What is real and what is fake in Yellowstone?
Yellowstone has transfixed the nation and sparked an interest in ranching and rural communities like perhaps no other time in the history of Hollywood. The popular TV series was created by Taylor Sheridan, a former rodeo cowboy who certainly understands the industry better than most.
However, despite Sheridan’s attempt to offer a realistic portrayal of the American western ranching lifestyle, there are some flaws in his show. Not everything in Yellowstone is completely realistic, especially in regards to real-life farming and ranching.
One real rancher claims that Yellowstone is somewhat accurate
How accurate is Yellowstone to actual, real-life ranching? According to Jessie Jarvis, a third-generation rancher from Idaho, the TV show does a good job overall of presenting a realistic portrayal.
Jarvis, who lives and works alongside her husband and parents, knows a thing or two about raising cattle in a remote area while dealing with family dynamics. In fact, she’s a big fan of Yellowstone and says that fears of land encroachment or state government interference are indeed major concerns for farmers and ranchers. In addition, the Duttons’ pride in the land echoes the attachment and affection of real ranchers.
Then there is the family drama. Jarvis revealed that 97 percent of ranching operations in the United States are family-owned. As a result, there is always the potential for family members to clash or disagree over the family business. However, Jarvis admits that the family dysfunction portrayed in Yellowstone is a bit exaggerated.Advertisement
Actual ranchers aren’t filthy rich, like the Duttons
While Yellowstone has many similarities to real-life farming and ranching, there are also many noteworthy differences. For starters, the clothing and gear the Duttons use on the ranch are generally out of the price range of most ranchers.
Jarvis noted that while the Duttons wear the same brands like Kimes Ranch and Greeley Hat, they also have a budget that is unrealistic for most in the agricultural business. It’s not common for most ranchers to own a helicopter or drive the latest, top-of-the-line trucks and trailers.
In the end, Yellowstone inflates the lifestyle of a farmer and rancher, many of whom are struggling to survive financially.
Yellowstone overdramatizes the amount of violence and profanity
Family dysfunction is not the only element of Yellowstone that is overdramatized. Jarvis, like most farmers and ranchers, cannot relate to the amount of violence and trauma in the show.
In addition, Sheridan’s excessive use of crude language is something that strikes a chord with many ranchers. According to Jarvis, the profanity in Yellowstone is not realistic for ordinary ranchers and leaves a bad taste.