In case you don’t know, Taissa is not doing so hot. It’s one of the central mysteries that run throughout Yellowjackets. The first minutes of “Old Wounds” make this very clear in the present and past within the opening minutes. In 1996, young Taissa had some connection to the forest regarding the symbols on the trees. Young Van figures that there is some pattern between where Tai is going and the triangulation of a prominent symbol.
Within the present, adult Taissa wakes up driving to a location with a Yellowjackets file. The destination is one of the episode’s first needle drops – adult Van (Lauren Ambrose) is alive and tucked away inside a video store. At least in the past, young Van has bought into the essence of Lottie – she’s joined Mari. Young Tai is reluctant to talk to Lottie about it – even if there is some interconnectivity with what they are experiencing. A big part of what drives Yellowjackets thrives on is mystery. It feels like Tai’s story is shrouded in most of it, which partly gets frustrating.
In the present, this other instance of her knew exactly where to find where Van is. Up to this point, it’s one of the most significant pieces of the puzzle that we don’t yet know how it all fits. However, this comes more into focus as we learn more about Lottie’s story. Young Lottie was always adamant that Javi was alive, and by happenstance, retracing Tai’s steps led her and Van to find Javi in the woods. What’s interesting is the blood offering Lottie gives at the altar – the grass surrounding it starts to melt. You can chalk it up to pure coincidence that Tai and Van found him. But there is something to the element of Lottie providing an offering to the woods in exchange for something. Remember the bear and the birds?
This only strengthens the resolve of Team Lottie. However, things aren’t necessarily all good in Lottie Land either. In the present, we find out she has been seeing a psychiatrist at a fixed time for the past ten years. She’s also on medication which Lottie asks to increase the dosage for. Given all the traumatic things, Lottie has built a good, insulated life for herself in adulthood. The “don’t call it a cult, it’s a wellness center” has provided positive affirmations. However, the bill always comes due. Something with the playing card shook her to the core, and thus she goes to another altar and gives a blood offering. (“Please let this be enough.”)
Where is this wellness retreat, anyway? I don’t think it’s a coincidence that this episode shows Lottie doing the same thing at two different points. As far as the past is concerned, a prominent theme is this continued fight between faith and logic. On one side, there’s Lottie, and on the other, there’s Natalie. What better way to settle this is a good ole fashioned hunt for food? It is messed up that Natalie gets the only gun (thanks to Mari for being the loud beacon of belief).
Two clear experiences are notable. Young Natalie sees the white moose again trapped under ice. Unfortunately, the strength of everybody combined can’t lift it out (who can blame them?) For young Lottie, she goes into hallucination mode when almost freezing to death. Again, Laura Lee appears alive – this time with all the girls at the mall. Could Laura Lee be a totem of Lottie’s guilt about the plane? It’s possible – however, in this instance, Laura Lee warns her to get warm. However, that doesn’t explain why Lottie saw a vision of Laura Lee before Travis died and why she appeared then.
There’s a lot more to this story and why the present Lottie is afraid of having these visions. On the other side, the Shauna/Jeff crime duo is still rolling on – given some hiccups. Callie is upset and has every right to be. Her father tried to blackmail her mother, and her mother killed a guy. With Shauna and Callie’s talk, it’s the nonchalant manner Shauna speaks about Adam’s murder. When she goes into what the Yellowjackets went through, she pauses. It’s another thing that ties to something earlier in the episode (when Lottie speaks to the psychiatrist).
While Shauna seems to have her bearings on the murder and creating an alibi, she’s not ready to confront her traumatic past. Jeff is still upset about the affair, and likewise with Shauna in the blackmail. It’s safe to say they are putting it aside because they must get through this ordeal and their daughter's safety. Unfortunately, they do not know that Callie is dating a cop on the case yet.
Leaving It At the Altar
- Ben is tired of it all. That’s why we get the quip with the “What are you going to do, eat me?” I hope it’s not a foreshadowing as we peer into his delusions of grandeur of what his life would have been like.
- Can Misty just be happy? Walter is interested in her as a person, but she’s so tied to this identity that she’s built for herself – she can’t see past it. When in doubt, ask your local waitress where the cult is.
- Having adult Natalie and Lisa go on a road trip back home was a pleasant diversion. There’s a good question about what instances people use to treat depression and addictions. Lisa uses the wellness retreat to manage her depression, like Natalie used drugs to numb the pain of everything. With Natalie standing up for Lisa, hopefully, she sees another way to deal with what’s hurting inside her – particularly the guilt of what happened to Travis.
- Can Mari please find out where the dripping is?
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New episodes of Yellowjackets premiere Fridays on Showtime Anytime and Sundays on-air.