Four episodes deep into season four of Justified and we finally got what we wanted: Raylan and Boyd in a room together. It wasn’t under the best circumstances for either man, but satisfying nontheless. “Kin” moved along the Drew Thompson plot, introduced a ruthless new Dixie mafia character, and made things a whole lot more complicated in the Crowder camp. The show’s universe also expanded deep into the hills and in doing so, Raylan’s past. More on this week’s Justified after the jump.
Last week Raylan said goodbye to his flame Lindsey (and his $20,000). This week, still looking worse for wear, he meets his true love Winona at the clinic. They share some nice, brief moments as Raylan feels the baby kick and talks to her belly and all of that mushy stuff. But whatever scent of hope she may have gotten by him actually showing up didn’t last long. One phone call from the marshal’s office and he’s gone. As Raylan says, “The job is the job.”
Back at the office, FBI Agent Barkley (Stephen Tobolowsky) handed over the Drew Thompson files and Arlo was brought in to strike a deal. He claims he can give them Thompson, who can then help authorities take down Theo Tonin. Seeing Arlo escorted through the marshal’s office gave me chills. I’m not sure a guilty cop killer would be treated so gently in real life – regardless of what he knows.
Anyways, Raylan was obviously also disturbed by the sight of his father and it lit a fire under his ass to find Thompson before Arlo’s deal can go through. U.S. attorney Vasquez said it’ll take 24 hours for the deal to process. That’s a small time period to wrap up the manhunt and make sure Arlo “dies in jail.” Later in the episode though, Boyd pays Arlo’s attorney to drop the deal. Ah well.
Raylan calls upon his trusty sidekick, Constable Bob to move along the case. He may be a little on the physically inept side, but Bob and his “go bag” come through for Raylan again. Bob snatches up the brace-face from the first episode who begrudgingly leads Raylan to her stubborn stepdaddy, Josiah. Raylan’s patience has been thin lately, and Josiah is a scumbag patriarch reminiscent of Arlo, so it’s no surprise he goes right for the rough stuff.
After being dragged through the dirt a bit, Josiah squawks about Thompson living amongst the fabled hill people. Producer Graham Yost had mentioned that these backwoods folks would be introduced this season and I dunno about you guys, but I got goosebumps watching Raylan walking up through the deep woods. It was a true “hero’s journey” moment that not only led him closer to Thompson, but also helped him confront his troubled past.
Besides her grave outside of the Givens’ home and memories of Arlo beating her, we don’t know much about Frances, Raylan’s mother. She died When Raylan was young, but it’s plain to see he gets his pride and protective instincts from her, which were ingrained in her from the hill people. Due to their uncouth (and cannibalistic) reputation, Raylan kept that part of his heritage hidden. It sure saved his and Boyd’s asses though.
He’s told by Mary of the hill people that Thompson was there, but he’s moved on and Raylan’s looking on the “wrong hill.” It will be interesting to spend some more time up in the woods, especially after seeing the residents get the drop on two of eastern KY’s most cunning characters. It’s a dangerous place up there.
Wynn Duffy offered Boyd a flat sum to find Thompson, which isn’t exactly the business partnership Boyd was looking for, so he raises the bounty to half the heroin business in KY. Speaking of Wynn, holy shit does that guy not flinch easily. Not even when Dixie Mafia member Nick Augustin (Mike O’Malley) shoots Barkley in the head right next to him. The look on Wynn’s bloodstained face was priceless.
Colt took a massive risk going to Sheriff Shelby to ask about Ellen May. Turns out Shelby has a top-notch poker face, as he’s hiding Ellen May. This is the ticket to finally getting out of Boyd’s pocket and taking him down. His ass is grass though if Boyd finds out about his little house guest first.
Five episodes in and there are a lot of pieces in play. Each character seems to have some volatile secret and east Kentucky is set to blow. In our recent interview with Graham Yost, he stated that episode five would kick off the next “chunk” of the season. It certainly feels that way. With Billy and Lindsey behind us and different parties racing to locate Drew Thompson, the last half of season five is barreling along nicely.
- BEST ONE-LINER: As Mary tells Raylan that Bo and Arlo took all of Thompson’s cocaine, Raylan replies “That’s another reason we’re so proud of them.”
- BEST KILL: Augustin getting Barkley right between the eyes. Christ, that was cold. And pretty ballsy, since he’s an FBI agent and all.
- There’s a few great documentaries about the real hill people of eastern Kentucky. You can probably find some on YouTube if you’re so inclined.
- That was a great moment between Colt and Tim – two veterans on opposites sides of the law who obviously respect each other. I would’ve loved to hear their entire conversation.
- Speaking of Tim, his line about “being to young to be blowing the head off of Talibans” was tragic.
- When a man as serious as Boyd Crowder tells you to text him a smiley face, you know shit’s no joke.
- I love Mike O’Malley and I genuinely enjoyed his underrated sitcom Yes, Dear. He’s been kicking ass on Glee lately, but I stay away from that show, so this is the first time in a long time I’ve seen O’Malley without a baseball cap on.
- Should be interesting to see where the rest of Josiah Turns up.