Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Most Upsetting Jimmy Moment From Yellowstone Season 1

Before the latest season of "Yellowstone" became the biggest cable television premiere since 2017, the Western drama had somewhat humble beginnings. Despite high viewership and audience ratings, critics weren't sold on the series right away. The Rotten Tomatoes consensus describes Season 1 as "too melodramatic to be taken seriously," but praises the cast and location.

Now, "Yellowstone" is an acclaimed series with a dedicated fanbase. But, it's hard to disagree that the first season was intensely dramatic — it had to be to set the tone of a show that blends family strife, politics, power struggles, and violence. The pilot, "Daybreak," didn't hesitate to pull out all the stops, immediately throwing many characters into the fire.

One of these characters is Jimmy Hurdstrom (Jefferson White), a burnout whose grandfather convinces John Dutton (Kevin Costner) to whip him into shape as a ranch hand. The formerly troubled young man appears to be set to lead the upcoming spin-off "6666" and has proved his worth as a cowboy, so it's easy to forget just how rocky his start at the Dutton's ranch really was.

Jimmy Hurdstrom's surprise branding was brutal to watch

While Jimmy Hurdstrom has had his fair share of hard-to-watch scenes across four seasons of "Yellowstone," his first encounter with Rip Wheeler (Cole Hauser) is one of the most upsetting to watch. The relentless Wheeler breaks into Hurdstrom's trailer to recruit him, which involves a taser and a branding iron.

Wheeler explains that he has a choice: continue his life of crime or commit himself to the Yellowstone Ranch. Backed into a corner and staring down a glowing iron, Hurdstrom accepts the offer and prepares to get branded. Smoke curls up from his chest as the ranch's 'Y' logo is burned into his skin — and this is only the beginning of what's to come. As Jefferson White puts it, his character is "thrown into a world that is totally foreign to him" (via YouTube).

Most "Yellowstone" fans have since grown to love the brand and what it stands for, but some dislike how brutal it is. On the show's subreddit, u/KellyKeybored called it "so extreme," regardless of what it symbolizes.

Similarly, u/kcox1980 said they "still don't get the whole deal with the brand" and called it "just really weird" as a concept. Others agree that it's hard to watch, particularly in Hurdstrom's case, but it changes his life for the better.

In spite of his startling introduction, Hurdstrom survives his various trials by fire and grows to become a valued member of the Yellowstone family — even though he seems unable to resist getting himself into sticky situations.