Yellowjackets – Saints Review

Is prescience a thing?

Some say leave it to the Cards. Some say leave it to the Stars. Others say leave it to the Good Book. In this sixth episode of Yellowjackets (Showtime) titled “Saints”, I think augury isn’t entirely out of the question.

Young Lottie Matthews (Neli Kastrinos) is in the back seat of her parents’ luxury car. As her father Malcolm (Thomas Nicholson) laments the rising gas to his wife Emilia (Tanya Jade), crippling fear is internalized by the little girl until she shoots out a piercing shriek just as the light turns green. As both staunch the histrionic, a big rig suddenly careens into an unlucky commuter, killing him instantly.

Though mom-dukes can’t get a handle on her gift, daddy doesn’t see Lottie as some prognosticator but rather a headcase primed for therapy.

Out in the wilderness, Akilah (Keeya King), Van (Liv Hewson), and a surly Mari (Alexa Barajas) forage for what little nature bestows. Her losing patience leads to mocking Lottie (Courtney Eaton) for the other night but homegirl gets in a good dig before proceeding towards a clearing where she spots it: a buck with crimson, shedding antlers. Van goes to cool things down but sees nothing at what Lottie’s spotted. It’s still feeding, though, in Lottie’s eyes, the feeding has yet to begin.

At the 2400 Court Extended Stay, Shauna (Melanie Lynskey) bumps into blast-from-the-past Randy (Jeff Holman), fresh from his divorce. To keep her alibi airtight, she cites “book club” as her reason for being there. That’s the funny thing about Jersey- you’re either out of your town or you’re in for life. I’m not shitting on my state, but true Jerseyans know how the game plays.

In this case, book club isn’t a tawdry liaison with Adam but rather a meeting of the minds along with Tiassa (Tawny Cypress) and Natalie (Juliette Lewis) to bandy about theories of not only Travis’ murder but also the fifty fat-stacks blackmail tethered to the motherfucker.

Shauna’s bemused having not received the cryptic postcards everyone else got. All three, however, agree not to include Misty (Christina Ricci) in their cabal… but it matters none, as the plucky personality has a little secret of her own. She’s been pilfering patients’ prescriptions for some time and only time will tell what she plans to do with ’em.

In the kitchen, Shauna ruminates on the postcard before hubby non grata Jeff (Warren Kole) reminds her of the traditional birthday brunch for Jackie. This is juxtaposed with Shauna (Sophie Nélisse) in the agonizing throes of childbirth as Jackie (Ella Purnell) guides her through it with Misty (Sammi Hanratty) helping deliver what can only be considered something so fowl, only David Lynch could have thought it up. She got through it and that’s the point. Hey, winner, winner, chicken dinner!

Back at the falls, an au natural Taissa (Jasmin Savoy Brown) and Van share an intimate moment together alone, massaging each other. Tai’s wickedly dirty nails are offensive to Van, but she’s the forgiving type. What’s more disconcerting is her partner’s unwillingness to be open about what they are and even more unsettling, Taissa’s determination to find civilization, cost be damned.

Though Taissa tries to surreptitiously retire back to the attic, Shauna’s awake, and Tai’s joke reveals this isn’t her first subconscious rodeo. The scarier thought Shauna can control in waking life: feticide, DIY style. The bigger bombshell dropped on her teammate though is whose baby she’s carrying, but Taissa swears to get them all out of there by heading south, baby included.

At the Taylors, Mrs. Taylor (Gabrielle Rose) gifts Shauna a ceramic rabbit (her favorite animal), as if Shauna was her daughter’s proxy. I think the more fitting word that ends in a “y” is creepy. Though Adam keeps hitting up Shauna, Mr. Taylor (Kevin McNulty) brings up the subject of Callie, which only raises the awkwardness when both offer to cover her college tuition while belittling Shauna’s inability to provide. Having her fill, Shauna excuses herself.

Checking the rabbit snares with Jackie, which comes up bare Shauna is starving. Jackie does bring up a hunger stronger than that in her gut and such is in the heart. Shauna listens to her bestie pine for one whose seed she’s carrying, but what makes her woozy isn’t the hidden onset of fatigue from doubled-hunger but rather the fact Jackie made Jeff wait for sex. It all seems like a lot, but being the good friend she is, Jackie relents her ration for her bestie. That ain’t making the aural flood of guilt any better!

Meanwhile, Natalie (Sophie Thatcher) and a very overeager Travis (Kevin Alves) make the fuck out in the only place where quietude and commiserating can co-exist: the blood-splattered cabin of their downed plane. Hey, beggars can’t be choosers, and though Travis is ostensibly frustrated at his lack of prowess, Nat isn’t one to give up someone she clearly like-likes.

Approaching camp, schoolyard jabs are aimed at the two until Jackie takes Natalie to task, casting light on her alleged reputation. Before the pot can boil over, Taissa breaks it up and the two go to their respective corners with Misty admitting to Natalie of a secret boyfriend as well. Good on ya.

Though Taissa’s attempts to withdraw from a joint account are fruitless, Simone’s (Rukiya Bernard) ire leave baby girl beyond reproach. Simone didn’t just see a dishonest stranger at the press conference, she saw something more bestial, and it kind of scares her. Regardless, their son Sammy (Aiden Stoxx) is paramount to Simone and should be to Taissa as well.

Entering Jackie’s room for the first time in ages, Shauna surveys the quarters of a ghost, possibly more pristine than it was left due to her grieving parents. To be fair, this was all just to view Adam’s flirty texts, but Shauna gets a little bit more than she bargained for.

While thumbing through Jackie’s diary, she’s taken back to when they were freshmen, Shauna reciting a script on how she’ll ask for her friend if a guy named Jeff likes her. It’s very sweet and pure, nary a disillusioned intent in the air.

