‘YellowJackets’ crash into Showtime


Rotten Tomatoes

Yellowjackets is rated MA, so viewer discretion is advised. This is due to sexual content, substance abuse, and scenes including cannibalism.

Addison Coerver, Staff Writer

A plane full of soccer players. A crash in an isolated wilderness. A fight to survive.

This story sounds familiar because it really happened: In 1972, the Uruguay rugby team was traveling to Chile for a game when their plane crashed in the Andes Mountains. The flight contained 45 people, 12 of whom died on impact; eight died later because of an avalanche.

However, “YellowJackets” is not based on these events in any way; the show simply draws minor inspiration from the disaster. 

Director Karyn Kuesama (“The Invitation” and “Jennifer’s Body”) takes the events of the 1972 Andes Flight disaster and turns them into the modern drama, “YellowJackets.” 

Starring Melanie Lynskey (“Don’t Look Up” and “Lady of the Manor”) , Ella Prunell (“Army of The Dead” and “UFO”), Cristina Ricci (“Monstrous” and “The Matrix Resurrections”), and more, Season 2 airs on Showtime

The recap below is about Season 1 of YellowJackets. Season 2 picked up where the show left off and premiered on March 24.

Season 1 and 2 have two different stories going on at once. The 1996 story, talks about the group when they were teens in high school, and the 2021 story talks about them as adults.

The show switches between time periods throughout the scenes but maintains solid organization.

-Spoiler Alert 1996 Story-

YellowJackets Season 1 pulls the audience into the backstory of a local soccer team soon to be stranded, lost and alone in the middle of one of Canada’s forests. 

The “YellowJackets,” the name of the soccer team, crash while going to play at nationals, killing four players right off the bat and leaving the coach without a leg.

Nowhere to go.

No one to call.

No food, water or hope.

Thanks to solid directing, the audiences feels not only empathy for the characters but fear for what is to come.

The main character, Shauna (Sophie Nelisse), is in an awkward situation: pregnant with her best friend’s boyfriend’s child. Her best friend Jackie (Ella Purnell) has been caring and calming with her during this time.

The YellowJackets struggle to find water, food and shelter but soon come upon a cabin that looks to have not been touched in years.

At first, the audience feels relief, but soon begins to feel wary based on the cabin’s appearance. The cabin provides shelter, a ration of food, and blankets. There is a lake nearby that saves them the hassle of finding water.

Months go by with nobody finding them, and winter is just around the corner.

Canada during winter months gets to -5 to -15 degrees Celsius. Without any supplies for this weather, they need a plan.


Shauna and Jackie have a disagreement that leads Jackie to go outside in the cold.

Part of the group decides if it walks straight in one direction, they are bound to hit society eventually. 

The group ventures off despite the dissociation from their teammates, specifically Lottie (Courtney Eaton). After the crash, she has been feeling one with nature and the forest. She has a vision of them going and never coming back.

On the first night, one of the characters gets mauled by a wolf, causing the team to turn back immediately.

Something is making them stay in the woods.

But what is it?

The actors put their emotions into the role, which provides deeper insight into the characters’ motivation and drive. 

Winter quickly comes after this with everyone itching to escape. One of the characters decides to fly an abandoned plane they find in the middle of the woods. No one had ever flown before, but she thought she could do it and she did.

After being in the air for two minutes, the airplane randomly explodes after her teddy bear catches on fire, killing her.

At the end, everyone is mad at everyone. Everyone just wants to go home.

All hope seems to be lost for the team. Jackie soon finds out about Shauna’s pregnancy. This causes everyone to be angry with each other.

Jackie decides to leave the cabin and not come back. Innocently enough, she goes outside wanting some air but soon sleeps through the night. She freezes; she dies.

-Spoiler Alert Story 2021-

The other side of the story starts with Shauna in her kitchen with her husband, Jackie’s ex, and their daughter. She appears to be sad and lost due to her appearance.

She soon gets visited by a fake journalist trying to uncover what really happened during the time the group was stranded in the forest. The audience then gets a recap about how all the remaining members of the plane crash are doing.

Taissa decides to run for state senator. Misty is a registered nurse, and Natalie has gotten out of rehab.

Shauna and her husband have been struggling for the past years in their marriage and have decided to go to a therapist. Meanwhile, Taissa has a son who draws concerning figures that resemble her at night. 

Viewers know something is wrong with Tasissa, but they don’t know what, and they won’t know for the entirety of the season. At night she becomes “a different person,” eating mud and climbing trees.

Shauna ends up in a car crash and exchanges numbers with the other driver, Adam. After this they start to text and this leads to their affair that continues for most of the season.

Natalie and Misty investigate a lead in present day.

Viewers can see the affair coming from a mile away. Shauna is a disloyal person struggling to deal with her trauma.

As this is all happening, another member of the plane crash, Travis, is found dead hanging by rope. The group thinks he is murdered while everyone else in town thinks it was a suicide.

The whole group – Shauna, Taissa, Misty, and Natalie – end up getting targeted by someone who knows what really happened in the woods. They are accused of cannibalism and get vandalized and harassed.

The group ends up paying $50,000 to stop the harassment. When trading the money the group chases after the suspect. Glitter ends up getting on the “thief,” but he escapes.

A day or two later, Shauna finds glitter in her closet, after shoving Adam in there to avoid getting caught by her husband, the same glitter the “thief” had on him. She immediately goes to Adam’s place and questions him. She ended up killing him, thinking he knows too much.

In an utterly shocking  and pivotal scene,  she soon learns it was her husband who bribed them; he wants money to help his business.

Shauna calls the group and they get rid of the body, cutting every limb and feature off to dispose of the body safely. They clean the house and get rid of all the evidence.

During this time, Taissa struggles with her problems, and her wife takes her and her son and moves out. Her wife gives her two choices: Quit the campaign or never see her son again.

She doesn’t quit and soon wins the election.


This is where Season 1 ends and Season 2 picks up. Season 2  of YellowJackets comes on every Sunday weekly on Showtime.

4.5/5 Ranger Boots.

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