Die Young And Save Yourselves, Yellowjackets, In Sic Transit Gloria Mundi

This week we say goodbye to our favorite fine young cannibals with one hell of a "Yellowjackets" season finale. I laughed, I screamed, I covered my eyes like a small child sneaking into a horror movie, and man oh man did I openly sob. 

After last week's shroom soup- and pruno-fueled "Doomcoming," everyone is waking up and coming to terms with what they were really, really close to doing. Show creators Ashley Lyle and Bart Nickerson penned our finale, and Eduardo Sánchez of "The Blair Witch Project" fame directed the absolute crap out of it. The episode title, "Sic Transit Gloria Mundi," translates to "thus passes the glory of the world," and is also what is said whenever they swear in a new Pope. Well, with Laura Lee gone, all we're left to worship is our beloved antler queen. It's time to dismember our secret boyfriends, expose our "alter" egos, end our relationships with our first true loves, and say goodbye to the first season of "Yellowjackets." *scream crying* BUZZ! BUZZ! BUZZ!

As the girls experience their very first hangovers, Nat is out trying to find Javi despite Travis' pleas, Coach Ben is trying to backtrack his coming out, Jackie is disgusted (rightfully so) at the actions of her teammates, and it finally comes out that Misty is unintentionally responsible for poisoning them all. She tries to save face by admitting that the shrooms were meant only for Coach Ben, and deflects responsibility by blaming him for tricking her into making her fall in love with him. Misty is now on everyone's s*** list, but their bickering is interrupted by a grizzly bear who bows to Lottie like a sacrificial lamb while the girls cower in fear. Lottie stabs it, providing food for the team and solidifying her place as the Antler Queen.

The Citizen's Detective Guide To Hiding Bodies

Back in the present era, Misty is in her element helping Shauna, Taissa, and Nat get rid of Adam's body. She grabs supplies from the hospice where she works (because 12 percent of all killers are caught buying cleaning products) and is immediately thriving. Shauna's in charge of dismembering him in the bathtub with Nat, while Misty and Taissa are on clean-up duty. Misty is ecstatic, giggling because she's now feeling deja vu. Shauna, armed with an electric turkey carver, notes that dismembering Adam's body is "like riding a gross, f*****-up bike," slicing and dicing without so much as a flinch. Nat is still desperate for answers about Travis' death and in a clear attempt to throw suspicion off Adam (and Jeff in the process), Shauna plants the seed in Nat's head that Travis really did take his own life.

Taissa is lamenting her inevitable election loss but Misty is thrilled to be giving orders. She's going to handle his head and hands, but Shauna needs to bury his torso. Misty claims that "torsos are useless," a line that will absolutely bite them all in the ass next season because apparently no one remembers that Adam has a giant, identifiable back tattoo. A LITERAL BACK STORY, Y'ALL. One of Misty's elderly patients recently passed away, so she takes it upon herself to attend the services to say goodbye ... and drop Adam's body parts in her casket before it heads off for cremation. Misty may be a psychopath, but she's also a friggin' genius.

The Yellowjackets Survivors Go Full Romy and Michele

Wiskayok High is celebrating their 25th anniversary and our four survivors are taking no prisoners. Shauna, Taissa, and Nat walk in together in slow motion to The Offspring's "Come Out and Play," with Misty popping in to join them having arrived earlier because of course she did. 

All eyes are on them — the survivors, the inspirations, the ... ones who dismembered and disposed of a body hours before. They all look incredible. Allie, the girl whose leg Taissa broke in the "Yellowjackets" pilot, has bullied her way into being the class chair for the reunion despite not graduating with them, because she's become that person who has co-opted the trauma of others and makes it all about her. Shauna lays into Randy for the blackmailing scheme, Taissa gets a lot of "thoughts and prayers," Misty is just happy to look like she has friends, and Nat has a face-off with a time capsule of trauma, aka the trophy case the high school keeps in honor of the team.

Allie has created a cringy slideshow where everyone else in the graduating class of 1996 doesn't exist because we are Team Yellowjackets or nothing at all. It ends on a massive photo of the class queen, Jackie, and Allie invites Jeff and Shauna to slow dance beneath Jackie's photo to "Kiss From A Rose." It's a haunting image, with Jackie literally looking down on Jeff and Shauna: two people bonded by their shared Jackie trauma, a relationship that wouldn't exist if it weren't for her. She's not even at the reunion, and yet she still has the most power in the room.

