Spoilers below for Yellowjackets S2.01 — Friends, Romans, Countrymen
Yellowjackets is back! It’s been a long year and change since the finale aired in January 2022 and I have been very excited for the return of the baddest women on television. While this episode wasn’t the absolute strongest, it did what needed to be done to get us back into the swing of things.
To help keep everything in order, I’m going to recap each timeline and character arc individually. Starting with:
The plane crash timeline
The episode begins in the plane crash timeline where winter has fully descended.
Teen Nat and Travis
Nat and Travis prepare to head out into the elements. I thought they were going to look for food, but turns out they were actually searching for Javi, who ran off when the group was accidentally high on mushrooms. It’s been about 2 months since then so…you do the math.
Before they leave, Lottie, who is now fully in her witch era, puts some dust on their palms, pricks her finger and mixes her blood with something in a mug, and makes them drink it. When Nat pushes back on the “wicca bullshit”, Lottie says that it’s the reason they’ve come back alive each time. Can’t really argue one way or another on that one, so they agree and head out. Lottie does one more protective (we think) thing — she draws one of the stick fingers on the fogged up window.
Nat and Travis don’t find anything when they trek out, but Nat has been leaving markers along the paths and mapping each direction they travel. When she returns, she and the coach reveal that they’ve mapped at least 7 miles in each direction. Not sure how helpful that is during the winter, but hopefully when spring comes they will have some idea how to escape.
Warming up by the fire, Nat tries to tell Travis that there’s basically no way Javi could still be alive. This sends Travis into a full blown panic attack. Lottie rushes over and places her hand on his heart, coaxing him to take deep breaths. When she touches him, Travis sees visions of the altar from last season all lit up with candles. When he is calm, Lottie tells him that she knows Javi is alive. This enrages Nat who pulls her aside and tells her to stop giving him false hope. Lottie has a great line where she says, “There is no false hope, only hope” and Nat asks if she read that in a fortune cookie.
However, the next time Nat and Travis head out, she notices a tree with dirt at the trunk, not snow. It looks like maybe someone had been there and cleared away the snow. This is likely the first sign that Javi is actually out there and somehow survived 2 months of freezing winter. I trust that Lottie is right, I just don’t know how!
Shauna is playing MASH in the meat storage shed with Jackie. Yes, Jackie who died at the end of season 1. Yes, Jackie is still dead, but Shauna is going through some stuff so she’s deeply in the land of imagination. For the most part, Frozen Jackie looks good, but after a particularly heated (get it? because they’re freezing) argument, Shauna pushes Frozen Jackie and her ear falls off. Shauna pockets the ear and scurries back to the main cabin with the meat.
The other girls have noticed that she spends hours in the cold room with Jackie, but haven’t said anything to her about how that is wildly weird. Shauna tells them that they are running low on meat and she had to cut back rations again.
Not much else happens with Shauna in this episode except…well, she does casually pop Jackie’s ear in her mouth and eat it. But, that’s not too bad right?? Just kidding — it’s the first cannibalistic event we’ve seen from the girls and will certainly not be the last. We’re getting into it now, people!
Teen Taissa and Van
Van’s face healed up pretty well considering they had very limited medical supplies. She and Taissa are still together and in love, though Tai’s nighttime attacks are getting worse. Tai keeps begging Van to stop sleeping in the attic with her, but Van refuses. In fact, after one such attack where Tai bites Van’s mouth so hard it bleeds, Van uses the blood to write “I ❤ U” on Tai’s arm. Ah, young love in the age of cannibalism.
The rescue timeline
This is the first time we’ve ever seen the rescue timeline, but I’m sure it is not the last. Just for one scene, we see the girls being hounded by press before getting onto another plane, I assume leaving the PNW to head back to Jersey. Misty is making eyes at the cameras slyly but most of the girls are avoiding speaking to and looking at the reporters. Except Lottie, who turns around before getting on the plane and screams at the top of her lungs.
A little later, Lottie’s parents explain that she hasn’t spoken since the rescue. Eventually, she is taken to a mental hospital and given drugs and electroshock therapy. In the hospital, she begins speaking again and even helps her roommate who is having a panic attack by using the same calming touch that she uses on Travis in the cabin.
The present timeline
Shauna and Jeff
In the present, Misty is trying to help Shauna prepare for the worst since they killed and disposed of Adam. Unfortunately, mastermind Misty can only do so much when the world’s worst criminal Shauna is at the helm. Even though she promised that she’d discarded all of Adam’s belongings, Shauna has kept his license, credit cards, and keys in the safe with her journals. WHY!? It’s so beyond dumb.