Speaking of specters, Jackie shows up to the party to remind Shauna that it totally was her fault, but that the young know not what they do. Before they can make amends, Jeff shows up and is handed a picture of him and Jackie in those halcyon days. All she wants now is get through dessert.

It doesn’t seem as though that won’t be much of a problem, however, as the Taylors’ further needling Shauna prompts Jeff to spill the beans on them fucking behind their little angel’s wings before uplifting his wife. Let’s call that a half-point in the cheating bastard’s favor.

Elsewhere in town, things are fairing so well for Taissa and Simone, as Dr. Sandlow (Katey Wright) informs them that Sammy’s dissociative/fugue state may take more sessions to snuff out the problem. The bigger problem at hand isn’t what’s floating about in Sammy’s head, but rather what is in Taissa’s. Her clouded mind had her nearly liquefy a cyclist on the way home much to Sammy’s dismay.

At the cabin, Coach Scott (Steven Kreuger) has ‘the talk’ with Travis. Now that ole Pops is six feet under and six feet away from his makeout spot, a surrogate father can only come in the form of he. Girls talk and if Travis is going to play, according to Coach, they shouldn’t have to pay with an extra mouth to feed, so Ben hands Travi his stash of jimmies. With Van indisposed, Coach is now playing goalie!

In the motel, as Nattie cleans her rifle, she’s informed that Taissa’s fucked, family-wise which means they’re fucked financially. Natalie’s on the move though, always with a plan… though it seems the plan may have found her.

Sauntering up to her pristine Porsche, Kevyn (Alex Wyndham) rolls up… with food! Fuck, I don’t care if I am straight, this guy is a steamboat of a dreamboat. Sturdy. Nice to look at. Always dependable.

Anyway, he follows Natalie to the dealership, where she sells the goods for I would assume an easy penny. This teammate is down for the cause and her past must be as buried as the initial six.

It’s sleepytime in the cabin and all seems calm, save for Lottie, who hears something. Extracting the lamp from the hung antlers, masterfully shot as her being an eight-pointer, she ventures into the outside only to find Tai voraciously gobbling dirt. I guess we know where those filthy from before originated.

On the ride home, Jeff is more ‘honest’ than he’s been in a long time. He claims to not be ashamed of their life, of their family, but Jeff also chalks it up to them being young and dumb and at least ONE full of cum.

Though his speech attempts to instill some comfort in her, his “I love you” doesn’t seal the deal but rather is the type of shit you buy at the dollar store just to fix a crack that wastes the whole tube.

At the soccer game of Kevyn’s son, Natalie is only happy to be a spectator but also as the nonplussed One, taking the position his ex-wife would have had. After a brief introduction and a bit of sage advice from the team’s great striker, both can revel in a maneuver tried but seldom successful.

At the cabin, Taissa finds the remnants of the same in the form of a bra that was missing some components.

After asking Lottie where Shauna went and calling her nuts for asking her for eating dirt, Tai goes on the hunt for her friend. Guess her dirty nails from before didn’t come from anywhere, remembrance be damned.

For some guidance and console, Lottie goes to Laura Lee (Jane Widdop), the only one that may not see her as the others do and there’s only one way to discern what is what.

With gut instincts guiding her way through the forestry, she comes across Shauna, about to crudely commit what Laura Lee would burn her at the stake for.

Instead of stopping her, however, she wants to help her.

This is interspersed with Lottie’s baptism. The shots, along with the music have an air of Midsommar, but it’s because something big is about to happen, and it does.

Through a confluence of extreme pain, tears, regret, meditation, and revelation, things are revealed. It’s the most powerful and telling montages yet, so I won’t spoil it.

At the end of the game, Kevyn consoles a traumatic Natalie, locking hands with her, which only reminds her of Travis’ first time on the plane.

He insults by insinuating, but also incriminates by his inaction.

Before the tension can be released, they must be, as a deer is seen skirting by.

As Misty watches both Natalie and Kevyn get busy through her Owl-mister, she mixes up something in her mortar and pestle and rings up someone special, Jessica Roberts. Is she willing to give up the goods?

As Shauna looks over Adam’s BUZZ, Jeff is out for his affair. They may both have a bit of a short-hand, though unspoken, so she may actually get her nut yet!

The one who isn’t going to have a good night is Jessica Roberts (Rekha Sharma), meeting with Misty in the parking lot only to be drugged and dragged, lest she drops a dime on her. But bed-bound is more of Misty’s speed.

Nat and Travi bringing back bounty to the squad isn’t fairing so well. Though Coach Scott assures the girls shedding antlers is normal, it is only when Shauna guts it when maggots are rife in the fucker and this can only go south.

Speaking of which, now that Lottie realizes she’s not batshit, Taissa only wants to head south come first light. So much for another dance party.

After a night of carnality, grown Natalie gets a BUZZ. Tonight’s the night, and I ain’t talking about that Redman song (which samples Flight of the Bumblebee).

That morning, Taissa, animalistic, at a tree under what seems a pale moon, chomping at the loam as well her fucking hand is awakened by the BUZZ.

After all that, the plot thickens as the blood is wont to do. Things said aren’t as sticky as those unresolved. The writing, as always, is on point, but it just leaves me, as every horror mystery should with a big, WTF?

Robert Kijowski
Robert J. Kijowski is a screenwriter who enjoys a good chuckle and an even better weep when indulging in art both good and even better bad. He enjoys the company of strangers in a theatre but adores the camaraderie of friends watching Netflix. He also loves to talk- a lot. This can be read through his recaps and reviews on the Workprint or heard through his weekly movie podcast, After the Credits. His presence can be felt through Facebook, Spotify or Ouija. Don’t use the latter though- he almost always ghosts people.

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