Sex in the wilderness is fraught, and not just because of the teen hormones running wild. During the first season’s “Doomcoming” episode, Jackie convinced Travis to sleep with her in an act that led first to her ostracism and then, ultimately, her death. Now, as Travis and Natalie finally get together, they open up a doorway to something we can’t yet name.

As they have sex, Travis has visions of a beatific Lottie cradling him like the Pietà, and it’s during their copulation that a wind comes along and dumps snow onto Jackie’s pyre, stopping her from turning to ash. Or at least it appears to be a wind — given the way the gust is filmed, we can’t see who or what is propelling it.

The mysticism of “Yellowjackets” is still more theoretical than definable at this point, but in both the past and the present, we appear to be inching toward a revelation. In the 1996 timeline, Taissa, sleepwalking, sees a gaunt, suited man in the snow. In the present, despite trying to stay awake with copious amounts of coffee, Taissa hallucinates that her son, Sammy (Aiden Stoxx), has come to visit. Thinking he has gone missing, she calls her wife (Rukiya Bernard) only to crash their car in a possessed state after they learn that Sammy has been safely at school all along.

The scenes in the current time line also deepen our understanding of the conflict between Lottie and Natalie and clarify, at least little, the circumstances of Travis’s death. Lottie explains that she had her minions kidnap Natalie to rescue her from her own potential suicide and then confesses how she was involved in Travis’s demise.

In Lottie’s telling, Travis contacted her in a manic state with the idea that he needed to have a near death experience in order to “confront the darkness.” She says she reluctantly agreed to help him hang himself to the point of blacking out, but when he went limp, the button wouldn’t work to lower the noose. Natalie is understandably skeptical of this explanation, and what Lottie doesn’t share is that the night Travis died, the “darkness” — or whatever you want to call it — returned to her in the form of Laura Lee (Jane Widdop), who in Season 1 exploded as she flew an abandoned plane to search for help.

At first, the sight of Laura Lee is welcome for Lottie. But as the ghostly figure draws nearer, its skin rots and its eyes blacken. For all of Adult Lottie’s quasi-hippie composure and ramblings about ashwagandha, she may be plagued by the most horrifying visions of anyone.

Esther Zuckerman

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