‘Yellowjackets’ Is Making Me Question My Friend Group’s Odds of Surviving in the Wilderness


There are many, many, plus sides to living alone for the first time in my life—I can organize the fridge to my exact specifications! I can walk around in nothing but a ratty college T-shirt and mismatched socks! I can come home unattractively drunk at 4 a.m. and microwave nachos without judgment!—but one severe downside is that I’ve been waiting for four days to watch the finale of Yellowjackets. Why, you ask? Because I work during the day, and I refuse to watch the show at any point close to nightfall. It’s that scary.

The Showtime series, about an all-star girls’ soccer team whose plane goes down, stranding them in the Canadian wilderness as they try to survive, has captured the world’s imagination (or the imagination of my Twitter feed, at least—potayto, potahto). And while watching the survivors (Christina Ricci, Melanie Lynskey, Tawny Cypress, and Juliette Lewis) attempt to figure out who’s sending them alarming reminders of whatever they did in the forest is gripping—Juliette Lewis 4ever!—it’s the flashbacks to their younger selves that I’m drawn to the most.

I don’t know if this is typical or not, despite literally being part of a 70-person Yellowjackets group DM, but ever since I started watching the show, I’ve become obsessed with trying to determine how my friend group would fare in such an extreme and horrifying life-or-death situation. I’ve never been much of a prepper (my dad had to buy me a flashlight for my current apartment, explaining that I might find it useful in an emergency), but suddenly, I’m wondering if I’d be more of a berry-gatherer or a spear-fisher. Would I be a bold hunter like Natalie, or a team leader like Taissa?

Ultimately, my Yellowjackets ruminations always come to the same conclusion: I would be utterly useless out there in the woods. I’d be like Jackie (Ella Purnell), too concerned with getting my Walkman to work to notice that my friends were plotting a revolt against me for being wildly unhelpful at all times. Would I conduct a clandestine queer romance behind the backs of my peers, like Taissa and Van did? I’d like to think so, but to be honest, I’d probably spend more time crying and trying to find hallucinogenic mushrooms than connecting with my fellow survivors.



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