Yellowjackets Reinvents The ‘Puzzle Box’ Show By Throwing Away The Usual Playbook


Despite the relative lack of precedent for a show like this, it feels right for Lottie’s woo-woo nonsense to coexist with the girls’ practical, everyday activities. After all, “Yellowjackets” is a story about girlhood and womanhood in a way that few of the aforementioned mysteries are, and women have long since been associated with earth-based magic across cultures. History books are full of references to women witches, healers, goddesses, and mystics. When civilizations build in spaces for the mysteries of the world to flourish, they are, in many cases, women’s spaces. 

The survivors’ casual incorporation of Lottie’s magic will likely be viewed as a non-twist in an episode that has plenty of other elements worth talking about (that ear!), but it deserves to be highlighted as a particularly clever writing choice in a show that’s always been smart about its character dynamics. By side-stepping, the fraught, prolonged conversations about what is and isn’t possible, and allowing Lottie skeptics and Lottie believers to live together under one roof, “Yellowjackets” poses a much more interesting question than “What part of this is actually real?” Instead, the show asks us to think about what it takes to survive; not just strength and smarts, but also intuition and openness. What’s more, it asks us to consider the power and necessity of finding something to believe in when enduring the unbelievable.

New episodes of “Yellowjackets” air Sundays on Showtime. The season premiere is available on the Showtime app now.

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