Trauma can take a toll on a person in many surprisingly terrifying ways. To momentarily steer toward personal experience for the sake of drawing an example, when my mom died in 2013, I developed a bald patch on the right side of my head days after I learned of her passing. That whole “the body keeps the score” thing? It’s real. And the brain goes in even harder. For the Yellowjackets, both past and present, their shared trauma is making the experience of being stranded after a plane crash even harder by picking off the survivors one by one and sending them reeling into an emotional darkness that grows darker the longer they’re left in the wilderness.
Lottie has gone without her meds for some time now, and she’s unraveling to such a degree that she’s having frequent visions. In last week’s episode, we saw her in a possessed state during a seance in the cabin’s attic the young teammates are holding up in. Now she’s hallucinating a huge deer with bloody antlers and agreeing to be baptized by Laura Lee so God can help her figure out if her visions are caused by madness or divine intervention. At the top of the episode, we’re given a flashback of Lottie as a child, and we learn that this type of eerie intuitiveness has been with her all along. Sitting in the backseat of her parent’s car as a young girl, she goes from playing with a toy to screaming at the top of her lungs. Her parents, obviously concerned and rattled by this, miss their green light to check on her and also miss what would have been a fatal wreck at the intersection when a car comes ramming through. Cut to later that evening, young Lottie eavesdrops on them fighting about her and whether or not she needs a psychiatrist. She does. But honestly, who doesn’t? It’s not like she’s zoning out in the dark woods on her hands and knees, eating fistfuls of dirt like Taissa.
Speaking of Taissa, we now know that her young son Sammy wasn’t lying when he blamed a series of misdeeds that seemed to be the work of a truly troubled child on a woman lurking in the trees outside of their home. It turns out grownup Taissa is the woman in the trees or at least one in a series of women taking up station in these cursed trees. We see her snap out of a trance with dirt on her face, balanced on a limb, having chomped a chunk out of her own hand. It makes you wonder why she’s (as far as we know) the only adult crash survivor out of the few we’ve seen who’s exhibiting this type of post-crash/return to society behavior. Sure, Misty is stealing drugs from work and terrorizing her patients, Shauna is cheating on her husband and openly hates her daughter, and Natalie is still struggling with booze, but Taissa is having violent blackouts that are doing more to bring the horrors of the past into present-day than the other women are. Or maybe we just haven’t seen the full extent of their hidden trauma yet and, if that’s the case, what’s that going to look like?
After agreeing to lay low and keep each other at a safe distance for many years, Taissa, Natalie, and Shauna come together to plan how to handle the person attempting to blackmail them. Shauna is the only one in the group who claims not to have received the ominous postcard and text asking for $50,000, but she suggests they get the money together and include a GPS tracker in the bag so they can see where it ends up. Taissa is the one with the most access to that kind of money, but since she’s in the outs with her wife, who she’d need to sign off on the withdrawal, she’s unable to help. Natalie says she’ll take care of it, and we later see her sell her awesome black Porsche. How’d she ever afford to buy that in the first place? Based on her cool car, and the fancy rehab she just got out of, it seems like she’s got money, but we don’t know how just yet. Left out of the loop, Misty’s role in all of this seems suspect at best, and we later see her spying on Natalie via her ylang-ylang cam while crushing up her stolen pills that she later uses to inject that pesky reporter with. It looks like we know who Misty’s pick is for the true identity of the blackmailer. But it could also be that Misty is holding the reporter hostage because the reporter knows that Misty herself is behind it all. We’ll have to put a pin in that for now.
Shauna and Jeff go for an awkward brunch at Jackie’s parent’s house to celebrate Jackie’s birthday. All signs point to Jackie being dead, but they could flip this in any number of ways. For now, though, let’s just assume she’s dead. While sipping mimosas and unwrapping creepy ceramic bunny gifts, Shauna gets berated within an inch of her life by Jackie’s mom until Jeff steps in and lets them know that he and Shauna were sleeping together even before the crash. Jackie’s dad comments that Shauna gave birth to such a special child, and she says, “I don’t even like my daughter,” which is hilarious. All the while Shauna is receiving texts from Adam, which she sneaks off to read in Jackie’s room. As she’s in the room looking around, reading her dead best friend’s journal and such, Jackie appears to her and says, “don’t worry. It wasn’t your fault.” And then quickly takes it back when Shauna says, “I know.” It feels like she’s talking about something a lot deeper than just sleeping with Jeff.
Shauna flashes to a scene of her and her friend, as their younger selves, sitting on Jackie’s bed and practicing what to say to figure out whether or not Jeff has a crush on Jackie. That bit, juxtaposed with Shauna nearly self-aborting Jeff’s baby with the underwire from a bra in the woods, is really rough. If her wilderness baby is the same as the teenage daughter she currently has, then surely Jackie learned her secret while they were still stranded. This is just getting more and more intense. Or, wait, this is a prime opportunity for a bad camping/wilderness pun. IN-TENTS.
Buzz Buzz Buzz
• Taissa and Van’s wilderness rendezvous is so cute, but it makes me worry for Van. Taissa isn’t well, and we haven’t seen an adult Van yet, so what becomes of her?
• It’s nice to see Natalie spending time with Kevyn again, but being close with a cop is probably not the best idea for her right now. Also a bit too close of a coincidence that he just happened to be at the same bar as Natalie and Misty when Natalie got out of rehab. We already know that Misty is spying on Natalie; could Kevyn be part of her scheme?
• Young Natalie’s speech to Travis about how it’s lame that women have to act like they don’t like sex to uphold some role forced upon them by society is fantastic. Natalie isn’t a “slut,” she’s just a human with needs and desires like everyone else. “Slut”-shaming is so antiquated. Even for 1996.