Shauna and Jackie Have the Break-Up of the Century

As the girls prepare for a feast of bear meat, Van suggests that Lottie lead in a saying of thanks, because she's fully convinced that Lottie's deer spine necklace is what saved her life, and saw something when she was somewhere between living and dead during the wolf attack. Lottie leads the group in thanking the spirits of the bear and nature, but when Misty realizes Jackie didn't say thanks, she makes her move to get back in the good graces of the group and snitches on her. Jackie, having been the only one not to take shrooms the night before, refuses to thank the dirt for their food, and calls out how utterly insane everyone acted the night before. Look, Jackie has been our resident b**** from day one, but she's 100% correct. Shauna tries to defuse the situation, but it quickly turns into a messy and malicious break-up fight.

The two of them pull out and weaponize each other's insecurities, spitting barbs and venom with tears in their eyes. Shauna is loaded with years of resentment and she goes right for the throat. Jackie busts out her trump card and announces she knows the truth about Shauna and Jeff — clearly an attempt to get the group on her side, but it fails. The group is on Team Shauna after Jackie made them feel judged for what they did on shrooms, but when Jackie realizes she's lost her influence, her reason for being Team Captain, she leaves. These girls have just laid their souls raw on the cabin floor, but Jackie isn't budging. She sucks at making a fire, but she's not coming inside unless she gets an apology, and stays planted right within view of every window in the cabin.

Dream a Little Dream of Peace, Jackie

Taissa tells Shauna to go out and talk to Jackie, but Shauna refuses. She's hurt, she's scorned, and she needs time away from her ex-BFF. After some time, Shauna approaches Jackie and says she should come inside, that she's sorry, and that their fight is stupid. Clearly cold, Jackie comes inside to find the entire team waiting for her. It's eerie, something isn't right, and it's quickly obvious that this isn't real. Shauna did not go get her, we're inside Jackie's dream. She dreams of everyone telling her they love her. She dreams of hot chocolate. She dreams of Shauna repeating the same line Jackie gave her at the party before the plane crash: "You're the best friend I've ever had, you know that, right?"

It's not just important that Jackie feels loved; it's important that she knows it's Shauna who loves her best. Her dream quickly turns tragic, seeing Laura Lee who says "It's not as bad as you thought," and what can only be assumed to be the dead cabin guy saying, "We're so glad you're joining us, we've been waiting for you." The vision ends and Shauna snaps awake with the intuition that something is very, very wrong. Poor, Shauna. She has no idea just how right she is.

What The Hell is Happening to Our Core Four?

Post-reunion, Misty lets Jessica Roberts free, and the duo planning to write a tell-all book on the Yellowjackets. As Jessica leaves, she realizes Misty has thrown out her cigarettes and despite Misty's request that Jessica listen to her and not smoke, she begs for them back. Misty returns them and sends her on her way ... big mistake. Misty has laced the cigarettes with fentanyl, and Roberts pulls over on the side of the road, suffering from an overdose. Shauna and Jeff are enjoying a nice evening at home, with Callie even joining in to watch TV. With no more secrets, their marriage seems to be the best it's been in years, but then a news bulletin plasters Adam's face on the screen as a missing person, and Callie realizes that her parents absolutely killed this guy.

Natalie is cleaning up the motel where she's been staying, clearly plotting for something big. She's got the shotgun, she's got the memories of her and Travis confessing their love for one another as teenagers, and she's preparing for the unimaginable. Taissa, earlier convinced she'd be delivering a concession speech, is declared the first Black woman senator in New Jersey history, her shocked reaction pivoting into a knowing and sinister smile. At the same time, back at home, Simone finally figured out what happened to Biscuit, finding the dog's head on an altar with Sammy's eyeless and armless doll, a still-bloody heart, and the ominous symbol drawn in blood on the wall. YO, WTF?!

"Who The F*** is Lottie Matthews?"

I'm not going to describe the details of what we see going on with Natalie, because frankly, it would be irresponsible to anyone who may currently be struggling and I don't want to give anyone any ideas. Just know that Natalie is about to do something irreparable, but is interrupted when her motel door is broken down by four strangers wearing sweat suits and a necklace with a charm of the ominous symbol. It's clearly a cult, enforced by a voicemail Suze leaves to Natalie saying that she figured out who emptied Travis' bank account out, that she's afraid she's being followed, and wanting to know "Who the f*** is Lottie Matthews?" Y'ALL, OUR ANTLER QUEEN IS A CULT LEADER! Now, we don't know if Lottie is still alive and running the cult or if they're acting in her honor, but either way, they're coming for Natalie, and they're likely behind Travis' death.

