Yellowjackets season 2: release dates, reviews, cast, plot, and more

Yellowjackets season 2
(Image credit: Showtime)

Yellowjackets season 2 may seem like it's wrapped up, with the dramatic finale leaving us reeling, but showrunner Ashley Lyle has revealed that a bonus episode is coming

Plus, Yellowjackets season 3 is definitely on the way, with the show renewed for a third installment in late 2022 – although there have been some delays to pre-production due to the ongoing WGA strike

If you're not up to date on Yellowjackets season 2 just yet, don't worry – we've got you covered. Below, you'll find a round-up of all our weekly reviews, an episode count for anyone still catching up on Paramount Plus, and a recap of the story so far (major spoilers for that one!).

Yellowjackets season 2 episode count


(Image credit: Showtime)

There are nine episodes total in Yellowjackets season 2 – plus the recently announced bonus episode, but the release date for that remains unknown for now.

  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 1 – Friends, Romans, Countrymen
  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 2 – Edible Complex
  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 3 – Digestif
  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 4 – Old Wounds
  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 5 – Two Truths and a Lie
  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 6 – Qui
  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 7 – Burial
  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 8 – It Chooses
  • Yellowjackets season 2 episode 9 – Storytelling
  • Yellowjackets season 2 bonus episode – TBC

Yellowjackets season 2 review

Tawny Cypress in Yellowjackets season 2

(Image credit: Showtime)

We reviewed Yellowjackets season 2 on a weekly basis, with new, spoiler-filled reviews dropping every Friday. 

Our reviewer gave Yellowjackets season 2 episode 1 four stars, saying that the "season 2 premiere pulls us straight back into the action and it's like we've never been away."

"There's a darkness lurking under the surface in episode 1. It's a tense, frenetic energy that's not bubbling up anytime soon. But when it does? It's going to be spectacular."

Our Yellowjackets season 2 episode 2 review jumped up to four and a half stars, with our reviewer writing that, with six episodes still to go, the season "certainly isn't pulling any punches."

"It's still holding enough back to keep us on our toes, though, make no mistake – this is exactly what you want from a weekly episodic release schedule. As the episode's final haunting scene fades to black, we can be certain of one thing: this is merely a terrifying tease of what's to come."

Yellowjackets season 2 episode 3 slowed the pace down and our reviewer gave the episode three stars, writing that "it feels like the show is floundering a little" after the jaw-dropping final scene of episode 2.

"Despite a feeling of directionlessness permeating this installment, the episode's creepy conclusion pulls us back into the Yellowjackets intrigue we know and love and ups the momentum ready for next week. If episode 2 saw things unraveling in the '90s timeline, episode 3 shows that not much has changed in the present day. Despite its strong moments, though, this week's Yellowjackets feels a bit too much like filler – and we know this show is capable of so much more."

As for Yellowjackets season 2 episode 4, our reviewer gave the episode four stars, praising the episode's "carefully crafted character work" and writing that it did a "great job of fleshing out the dynamics within the group."

"After last week's episode seemed to threaten a gear change from charged current to distracted meander, we're back in business in the latest installment of the Showtime thriller."

Yellowjackets season 2 episode 5 earned another four-star review, with our reviewer praising Lauren Ambrose's performance as adult Van and the "seamless extension" of her performance from Liv Hewson's teenage version of the character.

"This episode feels a lot like the destination the previous four have been leading to, albeit with plenty of rest stops along the way. The season's second act is about to kick off – but will it stick the landing?"

Yellowjackets season 2 episode 6 shot up to four and a half stars, with our reviewer praising Melanie Lynskey and Sophie Nélisse's performances as Shauna begins to unravel in both timelines. 

"The episode's closing scene is an all-timer for this season, with Sophie Nélisse giving a series-best performance in one of the show's bleakest moments to date."

Yellowjackets season 2 episode 7 earned three and half stars, with our reviewer feeling slightly frustrated that the adults' storyline is still moving at such a slow pace with only two more episodes left in the season. 

"Could this finally be the push we need in the present-day timeline? For now, though, it still feels like Yellowjackets season 2 is dangling something in front of us, just out of sight, and the reward is still out of reach."

