Yellowstone season 1 episode 4 ending explained: Why was Kayce arrested?

“The Long Black Train” – A secret about John comes to the surface. Beth shows Jenkins a rough night out. Quality time with Tate leads to a close call, on YELLOWSTONE, Sunday, Oct. 1 (8:30-10:30 PM ET / 8:00-10:00 PM PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Luke Grimes as Kayce Dutton. Photo: Emerson Miller for Paramount
“The Long Black Train” – A secret about John comes to the surface. Beth shows Jenkins a rough night out. Quality time with Tate leads to a close call, on YELLOWSTONE, Sunday, Oct. 1 (8:30-10:30 PM ET / 8:00-10:00 PM PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured: Luke Grimes as Kayce Dutton. Photo: Emerson Miller for Paramount /

Yellowstone season 1, episode 4, “The Long Black Train,”  was illuminating for all the characters involved. First, as we expected, it didn’t take long for Chief Thomas Rainwater and Ben Waters to be called to the grave site where Kayce and Danny Trudeau burned the bodies of the men who kidnapped Danny’s daughter.

Then we learned that John Dutton had colon cancer which has introduced a new element to the story. Will his diagnosis affect his position as the commissioner? He insisted that the doctor removed all of the cancer and therefore he’s cancer-free but something doesn’t quite sound right about that especially since (presumably) none of his kids know about his medical condition.

Jamie was missing in action this episode, but Beth more than made up for it as she continued to toy with Daniel Jenkins. She took this man to a rowdy honky tonk just so he could get his behind handed to him, and he could truly understand that she sees him as being beneath the heel of her boot. She didn’t soften until he left and Rip showed up hours later for a drink and a slow dance to “Stone” by Whiskey Myers.

Like episode 3, this one establishes character more than it establishes plot. We’re clearly moving toward something, but we’re going to be taking our time getting there as the pieces fall into place. One such piece in “The Long Black Train” is that the Yellowstone ranch isn’t just rough and tumble, it’s dangerous and perhaps Kayce’s killer instinct wasn’t honed at war but rather at his father’s side. We learn this thanks to Fred, a bully of a man who does not make it out of this episode alive. Yes, that does mean, so far there’s been a death in all of the episodes of Yellowstone season 1 we’ve seen so far.

Why did Fred fight Jimmy on Yellowstone?

Fred has had an issue with Jimmy since he walked into the bunks smelling to high heaven after being forced to break the stallion Kayce gifted John. Jimmy didn’t want to take a bath and Fred had been insistent that he should because his bed was near his and he didn’t want to spend the night smelling his funk.

The two nearly came to blows over it. Jimmy hadn’t let the others know he’d been branded, so when his chest was exposed–showing the angry red of the healing ‘Y’–he was embarrassed. At least until Lloyd removed his shirt and said he was going to be taking a showerletting Jimmy see that he has a brand as well that has long been on his chest.

In “The Long Black Train,” the tension between Fred and Jimmy spiked. Their fight seemed to start because of the praise Jimmy received from Lloyd for returning with a calf who’d strayed from the herd they’d all been wrangling earlier in the day. Lloyd noted that Jimmy was shaping up into a cowboy and Fred, being a person who can’t resist trying to make someone else feel small, kicked him in the legs as they’re walking back toward the main house.

Jimmy, of course, didn’t take kindly to this and he launched himself at Fred. It didn’t go well. Fred was a superior fighter and no matter how many times Jimmy got back up, he got knocked back down, and Fred showed no interest in walking away.

Rip intervened and worked Fred over before reminding him that Jimmy wears the brand and that means he’s not to be touched. Rip fired Fred on the spot. Later he filled John in on what happened, the two recognized that Fred is a loud mouth bully who has worked on the Yellowstone ranch long enough to have seen some things, so John said Fred should “take the train.”

The meaning behind taking the train

I’ll be honest. When he said this I really did think Fred was going to be getting a ride to the train station. Naive, I know, but once we cut to Fred cursing Lloyd out as he drove them into Wyoming in the middle of the night, it became clear the two were not going to the station.

Lloyd parked by a cliff side which should have been Fred’s second clue that something wasn’t right, but he got right out of the vehicle and walked up beside Lloyd like a fool. He received a bullet between the eyes for his troubles. Lloyd tossed Fred’s belongs right off the side of the cliff with him. So, “taking the train” on Yellowstone is a euphemism for a one way ticket to the after life.

This is the second time someone has been disposed of at John’s command. The first was the medical examiner in episode 2, “Kill the Messenger,” and Rip was responsible for that murder. Interestingly, all the men who’ve killed on this show so far, with exception to Robert Long, bear the Y brand on their chest, including Kayce.

Kayce is arrested by the Broken Rock police

Speaking of the youngest of John’s children, he spent part of his day helping Monica clean up his sister-in-law Samantha’s home after she sacrificed herself, as his wife put it. She had three kids, a dead husband, no job, no one who could take the children in, and no money, so she took her life to force her parents into taking their grandchildren in since they wouldn’t be able to say no after that.

Monica told Kayce to occupy Tate because she didn’t want him to have to watch his cousins leave. Kayce took him to the ranch to hang out with John. It was supposed to be a fun, harmless outing but it ended with Tate nearly drowning because he fell into the river while gathering wood for the fire he and John were building.

John saved him, irritating his surgical stitches in the process, and Kayce was none to happy when he went riding out to find them. He barely said anything to his father when he grabbed his son to take him to the hospital to get stitches for the gash on his face. Monica met the two of them there and then they proceeded to head home as a family. Only, they get stopped by the Broken Rock police.

For some reason, Kayce seemed to be trying to pull an outlaw move as if he was really going to draw a gun on the cops with his wife and child in the truck, but Monica stopped him before he could make that absolutely bonkers decision. Instead, he got out of the truck and followed the officers’ instructions, kneeling on the tarmac so he could get cuffed.

We don’t get to hear why Kayce’s being arrested in episode 4, “The Long Black Train,” but we know it’s because of the bodies found at Ture Gas’ dig site. Thomas suspected he was behind the murders and he already believes Kayce was responsible for Robert Long’s death as well. That makes three deaths on reservation land, all committed by Kayce. It’s about time for the two men to come face-to-face.

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Stay tuned to Hidden Remote for more Yellowstone news and coverage. Season 1 episodes air Sundays on CBS.