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‘Yellowstone’ Hunks: Our 9 Favorite Cowboys, Ranked

You won't want to miss this all-star line-up!

Paramount’s Yellowstone has become one of the most talked-about shows on television —and while the storytelling alone is enough to keep people interested, the hunky actors that bring the story to life certainly don’t hurt. From Kevin Costner’s John Dutton, the serious and respected patriarch of the family, all the way down to Jefferson White as Jimmy Hurdstrom, the ranch hand who proved his loyalty and earned the respect of his Yellowstone peers, the actors on this show make it worth a watch.

Luke Grimes, Cole Hauser and Kevin Costner
Luke Grimes, Cole Hauser and Kevin Costner on the set of Yellowstone

What is Yellowstone about?

Yellowstone is a neo-western drama on Paramount starring Kevin Costner, Luke Grimes, Kelly Reilly and Wes Bentley as the Dutton family, who own the largest ranch in Montana. The series takes us through their intricate family dynamic, the complexities of their relationships with one another, the complications that arise when it comes to land and border conflicts and much more. All the while, the storyline is intertwined with elements of romance and drama.

Yellowstone cast

While the main Yellowstone cast that make up the Dutton family are iconic in their own right, you can’t overlook supporting characters and actors like Cole Hauser’s Rip Wheeler, John Dutton’s right-hand-man. Each individual cast member brings something unique to the storyline, and we couldn’t imagine Yellowstone without each player.

(Read about our favorite Cole Hauser movies and TV shows here!)

Our Favorite Yellowstone actors

Ranking our favorite male Yellowstone actors is just about impossible. How could you put Rip Wheeler against Kayce Dutton? While no easy feat, here is an unofficial list of our favorite Yellowstone hunks!

MUST-READ: ‘Yellowstone’ Dads: See Your Favorite Cowboys With Their Adorable Kids

9. Wes Bentley as Jamie Dutton

Wes Bentley as Jamie Dutton
Wes Bentley as Jamie Dutton

While it’s tough to remove the actor from the character, we have to for the sake our our ranking’s integrity. Jamie Dutton is as controversial as they come, but Wes Bentley’s striking features and icy blue eyes ultimately put him on this list of Yellowstone hunks. The adopted son of John Dutton, we see over time the way his loyalty is tested (tests in which he ultimately fails), putting him at odds with the people he considered his family his entire life.

“I try not to judge my characters, but it’s been enough years that it’s hard not to at this point. It’s very hard to play him. And at the same time, I love it. I’m going to miss the challenge,” Bentley told The Hollywood Reporter. “Every single scene is literally the hardest scene I’ve ever had to do. Or it’s bringing in a new challenge. If the next thing is not the same challenge, I’m definitely going to miss it. 

8. Jefferson White as Jimmy Hurdstrom

Jefferson White as Jimmy
Jefferson White as Jimmy

White plays the fan-favorite Jimmy Hurdstrom. The ranch-hand had himself a tough start: Beginning as a thief involved with drugs, his grandfather convinced John Dutton to take on Jimmy as a ranch hand to help turn his life around. While his early days were no walk in the park, Jimmy proved himself to be loyal and hardworking.

As an actor, you never really know where you’re going to wind up,” he told Looper. “You kind of audition for everything and the jobs you get, you cling to like a barnacle for as long as you can. I feel so, so lucky to have wound up on Yellowstone. It’s the best job I’ve ever had, and it’s been an incredible journey over the course of four years. It has had such an incredible response from audiences. It’s a show that I love that also has found an audience that loves it, and that’s been a tremendous gift.”

7. Denim Richards as Colby

Denim Richards as Colby
Denim Richards as Colby

Colby is another ranch hand at the Yellowstone, often known for his comedic timing, sarcastic remarks and banter with his fellow ranch hands. But ultimately, he too is a loyal and hard worker.

“Since starring on Yellowstone, I have a greater appreciation for the entertainment industry, as challenging as it is to be a part of – and I have cried many nights out of frustration and sadness, but I continued on, blocked out the noise, and beautiful things happened,” Richards told PWR Magazine.

