We may earn a commission when you buy through links in our articles. Learn more.

The Dutton family Christmas on Yellowstone is insane, and we love it

Chestnuts are roasting on an open fire and the Duttons still hate each other. We’re obsessed with this Yellowstone Christmas scene.

The Dutton family Christmas is insane, and we love it: The cast of Yellowstone

There’s no such thing as a Yellowstone festive special. Jamie never meets Santa and John never learns the meaning of Christmas. But we do have the next best thing: a very brief scene showing how the young Duttons once celebrated the holidays, and we’re obsessed with it.

This all takes place in Yellowstone season 1 episode 7, in which we dip backwards in the Yellowstone timeline to catch up with the Duttons of days gone by (AKA: the ‘90s). A younger version of the Yellowstone cast steps in to show us just how the Duttons would have spent their family Christmas back when they were all still talking and…well, alive, and it’s just as baffling as you’d expect.

Put simply, the Dutton’s Christmas is a showcase of their wealth. If money can buy happiness, let it be known that it can also buy plaid, and this family has plaid in spades. The already grand Dutton living room is now a flurry of red.

It’s so damn cozy that it’d be easy to assume this house had been built for the sole purpose of hosting Christmas, with the total sum of their decorations definitely costing more than my rent.

Before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s set the scene: It’s Christmas morning, and a younger John Dutton is prodding the roaring fire. We then get a full view of the living room, showing off the biggest domestic Christmas tree you ever did see.

Teenage Jamie is sitting in a chair, looking appropriately moody (because some Yellowstone characters never change) while they’re waiting for Beth to come downstairs.

Kayce hands Lee a present, Lee says thank you, and John laughs at the completely normal exchange for seemingly no reason. When Kayce hands Jamie a present, the latter reacts as if he’s never been spoken to before in his entire life. All these elements contribute to the odd and slightly uncomfortable atmosphere. In a way, Taylor Sheridan’s nailed the Christmas vibe here.

This is where things get truly Yellowstone-esque, because Evelyn Dutton wanders upstairs to find Beth in the bathroom, traumatized by getting her first period.

What follows is one of the defining moments in Beth’s young life, in which her mother sits her down and tells her how people will forever look down on her now that she’s a woman and that she’s now going to bully Beth for the rest of her life to make her tougher. …Merry Christmas!

But the crowning glory of this Yellowstone episode is the full-scale gingerbread Dutton ranch. Yes, you read that right — complete with a little sign and everything. This raises so many questions, none of which this fleeting festive scene ever gets around to answering. How long did it take Gator to make this? Are there little gingerbread cattle, too?

What’s more, the Dutton’s gift exchange plays out like a commercial, since each box under the tree is so perfectly wrapped and unbelievably large that we couldn’t even guess what was in them if we tried.

One of the boxes is about the size of a young Kayce. If this is a reflection of the Duttons’ spending habits over the years, it’s no wonder John ran out of money.

It’s the only time we see the Duttons celebrate the holidays in earnest, but it’s enough. Enough to understand that there’s truly never a peaceful or normal moment for this family across the entire drama series, and enough to know that there is such a thing as Christmas decadence. Now, I’m off to buy some plaid.

YouTube Thumbnail

For more on the Duttons, check out our guide to Yellowstone season 5 part 2, and keep an eye on the 6666 release date. You can also check out our list of the best TV series of all time, to see which Yellowstone spin-offs appear. Make sure you get to know the newest addition: Yellowstone: 1944.

You can also look at our list of the best Christmas movies for more holiday fun, and read our feature on why Dallas ran so Yellowstone could fly. Happy holidays, Yellowstoners!