Yellowstone Season 5’s Young John Dutton Return Supports 2 Big Theories

The return of Josh Lucas as young John Dutton in Yellowstone season 5 supports two big theories about the future of the show. Lucas first appeared as the younger version of Kevin Costner’s John Dutton in Yellowstone season 1 and then again in season 2, serving to bridge the gap in various story threads, be they the death of his wife, Evelyn (Gretchen Mol), the origin of Rip (Cole Hauser), or the death of his father. Flashbacks are a recurring motif in Yellowstone, which frequently reveals new layers of various characters in the show, giving a better understanding of what led them to their current state in the narrative.,The Dutton family and their battle to keep their land from outside interests are the driving force of Yellowstone, which was created and written by Taylor Sheridan. The battle is led by Costner’s John Dutton, the patriarch of the family, who brings all of his adult children into the fight as well. The origins of that battle were explored in the prequel series 1883, which saw James and Elsa Dutton (Tim McGraw and Faith Hill) establishing their original roots in Montana and starting the Yellowstone ranch, now the family legacy that every generation is tasked to protect. The events that have unfolded throughout the course of Yellowstone, however, have continually indicated that the end is near, as John Dutton is getting older and his children are conflicted about how much — or how little — they care about saving the ranch while outside interests, from land developers to criminals to the native population, seek to take it for themselves.,Related: Yellowstone Season 4: Biggest Unanswered Questions,With all of the events of the last four seasons seemingly coming to a boil, the return of Josh Lucas as young John Dutton could very well be an indicator that two of the big theories about the show may come true. The first theory is that Yellowstone season 5 will be the last, and the second theory is that it would see the death of Costner’s John Dutton. He has already faced a cancer scare and been hospitalized after being shot, leaving the next evolution of his journey to be, seemingly, the end. Having young John Dutton in Yellowstone season 5 after a long absence feels like it could be a means to bringing closure to the bigger story at hand, tying up events in the past as they relate to the present and giving a sense of finality to the series.,It’s important to note that Yellowstone serves as the flagship show of Paramount+, helping to put the streaming service on the map and even causing them to reconsider rebranding into a movie network. Sheridan has since been tapped to create a plethora of shows for the network, including a number of Yellowstone spinoffs. One of those is the Yellowstone prequel series 1932. Another is a present-day spinoff titled 6666. Sheridan has said repeatedly that he knows exactly how the main Yellowstone show will end and that he doesn’t want it to overstay its welcome. Whether or not Yellowstone season 5 will be the end is unclear, but it’s important to note that it will be the longest season yet, broken up into two parts, and this could be another sign that the end is near.,Lucas’s young John Dutton return could also be the setup for yet another prequel series that would potentially feature the star in that role for his own season, much like 1883 and 1932. His popularity can’t be understated, and the possibility of exploring John Dutton’s middle-aged years and how it affects the current Yellowstone story is entirely possible, whether the show ends at season 5 or not. One thing is for sure with Yellowstone season 5 and that’s that the stakes feel higher than ever for the Dutton family, leaving the question of how much further they could go from here. This supports the theory that Josh Lucas’s return as young John Dutton could be a signal that the end is near and that all loose ends will be tied up, both in the present day and in flashbacks.,Next: 1883’s Season 1 Finale Secretly Spoils Yellowstone Season 5’s Ending