And it gets worse!
Looking at his keys, Shauna realizes that Adam had an art studio. She calls Jeff and they head over to check out what’s in there. It would be a real shame if it was covered in paintings of Shauna pre and post coitus wouldn’t it? But, of course it is. This weirdly turns Shauna and Jeff on so they have a quickie in the studio. SO DUMB! Don’t they watch SVU?? You can’t have sex at a crime scene, the DNA will be everywhere! When they’re done, they paint over Shauna’s face in all the artwork, which will look so obvious if this place is searched.
Don’t worry, it gets worse!
Shauna and Jeff return home and decide to burn Adam’s things and Shauna’s journals. Their daughter Callie is on to Shauna because she met Adam that one time, knew they were having an affair, and then saw on TV that he had disappeared. Shauna and Jeff burn the items and then make hotdogs. The next day, Callie goes out and looks through the coals and finds the photo piece of Adam’s ID! What?? They didn’t go through the coals themselves before making the hotdogs, or if they did, they didn’t find that piece? The most important piece??? Come on guys, less time on terrible dad jokes and more time being at least mediocre criminals!
Newly elected Senator Taissa is trying to get a replacement dog for her son Sam since their original dog’s head ended up as the centerpiece of her basement altar. She grabs Steve, a Yorkie, from the shelter and heads to Sam’s school to show him. He gets excited, but he’s immediately pulled back by his other mom Simone, who screams at him to get away from Tai, then tells him it’s ok but go over there, and yells at Tai. Totally normal parent stuff. Simone tells Tai that she found her altar and if she doesn’t step down and seek help, she’ll tell the press.
Unfortunately, Tai doesn’t remember even making the altar. She heads down to the basement and sees for herself what she’s done in the night (besides eating all that dirt). Steve unknowingly follows her into the secret room and she promises to do better for him. Steve, if you can hear me, RUN!
Misty, an actually good criminal, checks her unsolved mysteries message board to see what people are saying about Adam. Unfortunately, one of the commenters got a hold of his credit card bill and thinks he had a secret girlfriend. Not good. She downvotes it angrily and moves onto more pressing matters.
Natalie has been missing for a few days now. She goes to the motel and threatens the manager by explaining she knows everything about him (including his social). He tells her that Nat left in the middle of the night. Misty believes him until she notices signs of forced entry in the hotel room. Now, she needs to figure out what happened.
We briefly see present-day Lottie speaking to a large group of robed people in a small amphitheater. It looks like they are in the PNW, I think in the same woods by the lake as the plane crash. It is obvious that Lottie is leading a cult (or wellness center, which is also a cult) because she’s telling the people the only thing that can help you is you. You know, cult stuff.
And where is Nat? Strapped to a bed and still wearing those damn leather pants. She convinces the girl who brings her food to untie one of her hands so she can eat. The girl is wearing a necklace with a pendant that has one of Lottie’s stick figures on it, so Nat knows what’s up. Unfortunately for this girl, she is too new to the kidnapping game and never stood a chance. When she comes back, Nat waits until she leans over her to tie her back up and stabs her with the fork.
Nat runs as fast as she can through the grounds of Lottie’s cult/center. She pauses when she sees a group of people in animal masks singing and banging drums. One man takes off his robe and lays down in a grave. The others begin covering him with dirt. Lottie comes out arms raised and starts loudly meditating. Nat hits one of the animal people with her stick and calls Lottie’s name. Lottie tells the others to leave Nat because they are friends. Plus, she says she has a message for Nat from Travis.
Final thoughts/comments (all timelines)
- Does anyone else think they added more girls to the plane crash timeline? For example, who was Crystal, the musical theater geek? We’ve never seen her before (or if we’ve seen her in the background, certainly we’ve never heard her). But also, it’s just weird that they’ve been stranded for months and months and this loser is just now trying to befriend Misty! Don’t you think they would have either already been friends or at least, known each other a bit after all this time? Just weird.
- I stand by this, but I really thought that it was Jackie who they were hunting at the very beginning of the first episode of season 1. I thought that because of the necklace, which was Jackie’s and then she gave it to Shauna and then I think Shauna might have given back to Jackie towards the end. Either way, if they are going to ever return to that, I’ll be very interested in who was the prey.