Yellowjackets season 2 episode 8 shot up to four stars, with our reviewer praising the episode for finally upping the ante and cutting to the chase with some spine-chilling scenes.

"After a slow start, this season looks to be on its way to a chilling conclusion – in both timelines. With rituals, sacrifices, and a disgruntled millionaire looming over the survivors, it looks like Yellowjackets season 2 may stick its landing (no pun intended)."

The Yellowjackets season 2 finale also earned four stars, with our reviewer praising Sophie Thatcher's performance as teenage Nat and the "deliciously nauseating" ritualistic scenes. 

"The finale is flawed, but compelling, viewing. It's obvious at this point that the writers are playing a long game, but let's hope that they make sure to look a little closer to home in the next installment."

Yellowjackets season 2 cast

Christina Ricci and Elijah Wood in Yellowjackets

(Image credit: Showtime)

Sophie Nélisse, Jasmin Savoy Brown, Sophie Thatcher, Sammi Hanratty, Liv Hewson, and Courtney Eaton returned as teenagers Shauna, Taissa, Natalie, Misty, Van, and Lottie. The 1996 timeline also saw the return of Steven Krueger as assistant coach Ben. 

Meanwhile, Melanie Lynskey (Shauna), Tawny Cypress (Taissa), Juliette Lewis (Natalie), and Christina Ricci (Misty) reprised their roles as their adult counterparts. Season 2 also saw the addition of Servant star Lauren Ambrose as the adult version of Van and Obi-Wan Kenobi and Our Flag Means Death actor Simone Kessell as the adult version of Lottie. Another new addition to the cast was Elijah Wood, who plays Walter, a dedicated citizen detective who joined forces with Misty. 

Yellowjackets season 2 plot recap


(Image credit: Showtime)

Warning: there are major Yellowjackets season 2 spoilers from this point onward, so turn back now if you're not up to date with the latest episode!

Season 1 ended with Natalie being kidnapped by a mysterious group – meaning she missed the voicemail from her friend Suzie informing her that it was Lottie who emptied Travis' bank account after his death. Lottie was behind the kidnapping, too, with her group of "purple people" (that's almost definitely a cult) taking Nat to their compound after she seemed close to ending her own life. 

Elsewhere in the present-day timeline, Taissa has won the state senate election, but the episodes that we see glimpses of in the '90s timeline are starting to rear their head again with Tai suffering from disturbing hallucinations. At the end of season 1, her wife Simone (Rukiya Bernard) found a hidden shrine in their basement containing the decapitated head of their dog, their son's doll, and a human heart. Simone gives Taissa an ultimatum in season 2 episode 1: get the help she needs, or she'll leak the story to the press and end her career. 

Her sleepwalking episodes have only been getting worse, though, resulting in a car crash that hospitalized Simone in episode 2. It seems that there's only one person who Tai thinks can help her: ex-girlfriend Van (Lauren Ambrose). Episode 4 ends with Taissa turning up at Van's workplace, a VHS store in Pennslyvania, and episode 5 sees the pair's emotionally fraught reunion – and a glimpse at Taissa's sleepwalking state.

Meanwhile, Shauna is dealing with the repercussions of killing her lover Adam (Peter Gadiot) at the end of season 1 after she wrongly believed that he was blackmailing her and the other survivors. Her daughter Callie (Sarah Desjardins) is suspicious of her mother, for one thing, and she may or may not have found some key evidence that Shauna thought she'd destroyed at the end of the season premiere. Plus, the police are hot on her heels, with an undercover officer even targeting Callie in a bar in episode 2. Shauna decides to tell her daughter the truth in episode 4  – what could go wrong? In episode 5, Callie discovers that she's being played by the cop and attempts to retaliate, with less than successful results...

As for the girls in 1996, Shauna is still pregnant (and has even had a baby shower...), but we know that in 2021 she only has one child, a teenage daughter, and living out in the wilderness with no medical care it seems unlikely she will carry the pregnancy to full term. And we're about to find out the fate of the baby, as Shauna starts to go into labor at the end of episode 5. 

