Yellowstone – Season 2 – Episode 3: The Reek of Desperation
Later at a meeting with the wranglers, Rip tells Kayce that his job is to make sure no one questions Kayce decisions.
At the Broken Rock casino, Chief Rainwater and the tribe publically announce the deal with Dan Jenkins to create the new casino and hotel.
At the Capital, Jamie is forced to choose between winning the Attorney General election by making a deal with Thomas Rainwater, or the Dutton family. Rainwater agrees to fund his campaign. Jamie leaves the meeting unsure of what to do.
At the Livestock Association, Kayce is fingerprinted and his background checked. Kayce is sworn in as a Livestock Agent. Kayce is concerned about having to take a psychological evaluation. John tells him not to worry about. Kayce then leaves to visit Monica’s new apartment.
Governor Perry meets up with John at a bar. They talk about old times and relationships, before getting into the business of current politics. They reminisce on their lost spouses and how things didn’t turn out as they expected.
At the Yellowstone, Beth sees Rip feeding horses and tells him she wishes he didn’t let Kayce win the fight. Rip says he wouldn’t have won anything he’d beat Kayce. Beth thinks with Kayce in charge things will only get worse at the Yellowstone.
Malcolm Beck is introduced as a new player in the power struggle for the valley. After reading about Dan’s deal with Rainwater, Malcolm asks who Dan Jenkins is.
Jimmy runs into two men at a local hardware store. Jimmy is buying supplies for the ranch with Avery. The two men are buying supplies to make meth, and seem to know Jimmy. They tell Jimmy he owes them money and he needs to buy the supplies for them. It looks like Jimmy was involved with them in the past, cooking meth.
After not getting the supplies for them, they get into a fight. Jimmy hits them in the face with a bag of metal clips. He and Avery try to drive off but the men break the truck window trying to pull out Jimmy. Avery sprays them with bear mace, and they drive off.
Monica continues physical therapy at the pool. Her therapist seems attracted to her.
Dan is admiring the model for his hotel and casino when Malcolm Beck and his brother Teal arrive. Malcolm reveals he knows about Dan’s battle with John Dutton and explains that he and John don’t bother each other. They stay in their own lanes and a peace exists between the two. However, Dan’s now stepped into Malcolm’s lane since he partnered with an Indian tribe.
Dan figures out these men don’t like competition. He warns them to take him to court or else back off, making his dislike for these siblings known in no uncertain terms. Teal points out that Malcolm’s the head of the Montana Liquor Board, and Malcolm confirms he’ll be revoking Dan’s current license and definitely won’t issue one for the casino or hotel.
Malcolm and Teal suggest Dan should break his deal with Thomas Rainwater and partner with them on the casino instead.
After they leave, Dan’s furious. “You want to play dirty? Let’s play f**king dirty!” he says, slamming his fist down on the casino model.
Jamie’s still mulling over his options at dinner that evening. His campaign manager/girlfriend, Christina (Katherine Cunningham), doesn’t understand the problem, and Jamie explains he can’t have his father’s enemy fund his campaign. She suggests they try and hide where the money’s coming from, but Jamie doesn’t think that’s an option. He thinks he needs to turn down Thomas Rainwater’s money, which will effectively end his shot at being elected Attorney General.
Jamie heads off for a walk to clear his head. He stops in at Schwartz & Meyer and finds Beth still at her desk. “For someone with no spine, you sure got a lot of balls,” she says upon seeing her brother arrive for an unannounced visit.
Jamie reminds her they’re family above all else. Beth isn’t impressed and tells her brother she owes him nothing. Jamie, frustrated, wants her to give him guidance. He’s running for the office his dad suggested, and he’s well aware Beth chose his opposition. Beth, in her trademarked snide style, admits she did. Jamie confesses he has a donor who will fund his campaign.
Their conversation remains stilted and tense as he reveals Thomas Rainwater is the big dollar donor. Beth tells her brother he’s not a politician because he’s not a narcissist or crazy. “Let’s be honest. You don’t know who the f**k you are and you’re looking for the world to tell you. You reek of desperation and they can smell it,” she says, pointing to Thomas’ photo in the newspaper for emphasis when she says “they.”
She warns him he’ll be torn apart and so will their father. Beth suggests he consider everyone in his life and do what’s best for them.
The following morning Jamie has made his decision. He will not accept the money from Thomas Rainwater, and he won’t play dirty. In order to beat his opponent, he has to attack his dad and he refuses to do that. Christina doesn’t take this well and calls Jamie a chickenheart. (That’s a really bizarre – and lame – insult.)
If he quits, she’s dumping him. She knows if he gives up it means he’s heading back to work with his family, and she wants nothing to do with them.
John, Beth, and Kayce are eating dinner when Jamie arrives to announce he withdrew from the race. John invites him to sit and dine with the family, and Beth even makes him a plate. She laughs hysterically when Kayce asks where Jamie’s been, and John finally has to leave the table.
Beth apologizes as her father walks out of the dining room.
John, emotional, looks out over his ranch. Rip’s walking through the sprinklers adjusting their spray. John looks away as he pulls out a handkerchief and says, “Goddamn you for leaving me.”