6. Forrie J. Smith as Lloyd Pierce

Forrie J. Smith as Lloyd
Forrie J. Smith as Lloyd

Forrie J. Smith plays LLoyd Pierce, the oldest ranch hand at the Yellowstone. He knows the inner workings of the ranch like the back of his hand, and fans love him for his wise and kind-hearted nature.

“I’m just a country kid from Montana on screen with an Academy Award winner,” he told Good Housekeeping. “This is a dream come true for me, or actually, any actor.”

5. Ian Bohen as Ryan

Ian Bohen as Ryan
Ian Bohen as Ryan

Ian Bohen plays Ryan, another ranch hand. He is a trusted member of the unit and additionally works as a livestock agent.

I wanted to be a cowboy since I was a little kid spending summers on my grandfather’s farm in Wisconsin,” he told Numéro Netherlands. “Getting to play one in the mountains of Montana and shooting this show has been a dream come true. It’s certainly a once-in-a-lifetime kind of opportunity. I don’t look at it like a job, it’s an entire lifestyle now. I’m very grateful.”

4. Ryan Bingham as Walker

Ryan Bingham as Walker
Ryan Bingham as Walker

Ryan Bingham plays bad boy-playboy-cowboy Walker in the Yellowstone series. Bingham has brought his real-life musical talent with him when playing his role on the hit show, as we often see him with a guitar in tow.

We’re always joking backstage and things like that,” Bingham told The Los Angeles Times. “It’s interesting how light and fun it is when we’re on set and we’re playing around. People are chasing around horses and things like that. But then when you see the show, it can be pretty dark.”

(Read about Ryan Bingham’s off-screen relationship with Hassie Harrison here!)

3. Kevin Costner as John Dutton

Kevin Costner as John Dutton
Kevin Costner as John Dutton

Kevin Costner leads this cast as John Dutton, the main man behind the Dutton Ranch. His character is fierce, controlled and intimidating, and he’s willing to go to great lengths to protect both his land and his family. His acting chops and classic good looks put him at #3 in our ranking.

(Click through for Kevin Costner’s 14 Sexiest Movie Roles.)

2. Luke Grimes as Kayce Dutton

Luke Grimes as Kayce Dutton
Luke Grimes as Kayce Dutton

Grimes plays the ultra-complex Kayce Dutton, son of John. His relationship with his father is complicated from the start of the first episode, but as time goes on, we see as their lives become more and more intertwined once again. Kayce is slightly brooding, mysterious, but can show his sensitive side when it comes to his wife, Monica and son, Tate.

“Kayce, I just feel like the thing that I love about him, and [what] I think people connect to is, he’s really resilient. There’s always something overpowering him. And he’s always able to just keep moving. And I just love that quality,” he told Screen Rant. “You get to play a big vulnerability with that, that not many characters in Yellowstone have. They’re heroic, and they say what they want, and they get what they want, and they do what they want — he has a bit of that too. But he’s also a raw nerve, and he’s vulnerable, and he feels things, and it’s really fun to play all that stuff.”

(Read about Luke Grimes and his new music here!)

1. Cole Hauser as Rip Wheeler

Cole Hauser as Rip Wheeler
Cole Hauser as Rip Wheeler

Our top spot for Yellowstone hunks comes as no surprise, as everyone loves a little bit of Rip! So what is it that makes his character so appealing to the masses? Is it the fact that he’s a secret softie, disguised as a rough-around-the-edges cowboy? The undying love he has for Beth, played by Kelly Reilly? Or his constant loyalty and will to go above and beyond for the people he cares for? If you ask us, it’s a bit of everything.

“His loyalty to John and to the family is everything to him,” Hauser told Parade. “Beth is part of John and John’s a part of Beth, and the ranch is where he lives and he’ll do anything for the family and for the ranch.”

(Click through for The Astonishing Evolution of ‘Yellowstone’ Star Cole Hauser From Geek To Gorgeous.)

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