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Reservation Dogs

TLO Rez Recaps: “BUSSIN’” (3.1) and “Maximus” (3.2)

It’s the third—and, sadly, final—season of Reservation Dogs, the critically lauded series by Sterlin Harjo that shows it’s truly a good day to be Indigenous!

Throughout the past season, the Rez Dogs and their crew have been put through the wringer, with exhilarating emotional highs and comically resilient lows. With the Dogs stretched passed their breaking point, only to be revived by the calming coastal water of California, they are finally back in Oklahoma… one person short.

Just like Reservation Dogs Seasons 1 & 2, I'll provide a brief recap of each episode for those who are (and are not) watching, giving the basics, and not spoiling anything too much for you.

Skoden? Stoodis!


RESERVATION DOGS -- “Maximus” -- Season 3, Episode 2 (Airs Wednesday, August 2nd) — Pictured: (l-r) D’Pharaoh Woon-A-Tai as Bear, Dallas Goldtooth as Spirit. CR: Shane Brown/FX.

Episode 1/2: “BUSSIN’” / “Maximus”

The Plot: After the celebration of life that concluded Season 2, we find the Rez Dogs and their aunt boarding a bus back to Oklahoma.

On the way, Elora (Devery Jacobs) makes amends with her aunt Teenie (Tamara Podemski), Cheese (Lane Factor) and Wille Jack (Paulina Alexis) eat dumpster donuts, and Bear (D'Pharaoh Woon-A-Tai) inadvertently begins a quest to find himself.

In the continuation of his story, Bear is on a mission to find his purpose in life, with his wise-cracking guide Spirit (Dallas Goldtooth) right beside him. After an altercation with a Spanish spirit that died in battle, we meet Maximus (Graham Greene) – a survivalist with UFO affinities. He and Bear develop a strange friendship with a wholly unexpected ending.  

The Review:  As the trip progresses on the bus to Oklahoma, I found comfort in the way Elora and Teenie interact, especially when she finds out her dad is around and hopefully they might meet. With all the familial troubles Elora has been through in this show, hopefully, she – much like Bear – finds what she’s looking for.

On the topic of Bear, he tires of Spirit’s “fortune cookie” wisdom. After departing from him, he meets Maximus. I won't provide any spoilers, but it takes the episode on a turn.

Though Bear’s machinations are somewhat different, he – much like Elora – is searching for a parental figure and something to hold on to, and following his stomach-churning rebirth from the “dead cat” metal-tubing into the Oklahoma wildness, hopefully, finds the peace he seeks, either from his estranged dad or another unseen figure.

Best Line: “And why should you care? I mean, it’s not like some of your ancestors stole this land and then forced us to live on reservations, right?” – Spirit (3.1)

Funniest Moment: At the bus station, a dumpster diver offers free donuts to whoever wants one. Without question, Cheese scarfs one down. (3.1)

Oklahoma Soundtrack Pick: F.J. McMahon – “Early Blue"


Follow Louis on Twitter at @LouisFowler and Instagram at @louisfowler78.

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