Yellowstone Universe: Every Series & Spin-Off From Taylor Sheridan Explained


“Yellowstone” is the kind of once-in-a-generation phenomenon that most television executives can only dream of. Not only is the central flagship series incredibly popular, but its creator, Taylor Sheridan, has helped Paramount to launch a couple of spin-offs already in the form of “1883” and “1923,” both of which have been very well received by critics.

However, with at least three more spin-offs said to be in the works currently, along with at least a few more episodes of “Yellowstone,” it can be a lot for fans to wrap their heads around the growing world behind the popular series. How many generations of Duttons are we supposed to be keeping track of anyway? Furthermore, viewers may also have a hard time differentiating Taylor Sheridan’s other Paramount series, like “Tulsa King” or “Mayor of Kingstown,” from his central fictional universe.

If this sounds like a “you problem,” then fear not. Below, we’ll be laying out all five official spin-offs of “Yellowstone,” as well as filling in the blanks on everything we know about them, thus far. Will “1923” be coming back for more? What exactly is “6666?” Is “Lawmen: Bass Reeves” considered canon? Read on to find out all of these answers and more.

1883 is the earliest show in the timeline and the first spin-off

“1883” goes all the way back to the beginning of the Yellowstone Dutton Ranch. The mini-series follows husband-and-wife duo James Dillard Dutton (Tim McGraw) and Margaret Dutton (Faith Hill) as they join a wagon train across America in the wake of the end of the American Civil War. The journey is one that eventually culminates in the founding of the Dutton Ranch, setting events in motion that audiences are still following today.

They are joined by their teenage daughter, Elsa May Dutton (Isabel May), and Shea Brennan (Sam Elliot), a Pinkerton agent who leads the wagon train. On top of this already sizable star power, the mini-series also contains cameos from legendary actors like Tom Hanks, Graham Greene, and Billy Bob Thornton.

While “1883” was very well-received, the series will not be returning for a second season, according to creator Taylor Sheridan. He said as much to Dallas News when he confirmed that the mini-series would be a one-and-done television event. “It’s the one great thing about the Dutton family. You can skip generations and put them in all these unique situations, and it has nothing to do with ‘Yellowstone,'” he explained. “Nothing to do with ‘1883,’ and yet it’s tethered completely to them, but they’re all standalones. That’s what I find so intriguing about it.”

1923 showcases massive stars like Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren

The next chapter in the Dutton legacy is “1923,” and the series follows Jacob (Harrison Ford) and Cara Dutton (Helen Mirren). Jacob is the older brother of Tim McGraw’s James Dutton. Other Dutton characters to appear in the series include Spencer Dutton (Brandon Sklenar), a young man who has just returned from the horrors of World War I, and Jacob’s great nephew, Jack Dutton (Darren Mann).

The “Yellowstone” prequel sees the Duttons in conflict with a local sheepherder, as is par for the course. The series also sees them confronting many of the difficulties of the time period, including prohibition, the Great Depression, and the threat of drought. However, it isn’t just the Dutton family name that fans of the flagship series will recognize here. Chief Rainwater’s (Gil Birmingham) ancestor, Teonna Rainwater (Aminah Nieves), faces historical hardships of her own as she enters the Residential School System. There, she faces the characteristic religious oppression, cultural erasure, and cruel indifference that have since come to define these sorts of institutions.

Unlike “1883,” though, fans don’t have to take this one as a one-and-done series. “1923” has been confirmed to be receiving a second season. Still, Mirren and Sklenar cautioned against hopes for a third season. “It’s bookended, it’s still limited,” Sklenar told The Hollywood Reporter. Mirren agreed, saying, “I love it when you have the satisfaction of the whole journey, and then it’s over.”

1944 will see how the Duttons fair during World War II

The next series in the chronology of the “Yellowstone” universe is the upcoming “1944.” As the title suggests, the series will be set during the waning years of World War II. Unfortunately, little is known about the series aside from when it takes place in the timeline and that the Duttons will be involved in some way.


Since “1944” only has a 21-year time jump, as opposed to the 40-year period between “1883” and “1923,” the series could see returning characters from “1923,” including Jack and Spencer Dutton. Whether we’ll see Brandon Sklenar or Darren Mann reprising their roles remains to be seen, but it certainly seems like it could be a good starting point for the show.

1944 was a pivotal year in the conflict of World War II, as it was the year that saw the Allies turning the tide and beginning the operations that would see the Axis’ power receding and the eventual surrender of Germany and Japan. Of course, that could all be little more than background noise that the Duttons discuss while sipping coffee on the front porch. Furthermore, who will potentially star in the show could also change based on the events of Season 2 of “1923.”

6666 will be set at a prominent Yellowstone location

Another series in the works that’s connected to the “Yellowstone” universe is “6666.” The events for the upcoming show were set in motion in Season 4 of the mainline series, which saw Jimmy Hurdstrom (Jefferson White) leaving the Dutton ranch to begin a new life at the titular Texas ranch.

Being that Jimmy was a central character for the first four seasons of “Yellowstone,” it seems safe to suggest that he will be a big part of “6666,” if not the main character of the series. We also know that the Four Sixes Ranch is actually a real place in Texas and that the filming of the series is set to take place there.

Unfortunately, this factor has also led to a delay in production for “6666,” as Taylor Sheridan doesn’t want to impede or inconvenience the livelihoods of the very real people who live and work in the area. “That, for a number of reasons, needs a unique level of special care because this is a real place with real families working here,” the “Yellowstone” creator told The Hollywood Reporter. “You have to respect the lineage. I’ve told [Paramount] to be patient.”

Still, viewers will likely continue to itch for the return of fan-favorite Jimmy Hurdstrom. The end of his “Yellowstone” arc saw the character finally shaping up into an honest-to-goodness ranch hand, and fans will no doubt be eager to see where the unlikely cowboy’s story goes from there.

Matthew McConaughey’s series may be the new flagship

The future of “Yellowstone” comes in a series that has been tentatively called “2024.” Matthew McConaughey is set to star in the upcoming show, which is said to possibly be a continuation of the flagship series to some degree after it wraps up with Season 5, Part 2, in 2024.

As far as McConaughey goes, though, Taylor Sheridan told The Hollywood Reporter that after the actor gained an appreciation for “Yellowstone,” the seeds for “2024” were planted. “He seems like a natural fit. We had a few conversations over the years and spitballed a few ideas,” Sheridan recalled. “Then he started watching ‘Yellowstone’ and responded to it. He was like, ‘I want to do that.'”

Still, as with “1944” and “6666,” there is ultimately very little that we know about “2024.” However, Sheridan’s words in the same interview suggested that few, if any, legacy characters would be bleeding over from the main series. “My idea of a spinoff is the same as my idea of a prequel — read into that what you will,” he said, before confirming that it would be a standalone story.

Finally, as for “Lawmen: Bass Reeves,” though it was initially said to be a prequel to “1883,” it’s been revealed that the show will actually be a standalone story that takes place outside of the “Yellowstone” universe. Still, fans who are anxiously waiting for more shows with that same kind of flavor could certainly do a lot worse than the well-reviewed series.


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