With Taissa's altar found and the symbol slathered above it, her intentions are now all thrown in the air. Has she been in the cult the whole time? Is she a cult member when she sleepwalks? Did she sacrifice Biscuit to win the election? Did someone in the cult sacrifice him in an attempt to prove their power and get her to join them? Do any of the others know about the cult? Is Misty a satellite cult leader? WHAT IS HAPPENING?! I knew the season would end on a cliffhanger but god damn.

Goodbye, Queen Bee. Hello Antler Queen

When Shauna wakes up in the cabin, we can see her breath. The temperature has clearly dropped and when she runs to the window to check on Jackie, she sees that it snowed the night before. She tears ass running down from the attic and outside to find Jackie, still huddled around the non-existent fire, covered in snow, and looking her Laura Palmer finest. The team froze out Jackie for calling them on their s***, and she literally froze to death. 

Shauna erupts in absolute agony, screaming at the top of her lungs. Both girls dealt with their conflict in typical high school fashion, allowing their pride to get the best of them, and now Jackie is dead. Shauna is rightfully inconsolable, but Taissa does her best to hold her while she screams. It's the hardest scene to watch since the abortion attempt, and the most tragic way for Jackie to go out. She didn't burn in a blaze of glory or die in the heat of the moment– she died cold, alone, and believing everyone hated her.

The final moment of the episode shows Lottie carrying the bear's heart to the carved out tree in the woods, saying, "Versez le sang, mes beaux amis, and let the darkness set us free," which translates as, "Shed blood, my beautiful friends." She hopes her offering will suffice, with her first two followers taking a knee behind her — Van Palmer and Misty Quigley. Cut to black. Roll credits. Cue the screaming and crying trying to figure out how we're going to survive until season 2.

Buzzworthy Moments and Additional Thoughts

I know that a few "Yellowjacket" episodes back I paid particular attention to Jackie's notebook featuring references to movies released after 1996 as a sign that she survives the wilderness, but I'm amending this theory — my last until next season. I still do not believe the notebook references were a production error, but in fact setting the stage for something far more tragic. Shauna has always been an avid writer, and writing would obviously bring her therapeutic benefits. I think that every year when she visits Jackie's parents for her birthday, she updates the journal as if she were Jackie. She allows herself to mourn the loss and absolve herself of some guilt by keeping Jackie alive through writing. It's why she looks on the pages with so much endearment instead of sorrow. She smiles reading them because it's the Jackie she's created and still thriving, not the Jackie she scorned and left to die.

I also found it fitting that this week's episode was titled "Sic Transit Gloria Mundi." Yes, it's got religious connotations, but there's also a song by the band Brand New with the title and the major chorus is "die young and save yourself." The lead singer of that band is a sex pest, but I couldn't stop thinking about it. Jackie died young, and I have a bad feeling that she saved herself from whatever it is the rest of the team is going to endure moving forward

Buzzworthy Moments And Additional Thoughts Pt. 2


  • Misty only registering to vote so she could get jury duty is the most Misty Quigley thing imaginable.
  • Taissa's speech to Van about the things she believes in references Sporty Spice and Scully from "The X-Files" because Van is a huge lesbian and we are all her.
  • Now that Jackie is dead and Misty is Lottie's loyal follower, who is Mari going to be mean to now?
  • Best line of the episode is Allie shouting "Shut the f*** up, Doug. You're a grown man" at a heckler during the reunion. Absolutely perfect delivery from Tonya Cornelisse.
  • The book Misty is reading at the cabin is John Fowles' "The Magus," a tale about a young British graduate who becomes embroiled in the psychological illusions of a master trickster, which becomes increasingly dark and serious ... OH, OKAY. I SEE YOU, THEMING!
  • Shauna calling out the fact Jackie was quoting "Beaches" at her was funny, until you remember that Jackie's parents referred to Shauna as "the wind beneath Jackie's wings," a clear reference to the Bette Midler song made famous by the film. Ow, my heart.
  • I am secretly hoping that "Yellowjackets" season 2 opens with Misty loading Jessica Roberts with Narcan and saving her from the overdose to teach her a lesson about what happens when people don't listen to Misty's rules. She's basically Jigsaw at this point, let's just lean into it.
  • I have no idea what to do with Taissa but if she's been evil this whole time and her friendship with Shauna is a facade I will crumble into a million pieces.
  • Also, Jasmin Savoy Brown does SO MUCH HUGGING on this show and I just think that's sweet.
  • Natalie better get to punch Lottie square in the face at some point or I swear to the dirt gods...