Plus, winter is well and truly here, and the girls are resorting to desperate measures to stay alive. Lottie's grip on the girls only seems to be growing stronger – especially now that her predictions have proved correct and Travis' younger brother Javi has somehow been found alive, despite being missing for weeks in the deadly cold after disappearing at the end of season 1. Javi won't speak about where he's been or what he's been doing, only that his "friend" told him not to come back. Oh, and Misty's new BFF Crystal is dead, thanks to Misty – an altercation at the edge of a rock face after Misty revealed that she destroyed the plane's black box in the wake of the crash sees Crystal go hurtling over the edge. 

In episode 6, Shauna gives birth, but it's a tragic outcome – despite the girls' best efforts, the baby doesn't survive. Meanwhile, in the present day, adult Shauna and her daughter Callie are being questioned by the police about Adam's murder after their ruse to frame Randy as Shauna's lover was foiled. Callie shows that she's picked up a few tricks from her mother, though, by lying about the extent of her fraternization with undercover cop Matt – and she's still a minor, this doesn't bode well for him. 

As Shauna leaves the police station, she hears from Taissa that Misty has found Nat – with Lottie. Shauna, Taissa, and Van all make their way upstate to the 'wellness center', and the episode ends with the women coming face-to-face with Lottie for the first time since they were rescued from the wilderness.

Episode 7 sees the women reunited as a group for the first time in 25 years – and undergoing various "therapies" at the center, to varying degrees of success, until they're interrupted by a phone call from Jeff telling Shauna that the police have found Adam's body (or what's left of it, at least...). 

In the wilderness, the girls are only getting hungrier and Shauna is still traumatized from her miscarriage. When her tears turn to anger, Lottie tells Shauna to take out her anger on her, and the episode ends with Lottie lying bloody and unconscious on the floor of the cabin while the other girls look on in horror. 

Lottie is in a bad way as episode 8 opens, with hunger ravaging the rest of the group, too. They need food, fast, and they're willing to take desperate measures. A ritual ensues that involves a deck of cards – each inhabitant of the cabin must take one, and whoever gets the queen is on the menu. Nat is the unlucky member of the group, but Travis helps her to escape from the cabin. The rest of the girls chase after her, but Javi offers to show her somewhere she can hide (i.e. the tree hollow where he was hiding out for most of the season). On their way there, however, Javi falls through the ice on the frozen lake and dies.

In the present day, the survivors secrets are rapidly coming to the service – the fact that Taissa hired Jessica Roberts to investigate them all in season 1, and the fact that Misty was responsible for killing her, and Shauna and Jeff's involvement with the blackmailing and Adam's death. Lottie proposes a ritual of her own, involving a Russian roulette of poisoned cups, to give the wilderness what it wants.

In the finale, this progresses further to a ritualistic hunt, like the one we saw the teenagers in '90s partake in during episode 8. While the other women go along with the plan in an attempt to stall Lottie, they aren't successful, and Shauna ends up being the subject of the hunt. Meanwhile, cops Kevyn and Matt turn up at the compound to arrest Shauna, but Walter intercepts. He poisons Kevyn, killing him, and (somehow) manages to frame him for both Adam and Jessica Roberts' murders. 

The hunt doesn't reach its bloody conclusion, though – at least not in the way we might expect. The women are interrupted, first by Callie, who shoots Lottie in the arm to defend her mother, and then by Lottie's follower Lisa, who overhears them talking about the horrors they enacted during their time in the wilderness. She threatens Nat and Misty attempts to stop with a syringe of poison. However, Nat shields Lisa with her body and gets stabbed instead – ironically, after being on a mission to save her all season, Misty is the one to kill Nat.

In the '90s timeline, the group slices up and cooks Javi's corpse. Ben, disgusted with their behavior, retreats to his new shelter in the tree hollow, while Lottie crowns Nat as their new leader, as the wilderness "refused" to let her die. Later, while the girls are sleeping, Shauna is up late writing in her journal when she smells smoke. The cabin is on fire – by Ben's hand – and the girls manage to escape before their makeshift home comes tumbling to the ground.

Up to date on Yellowjackets season 2? For more viewing inspiration, check out our guide to all the other best new TV shows coming our way in 2023 and beyond.

Entertainment Writer

I’m an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering everything film and TV-related across the Total Film and SFX sections. I help bring you all the latest news and also the occasional feature too. I’ve previously written for publications like HuffPost and i-D after getting my NCTJ Diploma in Multimedia Journalism.