was being had by all. Ryan even ran into Abby, the singer he’d so recently “roped.” But then a drunk chick hit on Rip, who pointed out that his wife was standing right over there staring at her. Foolishly, the woman went up to Beth, and the next thing we knew, Beth had smashed her beer bottle against the poacher’s head, and the whole bar had erupted into fisticuffs. As the episode concluded, Sheriff Ramsey let all of the brawlers go… except Beth, who couldn’t resist taking one more swing at the woman. Rip warned that if the sheriff arrested the governor’s daughter, there was going to be a problem, but the new sheriff was no Haskell. Down to the station Beth went.
So, what did you think of the episode? Jamie stands exactly no chance against Sarah, right? Could this little case of aggravated assault be the weapon that Market Equities uses to take down Beth? Hit the comments.