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1923 Viewers Have A Sour Taste In Their Mouths After That Violent Boarding School Scene

For most of us, soap is an everyday product that's used to clean our bodies. In the premiere of the "Yellowstone" spin-off, "1923," however, the seemingly innocuous product contributes to one of the episode's most shocking, disturbing, and violent scenes. The moment in question sees Teonna Rainwater (Aminah Nieves), a boarding school student, get asked to name the nine ingredients of soap by her strict religious teacher, Sister Mary (Jennifer Ehle). When Teonna can't recall the ingredients, the nun proceeds to beat her with a ruler, which prompts the student to spring from her chair and start throwing fists.

Of course, it's easy to sympathize with Teonna as she's clearly being persecuted. The school isn't exactly enlightened when it comes to human rights, after all, and Taylor Sheridan's work never shies away from showcasing the uglier side of history. Furthermore, the nun refers to Teonna as an "animal" and similar slurs, highlighting the mistreatment and prejudice that the girl faces at the religious institution.

However, while many "1923" viewers sided with the boarding school student, they were still shocked by the violent nature of the scene. Following the episode, some fans converged on social media to share their thoughts on the matter. Let's find out what they had to say.

1923 fans can't get over the brutal boarding school scene

"Yellowstone" and "1883" established that this franchise is violent long before the "1923" pilot aired. People get shot and beaten up in these shows all of the time; however, the boarding school scene on "1923" had a profoundly disturbing effect on people who tuned into the episode.

The scene in question will go down in history as a polarizing one, but it certainly got people talking. Many people hated it, but some people felt it was necessary in order to get its point across. Regardless of which side of the debate the social media users sided with, many of them agreed that the scene was unexpected. "The boarding school scene in #1923 probably should have had a trigger warning," @sj62499 wrote. This sentiment was shared by @its_GOP, who never saw it coming. "1923 giving me something I was truly not expecting in the scene when the nun gets absolutely rocked."

Elsewhere, some viewers were disgusted by what they saw and made their feelings known. "1923 is a good reason I don't watch shows. Sick s***," @DavidfromMd2 tweeted. "I have no want to see. Nuns beating schoolchildren. Awful." On the flip side, some fans claimed that the scene was necessary in order to highlight the persecution faced by Native American students, especially during the time in which the show's story is set. "Love that #1923TV has incorporated the native perspective of the colonizing, Catholic schools," @oceanbluejeans said. "It's hard to watch but so impactful."

The shocking history that inspired 1923's boarding school

From movies like "Wind River" to the shows set in the "Yellowstone" universe, Taylor Sheridan always sheds a light on Indigenous characters. His work also highlights the displacement and mistreatment that Native Americans have faced throughout history, and it isn't pretty. Unfortunately for viewers with queasy stomachs, this means having to sit through some truly disturbing sequences, such as the boarding school moments on "1923."

The messed up history of Native American boarding schools has been well documented. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the United States government funded a program called the Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative, which was designed to assimilate Native children into American culture. That meant taking children from their parents and placing them in schools far away from their homes, where they were often beaten and abused by their teachers. "1923" is authentic in that regard.

Sheridan's work has always been political, and "1923" is no different. The show is certainly disturbing at times, but that's the point at the end of the day.