Welcome to the Recap and Ending Explained for 1923, episode 2, titled, “Nature’s Empty Throne” a reference to how nature is the ultimate frontier and no one can tame it. Not really. In the previous episode, the show introduced us to the tale of the Dutton in 1923. It gave us a glimpse into the lives of Cara and Jacob Dutton, who serve now as the matriarch and patriarch of the family. At least during this generation. In contrast to what the show depicted in 1883 and present times in the Yellowstone show, it seems that the problems of the ranch keep being the same.
We also got introduced to two other interesting storylines involving a native-american young woman named Teonna, who is now trapped inside a boarding school run by nuns. It seems like the mission of the nuns is to destroy any sign of Teonna’s own culture and substitute it with western morals and Christianity. It is all pretty cruel. We also got a glimpse into the life of Spender Dutton, a famous hunter working in Africa, who seems to have some serious mental issues and a death wish.
The following paragraphs contain spoilers for “Nature’s Empty Throne” the second episode of 1923. Read at your own risk.
The Dutton Don’t Need Sheep
The Dutton’s business is cattle, but they mostly work with cows and horses, they need no sheep. However, as we saw in the last episode, the shepherds are also looking for a place to take their sheep to the pasture. The problem is that they are trespassing on other people’s properties without permission. They believe that the law of men can’t stop them from taking their sheep wherever they want. This belief will become a huge issue in this episode. Jack Dutton was shot by one of the shepherds, and the episodes ended on a cliffhanger.
Here, it is revealed that Jack survives, but just barely. Jacob and the rest of the Yellowstone cowboys arrive just in time to save him from the shepherds. Their leader is Banner, with whom Jacob had an altercation in the last episode. Jacob is angry that Banner disregarded his warning, and now threatens Banner with hanging him and his men for crossing him. Banner and his men are put on horses and left there to hang. It is a chance to escape; they just need to keep the horses in place long enough, so they can free their hands. Unfortunately, not all of Banner’s men manage to do it.
Later, Jacob talks with both John and Jack about his decision. He says that the biggest enemy of the ranch is not nature, because no one controls it. The ranch’s biggest enemy is men. Men will try to take what you have built from under you because they don’t have the ability to create it themselves. He talks about how every single civilization in this world has been built on top of the ruins of the conquered civilizations.
Teonna’s Blood Is Filled With Resilience.
Going back to Teonna and her time in the boarding house, we see that things haven’t really gotten better for her or any of the other girls. Sister Mary is seen giving the girls a lesson on how to sweep, and when one of the girls does it wrong, she defaults to hitting the girl. Teonna clashes eyes with Sister Mary, but now the sister knows that she must be careful around Teonna. Later in the day, while having lunch, Teonna refuses to speak to the holy father, and she speaks in her native tongue.
When she does this, Sister Mary goes to strike her, but Teonna is ready and hits Sister Mary’s head on the table. Teonna is seized, and the Father takes her to a hot box in the backyard and traps her there. Teonna spends more than a day in the hot box, and when she gets out, she is delirious and can barely walk or speak. Her fever is high, so she is put in a bath by one of the nuns, who start touching her in the wrong way while she makes it seems like she is only washing her. Sister Mary stops the other nun and tells Teonna they are not enemies, even when Mary is trying to destroy Teonna’s culture.
We also see that Teonna’s aunt is trying to get her back. It is revealed that Teonna’s mother is dead and that she was taken from her family to study at the boarding school. A bureaucrat informs Teonna’s aunt that the only way for Teonna to go back to her is that she legally adopts her. Teonna’s aunt is set to do it and go before a judge to make the request.
Africa Is A Dangerous Place Full of Adventure
In the previous episode, we left Spencer and his friends being attacked by a leopard. Spencer manages to survive, of course, but a leopardess ends up killing one of his friends. It is a sad day for Spencer. He blames his boss for hiring him and not giving him the information that there were two animals in the zone, not just one. After forcing his employer to say sorry, Spencer makes his way to the hospital, as his wounds need to get properly cleaned, or he could die in a couple of weeks.
At the hospital, Spencer is hired for another job in the east. He doesn’t seem very eager, but he takes it anyway. However, something unexpected happens when a woman named Alexandra approaches him and starts asking him questions. It seems Spencer’s exploits have become legends around the area, and the ladies are eating it up completely. However, Alexandra strikes Spencer differently, and it becomes clear they are both quite attracted to each other. Sadly, it seems Alexandra is engaged.
Later that night, the two speak again at the bar, and Alexandra seems to want to escape her marriage. Spencer would take her away, but he restrains himself. It doesn’t really matter. Because on the next morning, as Spencer is ready to leave for his next gig, Alexandra grabs her things and jumps in Spencer’s car, leaving her fiancée and her life behind to start a new adventure. She seems quite wild, and Spencer loves that.