Is Kevin Costner’s Yellowstone the Big Western Comeback?

Yee-haw! The western burst onto screens with a glimpse at life in the new frontier in the early 1900s and has continued long into the 21st century. Whether it’s the classic John Wayne take, the Clint Eastwood versions, or Quentin Tarantino’s modern westerns, the genre continues to succeed by showcasing a period of time that many people can’t even fathom.

The latest to hit the list of westerns we love is Yellowstone, a TV series starring Kevin Costner and produced by the Paramount Network. The series focuses on the conflicts that developed in the 1850s around the Yellowstone National Park, a nearby Indian reservation, and a cattle ranch.

Is Yellowstone Worth Watching?

The main premise of westerns is, in layman’s terms, the fight between cowboys and Indians – i.e. between Native American tribes who lived way out west and the cattle ranchers that moved there as part of the great gold rush towards the west of the United States in the mid-1800s. Yellowstone fits this mould well, offering a soapy drama wrapped up in the setting of a western. IMDb scores it roughly 8.3/10, while sterner critics Metacritic and Rotten Tomatoes aggregated 53/100. The show is an attempt at placing a modern story we can all find engaging in more of a classic setting. Shows such as Mad Men enthralled us by placing common glimpses into human interactions and the human condition over the advertising world of the 1950s+, albeit arguably more successfully. The Hollywood Reporter stated that the show was cliched and testosterone-fuelled. While Costner’s foray into big-budget TV might not have gone to plan, the second season does offer a chance to right the wrongs.
Picture Source: Pixabay

Are Westerns Making a Comeback?

Westerns aren’t just making a comeback on TV. Family Guy and Ted’s Seth MacFarlane gave us screwball western comedy A Million Ways to Die in the West in 2014, while The Magnificent Seven was rebooted in 2016. HBO’s Westworld takes the popularity of westerns in order to create an immersive experience for guests. While westerns are still popular as the themes of games, such as Red Dead Redemption 2, which is described as Grand Theft Auto in the wild, wild west. Plus, as this no deposit casino bonus list shows, the western has even been adapted into an online slot developed by NetEnt, Wild Wild West: The Great Train Heist. Taking the themes and imagery of the western and applying it across the board gives people a known quantity of what to expect.

The western will never officially die. While Yellowstone’s renewed second season may give us what its first didn’t quite achieve, the taste for the western is already high – and it’s only a matter of time before someone comes back and uses the perfect formula to develop a western based TV series that gains popularity. There is also certainly room for more western films. Modern westerns have been made popular by Quentin Tarantino, but there is still scope for a less gory and more story-driven western to launch us into the future.

Picture Source: @yellowstone_tv via Twitter